Friday, August 31, 2007

At Murray & Jill's

We moved everything we own to Saskatoon yesterday. Marilyn & I (and George) left home early early and drove the bus & truck to the Meath Park junction. Then we took the truck to Candle Lake to pick up the boat. We had a visit with Larry Watts on the way into town, loaded the boat without incident and took me back to the bus. Then Marilyn left me with George for the day while she went into PA.

I fixed a windshield bruise with these neat kits you can get from Permatex. Then I spent the day writing outlines for UFA and training material for CAAR. In the afternoon I moved the bus south of PA stopping on the way through town to reload the fresh water. We have never put our farm water in the tanks - often the water sits for an extended period of time so I like to pick up chlorinated water. Karla caught up with me around 4:30 and we waited until Marilyn got off work before leaving for Saskatoon.

We arrived at Murray & Jill's around 8:00. Jill escorted us to our parking spot in the bin yard, next to their trailer. I got busy and set up the satellite dish with the new Align-a-Site. It sure works great. We wouldn't have got a signal here without it - there is a row of tall trees along the south side of the yard that I would have expected to be too high to shoot over. As it turns out we are able to shoot over them by putting the dish at the front of the bus but from that position we are also shooting over the rear corner of the bus. Again I wouldn't have been sure we would clear it without the assurance of the siting tool.

We've got an old IBM laptop that Marilyn is going to use but it didn't have network capability. Last night I fought with it until after midnight and wasn't able to get connected to the internet. I could get a connection inside the bus on our local net but couldn't connect to the router. It has windoze 98 on it so that was causing me some grief because it has been a long time since I have put up with that particular operating system.

This morning I had an early breakfast meeting with Blaine Canitz & Al McDougald to discuss the IDEA exec director contract that I have just taken over. Blaine was the past exec director and Alan was his predecessor. We had a great visit covering a wide range of topics including IDEA and then I went to do a bit of shopping before coming back out here. I looked at Staples for a headset that I could use for Skype and instead found a $3 adapter that lets me use an earbud that I had already so I splurged and bought a network card for Marilyn's laptop. Then I came back to the bus, plugged the card into the laptop and she was on the internet in under 10 minutes. We had to bugger around a bit with some settings to get her completely connected and she still has some kind of a bug with Java or ActiveX so I need to do a little more work but she is able to connect to SIAST and get her email which is all she ever wanted to do anyway. Life is good.

I even placed a Skype call to mother which was a bit frustrating for both of us but I think it will be a workable solution. It may not be an ideal solution but Mexican phones aren't an ideal solution either so getting connected in any fashion is better than not being able to connect at all. The big problem with Mexican connectivity is that - up until now - we have had to go find a public payphone in order to phone home. Then if there is no answer we have to go back to the phone. Sometimes the phones don't work, some of them are in less than ideal locations, you have to buy a card to use the phone which has it own set of quirks, in short its just a royal PITA. Now we will be able to pick up the phone in the bus in the evening and call home at our leisure.

Tonight we are off to the Huskie season opener. RJ won't be playing so we'll maybe get to spend some time with him. Blaine has Chamber of Commerce tickets to a pre-game tailgate party and to the game so we are meeting them for that.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Getting started

We leave tomorrow for Prince Albert and then Saskatoon. We'll be staying at Murray & Jill's and attending the Husky season opener Friday night. I'm going out to Alberta Tuesday with the boat and stopping in Medicine Hat on the way home to spend some time with Marlan. We'll be home "sometime".