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Barbara Fritchman Thompson Diary

Week of 22 April 2002

Latest Update: Saturday, 26 April 2003 08:54


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Monday, 22 April 2002

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Last night I watched an excellent documentary on Ansel Adams. When Bob and I met in 1983 I was just getting started in my photography hobby. I was a member of the local photography club and had purchased my first 35mm camera. I had never heard of Ansel Adams that I can recall. Before computers completely took over his life, Bob was also interested in photography, having been shooting and processing his own film for years. We have almost everyone of his books and purchased a large print of his while on our honeymoon in Washington, DC. I have enjoyed learning about this mans works and to fully appreciate the marvels of black and white photography. 

Our very first long trip, a week in Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine (Acadia National Seashore), we shot slides, well over 100, came home, processed them ourselves, and mounted them. We had darkrooms at both our rent houses and had planned to build one here when we bought this one. We processed a lot of our own color prints and Bob did some black and white. 

In the meantime Bob became interested in PC's and of course now film cameras have been lost to the digital age. I however, still love to shoot 35mm with my one remaining all manual camera, my Ricoh. My Pentax MX's light meter finally gave up the ghost. It can still be used in light situations where a meter is not needed or Bob can use it because he knows how to calculate the f stops. 

Off to the gym this morning for Body Pump and a stop at the drugstore. Hopefully the sun will come out this afternoon so I can mow the lawn. It is HIGH. I missed the midweek mowing last week with the wedding stuff. We are supposed to go from a high of 80 today to a low of 40 tonight and a high of only 60 tomorrow. We need rain so bad but the cool temperatures will also be nice.

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Tuesday, 23 April 2002

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If you read my post last week about the Niall Williams books I was reading, The Fall of Light, I mentioned I was not very excited about his fiction. Well, I finally bailed on the book about a third of the way into it. Need I say more. I am now reading another Dorothy Simpson mystery Puppet For A Corpse.

I spent yesterday getting caught up on e-mails and other stuff from being so busy last week. I did get the lawn mowed. It took well over an hour and I filled the yard cart to the max with the grass clippings. Last night, other than watching Angel, we sat and read until bedtime.

The digital pictures are ready to put up and this morning Bob will scan a couple of the print pictures. This afternoon I will work on the wedding page. This morning I have a doctor's appointment. 

It is to be clear and cool tonight so I hope we can get in some observing from the back yard.

 

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Wednesday, 24 April 2002

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The pictures from the wedding are up. Bob did a very good job with the digital camera. A few of them are ones I shot with my 35mm. Of course Frances had an official wedding photographer.

I spent most of yesterday afternoon putting the page together between breaks of laundry, walking the dogs, and answering e-mails. 

It was clear last night so I did some moon observing from the front yard from about 8:30 to 9:30.. Bob was too tired to go out but he set up the refractor scope for me. With the binoculars and the scope I spent most of the time studying the moon and getting a few more lunar objects checked off my list. Before I came in I took a quick look at Jupiter and its moons and the bright red star of Betelgeuse. 

After we walked the dogs I headed off to bed to finish my book finally turning off the light a little after eleven.

Bob is off to the dentist this morning so I am staying home to man the home front. With the other truck full of astronomy gear we pretty much try to keep my car available to both of us whenever possible. Once he gets back home I will scamper off to the grocery store. Meanwhile, I will get some work done on poison pages while he is gone and then continue working on those more this afternoon.

 

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Thursday, 25 April 2002

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I forgot to mention in my post yesterday that having spent an hour or so playing the refractor I am much more comfortable with using it. I still like the 10" Dobsonian but now feel much more comfortable working with the tripod mechanism on the refractor.

Speaking of astronomy and the skies. Even if you  are not a star gazer, you should still check out the sky just after sunset sometime during the next few weeks. This is a rare opportunity to see five visible planets lined up close to each other. By May 5 they become very close but anytime within the next two weeks will be good. As I mentioned I am studying the moon and trying to learn about its features from the various phases to learning how to identify the lakes, mountains, craters, etc. Check this cool page. You can see a quick movie of the moon going through its various phases. 

Frances called me last night from Quebec. They are having a wonderful time so far. They have hit snow off and on since they left home in upper state New York and Montreal. There is snow on the ground in Quebec but she said it has warmed up some since they got there. They toured the Provost Bus Plant in Montreal where Holiday Tours buys their buses. Sounded like a really nice facility.

I am off playing golf this morning. 

 

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Friday, 26 April 2002

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Bob's brother came for a visit yesterday afternoon so we ordered Chinese take out for dinner last night. Otherwise a rather typical day around the Thompson Techno Groto.

I am reading the first of several dog mysteries we have discovered written by Melissa Cleary, Dead and Buried. Cleary's amateur detective, Jackie Walsh is a film studies professor at Rodgers University. Her side kick is a retired police dog Jake. In this book she has also acquired a goofy elephant mastiff named Maurey, the product of a union between Jake and her friends elephant mastiff. 

Cleary has a good sense of humor and reminds me of the Susan Conant books. These are not the best written mysteries you will ever read but they are fun and enjoyable. Jake does some pretty amazing things for a dog, i.e. Cleary stretches it  a little with some of the commands Jake carries out for Jackie. But, overall, this one is pretty good. I have several sitting here waiting in the wings and like the Dorothy Simpson novels, will let you know which one I am reading and how I like it.

Errands again today. I have a right low beam head lamp out on my Trooper so I am taking a quick ride out to see Tim this morning a get that fixed. After a workout at the gym I have several other stops to make.

This afternoon I need to mow the lawn. Ribs on the grill tonight with red potatoes boiled in their jackets.

 

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Saturday, 27 April 2002

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While I was out getting the headlamp changed I went ahead and had the oil changed since Tim was not very busy. By the time I got to the gym and ran the other errands it was almost noon by the time I got back home.

After a quick bite of lunch I went out to use the gas blower to blow the little oak helicopter wings off the drive than mowed the lawn. 

The afternoon was spent checking e-mails and web pages before getting dinner started and watching a little of the GGO golf tournament on television. It is being played in nearby Greensboro, NC. Dad and I have gone over a couple times in the past years but not lately.

After dinner Bob and I took the evening off to read and listen to classical music.

Today I am at a sheepdog trial in Cleveland, NC for a CBCR table event. Just about 45 minutes or so from here. I am not sure what time I will get home. It all depends on how sales are going in the afternoon.

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Sunday, 28 April 2002

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I was back from the sheep dog trial at 4:30. It was a fun day talking with other Border Collie owners, petting dogs and puppies, and making some money for CBCR. I enjoy watching the dogs work the sheep. It turned out to be a much warmer day than the weather folks predicted which was nice. 

Today is house cleaning/laundry day. Bob's den computer has gone sour on him which means I have another PC to vacuum out. 

Last night I finished another Dorothy Simpson/Inspector Thanet mystery and started another one of the Melissa Cleary dog mysteries. I watched some of the dog show from Portland, Oregon on Animal Planet but could not stay awake to the end. A Border Collie won the herding group.

 

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