Archive for the 'Whimsy' Category

Bali 6–A Respite in Ahmed

said on May 27th, 2011 filed under: Whimsy

Bali ahmed shore

We were so exhausted from all the relaxation on the Gili Islands that, before returning to Ubud, we decided to go over to Ahmed on the northeast coast of Bali to rest up for the remainder of the vacation. Truthfully, we wanted to get back to Ubud as soon as possible, but we had promised ourselves to scout Ahmed as the site for continue reading…

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Bali 5–Eeny Miny Gili Meno

said on May 26th, 2011 filed under: Whimsy

Have you ever wanted to get out of LA, leaving La Cienega Boulevard far behind? Have you ever wanted to disappear onto a tiny sun-drenched island in the tropics, a sleepy refuge from urban despair, a secret place where you don’t have to see anyone unless you want to and everyone already knows to leave you alone, where a breezy bungalow doesn’t cost a bloody fortune and you can eat well for less than twenty dollars a day, a quiet spot under shady palm trees where you can meditate, or write, or loaf, hide from the world, or create strange art works along the beach?

Bali meno art

Gili Meno is the paradise for you.

The day before we planned to depart Gili Trawangan and return to Bali, we decided to explore the tiny neighboring island of Gili Meno, the smallest of the three Gili islands.  I had already poked around on the middle island, Gili Air, for a few hours and don’t recommend it.  Gili Air is not as pretty and laid back as Gili Meno or as fun and silly as Gili Trawangan. continue reading…

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Bali 4–Silly Gili

said on May 21st, 2011 filed under: Whimsy

The Gili Islands are not part of Bali.  The three small islands are just a mile or two off the coast of Lombok, another large island province of Indonesia. To get to the Gilis, depart Bali on the “slow boat”, cross the Lombok Strait, swing around Lombok on the north east side, keep going a bit, and you will come to Komodo, where there be dragons.  No, no don’t go that far.  Just stop near Lombok, and wade ashore on the sandy, low slung Gilis.  This is the tropical paradise of your dreams.

Bali meno to trawangan

That’s Gili Trawangan, Gili Tee, in the distance as photographed from the even smaller island of Gili Meno.  The hill you see on Gili Tee is the highest continue reading…

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Bali 3–Welcome to Gili Tee

said on May 18th, 2011 filed under: Whimsy

CJ believes that any real vacation must include blue water, white sand beaches, and palm trees, so off we go to the Gili Islands, three microscopic specks off the coast of Lombok.  Gili Trawangan,  revered for its all-night parties, is the largest of the three islands, called “Gili Tee” by those “in the know.”  A short boat ride away is Gili Air, the middle child.  Another short boat ride gets you to Gili Meno, the littlest.

To get to these Gili Islands we took a Parama bus down to the sleazy harbor town of Padang Bai, about an hour southeast of Ubud.

After hanging around on the Padang Bai dock for a scorching hot interval,

Bali padang bai dockan

we boarded a tender which took us out to the “Slow Boat.”  This old inter-island ferry was indeed slow, but oh so cheap.  We bid goodbye to Padang Bai . . .

Bali padang bai harbor

. . . and settled in for a totally enjoyable boat ride of 4 hours.  The old boat was exotic, the passengers few, and the crew cooked and shared a delicious continue reading…

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Bali 2–Family Guest

said on May 15th, 2011 filed under: Whimsy

Ubud, the spiritual and artistic capital of Bali.  Ubud the Sweet.  Ubud the Cool.

Bali ganesha

Thanks to the Goddesses and Gods (especially you, Ganesh!) that we are in Ubud and away from the sleazy streets of Kuta.

Ubud is only an hour north from Kuta, Denpasar, and the airport, but it is a world away in mood, or as we say in Sanskrit, in the bhav.  If you are going to Ubud, there are three or four roads you can take.  Tell your driver to take one of the back ways through the countryside, otherwise he will drag you continue reading…

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Bali 1–Let’s Go to Bali

said on May 11th, 2011 filed under: Whimsy

Everybody needs a vacation, right? Why don’t we head south of the Equator, way down in the tropics, to beautiful Bali?

Bali uluwatu coast main

If you scrounge around on internet sites like Cheapo Air you can get a ticket for a bargain price. Go in April, the rains have stopped, but the tourists haven’t arrived in their barbaric hordes. Accommodations are affordable, dirt cheap by American standards, and you can eat for less than continue reading…

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Yummy Mandarin Orange Stir Fry Sauce

said on October 12th, 2010 filed under: Cultural Events, Fun Things to Do Outdoors, Whimsy

Last weekend Bob and I wandered through farm country on the Placer County Farm and Barn Tour.  While at Twin Brooks Farm near Penryn, we purchased a bottle of Snow’s Citrus Court Mandarin Orange Stir Fry Sauce.  This concoction is made locally from organically-grown Owari Satsuma mandarin oranges.  Monday night Bob stir-fried continue reading…

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Long Range Fitness Goals–Fun and Games

said on October 1st, 2010 filed under: Fun Things to Do Outdoors, Running and Hiking trails, Whimsy


We’re three quarters through 2010.  How are you doing with your annual fitness goals? 


