Hurricane Elsa…She Sorta Wussed Out On Us

Before I get into all of that…sorry ‘bout not posting for the past going on 3 weeks now…but there just ain’t been anything worth yakking about…it’s been raining a lot so no wildlife out at the pond, we skipped Date Night the past 2 weeks once because Connie wasn’t feeling well and once for Elsa, and we haven’t been to the Elks in a couple weeks either.

We just have been staying home doin nuttin’ as they say.

We did have a nice dinner for Independence Day…some gourmet mashed taters, bison burgers topped with onions and mushrooms and cheese, and some corn on the cob…but it was way too hot too cook outside that day so we just steamed them inside…not quite as good as grilling them but it is what it is. Neil also made some of his famous Blueberry Crisp using the recipe that we got from Dogbite and Catscratch some years back…only instead of blueberries he used a can of peach slices and made it Peach Cobbler Crisp…we tried it with just whipped cream, then with caramel sauce and whipped cream, then with mint chocolate chip ice cream…and we’re going back wot the caramel sauce and whipped cream for the last one this evening as it was the best topping…next time he does peaches he needs to add a bit of sugar to the syrup and peach mixture before piling on the crisp part and baking it.

Connie got herself a new Apple Silicon M1 MacBook Air a couple weeks back…well, actually Neil got it for her…and then since he’s the head of the IT department he set it up for her. She got the Rose Gold case one to match her iPhone and iPad…she’s happy because it’s faster and since it’s got a better screen things on it are a lot clearer for her than before. He investigated trading her old one in…Apple takes them in trade…but it was only worth about 100 bucks so he’s keeping it for a spare on the shelf at least for now. Hopefully the new higher performance one will get released soon and he can upgrade his 2015 MacBook Pro as well…but her old one was from 2013 so she needed a new one worse than he does although his keys are a lot more worn off then her old one is…good thing he’s a touch typist I reckon.

So…Hurricane Else…guess ya read ‘bout it over the past week or so as it made it’s way through the islands down in the Caribbean…it mostly stayed just a tropical storm and after passing over Cuba heading mostly west it took a right just past Key West and headed up the west side of Florida. It turned into a hurricane category 1 just after it passed about 50 miles west of North Fort Myers and then weakened again before making landfall up the coast just east of Cedar Key and north of Tampa. 

Not knowing what it would do…we sort of rigged for storms at home…moved the plants inside from the lanai as well as some of the lighter stuff into the garage. The heavier stuff on the lanai got shoved over into one corner and he put a couple of tie downs around it to hold everything steady. We had expected…and were forecast for…winds of 40-50 knots but the highest wind we recorded was just 26 and that just once. Rainwise…we got about 4.5 inches over the 36 hours it rained…again mostly just regular rain and not your typical hurricane downpour. We were on the northeast side of the storm as it past which is the worst side usually but Elsa was a strange one. She really didn’t have a defined eye like most tropical storms/hurricanes do but sort of an oval center of circulation with no defined clear area in the middle. The strangest part was that our strongest wind and most of the heavy rain happened after she was past us and north of Tampa…we did get some thunderstorms in the wee hours of Wednesday morning and a tornado warning but as far as we heard no actual tornadoes on the ground.

Sure enough…by mid day on Wednesday it was no longer raining and by late afternoon the sun was back out and we were right back into Florida summertime weather. After Neil’s bike ride this morning (Thursday) we put the lanai back together after Neil took the opportunity to blow all the dirt and stuff out the doors since it was empty already.

Dinner tonight…he’s got a pork tenderloin marinating in some dry rub in the fridge and some corn he got from the Winn Dixie the other day along with a zucchini he’ll grill for her…he’ll probably do a couple of mushrooms for a side dish for himself.

I don’t have any Fun Stuff© to report on or cool wildlife photos for ya…but he did give me a few photos to illustrate how much our pond out back varies it’s water level over the year.

Normally…summer is the rainy season down here and winter is the dry season. Last summer…2020…however it really didn’t rain much in our neighborhood, it seemed like most of the storms coming in from the southwest from the Gulf (the typical direction) split and it rained north and south of us but not where we were. Consequently, the pond got pretty low and then even lower during the dry season this past winter.

