Saturday, February 05, 2011

Awww -- Rain, Man!

Well, that's two winter storms in a row: we get a bit of snow but mostly what falls is rain, or even freezing rain. We got slammed Tuesday night and into Wednesday with ice, and we woke up to rain and near-freezing temperatures -- and in the words of long-time reader Greg (in the context of MTB racing), "I'd rather it be 25 and snowing than 35 and raining." Amen to that!

Tomorrow is the Superbowl of Chili, and I think we'll be doing directly there instead of our usual pre-chili outdoor workout fun.

So anyway, instead of doing anything outside today, I'm playing on the computer, posting more scanned photos and Browsing Around The Online... seems like something's hanging up in the intertubes though, several sites are down or very slow. Ping returns "packet filtered" errors, traceroute says "no reply" partway through the "route" (?); sure I wish I knew what these things meant but it was fun pushing the buttons. Meantime, it looks like maybe some intermediate connection is either down or slow -- is a common factor -- or something is blocking something, and that something might be an ad company since many of the websites that are hanging have ads in them. Or maybe it's the ice storm? Or something on my machine?

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Black Toe Shuffle

Good weekend, and now I'm doing some post-breakfast blogging from the basement of the Haymarket Cafe.  Anne's browsing at the local bookstore, and Doug and Lori just left, maybe to do some window shopping in town but essentially heading home.  We were all so beat from the previous two days of skiing that even snowshoeing sounded too strenuous and we're done.

Irony #1: We were going to take my car because of the 4-wheel drive and the extra room, but I had some sudden repairs that needed making -- windshield wiper broke, and one headlight blew out, the day before we left -- and since we had to dig out of the snowstorm before leaving, I tried to get my car worked on.  Snowstorm, garage is understaffed, no point in waiting for them to get to my car so we took Anne's.  Fast forward about an hour into the drive, and I get a call: the car is done and I can pick it up any time...

Irony #2: Driving for another hour or so, I get another call.  This time it's Nestors, and my XC ski boots, ordered weeks before, then recalled, then re-ordered -- the boots were supposed to be in early last week, but I was forced to pack my old boots (which cause my toenails to bruise and turn black) because the new ones never arrived -- well, they just arrived, and I could pick them up any time...

We had an awesome time on the trails though.  On Friday we hit a place called Northfield XC Ski Center, which is really a power company's hydroelectric pumped-storage reservoir, but they do a good job, moonlighting as a park.  The trails were for the most part fairly tame, but aerobically strenuous; we did about 6 miles over three or four hours of skiing (actual moving time was 1:25).  Dinner and drinks that night, and we met Ben and his girlfriend in town, but we were all so tired that the night ended early.

Yesterday we hit a place called Stump Sprouts XC Ski Center.  This place was a bit smaller, and a bit more rustic (ie less an afterthought at an industrial site than a real farm-and-forest location), more real, and more technical: we only got in about four miles in the same amount of time, but had a lot more thrills on their twisty rolling trails -- ascents! descents! turns! crashes!  Good times were had.  We were a little more spry afterward, and had a lighter dinner that night, and that  meant that last night was more of a nightlife blowout than Thursday or Friday.  Ben and and a bunch of his friends, the local brewpub, a late night, maybe that was the real reason this morning was a bit rough?