June 29, 2020

Quarantine and the unknown

We had considered replacing the X5 once the warranty was up. In the end, we decided to put it off, partly due to all the uncertainty about everything. We knew it would be costly to maintain, but we own the vehicle and that straight six diesel engine is known for longevity. The kids and I set off on a mad dash to Vermont in the X5.

We left a week earlier than normal, knowing we would be expected to quarantine. We packed a giant cooler of food, for the road trip, and quarantine. It's not a great time to be travelling. We knew that much. But we had the plan worked out to get to VT without dealing without human contact.

bmw 35d engine malfunction

But that all came to an abrupt halt in rural central Virginia. We have AAA+ (100 mile towing), they towed the X5 to BMW of Charlottesville.  

public oyster charlottesville va  

If you have to be stuck somewhere, Charlottesville is a lovely place.

bmw of charlottesville va 

I secured a rental and we left town with all we could fit in it.  

popo chinese grandma 

We detoured to Popo's house (Kat's Mom). She was more than a little surprised and SO happy. She had no idea we were coming. I had to knock on the door and hope she would answer.

h-mart gaithersburg  


Gongon (Chinese Grandpa) has been in rehab for a couple months. The facility does not allow visitors inside due to covid19. But... we found that if you walk down a path to the side of the facility, we could wave to him through a window. He was also surprised and excited to see us, even though separated by glass. He's ready to go home. It was a great adventure.

We had spread good cheer to the grandparents, but the news from the BMW shop was not inspiring us to hang around any longer. The timing chain broke, pistons hit valves. Timing chains almost never break. But it did, so we made the final leg of our pilgrimage in the rental.

road trip cheeteo sandwich  

The rental had less room than the X5 and luggage rack. We had to pack things tightly. We soon realized we could not access our cooler, and all the road trip sandwich fillings we had brought along. We could've pulled over, unpacked everything just to access the sliced chicken and cheese etc. But we had a long day ahead of us already. We decided to make our lunch with what we could reach. I enjoyed a Whole Foods Queso and Cheeto sandwich.  

vermont near rutland  

Green Mountain State!

vt rt 15 

vermont rt 15

Vermont quarantine living room 

It's not a bad place to quarantine.  

facetime with the wife and equilibreum ipa  

Kat is still in Austin and we have a lot of puzzles to solve. But I have quarantine time to sit around and think, and think, and mull the past four months over a hundred times or more. What more could go wrong?  

June 22, 2020

Cerwin Vega sings again

Kat and I attended the final day of an estate sale last week. 

The large house was well concealed down an unmarked gravel road. It had been the home of a mad scientist type electrical engineer amateur radio operator. Each room was filled with switches, wires and piles of old radios. Also, no central heat or air. Wood burning stoves were the source of heat.  

phoenix house austin  


Switches and meters on all the walls... 


The last day of an estate sale is bargain day. They will often apply extreme discounts to get rid of stuff.

I found some vintage quack medicine and dentistry tools. I also rescued these old Cerwin Vega speakers.  

cerwin vega resotration  

My father's day project was to replace the red rubber foam ring around the woofers.  

cerwin vega refoam red rubber foam ring 

I hooked them up to my tube amp and started the Thorens turntable... they sound great! 

art corner 

For my birthday, the daughter made me a watercolor painting. The rooster on the bottom right. It is based on the rooster that lives on the family farm in Beaver Crossing Nebraska. I have several 8x10 frames, and mat board. But I needed a piece of glass cut.


The glass cutting station at our local hardware store has been closed. I found an 8x10 frame at the estate sale. I brought that home to harvest the glass. The rooster painting has been waiting for two months, for an 8x10 glass.

caroline wright artist solongo monkhooroi art 

The sexy Italian chair corner now features artwork by Caroline Wright, Solongo Monkhooroi, Rose Saenz and the Daughter.  

catnip cat weed 

I enjoy an IPA at 6 PM most days. I've started to share my daily Happy Hour with the cats. Mr. Kreamer is especially enthusiastic about catnip.  

June 16, 2020

Wall of Sound replaced by Red Italian

My collection of vintage Hi-Fi speakers had become too great to store at the top of the stairs. It just was not a good look. I moved them down to the garage and replaced them with this sexy red Italian. 

vintage hi-fi speaker collection 

red italian chair

menards shirt for runza night nebraska

We improved our Runza skills. I always wear my Menards shirt when I make Runza. 

kreamer the caat high on catnip 

I've been giving Mr Kreamer a bit of catnip for HH. He goes a bit wild. I'm an enabler. 

texas red wine  

Almost 100F out, but we managed to enjoy another night of patio wines.  


Porsche 928 

I've never owned a Porsche 928. It's the sort of thing that keeps one up at night.  

sculpture by paul schuster austin tx artist

I installed some solar LED landscape lighting for the sculpture above. The new iPhone 11pro is crazy good at night photography.  

sculptor paul schuster austin tx 

paul schuster austin tx art sculpture metal 

rudys bbq brisket  

Rudy's brisket for lunch yesterday was a nice treat.  




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