Praetorium Honoris

Pages

Monday, January 4, 2021

“A happy family is but an earlier heaven.” *

 It's been a busy few weeks around Rancho Juvat, but busy is good.  "Idle hands...." doncha' know?

Unfortunately, they're coming to a close and Casa Juvat will be much quieter.  Little J and DIL will be departing our AOR tomorrow to travel to Sodom on the Potomac.  Not to do anything official, mind you, in fact they are prohibited from visiting the headquarters because the District is in lock down.  No, they're going to sit in a hotel room until their flight leaves on the 11th.  But, they can't remain here either because...rules!

YGBSM!  Gummint at its most brilliant.  

But, it has been fun having them around.  The wine closet took a bit of a hit, but it was well spent. It did an excellent job of lubricating the tongue, reviving long forgotten memories and enhancing the stories thereof.  It is amazing what children remember about their childhood vs what their parents remember about it.


 

Yeah...Good times.

Mrs J and I had 5 "pods" of family visit over the past couple of weeks.  Mrs J and I being the first.  Second to arrive were Little J and DIL about 10 days prior to Christmas.  Third, was MBD and SIL and their dogs, Tallulah and Piper.  

Piper (l) Tallulah (r)

 
Dog fur rug

My sister, lives on our property, so she was around quite a bit, as the holidays shut down the HEB were she works. Finally, my Niece and her family arrived for a visit from Austin yesterday.  Clair is 4 and Wyatt is 2 1/2.  They fill in as my "grandkids" as I am their great uncle.

Great Uncle juvat...Has a certain ring to it.

They were wrapped up with their father's family over Christmas, but they managed to visit for a few hours yesterday.

Child proof packaging on a package for a child. Gummint at its most brilliant!

 

I had forgotten how much energy a two year old has and how much gets sucked out of you.  But...It was a great time.  I particularly liked the reaction Wyatt had to the gift Santa left him.  A walking, roaring, teeth gnashing T-Rex.  His in-car entertainment device (a hot wheels car) promptly went into the T-Rex's mouth followed by peels of laughter from the little guy.

Kids!  They keep the old heart young!

On the weather front, it's been in the high 60's low 70's until New Year's Eve when our first winter storm blew through.

Wind chill was in the teens and after about 2" of rain, it finally turned into some cold, white  stuff.  I vaguely remember it from Korea being called "Snow".


All I know about it is, it turns Texas Drivers into lunatics.  It's either 2 mph or 80 mph and frequently it's one car/truck cycling between the two limits at record pace.  

We stayed on the property.  Even then things got exciting.  Walked to the barn to feed the horses.  Just enough snow on the ground to stick to my shoes, but not enough to notice.  Stepped on to the concrete floor of the tack room and did a fabulous imitation of Brian Boitano across the floor.  Fortunately, I avoided contact between my face and the floor with a strategic placement of my bottom on a nearby hay bale.  The Horses gave me an 8 for the pirouette.

The ground was too warm for the snow to remain very long, but that and the Rain did a bit of a number on the septic.  The construction foreman said it's just the topsoil compressing around it and is sending more dirt out today.



Made some progress on Operation "Everyone move one house clockwise".  The replacement flooring has been delivered and is now "acclimating" in our old house, soon to be my sister's new house.  Installation will begin next Monday and should take two weeks.  Once she moves in, phase 3 will begin, the renovation of her current cottage.  God willing and the creek don't rise, that will be complete before DIL returns in March with the Grand Dog "Tex".  Seems Hong Kong will put him in 6 month quarantine if he PCS's from Kuwait to Hong Kong.  However, if he PCS's from the US he's good to go from the start.

Once again, Gummint at its most brilliant (GAIMB? Sarge?) 

No, it's not a Stearman, just thought it was a great photo!
Source

 

Finally, I was scheduled to take my Stearman ride Saturday.  However...WX CNX.  Too cold and too windy.  So,  the flight will be rescheduled shortly, film to follow. Windy I understand.  Took me a second on the too cold.  It was about 35,  if the Stearman flew at 90 knots, the wind chill would make it about 14.  Given the standard temperature lapse rate of 3.5o F/1000', flying even a thousand feet above the ground would make it even cooler.  But not as cool as the Ardennes in 1944.  Which I'm sure we'll find out more about soon.

