Thursday, 20 July 2017

The stock project

I'm a retired guy who like to live life on his own terms. One of those terms is that I get some sleep without being woke up early unless it's absolutely necessary. Today started with the sound of earth movers, dump trucks and back up beepers at the ungodly hour of seven. The town where I reside has finally started the clear the ditch line project which is wonderful, but did they have to start in the middle of the night? Kidding aside I'm glad they started this and I hope it will take care of the poison ivy issue in the ditch. I'm a little tired of having a guy come in and kill it as the poison ivy tries to invade my property. 

Seeing I was up early I went and, after getting some breakfast, I decided to do a little more work on the SKS stock. Seeing the minor issue of placing the wet stock down on a table after staining it last time I checked around and found a length of dowel. This I chucked into my table mate then I put the stock on the dowel. This worked perfectly at keeping all sides of the stock from coming into contact with anything that could mar the finish. I gave the stock a second coat of stain then, after securing the lid of the stain bucket, I called it a day. 

The stock all dried after the 1st coat.

The stain I'm using on this project is left over stuff. It's the same stain that we used for the exterior walls of our log home. Right now I'm in a bit of a quandary, this stain is designed for exterior applications and when applied is as tough as nails. Where my indecision comes in is seeing how well the stain protects the logs of our home do I really need to put a coat or two of varnish on the stock as well? I'm going to hold off on the decision until Saturday when I see how tomorrow's coat looks. 

2nd coat of stain applied. One more coat to go.

There really wasn't much use in hanging around the workshop watching the stain dry so I went back to the house. I hadn't noticed what was going on outside while I was focused of the stock. Seeing this as their perfect opportunity the fates moved in a thunder cloud and I got a little wet dodging the rain drops. Since it's supposed to rain for the majority of the rest of the day I'm not planning on doing that much.  

So until the morrow I bid you farewell...

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Golf, for some a good walk spoiled

This morning saw me up and out early. I know, what was the big emergency that made me crawl out at the ungodly hour of seven in the morning. Well let me tell you, I had a tee time booked for eight thirty and I had to get ready. 

After making myself presentable I managed to get out with enough time to grab an apple and some water. I met my friend J at the course and, after paying my green fees, we were out an about. As games go this one was a damn sight better than the debacle I went through the last time I teed off. No whiffed balls for me. Except for the normal issue of putting my game wasn't that bad. I'm managing to hit a fair distance and keep it in play so all is good. 

Looking back at
"the tree" on
the 6th.
On the sixth hole I had my usual run in with "the tree." The hole is a long par five that has a right angle dog leg. To make it interesting there is a humongous tree in the fairway just after the turn that no matter what I do I seem to always hit. I was kidding with J about trees being ninety percent air. My reality is that if trees are ninety percent air I will manage to hit the ten percent that is tree ninety percent of the time. Sigh.  

Bringing it on home, just about to
tee off on the 9th hole

Because there was a call for rain in the noon/afternoon time frame we only played nine. For me that was fine, I just wanted to get out for a few holes anyway. After I left the club on my return trip home I took a minute to "stop and look at the flowers." That's something I'm trying to do more of these days. 

Lake St George, on an overcast day it's better than
any sunny day in the big city.
When I arrived home I had a cup of coffee then went out to work on the stock. Today I put a coat of light stain on the stock. I'm glad I picked up some latex gloves the other day or this process would have been very messy. Tomorrow will see the first of three coats of varnish on the stock. At the rate I'm going the rifle should be ready to go on Sunday. 

Well that's about all that's worth writing about. Until tomorrow adieu.   

Monday, 17 July 2017

The weekend that was

As weekends go this past on wasn't that bad, heck I even managed to get some stuff done. Friday saw my wife and I visiting a local farmers market in an attempt to settle the ever present "what shall we have for dinner" question. 

When we arrived at the market there was one heck of a line up. I'll admit seeing the line we came very close to climbing back into the truck and leaving but in we went. 

The dreaded line up.
Turns out the line up had nothing to do with the market, it was for an event taking place in a week. The local radio station was giving away a limited number of tickets to the Way Home Festival. My wife and I carried on looking at the stuff in the stalls. 

Checking out the dinner options.

The pickings were on the slim side because the owners had started to set up for Way Home. We did pick up a couple of things but in the end I went out for Chinese food. One thing I was disappointed in was "doughnut guy" wasn't there. This pastry baker sells these doughnuts with the center filled with a vodka based cream filling that is simply incredible. 

