It’s almost a week past Christmas, and a LONG time since this story happened, but it’s one that I always remember. One Christmas I had in the Army- I think it was the last one I had there (I was saving my PTO to get home early after my tour was over in 8 months). So, the old mess hall at D 1/1 ADA was pretty barren- most anyone that had any common sense went home to be with family, but a few of us didn’t. So the skeleton crew left behind didn’t have much of a decorating spirit- we didn’t even have a tree!
Anyway, I don’t know if it was me who came up with the idea (I think it was), but Sean Sprague and I decided to take one of my section’s HMMW-V’s out (Humvee for you civilians out there), and go search for a tree.
There’s two problems here- 1) We’re using a HMMW-V for non-official business, and 2) we were in civvies (civilian clothes). That of course didn’t stop us. A few months earlier, myself, Warrel (forget his first name), Sgt. Stephen Lee, and a few others went to Baumholder for training, and it was SO cold out. Anyway, we ‘acquired’ green soft plastic like camper shells for the HMMW-V’s from other ones that were parked. For those that are reading this, re-appropriation of equipment is ubiquitous in the military. ANYWAY, we took a HMMW-V out with a camper shell, and found a tree perfect for the mess hall. We chopped it down using a axe from the pioneer tool kit from the HMMW-V, and carried it back. Anyway, we got the tree up in the mess hall (sans any decoration of course- most army thugs don’t have tinsel and ornaments in their locker), and I have to say, it sure did brighten things up around there. I still remember those German winters, and how cold it was, but I sure do miss it. I can almost still feel the bite from the cold as I write this. I know this story isn’t nearly as cool as the F-15 one I told earlier, but it’ll do I suppose. Sure would be cool if with all this name-dropping, that some old buddies from my unit over there would find this, and drop me a line.
Z and I wanted (well, I did more than she did due to the cold weather) to get away for a few days, and do some camping at our top-secret camping site. The picture below on the left was taken on our last night there when the clouds lifted. Our site is about 3400 feet up, so we get the opportunity to be above the clouds most of the time. This is a pretty typical view, and once the sun goes down, the stars are absolutely amazing.
From the campsite in the daytime.
We headed up Friday morning. I knew that the weather reports said that it would rain at about 6p, and off-and-on throughout the night. We had plenty of cozy gear, and a rain fly for our tent, so we weren’t worried. It sure did rain that night, but when the morning came around, it was beautiful outside. I had brought some wood with me, so we got a fire going, and enjoyed the morning. We’re looking forward to when Costco has their big camping tents for sale- it’ll be so nice to have a good size 4+ person tent available. A 3 person one for her and I is a bit snug.
The only real downside to getting here is that there’s a good section of unpaved road. The first time Z and I went up, we took the Focus, and it did just fine. It was nice having the Yukon for this trip for sure. hehe. I think it would be SO FUN to get a bunch of people together to do another trip. Anyway, the photo below is untouched, and exactly how it looked- watching the clouds roll out as the sunset sure was beautiful.
That night it got SO windy- crazy windy. We woke up a few times from it, but once again, in the morning it was beautiful. I got another fire going-almost getting one going without matches by just using a little hot coal that was still red when blown on. That would have been quite an accomplishment had I been able to. I think it was because the wood was a bit damp- if the wood was dry, I think I could have done it. Anyway, we packed up, and did some geocaching on the way home. SO FUN.
So, who wants to join us?
For about a year or so now, I’ve been running Solaris 10. It worked out pretty well when I had a account that I piggy-backed off of from work at Shutterfly. Those days are over now, and being over at Yahoo!, I don’t have that privilege anymore. That’s quite alright as OpenSolaris is available. So, OpenSolaris comes out with a new build about every two weeks, so it was time to go with b77, and do the migration. I had some key things I wanted:
- All customization has been done in CFEngine. I’ve been faithfully keeping my Sol10 system’s config current in it, so building up a new system should be a breeze.
- All PXE based (pxe + dhcp > bootparams + rarp).
- Make it so that I can self-replicate the server to a new system, so I can replicate it back when done.
Driving to work this morning, I’m reminded of something that frequently gives me the blues. It all starts when I’m listening to one of (at least for me) the ‘holy trinity’ of Jazz musicians- Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, or Miles Davis. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve listened to Giant Steps, A Love Supreme, Kind of Blue by Miles (the album where I have an almost spiritual experience from), and any number of albums by Parker. The downer obviously is that I will never hear anything new from them. Oh well. Right now at work, I have Cousin Mary from Giant Steps going, and it’s absolutely sublime. I suppose I should just get over it. Cheers.