30 November 2012

Postcard from Arizona- 3

30 November 2012


Benson

It's almost Rabbit! Rabbit! day (the first day of a new month) and I am still trying to get the new computer to the point I can call it "useable". It's been almost a month of screwing with this thing! Takes awhile when you have to start all over again: at one point I had to contact Samsung who told me how to use a Function key option when powering-on to restore the computer to an earlier or even not-yet-installed Windows configuration (there are no instructions; the only Help is on-line which pre-supposes you don't a problem getting connected; well guess what Mr. Microsoft and Mr. Samsung, when you click on "Get Help With Connecting to the Internet", you probably don't have a *&^%#$# connection!). The problem was intermittent and seems to occur daily sometime during the mid-morning ('morning sickness' I guess). With that problem sorted, I got started again and must admit it went much quicker the 2nd time (though the Admiral emphatically does not agree!).

Sierra Vista hasn't moved

We drove both vehicles over to Sierra Vista to have the Highlander serviced and to get the windshield washer hoses replaced at Sierra Toyota. While we were off to Maine for the summer, a critter had taken up residence in the engine compartment and needed some building material. Or maybe a low-cal lunch. I guess the hoses were handy and he was sure we wouldn't mind. Sorry dude... wrong!

Surprisingly,  the bill at this particular Toyota dealer was very reasonable for service and repairs. Looks like they have a $70/hr billing rate which is significantly less than we seen elsewhere.

Update on our truck

Just for the record: nothing has broken on our F-350 truck since we arrived. Still running great; still getting good mileage; and the exhaust is still smelly when we idle.

This reminds me of an old Post script that appeared in the Saturday Evening Post around 1952 which went something like this:

During WW-II, a merchant marine captain was disgusted with his First Officer's drinking habits, so to build a case for dismissing him he decided to record the problems in the ship's log:
"Tonight the 1st officer was drunk when he came on duty."
The next night when the First Officer came on duty, he read the Captain's entry and then added an entry of his own:
"Tonight the Captain was sober."

Channel 43

I think I mentioned earlier that I've volunteered to help with Channel 43 (the SKP Saguaro RV Park's private cable channel). It's been fun learning something new, creating the weekly playlists that schedule the video files and play them into the park's video feed. I may have to learn about creating videos as well. Bryan & Mike have been patient teachers!

The key s/w that makes this all work is Playlist Manager from SprintBit.com. It's an SQL-based product that costs all of $29 which, if you forgive a few quirky behaviors, is a bargain for what it does. Last year the freeware program they were using was causing more work than you can imagine. They have photos of the guys laying on the floor in the park's video feed room as they entered new playlists and added videos. No thanks! Call me a prima dona, but Mrs. Bowman's little boy doesn't do laying-on-the-floor-updates-cuz-of-crappy-software-from-China. Bryan and his wife Susan worked on those problems the entire summer and his effort has made the production job nearly routine this fall. What a guy!

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