Monday, August 18, 2014

Long Morning Shadow

Good day for a bicycle ride, was long as you were out early.  When I left home, was reporting 66 deg and 100% humidity.  Sunny morning with a slight breeze from the West.

With the humidity, it was a bit chilly when I headed out from Wabash Trace Trailhead.  Glad I had my light jacket.  Headed down the Lake Manawa Trail.  I had some back pain over night, so took a couple generic "Tylenol".  Hoping the ride would loosen up the back.

So, I took it easy starting down the trail.  Felt pretty good to be one the bike, riding the hybrid.  Looking for a little change of scenery, I decided to ride the loop around Lake Manawa in a counter-clockwise direction.  Today's photo was taken on the Veteran's Memorial Trail near the junction of East Manawa Drive and Hwy 92.

Did not meet any other riders until I rode down Indian Creek Trail.  At the bridge, I was getting a bit warm so stowed the backed in the rack bag.  Met several more early morning riders in Lake Manawa State Park.  Surprisingly, my legs were not sprnt when I got done. 

While in town, did a couple errands.  Stopped at the hospital for my regular blood draw.  Then Hy-Vee for new supply of generic tylenol and one of my prescriptions.  On my way home, detoured to Treynor and picked up some snacks.

Home, checked e-mail and facebook.  Re-hydrated with Powerade Zero and took a nap.  Pretty good morning.  Calendar proof was in afternoon e-mail.  Approved the proof.  SWINT meeting this evening in Silver City, debating if I make that meeting. 

Thursday, August 14, 2014

2015 Calendar

The 2015 version of my "Bicycle Trails" calendar should be going to the printer next week. 

New Gutters

Thursday is a day for coffee at Panera.  The contractor's crew was scheduled to install new gutters.  With the problems with the roofers, I did not cancel my coffee chat.  Good thing, too, because Paul (had not seen him for a while) stopped by for a while.  When I got ready to leave and shut down my laptop, there here 14 updates needed tp be installed.  Delayed me departure by 20 minutes.

The contractor dropped off their trailer while I picked p the rest of supplies.  About 9:30 the crew arrived at the house and got to work removing the old gutters.  New, seamless gutters with leaf guards and larger downspouts.  Chose the classic cream color for the gutters since I am repainting the house and want a lighter color.  Colors are discussed in another blog posting.

The gutters are formed on site from a roll of painted aluminum.  I had hoped to watch the machine form the gutters, but I missed it.  They were too quiet and did not hear them.  They have their forming machine in a trailer which they bring to the job.

Over the last several years. I have not been able to get up on the roof to clean the gutters.  The downspouts were completely plugged.  All this did not help keeping a dry basement.  Having the larger downspouts and the leaf covers should make things much better -- no more water pouring off the roof and past the gutters.  May find out how well they work this weekend are rain is forecast.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Top 10 Day Ride

Been looking for a good weather day for a bike ride.  I been suffering through some depression and pain in my back.  I needed to get out for a bicycle ride.

It was about 10am this morning when I kitted up for a bike ride.  Loaded the hybrid on the rack and drove to Lake Manawa.  Parked at the Nature Trail.

Did my good deed of the day.  At the trail parking lot, there was a woman contemplating the trail signs and map.  It was obvious she was not familiar to the area.  I offered her some help and gave her a copy of the Omaha.Council Bluffs trails map I always have in the car (in the bike rack bag).  Suggested some routes and their distances. 

Sunny with light, variable winds,  Thermometer on the car said 72 degrees driving to the trail.  Road the look around Lake Manawa.  Perfect temperature - in the shade and a little wind I was cool,  in the sun and sheltered from the wind it was a bit warm. 

Snapped this photo at the apartments across from the golf course.  Three bears climbed a tree as chain-saw are.  The sculpture was fashied from on dead tree - instead of cutting the stump - they created the sculpture.  Had seen if earlier in the season before the bears were painted.

