bits and pieces of news

So the National Hurricane Center just issued their predictions for this season. As expected, they forecast it will be an above average season in terms of the number of storms and the intensity of those. They make the same prediction every year. I guess the logic is that people will be better prepared if they think it’s going to be a bad year so why not predict doom and gloom. You might think they’d worry just a bit about their credibility after missing predictions year after year but I guess they just assume people will forget prior year predictions. Woooolf.

As the garden matures this season, some goods and some bads. Beans, cucumbers, and peppers are pumping out record numbers. Looks like the egg plant bushes will likewise blow up. But the squash has been a disappointment and a puzzle. I’ve never grown better looking bushes, loaded with blossoms. But very low squash production. No insect damage, no apparent nematode damage so the only thing I can imagine is that some critical element is missing in the soil. I need to do some research. We’re getting a few zucchini but nothing like you’d expect from such beautiful plants. The tomatoes are shaping up to be another mystery. Beautiful bushes with loads and loads of green tomatoes but they seem to be rotting or being eaten on the vines. No sign of any bugs but something weird is going on for sure. Maybe it’s the same phenomena that’s nailing the squash. One thing I’m going to try is sprinkling some Epson Salts around a few of the plants and see what happens. If I have some kind of trace metal deficiency, that could help.

Nancy finally finished the repair job on Andrew’s quilt. It was such a disaster I couldn’t imagine ever taking on the job but she stuck with it and completed it this week with a new binding. It’s incredible. I’m jaded on seeing new quilts and take her ability for granted but this one set me back a peg. It was truly a rag that was worn out and torn up from romping with the dogs for years but was something near and dear to Andrew. Went it arrived, I wrote it off as an impossible request but Nancy thought she could do something with it. I contacted Andrew and told him it was a really big job and was going to take quite some time and, most importantly, not to bug his Aunt Nancy. To his credit, he took my advice to heart and a few months later, it’s finished. I’d love to see the faces when the package is opened and the quilt spread out.

I’ve mentioned that our dial-up internet hiccupped last February. We’ve been getting along ok just hitting an occasional wi-fi spot and put off doing anything until we could check out the ipad with 3G communications. Tom brought one by last week and sadly out here in the jungle we don’t have 3G coverage. It did provide internet access but at dial-up speed. So that sets the decision process back a bit – do we invest in the ipad – probably $700/$800 when all is said and done – and live with dial up speeds or go to one of the satellite internet providers? It’s $30/month for slow speed vs $60/month for higher speed – not blinding higher, but maybe 10 X dial-up speed. Or $0/month for an occasional trip to the library or other wi-fi hot spot. Personally I’m fine with an occasional trip to civilization but my bride is leaning toward the satellite.

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