Hope all is well with all y'all. Never give up, never surrender!  

*Quote attributed to George Bernard Shaw

45 comments:

  1. Good times, indeed.
    Texans and snow - went to the Cotton Bowl in the 70's. The temp on the day of arrival was mid-60's. A couple days later it dropped to 30 and started snowing. Where I flew in from was in the middle of a month long cold snap with daytime highs around 5 below, and I was working afternoons in a food warehouse freezer, so 30 degrees was jacket weather - got the strangest looks from the locals. One person in our travel group saw a police car going about 5 mph on an overpass, when it started sliding. The cop opened the door and jumped out.
    Frank

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Frank,
      I arrived back from Korea in December. Flew into Las Vegas where my folks lived. It was about 30 when I arrived at McCarran I had a light jacket on and, I suspect, I got the same looks from folks all bundled up. Kunsan, being on the Yellow Sea the other side of which is known as Siberia, could get rather chilly so I was similarly acclimated. Disappears rather fast however.
      I suspect the police car ran into black ice on the overpass. Jumping out might have been the wiser choice than relying on the strength of its edge barriers. There's not much else you can do other than ride it out. I've experienced it a few times, hence my desire to "remain on property".
      Thanks.

      Delete
    2. Jumping out, if the car was going faster, might make sense...but creeping along at 5 mph????
      Stuff wasn't made of chinesium back then :)
      Frank

      Delete
    3. Frank,
      I suppose so. Unless it was headed down hill.

      Sure does seem to be quite a lot of chinesium in use nowadays, doesn't it?

      Delete
    4. On the other hand, cars today are designed to crush all the exterior bits without crushing the interior bits. So...

      Delete
    5. There is that. And as long as your insurance is paid up....

      Delete
  2. My sister and I did find out that our memories of childhood events are indeed different from those memories of our parents.
    Also my sister's memories and mine differ about the same event.

    I'm thinking that speaking "Great Uncle juvat" out loud does have a certain ring, and I'm thinking that if you speak it sonorously and in the third person, the effect will be so much better.
    "Great Uncle juvat thinks that it's time to uncork another bottle."

    Clockwise. Hmm. That does mark one as being of a certain age.

    I hear tapping from the basement. That means my wife is putting the lid back on a paint can, and the medicine cabinet mirror door is that much close to being done.

    Home stuff is never exactly done.

    I was stationed in Norfolk during the seventies and saw much the same driving reaction to one of the very rare snowfalls that you described in your area.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have now practiced it and it does have a much better sound. Thanks for the suggestion!

      Yeah, "Clockwise" does date me a bit. I wonder how modern fighter pilots point out bogeys. Inquiring minds want to know.

      Amen on the Home stuff never exactly done! Mrs J seems to think up new projects at the 85% completion point of the current one. Although the Murphy Bed project is stuck at the 50% point. Going to have to go with pneumatic lift assists, I think.

      I think that driving reaction is pretty common in any area south of the westward extended Mason-Dixon line and is not completely absent north of it, except maybe Alaska.

      Delete
    2. Well, from the watch that LUSH's husband has, as been shown by OAFS, they, at least in the Navy, still use a standard, old fashioned clock watch-face.

      Don't know about you Airfarcers. And who the heck knows what the Guardians use (yes, that's what the Space Forces forces voted to call themselves...)

      Delete
    3. The NAVY? they still use Hourglasses to tell time. Space Force will probably measure time in light years. The new generation of Air Pirates will say "Bandits at left 21:32:15,16,17,18..."

      Delete
    4. HEY! We're transitioning away from hourglasses, and that should be complete by 2028, but the contractor is a little behind schedule and over budget.

      Delete
  3. It's a good sign when you can do the cow-on-ice dance and live to write about it. Stearman ride sounds fantastic. They used to harvest seals to make up all weather flying suits, back when we only had the open cockpit aeroplanes...

