Monday, January 12, 2009

Journal: Monday, 1/12/09

Early Morning:

►  Worked on various projects, getting some photos cropped and uploaded among them.  Clear, calm and a temperature that hovered just above freezing.

►  Interesting Website:  Day and Night World Map Shows the current position of the Sun and indicates which parts of the Earth are in day and which are in night.  Page also has links to world clock and other time zone conversion tools.

Late Morning:

►  Mostly clear, gusty south wind and 46ºF/7ºC when I got up at ten o'clock.  Jo said the sky was overcast earlier, but cleared rapidly.

►  Jo washed a load of clothes and hung them on the line to dry.


►  Temperature in the mid-fifties.  Clouds are building from the north.  Wind is still building from the south.  Yes, a new cold front is on the way down and scheduled to arrive sometime late this afternoon or evening.  Then, we'll enjoy a blustery north wind for a while.

The dark clouds that moved in from the north during the early afternoon just moved on through.  Most of the afternoon alternated between partly and mostly cloudy.  The south wind continued blowing as a new cold front approached.

►  Television Antenna:  First a little background.  When Jo and I first move up to Arkansas we didn't even unpack the television for a couple of years, mainly because we figured we'd not be able to receive a signal unless we erected and antenna.  We had so many other things going on with trying to get our house finished enough to move in that having a television was a low priority.

Eventually, we did pull the TV out of the box and discovered we could receive the signal from the Arkansas PBS affiliate using only rabbit ears on top of the set.  (Arkansas Educational Television has a half dozen transmitters around the state and one of them is only about 60 miles away.)  We were content watching only public television, but figured we'd get an antenna to pull in the signals from Little Rock and/or Springfield some day.

In 2001 Radio Shack had television antennas on sale and we bought one.  When buying the antenna, I was thinking we might be able to install it in the attic and not have to deal with erecting an antenna mast.  After getting the antenna home, it took about two seconds of inspection to determine there was no way it would fit into the attic when assembled and opened up.  Erecting a mast and installing the antenna has been on my "To Do" list since then.

The upcoming national conversion to digital signals has spurred new action on the antenna front.  Jo completed an online form and secured our $40 discount voucher which we used to buy a converter from Wally World.  (A good thing Jo got this done.  I've read that the agency doling out the vouchers is out of money with millions of folks still on its waiting list.)  We hooked up the converter and NOTHING.  Evidently, the weak signal we received with our rabbit ears isn't good enough for receiving a digital signal.

Our current plan is to assemble and connect the antenna while it is just sitting out in the yard and see if we can pick up a signal.  Actually, mounting the antenna to the roof is going to be a big job.  There's no need going to all that effort if it isn't going to make a difference.  If we cannot pick up a signal with the antenna sitting out in the yard, we're going to have to think about the situation for a while before deciding our next step.

Anyway......  We got the antenna mostly assembled this afternoon and I found my supply of antenna wire.  After eight years of procrastinating, a little bit of progress has finally been made.


►  New cold front is easing into our area.  Before this multi-day siege of cold weather is over, temperatures are forecast to dip into the single digits

Weather Summary:

High = 57ºF/13ºC.  Low = 33ºF/.5ºC.  Skies alternated between partly and mostly cloudy all day, especially during the afternoon.  Cold front arrived during the evening.  A blustery north wind was blowing by midnight.