Stopped at the bike shop for a quick visit.  Rested and napped the rest of the afternoon.  Word is that the contractor crew will be at my place tomorrow to replace the gutters and downspouts.

Oh, while riding my bike, my back did not hurt so much.  Pain was back when done, though prehaps a little less than this morning.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Contractors (and other vendors) Beware

Back on June 3rd, we got hit with a nasty storm.  My house suffered hail damage.  This is August 12, almost 2 1/2 months since the storm.  I am STILL getting unsolicited phone calls for roof and house repairs!

First - They are too late.  Do they really think I would wait for over 2 months to look for and contact a contractor?  I was on the phone and web sites withing a couple days.  I know contractors get busy at these times, so the best thing is to get estimates, Do the rest of your homework, and select a contractor.  Then you are on his list for repairs.  Nothing will happen until this happens.

Second - I do NOT work with contractors that solicit work over the phone.  I will work with local, known contractors that I contact and ask for estimates.  There are too many traveling, fly-by-night contractors out there.

Finally, my phone number is on the National Do No Call list.  Anther reason your phone calls will not generate any business for me.  All you do is make me angry and make sure I would never do business with you.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Rainy Day Errands

Sure glad the roof repairs were completed Tuesday.  Yesterday was a wet, rainy day - most all of the day.  Good day to do errands in town.

Started with a hair cut (I was getting a bit shaggy).  Then stop by the paint store to tal about paint colors for house exterior.  The clerk there said they could match just about any color I wanted.

Next stop is the hospital.  Short visit with the Cardiac Rehab folks.  Wanted to show them the selected photos for the 2015 calendar.  Then it was to CVS photo department for passport photos.  My passport had expired last year.  Need it renewed or a new passport card if i want to drive through Canada during my trip to Portland, Maine.

While the photos were getting processed, stopped by the bike shop to visit.  Talked to Zach - asked him to proof my calendar - I had e-mails it to the shop account. Bacl the CVS to pick up my photos.

DAMN! Passport photos are a rip-off!  I could have taken them myself, but hearing all the hassles with size of the face in the photo, size of the photo, not to mention of printing and cutting to size, I decided to have CVS do them. 

Now, anywhere, you can get 4x6" prints for under 20 cents.  Passport photos are 2"x2".  But, they cost almost $12 each!  And we need to get 2 (government paperwork is confusing - some places in the web site I see 2 photos are needed, other places need 1).  Anyway, $24+ (including tax) is a bit high.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

A New Roof

After almost a week of broken promises, yesterday was again the day for the shingles replaced on the roof.  I was a little concerned when I got up.  There were showers in the area.  Decided I was not going to miss my regakar trip to Panera Bread for coffee, bagel and conversation.  I was there when they opened at 6am.

Logged in for my normal chat session.  Forgot to bring the portable hard drive with my photos, so could not do much photography work.  Left early and headed home - interested to see if I had roofers at the house.  They were promised for 7am.

Disappointed but not surprised when I got home a 7:45 and no activity at the house.  Grabbed the laptop out of the car and took it to the house.  Was about to take the trash to the road when I saw the roofing crew arrive.  They back their trailer up to the garage (for removed material), parked the rest of their vehicles and got to work.

I also had a exterior painter coming to look at the house.  The house is in bad need for repainting.  Has been another of those items I deferred.  With the new roof and gutters, it was time to get it done.  And, soon the condition would be damaging the house. 

Had a good discussion with the painter.  Showed me that I was look at.  He suggested I go to Sherman-Williams to select colors.  The gutter sample colors the roofing contractor has gave me a good color scheme. 

I had to watch out for any clash from the brick part-way upthe front of the house.  i an settling for a cream main color of the house.  Trim in a dark. subdued green. (see lower photo)

Roofing contractor salesman dropped by as the crew was cleaning up.  We discussed plans for getting the gutters replaced.  Can change the gutter color (yet).  Can use the new base color of the house.  They were all packed up and gone before 5pm.