    The little ones keep you exercised for sure. Dirt and noise in formation wringing everything out of the motors and airframes. Sometimes I'm surprised the walls are still standing.

    Hard for me to believe that so many have been taken in by the scam. Even the A-6 guys are probably going to cank the reunion this year, not because of the gubmint or the hotel in Sandy Eggo, but because half or more have become professional victims. Whatever happened to Fused Ordnance On Target On Time? SMH.

    Happy New Year Juvat, best wishes to you and yours in the coming year and always.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, BarbaCat had a pretty good meme a couple of weeks ago that said something along the lines of "Some folks are so terrified of dying, they're too afraid to live." I thought that was spot on! As you, unfortunately, are too well aware, we're all going to experience it. From what you've told us, it doesn't sound like Alexzandra was in that group. God rest her soul.

      You're in our prayers PA. Hang in there.

      Delete
    2. They also used to whack seals because the little and not-so-little bastiges would ruin a fishery quicker than a ChiCom fishing fleet. Furs were, in many places, a side business at the start.

      Something the environmentalists don't talk about. That fisheries return quickly to full strength when neither seals or ChiCom fishing fleets are allowed to destroy said fisheries.

      Delete
    3. There's a lot of things environmentalists don't talk about if it doesn't suit their agenda, Then again, there's a lot of things they DO talk about that JUST AIN'T SO!. Not sure which is worse.

      Delete
    4. Never met anyone who was less afraid of livin' or did it better. She trained me up right!

      Thanks so much for the thoughts and prayers juvat. So many of you who we've never met continue to make such a big difference in our lives every day, and that's a fact.

      Delete
  4. Well done on the celebration and taking care of your sister. President Reagan had the .gov figured in the 80's!

    Too cold to fly? When I was a young man, we used to go rabbit hunting up in Lubbock county on the winter wheat fields. To help keep the rabbits from eating the crop, we'd pile into a pickup after dark, and go tearing around shooting rabbits until we were "Winchester". The 40 to 70 mph ride, standing in the back of a swerving pickup, popping away with a pump shotgun was a hoot. My tears would run into my ears, and snot would stream and drip all over. Up there, sunset was about 1720 local, and it got cold quick. But now? Thank you, no.

    And driving on snow? I was heading to school for basketball practice one afternoon. There was packed snow and ice on a little rise east of town... I couldn't get the truck to make it up. It would just start sliding and fishing around, so I eased into the ditch and ran up the turnrow to town. Easy.

    Well, it looks like interesting times are upon us. Watch your topknot.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was ready for the cold, however, the winds were pretty strong and there's only one runway, so I think it might have been the crosswind limit that actually caused the cancel. They called it not I.

      I've mentioned before in posts and comments my little episode with black ice south of San Angelo on my return to Laughlin from Lubbock. Thank heavens there wasn't a bar ditch in the vicinity. I just skated off into the fields and was able to get the spinning stopped and back onto the road. Took me quite a bit longer to get back to the base than I expected, but I managed to arrive without further "issues".

      Unfortunately, I'm afraid you're likely to be correct. Topknot watched, Aye!

      Delete
  5. Family with the little ones around make for a good Christmas season especially with other adults responsible for them. Sure don't need a Grand Canyon opening by the septic system eh? Always thought the Eagle had nice lines, that photo confirms it again. Here the total is 34 inches of the white so far this season, maybe 6 on the ground although up to 35 today, hey... heat wave!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "We're having a heat wave, a tropical heat wave...." My favorite Christmas movie!

      Stay chilled, Nylon!

      Delete
    2. Hey juvat, isn't that the theme song for the musical "Menopause" or was it the documentary "Radical Hysterectomy"?
      And that last word, how is it women have a HIS-terectomy and men have a HER-nia??
      That's a head scratcher right there....

      Delete
    3. Dang,STxAR, that's some profound thinkin' right there! Yeah, it is. Don't think I'm gonna mention it to my wife though, self=preservation runs strong on my side of the family.

      Delete
  6. Sounds like you were busy indeed Juvat! Glad the skating incident resulted in nothing more than a sore butt.

