December 20, 2012

Power Outage after heavy Snowfall

If you are at home a power outage can be quite nice. You lighten up a few candles and cuddle up in a blanket. At work however, one becomes quickly redundant.

This morning my better half had asked me to confirm safe arrival at the office because he was worried about the weather and driving conditions. I sent him a picture to prove that everything went swimmingly.

Then around 2PM we experienced a power outage in the area. It was on and off again, and we had lost our internet connection, too, so the boss gave us the rest of the day off... well not really, of course he expected that we would continue to work from home. So, here i am sitting in my 'home office', which is actually the dining table... working.

Some good news: It seems the Mayan calendar wasn't interpreted correctly. Doomsday has been postponed for another century, and Apocalypse is now scheduled for 2116. All is well.

I wish everybody a very Merry Chrismukkah and a Happy New Year!

Find me on the Road again... in 2013.

December 17, 2012

Last Challenge of the Year

I have taken up the challenge posted by Scooter for Fun, looked under the seat of Bella, the Vespa GTS250, pulled out the items 'living' in the trunk, and snapped a picture before stuffing them back inside.
Balaclava (replaced by a beanie during warmer seasons),
Pair of spare gloves (always!),
Bungee net in a blue pouch (for stuff that doesn't fit in the top case),
Empty fuel bottle (note to self: needs refill),
High-viz vest (never on the road without a high-viz something),
Kidney belt (keeps me warm and supports my back),
Pair of goggles (never used).

No surprises, no weird stuff, all practical and well used items except for that pair of goggles.

December 15, 2012

King Tide

Saturday 8.18 AM, 4C, sleet. My typical route along the shoreline was cut short by the occurrence of a perigean spring tide, or in layman's terms king tide, an extreme high tide event that happen when the sun and moon is in alignment and the gravitation forces reinforce one another. 'Fascinating!' as Mr Spock would have said.
The trail is under water.
The flood is at its peak.
  The boardwalk... not above but in the water.
 The path... drowned.
And the waterfowl doesn't care.
Sorry for the bad quality of the pictures. With rain/snow at dawn it just wasn't the best light conditions for a simple point-and-shoot camera.

December 12, 2012

You know what I didn't do last Summer?

I did not buy that 2006 Triumph 1050 Speed Triple for almost seven grand. It was a very nice bike, and well maintained, too.
I visited her twice, and I almost took her home, but in the end I didn't. At the end I was terrified of the one liter machine, and what it would do to me. Besides, where is a money tree when you need it?

Meanwhile an update on my Cruiser-going-Street-Tracker-Scrambler Project... Changes to date have been low cost, and low tech: Seat, Flyscreen, and Handguards.

December 09, 2012

A Vespa Dealer's Swan Song

Recently we had learned that Urban Wasp, our favourite Vespa dealership would be closing their doors end of December 2012. This establishment was one of a kind when it came to service and parts.
We stopped by today, and briefly talked to the sales guy, and spent some time with the mechanic. Above is his kingdom. 

What had happened? Naturally customers would shop around to buy their new scooter where ever they could get the best deal, and that might not have been exclusively at Urban Wasp, although sooner or later they'd all show up for repair and maintenance due to the quality of their shop. But new vehicle sales is what's counts in the big picture, and here our dealer must have lost against competition. Very sad, but when it comes down to business it is obviously the survival of the fittest.

On the plus side, the mechanic is a bit of a celebrity in his field, and several other motorcycle dealers seem to be interested in his talent. We certainly hope that he decides to stick around, and we can continue to have Bella serviced by his capable hands.

December 03, 2012

In the Mood for Snow

My employer had invited the team for (early) Christmas celebrations at the Summit Lodge in Whistler, and we were happy to oblige. We had booked an extra night and drove up early on Friday to make the weekend getaway really worthwhile. Our trip started in torrential rainfalls, but as we were gaining elevation the rain became snow, and the world turned from depressing grey to shiny white. There is something special about the first snow in the year, which I find quite magical.
The view from our hotel room. I managed to capture some of the rare blue sky. We geared up for a hike, and took in the fresh mountain air. As most people were headed for the mountains we had the meadows all to ourselves.
The sign reads 'Keep off Greens'. Greens? What greens? They are currently covered by a foot deep of fresh white stuff, so we crossed the snow field.
We hiked around Lost Lake which was merely a three or four mile long hike, we got however quite the workout trudging through the deep snow.
This peaceful picture was taken at Green Lake. There are a handful of lakes around Whistler adding to the outdoor opportunities.
A geeky snapshot of the two of us at the lake. There were no other people around, so we had to take the picture the good ole handhold way.
Friday night we had some pretty authentic tasting Mexican food, and the chef was great with veganizing my dish. On top of it we had some awesome drinks. Mango Margarita for me and Sangria for the spouse. This restaurant is highly recommended!

The official company dinner was on Saturday night and took place at the Wildwood Bistro.  They had exactly one vegetarian dish, which I asked to veganize, but it was nothing to write home about. There was no complaints but no excitement either around the table. I would say the food was merely average. Nevertheless we had a good time, and enjoyed a midnight stroll along the Whistler pedestrian zone after.
This is us in front of the Olympic rings.
Snow and fairy lights. 
 The perfect ingredients to get into the season's spirit.
Life is good, eh!