Day 17, Sabbatical Part Deux

It’s hard to take six weeks off. Not as hard as it used to be, but still hard. I have commitments, and today I popped up for a bit to work on some. I was accepted to speak at the Rocky Mountain Oracle User Group Training Days conference later this month. I did some prep before the break, but I need to do a bit more before I speak.

Today is prep day, going over my talk, submitting a deck, and working through some of the timing, and handling payments for SQLServerCentral. It’s a big deal to move these for a month to someone else, so I’m just doing them. Don’t worry, I’m taking a couple extra days at the end of sabbatical to make up for this.

After about 4 hours of misc work work, I took a break for lunch and then started on guitar. Trying to work through two songs today: Ain’t No Sunshine (easy) and “House of the Rising Sun” (easy, but tough fingerpicking). I got them outlined a bit, and practiced more of Wonderful Tonight, which is tricky.

That occupied a good portion of the day, which was ugly outside. It was 5F when I got up and got worse. This is my return trip from the gym. Weightlifting today, getting back on track.

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Chilly outside.

I came home to cook and then do a bit more Marie Kondo’ing. I tackled some of the kitchen tonight, trying to clean up the pantry.

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It looks crowded, but I found plenty to get rid of, including some cans that expired in 202-2017. Maybe they’re still good, but not taking chances, and some of them are things we won’t eat anymore.

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Not the stuff I wanted to be cleaning, but it worked out well for tonight. Now off to a little more guitar work, which is becoming the focus of my time off.

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Day 16, Sabbatical Part Deux

Yesterday was a quiet day. I could say that it’s recovering from vacation, but I really felt fine. The weekend in Vegas with family was great, with lots of laughs, too much indulgence, and a few losses, but not too bad. A good time, and everyone would like to go back again next year.

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I came home to 55F temps at the airport Sunday night around 8. Supposedly it was over 70F (21C) during the day and records were set. I woke up to something less than that. We went out and did chores, and while driving to breakfast (we treated ourselves), it was 16F (-9C).

No snow, as we went out early (815), and we were trying to beat it. While my wife got grain ready, I loaded up a bale in a net. These slow feeding nets work great in bad weather.

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An hour later, it was coming down. We had to get out there and blanket horses. Not hard, but hard work. And it takes time, as we have 20 on the property. We want to get it done quickly, before they get too covered with snow and wet, just like humans. It’s supposed to get down to single digits tonight.

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My daughter’s horse was sporting a new look, and I sent her a picture.

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I filled water while my wife did blankets, and after about 2 hours, we were done with all chores and prep for the storm.

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From there, we went for breakfast, since we didn’t get a lot of groceries the night before after landing. We got home, and I spent about 2 1/2 hours practicing guitar. It was a good time for me, and I worked on “Wonderful Tonight” for a good portion of time.

Late afternoon was yoga, then back home where my wife and I watched a little of “This is Us”. My sister in law told us about the show, and we watched the first few episodes. Great writing and enjoyable.

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Day 14 Sabbatical, Part Deux

A full day planned, starting with 90 minutes of guitar. Working on “Everybody Hurts” along with some exercises and a little blues practice. It was a nice time, and I’m thinking that most of this sabbatical is going to be about guitar, with a few other things thrown in.

Afterwards, I went outside to get a little work done. I started with the winch. After machining new holes and ensuring I had hardware, I mounted it on the building.

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It’s in a good spot, but I discovered a few other issues, which I wasn’t sure how to solve. First, the cable up there is 1/4” cable. The winch has 3/16”, which isn’t a lot different, but it is different. I removed the electric winch cable and found a 1/4” hole, or close to it, but it’s too narrow to get the old cable in.

I tried a few ways, including using the Dremel to saw off a clean edge. I could try to widen the hole, but I have a different issue, which is the drum is really small on the electric winch for 1/4” cable. That likely would be an issue. Perhaps the better solution is to connect to two cables together, but I need to do that up high, likely somewhere in the 22’ range, which means renting a hoist. It’s an interesting problem, and one for another day.

My wife has other issues with repairs, so I moved on to work with the tack room. The old lights are dying, likely with blown ballasts, but rewiring those is a hassle. It’s also likely not as efficient as getting something else. I did find a nice fixture on Amazon for $25, which is less than a new ballast for these lights.

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I replaced one today and my wife liked it, so I’ll order another and replace the second one next week.

Then I went to do some feeder fixing. I cut new wood, but had some issues because some of the screws in this feeder are phillips, some are square, and I didn’t have the right bit. I decided to leave things along and just redrill some holes for a temp fix. Again, this seems like a next week project.

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I have a few to fix, so I’ll measure some items while I’m out there, and then fix them better when the weather clears up. Today was cold, frigid really, with 10-20mph winds and a 25F temp. I retreated indoors.

I’m publishing early, with the intent to play a little more guitar and ride the indoor cycle today for exercise. Then it’s time to get on a plane.

Yes, I’m traveling on sabbatical, but not for work. My wife wants to celebrate this birthday in Las Vegas, so we’re heading out tonight. I got practice covered, and her sisters and our sons are meeting us out there for the weekend, so this will be a fun, relaxing weekend.

We’ll see what I can pick back up with on Monday. Halfway done, and it’s been fun and relaxing. Not getting as much done as I’d like, but I’m working through things.

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