Sunday, December 20, 2009

Santa Barbara

We're pretty remote here, despite being less than 10 miles away from Santa Barbara.

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Fortunately we had been forewarned so we knew enough to disconnect the micro-truck before starting up the winding, switchback filled trail to the gatehouse. I wondered if we would be able to see through the trees to get a satellite signal but as you can see we are in a clearing in the middle of a forest. I had some serious difficulty last night trying to get the internet satellite online and finally had to give up. I'm still not 100% sure the problem is fixed but I was able to get online this morning. I had an excellent signal strength but there is a step in the setup where the Hughes satellite checks to see if my transmissions might interfere with other transmissions (called "cross-pol")and I just couldn't get past that step. Normally its no problem but this time it was a major problem & the "solution" eventually was for me to reduce the accuracy of my aiming. When I had an 80+ signal strength I simply couldn't get past the cross-pol step but when I pointed a little off the satellite so that my signal was in the low 70's then I was able to pass cross-pol.

We arrived here close to a week ago, on the 18th, but neither of us has been very active for the past week. Marilyn caught a bad cold about 2 weeks ago now and of course she shared it with me. I managed to stay clean until last weekend but it has hit me hard this week. We both felt good enough yesterday to make a trip into Santa Barbara but that pretty well played us out. We did manage to find a small turkey yesterday so the trip was worthwhile. The turk is in the oven right now - today will be our turkey day. We're both more in love with turkey leftovers than we are with the first time round turkey so we decided we would arrange it so we have leftovers for Christmas day.

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