Sunday, October 12, 2008

Sailor escapes a ride to the top of the boiler (mostly)

Another day, another dollar, another tube leak. I got the day shift this time, which was nice, but thought I was going to have to ride the xxxxxxxxxx (note: x's replacing a brandname ) up to the leak to take pictures, and acess the situation and to put in my two cents as to what would be the best way to repair the boiler.

The xxxxxxxxxx is a platform with an air motor on each end that climbs a steel cable. Two guys ride it, one running each motor. Mostly, I don't mind heights, but this thing gives me the willies. Not only are you up high, but the whole thing swings back and forth some. If the operators aren't watching, one motor will run a little faster the the other one, and one end will rise or fall faster than the other. It is noisy in the boiler, and hard to communicate, and if you walk towards the middle to yell at each other, it wobbles all around. When they got it ready, Jake the Welder and I went into the boiler, down at the bottom with safety harness' on. We climbed onto the platform and started up for a test run.

As you start up, the platform bangs against the sloped bottom of the boiler, throwing you off balance. The platform begins to climb the slope, and we each stick a foot out between the handrails to brace us back to vertical. My motor didn't seem to be working as well as Jake's motor, and when we got to the top of the slope, up the the side wall we stopped to assess the situation. Jake wanted to look at my motor, but the handrails are really narrow, and neither Jake or I am very wispy. So Jake climbed up onto the handrails, and I crawled between his legs and went to the other side, amid a lot of rocking and wobbling. We determined that my motor just wasn't up to the trip and we went down again. It was quitting time, and I went home before the motor was replaced. Whew.

Friday, October 10, 2008

A Snug Night

Tonight the house was empty, and I wandered around for a while, looking for Annie. There was a chicken in the oven, baking, and that was pretty inviting. Finally I found her in the back yard, hauling the houseplants towards the porch. We haven't been watching the news too closely, and it is supposed to blow/rain/snow for the next few days. We dragged all of the plants in the house, then fighting a biting wind, got the tomatoes covered with plastic and old blankets, ready for the storm.

Now we are having a nice evening. We are both tired, fed, warm and snug in the house. Bed time is just around the corner, and even the fact that I have to work on a tube leak tomorrow doesn't dispel the cheer.

I think I will wish you all a good night, add a little wood to the fire, and maybe top off the wood pile in the house and head for bed. Sleep well, and wake. :)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Alabama Music Videos

These songs have been favorites of mine for a long time, and I found the MTV video clips tonight. I hope you like them too. They are a little dated, but then so am I.