Life changes.

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Thinking about how much life has changed since I cooked toast on our gas fire.

In the 1970’s we had electric central heating installed downstairs in our house. This was installed by our council. But my mom would not have it on because of the cost. We used to sleep with our outdoor coats on top of our sheets, blankets and eiderdowns to keep warm. In the winter there was always frost on the inside of the bedroom window. Sometimes really thick ice.

Now my home has double glazing (single at my mom’s house till the 1980’s). Central heating. The water is usually hot, where we were only allowed to put the heater on for an hour at night at my old home.

Also computers were just coming in and calculators were introduced when I was a teenager. Now they are everywhere. “go online” is the mantra.

Electric cars? Maybe imagined in the 1960’s to be everywhere by the turn of the century, and people really thought there woukd be flying cars.

Bad stuff now… Too much plastic… Too much pollution. But there were shop wrecks like the Torrie canyon and the Exxon Valdiz that poured millions of gallons of oil into the sea and destroyed sea bird colonies.

What else? Our phone, when we got it was a big green one, with a hand held ear and mouthpiece attached to the phone body by a curly wire. The phone itself had a dial with holes lined up with numbers on it. To dial a number you put your finger in a hole then pulled it round the dial until you got to a stop then the dial turned the other way and you dialled the next number… Now, well we have mobile phones, hand held computers like in star trek.

Other things, better medication, more cures for cancer, more treatments, more, older people.

The thing is, the more we have, the more we want…. Catch 22….

Waiting for the mechanic

Our car needs the rocker head gasket replacing because its starting to weep. That means oil is starting to seep out of the top of the engine. It’s not serious but it needs fixing. The rocker head gasket is right at the top of the engine and sits above the spark plugs. Its where the top is bolted on to the body of the engine block. Not to be confused with the head gasket which is a bit further down.

Apparently its quite a simple job, and as long as the oil is only seeping out slowly its not too bad, but on the other hand it does need fixing.

When I rang up the garage I go to they said bring the cat in this afternoon. So we went down and waited, but no one is there. Its a bit worrying because our mechanic has not been well and he is a friend, so that’s even more worrying. I tried ringing but there was no answer. I guess all I can do is try again tomorrow.

What to do when your digital signal breaks up?

This is a weird solution, thanks to my hubby. We have a set top ariel because there is a large building across the road with a metal covering. So we have found that we don’t need a TV ariel on the roof. We have hung it up by the curtains to get a stronger signal. With it there we have a good enough signal to get most channels.

But when the weather is clear, or we have high pressure it effects the TV. On a few channels the picture breaks up into lots of little squares and patterns.

What to do? First he wiggled the ariel about, then when that didn’t work he held a saucepan up with the idea that the metal of the pan would boost the signal – and it did! Now there is a saucepan hanging off the ariel now. Its a temporary solution. I don’t want it falling off and hitting the television! I might get a better ariel.

Trust me

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She woke to a bright light shining overhead, blue curtains round a metal bed. The smell of disinfectant in her nostrils. Why was she here? She looked at her leg, a metal cast was round it. Bolts stuck put at the top and bottom near her knee and ankle. She realised she had a cannula in her arm. What else? No visible windows, just the all pervading glow of light. No sound of anyone moving, no drink on a cupboard next the the bed. She felt thirsty, hungry even, no idea what time it was.

She looked round for a push button or a pull cord to get attention, nothing. She called out ‘Hello? Can someone help?’

Silence… She felt tired and fell asleep. Later, she didn’t know how long, she woke again, strangely no longer hungry or thirsty. The cannula was attached to a big bag of pale blue fluid. She looked at her leg. Now it was wrapped in a plastic bandage, the splint or cast was gone? How, she didn’t remember time passing. She heard a sound, a human shape pushed through the soft blue curtains. She flinched as she saw the metallic face.

‘Trust me, I’m a Robot’ it said.

What is up with WordPress?

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I want to reply to a friend who commented that some test results were good, which is great, but WordPress won’t let me reply. It keeps coming up with an error message. Something like ‘user cannot see your reply’ and ‘user approval not given’ or something like that. It’s very irritating when technology allows you to make friends over the Internet with people all over the world, then stops you communicating!

It might be something to do with my provider. I still have a ‘saving of draft failed.’ message that one of WordPress’s ‘happiness’ support workers could not resolve.

I’m not exactly sure what to do. This might be a one off between me and the other user, or it might be with everyone? We will see.

Barometer reading

My barometer pressures have dropped from about 1010 yesterday to 970 on my traditional barometer and 959 on my electric weather station. There is always a discrepancy of about 10 (millimeters of Mercury?) between the two.

What is ‘pressure’. Pressure is air pressure, the weight of the air pressing down on us from the top of the atmosphere downwards.

The guage on the traditional barometer has gone from fair (gold pointer) to rain with the black pointer.

How is pressure measured? One ‘bar’ of pressure is the average air pressure at sea level. It’s also measured in millimetres of Mercury.  There was a historical experiment to find out about the air pressure. The experimenters put a tube of  mercury upside down in a glass dish. This can leave a vacuum in the top of the tube. If you have the tube and dish at sea level the Mercury will be at a lowed level in the dish. This is because a larger weight of atmosphere is pressing down. Go up a mountain and the level in the dish will rise, because the air pressure up there is lower (less depth of atmosphere).

There is lots of information on sites like Wikipedia about air pressure. They probably describe how the air circulating in the atmosphere causes areas of low and high pressure. The weather is also influenced by the sea and its temperatures and the heating of the Earth’s surface by the sun.