Saturday while there was a lot going on in the area there was the ever present danger of storms so we played it safe and stayed close to home. I toiled away most of the day in the work shop. My current project is the refurbishment of a rifle stock. 

The stock is from a Russian made SKS
I managed to strip most of the laminate coating off it and then came the sanding. I sanded it three times once with coarse then medium and then very fine grit sand paper.  This afternoon when I finish my running around I'm going to stain the stock then over the next few days I'll give it three coats of spar varnish. Hopefully by Friday I can reassemble it and take it to the range.

The highlight of Sunday was the Bro-in-law stopping by. Truth be told, he wasn't the real highlight it was his little bundle of joy, our niece. I'm not going to write volumes about our little niece, suffice to say she is simply adorable.

Life out here in cottage country goes on. We are well into summer now with the festivals and other attractions in real swing. If it stops raining a bit I may even get the lawn cut... tomorrow. As for right now that it for me. Bye-bye...

Friday, 14 July 2017

Puttering around

It is yet another rainy day and I'm board. I know I'm an adult and I can figure out something to do but right now I really don't feel like doing any inside chores. As for the outside chores, the grass needs to be cut. The thought of riding a lawn tractor around in the rain, well I don't believe i'ts the greatest way to spend an afternoon. What I will end up doing is a little work in the workshop. There's a stock that I've wanted to refinish for a while so I'll get on it. 

We are well into summer now and I haven't managed to do a heck of a lot. Whenever a thought about a project or getting out and about comes up I've been tending towards finding reasons not to get my butt out of this chair. I had such high hope for retirement but lately I've been second guessing myself. I know that my situation is a damn site better that what it was but I'm not ecstatic about it. I figure the feeling is due to the time spent dealing with the kidney stuff and the rain.

Where did the adventure go?
After entering the above I had a bit of lunch then actually got my butt in gear. While it was, and is, overcast and rainy outside that didn't mean I should go find a hot bath and a razor blade. 😀

I went out to the workshop and started on a project that I'd been putting off for a while. Last year I picked up a Russian SKS and striped it for parts. There were a few items that needed swapping out on my Type-56 (Chinese SKS) so I did that. I was never happy with the Tapco stock that I had stupidly picked up a decade ago for the Type-56, it just never felt right. To add insult to injury I had tossed the old wood stock out so I was stuck. The stock that came with the Russian gun was... Well let's just say the wood was OK. The lamination, to be charitable, sucked.

I found some old paint stripper and a scraper and went at it. I managed to get around ninety percent of the old laminate off. Once that was done I hit it with mineral spirits and now I'm letting it dry.

The stock before removing all the hardware.

Just about all the laminate has been removed
I'm going to pick it up again on Monday. Then I will rub it down with some more mineral spirits then I will give it a good sanding. With the sanding out of the way I'll give it a coat of spar varnish. On Tuesday I will give it a very light sanding and a second coat of spar varnish. Then on Wednesday I'll do it again and that will be the end of the first step. The second step will consist of installing a magazine converter so the SKS will use AR magazines. To put that into English that's the same magazines used on the AR-15 rifle only mine will be ten round. I could get the big magazines that hold a bazillion rounds but why?

After the stock is done I will be taking it to the range and we shall see what we shall see. As for now, my wife is calling. We are off to the farmers market and I'm looking forward to it. Have to run, no post on the weekend so have a good one and I'll be back on Monday. 


Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Isn't it always the way?

Today is another one of those hot hazy humid days. A day  where the weathertainers have prognosticated an end to the world in the form of thunderstorms this afternoon. Well at least I don't have to be outside with the risk of being zapped like this guy was. 

After lunch I went into town, I had to stop by the hospital for a little paperwork. I got there OK and parked then I was off for the main entrance. Before I got that far I noticed one of the stranger sights that I had never seen before. Outside the main entrance near the parking lot was an ambulance with a pair of paramedics working on a guy. I reached for the phone to take a couple of snaps only to find the pocket I usually keep it in empty, damn. My cell phone was still at home.

Of course being the inquisitive (AKA nosey) guy I am, when I went in I asked around to see what was going on. After all it's not every day that an ambulance responds to a call at a hospital. Turns out that a guy had just parked his car and was headed for the entrance with chest pains and dropped. Two passers by stopped to help and one went into the hospital and told staff what was going so so they called 911. 