 Here is my report, promised last month, whether you are interested or not, but hey, who is this report for anyway?

 The Run Around the Earth project.  If I complete my mileage goals for 2010, I will have run more than 24,000 miles toward my long range goal of 25,000 miles, the circumference of our planet.  The other day it occured to me that if one middle-aged guy can run around the globe, then it’s a pretty small world.  Finite.  Just how many people are crawling around on this ball?

 The Thousand Miles in 2010 project.  As of today’s run, the final run of September, I have run 785 miles this year.  To stay on track to meet the 1,000 miles goal, I need to have run 750 miles.  I am 35 miles ahead.  No celebration, though; I’ll need the miles “in the bank” because December is always one of my worst running months.  The holidays are distracting.  The weather turns bad.  Blah blah.  Whine.

 The Kinsey Milhone vs. Bob Jenkins competition.  I beat Milhone again this month, my 96 miles to her 90 miles.  I have, in fact, beaten her 6 of the 9 months so far this year.  But . . . the 3 months she won during my sciatica episodes, she really kicked my ass.  In toto, she leads 819 to 785 going in to the last quarter of the year.  She will not falter.  Her lead of 34 miles is probably insurmountable.  She will run 1080 miles this year, the darling girl (bitch).


 Kinsey Milhone

How Far is Afghanistan?  My son’s return date from Afghanistan is December 1.  That’s actually the estimate for “wheels up” as his aircraft lifts off the desert of Afghanistan.  Good enough.  Because I want to hit December with 950 miles run, Luke is a scant 164 miles away.  Just run 164 miles and my boy will be done with war.  Honorable, safe, home.   

Luke's 4th of july


What’s the point?  If you want your fitness to be a lifelong lifestyle, you got to keep it mixed up and have fun with it.  You need to find ways to keep your mind occupied, to keep yourself motivated, to kick your own ass when necessary.  If you can’t do that, Kinsey Millhone will be glad to oblige (bitch).

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How to Make Millions from a Secret Creek

said on September 19th, 2010 filed under: Country Property, Water Wells, Septic Systems, Sewers, Electric Power, Whimsy

There is a nondescript little creek that meanders along the perimeter of Sierra College in Placer County, California.  How much water flows throught that creek?  How much money is that water worth?

About ten years ago I was a member of a team that measured “Secret Creek” to answer those questions.  Using a graphing technique we constructed a cross section drawing of the creek.  The cross section we chose as representative of the creek was about 12 feet wide and no more than 1.71 feet deep.  The creek averaged about a foot and a half deep.  You can wade across it without getting your knees wet.  Like I said, nondescript.  It just burbled along, minding its own business, not raging rapids, just sort of . . . well . . . creek-like.

Measuring Secret Creek

Using several analytic steps I’m not going to bore you with, we determined that the volume of the creek was about 25 cubic feet per second.

Prepare to be amazed!

volume of flow per hour in cubic feet = 90, 144 cubic feet

volume of flow per hour in gallons = 674,277 gallons

volume of flow per day in gallons = 16,182,648 gallons

volume of flow per year in gallons = 5,906,666,520 gallons (look at that number again) 

From that little pissant creek?  How much is it worth?

volume of flow per year in acre-feet = 18,142 acre-feet per year

value of 1 year flow ($200/acre-feet) = $3,628,400.

S0, friends, if you have a little creek on your property, you will be a millionaire 3 times over in just a year.

(Oh, I forgot to mention one thing.  You have to get that water to the buyer.)

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It Never Snows at Lake of the Pines

said on September 16th, 2010 filed under: Lake of the Pines, Whimsy

Old Misc Cannon Stuff 1379

Well, almost never.  At 1500 feet of elevation, we Pinespeeps like to claim that we live “below the snow line.”  Oops.

Old Misc Cannon Stuff 1380

These photos are from the winter of 2008.  Granted, this snow fall was unusual for us, but for about a week we needed 4 wheel drive to get out of the driveway.

Old Misc Cannon Stuff 1384

The house sparrows complained, “Baby, it’s cold outside!”

Old Misc Cannon Stuff 1386

Snow or no snow, everybody has got to eat.

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