Hi All,

Fortune cookie say; Novel that gets wet becomes Pulp Fiction.

Headline; Maryland cancelled their Polar Bear outdoor event due to sub freezing temps.

Hope you all had great holidays!  Ours was enjoyable, we did manage to make it feel like a special season by taking a bit of time off and attending a few get togethers.  My Dad was supposed to come visit but that trip got rescheduled due to the weather.  Since leaving ABQ I have had much less to talk about weather wise.  I know this winter has been odd for many of you.  Our taste of strangeness was that the Sun before Christmas, it was 75 deg here (a record high).  Those across the northern stretch of the country, it was cold early and has been very cold for quite some time.  My Dad commented that they have had so much snow it is Houghton like.  Houghton is the town where Mich Tech (MTU) is located in the Upper Peninsula of Mich, MTU is the alma mater of Kara and I.  There was one winter while I was at MTU, we got 300 inches of snow and that was NOT a record.  My Mom also has the quote of the month regarding the weather in Cheboygan MI, “it was a relief when it warmed up to 5 deg”.

Excellent timing on the part of Accuweather.com.  They did an article on “The 10 Snowiest Colleges in the US”.  Some of you have been to MTU, others
have only heard us talk about the place.  If you read the article below, note the difference between numbers 1 and 2.

http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/the-10-snowiest-colleges-acros/22129751

One further story regarding MTU, another headline I bumped into which you might find interesting / humorous:

http://www.engadget.com/2014/01/03/searching-twitter-for-time-travelers/?ncid=rss_truncated

We did manage to go golfing the day before the record warm day and it was very nice out.  We had to try out the new(er) golf clubs Kara got.  One of our many good friends, Gerrie, whom, 18 years ago, hosted our wedding is a great connection for us to acquire golf equipment.  Otherwise the weather here has been quite cold, the day I compiled this was a day the base closed and we were home almost all day.

There recently was weirdness with our car.  Upon returning to VA after visiting NH for a week, I went out to start the car.  The battery was near dead, the car would not start.  I was not surprised, the car and battery was more than old enough for such an event to be due.  So we went and bought and installed a new battery all seeming to be just fine.  We drove to work the next morning, no issues.  Kara later that day had to travel across base without me.  She called me and said the car was now possessed, the door ajar alarm would go off and the interior light flash while driving.  When I next rode in the car it did similar for me.  We had not yet connected all the dots having headed out to eat, we locked the car to go inside the restaurant.  We happened to sit somewhere we could see the car and I noticed the car alarm going off for no reason.  It finally clicked that likely one of the door switches was failing causing false door open signals, alarm going off and hence likely explaining why the battery had died while we were gone, we had locked the doors.  I pictured our car in the garage with us gone for a week, the alarm occasionally going off, the neighbor really appreciating the noise.  Call it “pay backs” for her being so inconsiderate but that’s a different story.  I looked to see if I could find the door switch to fix it but it is internal to the door so I called to make an appointment to get it fixed telling them “our car is possessed”.  After a bit of silence on the other end of the phone, I explained further.  We left the car there for 2 days with the car never miss behaving nor has it since.  When I picked the car up I told them we appreciated the exorcism. 

At one restaurant we eat out at occasionally, they provide biscuits for which we like to use butter.  They are happy to provide butter but, often, it is near frozen.  So much to Kara’s consternation, I found an efficient way to thaw said butter by placing it in warm body locations all while in public.  Recently this backfired with the butter container springing a leak for which I needed assistance to clean up said leak because the location was not wholly visible which of course caused even more appreciation on Kara’s part.  Come on now, it was only an arm pit.

Kara is still on several email lists from her old employment / field.  She ecently got the below message … You think it’s cold where you are?  Try this place…

From: NASA Science News
[mailto:noreply@nasascience.org
Subject: The Coldest Place on Earth

NASA Science News for Dec. 10, 2013

Earth-orbiting satellites have found the coldest place on Earth. It’s a group of hollows in Antarctica where temperatures can dip below minus 133.6 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 92 degrees Celsius) on a clear winter night. 

FULL STORY:
http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2013/09dec_coldspot/

Newsletter picture: While visiting my home town of Cheboygan
MI, we were at a beach to view the scenery.  This beach
is broad side to a bridge with only water in between the two
locations and is approximately 20 miles distant.
 This bridge is somewhat famous for, depending how you
measure, being the longest suspension bridge in the world
for quite some time.  Now days, according to
wikipedia is #16 in length, being approximately 5 miles long
from land to land.  Driving across the bridge can be
interesting, with the center lanes being metal mesh and
quite visually transparent when moving along at 40+
mph.  As you can see in the picture, at least for a
short time Mich had its own bridge to nowhere (or so it
appeared).

 

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