Once the hospital was dealt with I went over to Scout Valley. The walk along the paths was nice and it cleared my mind a bit. Once again I missed the cellphone with the camera because there were a few things I would have photographed and posted. 

Well that's enough bantering for now. I promise to keep the cellphone upon my person and if anything comes up post it. Until tomorrow, bye-bye.

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Home on the range

It's a nice hot sunny and cloudy, don't like the sky hold off a few minutes, kinda day. I said the heck with the chores and grabbed the clubs then took off for the driving range. Once there I spent a few hours hitting balls and going through the various drills. 

It was a nice time and restored some of my faith in my abilities after the debacle of the other day. The drives averaged 230 yards and playable. The short clubs were also good.  I even hit a few one handed drives and all was well. I had to laugh the course pro came around trolling for business. After chatting with the guy in the next tee she came over and watched me for a minute or so. As I was taking another ball out of the bucket ! looked at her and she smiled. Then she told me that obviously her services were not needed. I laughed at that, thanked her then resumed my practice. 

The majority of the driver hits managed to ping off the
old satellite dish around 225 yards away.

After I finished the bucket I got into the truck and checked my new weather app. It's called WTForcast and every time you open it up there's these really rude comments. For example:

Have to say I check the weather more frequently than I once did. What the heck why shouldn't the weathertainers be entertaining.

Well it's just about supper time  My wife and I are once again in the infernal circular argument... "So what do you want for dinner?" She doesn't feel like cooking because it's too hot so I'm going to exercise my limited skills on the BBQ. I just haven't decided what yet. 

That's about it from me for now. Until tomorrow bye-bye... 

Monday, 10 July 2017

Who knew I had a green thumb?

This past weekend was a good one with some good friends and good food. Heck we eve got some gardening done.

I planted this
all by myself
My wife's capable
Saturday the weathertainers called for showers with the possibility of thunderstorms. What we had was a nice mix of sun and cloud. During the day my wife and I did some gardening. Yes I just wrote that I did some gardening, don't be so surprised. 

While my wife cleared some weeds out of the smaller garden and moved one of her roses I planted a tree. The tree had been a gift from two friends, B and C that had been in a pot for a couple of days. I picked a nice spot for it and got my wife's seal of approval then in the ground it went. Hey look at me, my days of killing plant like a certain cactus (who knew you could over water one?) may be over. Meanwhile my wife took care of planting a hydrangea.

Saturday evening saw us out with neighbors T and L plus our friend S. We went to this little hole in the wall restaurant attached to a motel just north of us called the Northland Motel and Restaurant. The food was amazing as usual, the conversation great and the company awesome.  

This morning I learned we were almost of of the elixir of life AKA coffee so I took a run down to the semi big city for java beans. I know, a forty kilometer round trip for coffee is nuts but these guys roast the beans right there and the taste is heavenly. 

Sightseeing in the
semi big city. I may
be old but I'm not
The semi big city is under construction. Not all of it just certain parts like the roads I wanted to drive down. Not to matter, the sights were OK and as a retired guy I wasn't in to much of a rush.  

On the way home I passed a TSC store. On a spur of the moment I went in and picked up a few things. Some items were vastly marked down on sale while one item that I picked up wasn't. The not on sale item (jeans) I did get a discount on because of the OFAH membership I have.

Then it was time to run for home. Looking around there were a lot of angry looking clouds heading my way. I wanted to be under cover when the rain hit, it if did.I did manage to out run the rain or maybe it gave up in disgust trying to soak me, whatever. I'm home and dry. 

An angry looking sky
Well that's about all from my little corner of the world. It's time for me to put this entry to bed and get some more work done. So until tomorrow live free and have as much fun as you can.

Friday, 7 July 2017

It's the little things that make a guy frustrated...

Yesterday was a bit of a nothing to see here kinda day. With nothing to write about I chose to not write. Today the game plan was to pick up the materials for a project and get it underway. 

The project I was thinking about doing revolved around converting a piece of old luggage into a coffee table and board gaming storage sort of thing. With he best of intentions I strode out the door a little after noon. i saw the red flag was up on the mail box so I took a look. One of the bills was from the hospital for the procedure I just went through. I took a look at the bill then amended my plans, first stop the hospital. 

