Saturday Work Party

Saturday, July 24, 2010

A work party should materialize at any moment but I’m prepared.  The blueberry muffins are cooling on a rack in the kitchen.  I’ve got making them, down to a science.

A little boy was here yesterday who made us all laugh in the cove.  As he played in the water with his older brother he suddenly came back to the sand and announced that he’d better get out of the water now so he wouldn’t get hypotheoria.  Later he reported after hiking the north trail that he had planned to take one of the gull chicks back to the house and then let it go.  His mom explained that it was probably just as well he hadn’t.  This kid was fearless.  My friends hiked that trail and were intimidated enough by the mommy gull to turn around and come back.  Tony never did see the end of it.

David and Tony left with the work party consisting of Cyndy, Ann and Greg and Rick Mayo.  Actually, Ann and Greg spent the night in the cove on their boat and left a little earlier with their dog Lara because the wind was picking up and another storm threatening, unfortunately missing lunch consisting of France’s tomato tart, fresh squeezed lemonade and lobster salad on fresh greens from the garden.

We cleared the sumac that had grown up in front of the chair where you can make a cell phone call with the best reception on top of the island, and sip a martini, to once again allow a spectacular view of the shore and the ocean to the east.  It will be a nice alternative to watch the sun rise there, to sitting on the front porch.

Rick and Greg went to work with the pulley I’d discovered under the platform at the top of the tram, to mount it on top of the platform and keep the cable from cutting into the wood of the deck.  They did a nice job and there’s no reason it shouldn’t make the tram run better, but we haven’t tested it yet.

Jim couldn’t make it so we must postpone reattaching the ground for the lightning rod at the top of the light to the side of the tower until next weekend.  If we made it through the lightning and tornado that hit on Wednesday night without it, I’m confident that all is well.  But there will be questions for the Coast Guard when they come on the 30th.  Why didn’t the two modern lights mounted outside on the upper catwalk kick in as they were supposed to when we lost power?  And why doesn’t the foghorn go off consistently when there is fog?  I look forward to their arrival.  Now that we know when it will happen, there will be no excuses not to have fresh batteries in the camera.

Hi Dave and company,

I’m happy to wait until the 30th for the Coast Guard to come to check why the backup battery-operated lights didn’t kick in last Wednesday night when we lost power for a few hours, but I didn’t think it was such a good idea to wait until then for them to check why the foghorn stopped working this afternoon when the fog rolled in once again.  It was functioning this morning.

I gave a call to Steve, the duty officer at the Coast Guard and told him about my concern.  He said one fourth of his unit had been called down to The Gulf to deal with the oil spill; possibly they’d be able to come on Monday.  He was on the road as we spoke.  I asked if there was anything I could do and he explained how to open a box in their room in the Whistle House with their monitoring equipment in it.  The only thing he would allow me to do was to unscrew the cover to this particular box and in the upper left corner were two reset buttons, one for the foghorn and the other for something related to it.  He said I could press those.

I had to go back to the north side of the house to call him back because you can’t get phone reception in the Whistle House.  First I pressed one button, then the other, and then both at the same time.  I heard some electronic clicking but nothing else.  I waited for a short time and then pressed both again at the same time for a full three seconds.  The horn blasted twice but not again.  He said he’d try to come on Monday.

A little while later, the horn started working again like it always has.  I called Steve back and we were both relieved.  Probably the power outage on Wednesday required that the timer be reset after the power came back.  Whatever the reason, we’re functioning again as we’re supposed to and the rest will have to wait until their visit on Friday.

Best regards,

Michael

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