    The soil -ugh, what a pain. My parents had their septic system installed twenty plus years ago; fortunately they are not subject to near the cascading rains that you are and the settling was much less pronounced.

    As an update, our oldest daughter is headed back to Hong Kong for the Spring semester and finish out her schooling. Current quarantine from the US is 21 days in a hotel.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, Little J and DIL don't actually PCS until September, so who knows what the requirements will be than. Hopefully, more reasonable, but as the saying goes "Hope is not a course of action."

      Delete
  7. Sounds like a good time was had by all.

    Skating, always not fun when unplanned.

    The acronym has been added, I used the standard spelling for "government," i.e. "gubmint."

    "Great Uncle Juvat!" With the exclamation point it sounds like a curse, to wit:

    "Great Uncle Juvat! What are those idiots in Washington up to now?"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, we did, and no it's not.

      The exclamation point definitely make the name.
      "Great Uncle Juvat! What are those idiots in Washington up to now? Great Uncle Juvat wants to know." Works for me.

      Glad you made it home safe and sound.

      I did forget one milestone in Phase one of the Oplan. Construction of the Petio commenced this morning right outside my office window. PROGRESS! The Cats are excited, although they're trying their best to camouflage it.

      Delete
  8. Texans driving in the Rocky Mountain winters seem to fall into two groups. First, oil field professionals; no problems with them. Second, visiting skiers/snowboarders; look out!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I concur with your assessment WSF. Although the later group is much larger in-state than it is out of state.

      Delete
  9. Dog fur rug...hehehe We have a few of those around here as well. Funny looking for sure.

    Ok, gotta ask--what in tarnation are those little green thingys by your fallen soil/ditch????

    Snow--the South---drivers---HAHAHAHA Tread is good, snow tires are very helpful, especially when going up hills. It's when you're coming downhill that can get "skate-y", gravity is truly a law, so GO SLOW, in neutral, downshift, and KEEP YOUR FOOT OFF THE BRAKES...lessons learned early in life. Sand being generously spread by the plow boys is also extremely helpful.

    And there is nothing worse than unexpected skating--even if you don't actually fall down all the way to the ground, the twister dance ya did to NOT fall all the way to the ground still can make you very sore the next day.

    Kids are the reason for Christmas--having them around just makes it that much better.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, It seems to be her "go to" relaxation position. I haven't seen her lay down on her side. On her back, yes, but primarily legs back on her belly. Who knows.

      The green things are the access panels for the septic system. The furthest away in the picture is the access panel I use to put chlorine in it. Country Living...doncha' know?

      Some lessons are learned best when learned the hard way. Driving in snow is one of them.

      Surprisingly, I managed to avoid being sore, just embarrased. The horses still snicker a bit when I go out to feed them. Turkeys!

      Yeah, still looking forward to having actual grandkids. Hint, Hint to any of my progeny reading this.

      Delete
  10. I learned all I needed to know about driving on ice and black ice (that's raycyst, or something...) living on the eastern barrier island area just east of Melbourne, FL. Driving a 1972 Olds 98 with what I found out was bald tires (I was driving, DAD was supposed to be maintaining, or so I thought..) Coming off the road from the Eau Gallie Causeway turning left onto A1A right after a pounding rainstorm. Ordered the helmsman to 90 degrees port, increase to cruising speed (hey, it was a land yacht... and yes, I talked like that while driving, highly amusing, even answered back, somewhat less amusing to the passengers, but as long as you and your personalities can understand each other, you're not really crazy) and the vehicle went through 90 degrees, through 360, through 780, through yet another 360 and finally a final 90 degrees for a total of (counting toes....) 1230 degrees of total rotation and finally the tires bit and I just drove off. There was no correcting the spin as there was just the right combination of water and oil residue to make black water or whatever you call it.

    Fast forward to 1989, the Year Florida Froze (seriously, below 20 degree weather all the way down just above Ocala, dividing line between South Michigan and Florida was about a mile north of SR40 through the Ocala National Forest (good thing all the northern orange groves were frozen out in the 70's, because there would have been a mass killing.. Global Warming, dontchaknow...) And Mrs. Andrew and I had to drive to Satellite Beach. So off we went, see a patch of um...water, get on the windward side of it, end up on the leeward side of it once passing over it, continue to next patch of um...water... It made for interesting driving.