I got there and went to the cash bill paying area and spoke with the clerk. I gave here my ID and the new and improved health card then watched her do her thing. She told me that she had sent a copy of the information "upstairs" and "we shall see what we shall see." Well I guess only time will tell if they have their act together. As for me, I ain't gonna worry about it. If things get ugly I'll deal with it. 

Then it was off the a craft store for some green felt. I wandered up and down the isles for a few minutes than gave up and asked for help. Seconds later the clerk showed me the location of the felt, a location I had previously walked by... twice. 

Felt paid for I was off to Home Depot for the other items. I needed some glue, a two by four, four coffee table legs and a sheet of packing foam. I went up and down the isles looking and found most of the items. The packing foam was a negative as was the coffee table legs.  I asked about these items only to be told Home Depot doesn't carry them. Sigh... I told the guy that I had seen these items at Lowe's but I really didn't want to make a fifty kilometer round trip. I asked if he had any suggestions where I could find these items in town. His answer... "Guess you're going to Lowe's."  I thanked him for his help and handed the other items I was going to buy to him and then I left the store. 

I've taken a look online and I can get the majority of items shipped so that's what I'm going to do. I want to support local businesses but they, it appears, don't give a rat's ass about me.

So there's a day on the trash heap. Tomorrow I'm going to make a list of the items I need and head down to the semi big city. I figure I should have this project done by mid week. 

Yea haw it's Friday! With that in mind there will be no posts until Monday. To one and all have a good weekend. 

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

We have lift off...

This morning I was up early, or at least to me early. I understand the world is mostly into it's second or third cup of coffee before I flip off the blankets but today was different, I had a mission. My friend J had asked if I would like to play a round of golf today and I had said sure. I was curious to see ho bad playing would be after almost two years of sitting on the sidelines.
Here we are giving the grounds staff ulcers.
I was lucky J took pity on me, we played a par three course and didn't keep score. I'm glad that we did that because, not sugar coat anything, I was horrible. I'm not going to bore you with the finer points of my game, when It comes right down to it I stank. Well on the plus side we have lift off, I can play golf again. On the down side I've a lot of work to do at the driving range.

That's all I have for now. Until tomorrow have as good a time as you can.

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Getting back to normal

This morning saw me start the day around nine or so this morning. Last night's sleep was better but not yet perfect. The misuse that my little friend down below has gone through in the past few days is still being felt but it's getting better. 

Today I've been catching up on chores, clearing up the remainder of the stuff on the deck, filling some holes in the yard and giving the lawn a trim. Right now the lawn tractor is being charged because the unit hadn't been used in a while and the battery was sketchy to begin with. When I first tried to flash it up there was that dreaded rurrr.. rurrr... sound of an engine not wanting to turn over. Before putting it on the charger I took the time used compressed air on the air filter to blow out some of the accumulated dust, dirt, crap and corruption. Looks like tomorrow, if I don't play golf, I'll be doing some mid season maintenance on the beast.

For now I'm taking five and when this break's over I'm going to hit the machine downstairs for a half hour of weights and cardio. Why? Because I can.  It's a nice feeling to not be dealing with the pain any more. While the pain was manageable it was grinding me down.

So until tomorrow, adios my friends.

Monday, 3 July 2017

Wham, bam, thank you ma'am

This morning around six thirty my body decided that I should be awake. Never minds that I was in bed after midnight. Never mind that I was up a couple of times to vent my bladder, my body decided that it was time.  

My wife was up then and thought it was her fault I was up. I quickly corrected that course of thought as I did my thing in the washroom. What we had here was a failure to communicate between brain and body, nothing more or less. The main issue was the pain meds had worn off and things hurt. 

Up and clean I went down stairs and got the trash to the curb then it was time for a cup of the elixir of life and some sustenance.  Today will be a quiet day for me as I have no intention to exert myself. This afternoon I'm off to the Doctor's office to get that accursed stent out. The game plan after that is to get home and have a, oh so desperately needed shower.

Time passes...

Around one thirty I went in to see the Doc and to get rid of my little friend. When I arrived I found a waiting room just full of folks waiting to see him. At two in walks the Doctor. As it turned out he forgot that he was working today. After a very short wait I was ushered in to "the back room" where the Doc was. We had a quick chat and then he rid me of the stent. There was no drama it was simply wham, bam, thank you ma'am and it was done. I shook the man's hand thanked him and made a hasty egress.

I'm home now and all is right in my little world. Tomorrow I'm going to get some much needed work done around here but until then it's time to relax. So until the morrow bye-bye.