None of these are really great shots…but they’re just helpful to show you the water level change. Pay attention to the notes in the captions as they’ll become clear later on. The first three were taken some last summer and some at the beginning of the dry season.

In this first one…note the position of the couple of clumps of grass at the far left side near the end of the lake, also the dry bank areas on the left side of the pond (across from our house which is just out of frame to the right) known as Ragnar Beach, and also the partial tree on the far right side, particularly how far it is from the water. Also all the dry clumps of grass on the right side of the lake (right of center in the image) just behind the house. This one was from last summer sometime.

D75 5595

Ragnar Beach at the end of the 2021 dry season…as you can see it’s a lot more beach than in the above…the top of the sandy bank is about 4 feet out of the water at this point.

D75 5117

This one is Alligator Shelf…in the first shot above it is underwater just about where the circular ripple is right the dark double clump in the first shot…this was taken at the end of the dry season in April or so and is about 3 feet or so lower than in the first shot which was already pretty low. 

D75 5837

The rest of these were all taken after Else passed through. First one…the grass clumps just left of center are the same clumps that were high and dry in the first shot…and Alligator Shelf is just about where the reflected sky is visible in the water right of the grass and left of the sign reflection in the water. The shelf is about 4 feet underwater today.

Z72 001 copy

Ragnar Beach…well it would be if it wasn’t under water. All of those grass clumps that are surrounded by water were high and dry a month ago.

Z72 003 copy

Remember that partial tree from the first shot…as you can see in this one it’s just about at the water line and the clump of grass you can see about even with it was dry a month ago and is now several feet under. All of those small grass tufts just below center of the image were also dry.

Z72 019

This is the bank just behind our lanai…about 12 or so feet from the edge and 4 feet down. The bank has about a 45 degree slope and the edge of the grass is about a foot deep.

Z72 024

So…you might be thinking that we’re about to get flooded but fear not…it would take a lot…a huge amount more…before it got up to us. The edge of the lanai is 4 feet at least above the current water level and with the bank the way it is every foot of rise increases the pond surface are by 25% or so…meaning it would take more water to go up another foot than it did for the previous foot. Even if it got to the lanai it would need another foot rise to get to the house and that would increase the pond area by 10 or 20 times…so we’re not worried.

We did not lose power at all…in fact I heard of no outages in the entire area but that’s because most of the power infrastructure to the houses is underground. The high voltage lines are kept clear of trees and once it leaves the substation for a development it’s underground in waterproof conduit.

And that’s about all the excitement for this week…sorry to ramble on about pond levels and such but it’s something for ya…

Interesting things found on the net.

I’m really puzzled why math people feel it necessary to figure out things like this.

MoreMathWeirdness

and 296³ + 584³ + 415³ = 296,584,415 710³ + 656³ + 413³ = 710,656,413 828³ + 538³ + 472³ = 828,538,472

It turns out that if you square 99 and then take the reciprocal you get a very strange number as well.

99Squared

And then there’s the number 2592…or the ABCD number. It is the only number known such that ABCD is equal to A to the B power times C to the D power. 

You might need to be a nerd from the 60s to get this one…think The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. The books…a trilogy consisting of 5 books and then a 6th sequel)…was written by the late Douglas Adams and it also includes “The Restaurant at the End of the Universe”, “Life, the Universe, and Everything”, “So Long, and Thanks For all the Fish”, “Mostly Harmless”, and “And Another Thing”. On page 16 of the first book you’ll find that 42 is

RequiresANerd

Ima tellin’ ya…nobody understands mathematicians…nobody.

ScaredSnowman

TherapistSaysWow

RomanticWife

SerialKiller

TalkAboutMozart

LowFlyingAircraft

SpeedLimit35

HavitureWay

WifesSize

And finally…

HighwayToHell

Cyas.

About Gunther

The full time RV travels and experiences of Gunther the Bear and Kara the Dog…along with their human staff neil and Connie.
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