    As to childproof... nothing is worse than having THE FLUX and trying to get those little pills out of the Immodium package that requires supposedly tearing the foil and plastic apart, and doing this while your bowels connect through a wormhole nexus to some intergalactic septic system and it's all draining out of your nether regions. Bastid child-proof crap. I really think it's designed to kill off old people and sick people who actually need to access medications. Sure, the pharmacy puts on the child caps on the non-childcap way (one side locks, other side doesn't) but make one mistake and it's time to get out a sledgehammer. (I've replaced the tops of most of our meds with the tops from empty vitamin bottles that fit. You can either use the flip opening or just unscrew the tops. Why can't the pharmacy provide such simple tops? Government. The Bastiges.)

    As to kids and grandkids, yeah, no. That didn't happen for us. But we have nieces and nephews. Right now our hope for grand-Ns is resting on my Godson's shoulders, upon which the last time I saw him he was still dating his girlfriend of 8 years and I told him he either needed to marry or dump her. He dumped her, and found some nice lady from Rhode Island to get semi-serious with. I need to give him the Marry or Dump speech again, which I'll do once he comes back from deployment. The rest of the nieces and nephew? Gahhhh... Flutterbugs and never-childrens... Maybe Brother #1's daughters eventually, maybe... but Brother #2s are lost to child making... dangit. All the hopes of our singular family name (from Louisiana, singular, we are the only ones before 1940. Ohio and other northern states, last name is common. Seems most Germans were smart to stay away from the South. But we have to be descended from the one who, when coming to America, said "I don't ever want to live where it snows...") rest on Godson's shoulders. Not to put pressure on him, but biological clock is ticking, Trace....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 8 years? Afraid of commitment much? Milk and cows comes to mind.

      Delete
    2. Dad--Tuna owes me a laptop screen...said in a whiny tone of voice. Lol.

      Delete
    3. OK, Tuna/Suz, ya stumped me. Milk and Cows???

      Delete
    4. Why buy the cow when the milk is free?

      Delete
    5. Suz, before I buy you a new one, try sticking it in rice! lol

      Delete
    6. (Don McCollor)...the wisdom of an old pilot is looking at the sky and saying "No"...In MN and the Dakotas, in a bad storm, you can die out there...

      Delete
  11. "Wine closet took a hit" and "lubricating the tongue." Funny stuff. You manage your own stock though don't you- just gotta boost production? I can't remember if you once, or still make wine, or just house the folks who come to town to drink it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well we used to own a Wine Store, but when Texas Wines started coming of age, a guy walked in one day and offered us WAY more than we paid for the store, Much like the song, "We took the money and run."

      We do house a lot of folks that come to town to drink it. Our occupancy rate on our guest house last year was about 60%.

      Which is a good thing!

      Delete
    2. Good, I didn't make it up. I just have CRS a lot these days.

      Delete
    3. You ain't alone in the CRS thing Tuna. I think that's the worst side effect of this pandemic.

      Delete
  12. Glad you avoided a faceplant thanks to a strategically prepositioned hay bale!

    One of the "selling points" for the steps I put on our little truck was you's get better footing to climb into the truck when the surface was icy.

    Works great as long as you remember to remove any ice/snow that is ON said new steps......DAMHIK!

    Got the rest of the decorations and the tree taken down and packed away. Tomorrow will be cleaning and arranging the family room/den back to the standard config!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Once we get back from Austin, un-decorating will be on Mrs J and my schedule also.

      Delete
  13. Glad y'all had a great holiday season! It was quiet up here. No family, due to Commiefornia lockdown...grrr...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It does say something when my son and DIL can travel to and from a feudal kingdom, but citizens of certain states in the "land of the free" are prohibited from doing so. Hopefully, the Newsom Recall will be successful.

      Delete

Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)
Can't be nice, go somewhere else...

NOTE: Comments on posts over 5 days old go into moderation, automatically.