Saturday, January 30, 2010

Fatehpur Sikri between Agra and Jaipur

There were many notable things about this site. It was really huge: One would go through a cluster of buildings and into a courtyard, then there would be buildings on the other side of the courtyard, with a courtyard beyond that etc.

One odd and ironic thing which struck me was in regards to water. Our guide claimed that the city was abandoned due to lack of water and yet this was the only fort/palace we visited with such obvious water-handling civil engineering as this place had. In the above picture, the drainage channel was one of many throughout the complex. It would seem that excess water was the problem when the place was being built.


I had tried my hand at cider making before the trip to India and the results were fine, but the trip ended my production line.

What I had been doing is starting a new batch of 64 oz each week by pouring a little of the previous batch into the new one. To the yeast it must have seemed like escaping from a crowded and polluted slum to rich, verdant and unpopulated countryside. The alcohol and CO2 that are my whole purpose for doing the fermentation are waste products and therefore pollution, from the yeasty standpoint.

I can usually get two 64 oz apple juice bottles for $3.00 and each will give 5 1/3 12 oz servings, so this comes to about 30 Cents/serving. Not bad considering that pre-made cider I buy costs about $ 7.00 for 6.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Me and the 1984 Woman's Olympic Marathon.

  1. I watched it on television and was thrilled that an American (Joan Benoit) won the first time women were allowed to compete in the event.
  2. I was amazed by the Swiss finisher who, due to heat exhaustion, took 5 minutes to stagger through the last 400 meters.
  3. I met the Swiss woman's (Gabriela "Gaby" Andersen-Schiess) husband. He was the night manager at The Sun Valley Company and I worked the night shift in the housekeeping dept. I noticed the iconic picture of Ms. Andersen-Schiess on his wall and indicated that it was a riveting scene. That is when he mentioned his spousal relationship to her. I would also guess, given his last name is Andersen, that that is the source of the first half of her last name.
  4. Many years later, I was working in Tech Service at Affymetrix, Inc. and I used to run (very occasionally) with a woman who ran in college up in Maine. She knew Joan Benoit from the running community there.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Sunday mixed-bag

Ran out and got bagels--they discontinued the onion, which were really only onion seed, so the loss was less. We had smoked salmon on-hand from before the trip, so that helped.

Roasted coffee for the first time this year.

Attached the new desk top to the frame. We stopped at the Ikea in New Haven on the way back from Newark and got the missing T-leg. The guy who helped me was great! It was all a fog though because I hadn't slept on the flight from Bombay--which had departed at midnight India time.

Went for a slow and painful run. I have a marathon in 3 months but am crippled by injuries: There isn't time to wait and heal--then train, so I will have to just grit my way through.