Friday, December 23, 2011

Healing, Support, and Happy Winter Solstice

I have to say when Cook County wants to come together they do so beautifully,
The support for everyone affected by this event not only from our county, but the entire state, was heart warming to see.
One positive out come from this tragedy could be that this huge surge of  support and caring for others might continue and grow.
People are healing and that's the best news!

Trying hard to stay somewhat politely correct in the "Holiday Season"
I want to wish you all a happy
Winter Solstice
In the world of  astronomy one should be sad with the increasing daylight hours but as a person that lives in a remote setting in the woods I say

I also want to thank all you readers
we are approaching the end of the second year of our 1 year building project so
 "we're right on schedule
and all we're lacking is finishing up".
(my old boss just hated this statement)

This blog started in mid-January 2010 and we are working hard to be up and  running and shooting photos by our two year anniversary.
We will do a entry on that anniversary with a complete list of visits
but here is a little sample:
As of today the site has had
over 8,000 visitors
over 14,000 pages viewed
with visitors from  over 80 Country/Territory's
and well over 300 hours of content read.

So again thanks!
Coming soon will be the .com site for the observatory
and my new blog on Cook County politics.
For all  my neighbors in the small end of the lake,
yes the beavers are hitting you all hard, the new lodge is now built on Lonny's dock
and I have seen very little down my way,
 They must be very happy down there but with the water as low as it is I don't know why.
I'll try to get you some photos.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Courthouse Shooting and a Need for Change

I have to start by  sending positive thoughts to Tim Scannell and his family,
I  really appreciate Tim  both as our county attorney and a genuine human being.
My heart also goes out to all the people this entire episode has affected, both mentally and physically, and I hope everyone can move forward.

I hate to get political on this site but I have to explain the break in observatory progress.

It started years ago with my laundry.
 My laundromat is right across the street from our county courthouse, and as I waited for my cycles to run a combination of boredom and curiosity drove me to attending court and getting educated on just what goes on in our community.
After a year or so of court I got somewhat depressed and frustrated with it repetitive nature and all the dealing with alcohol.

I  then decided to changed my focus to the county commissioners meetings. 
Keep in mind that I had no local government experience what so ever, 
and I do mean none.
Now after over more then a year of sitting in the audience for 3 Tuesdays every month,  I have grown somewhat frustrated with the system, 
actually more frustrated with our fractured community and their thinking that 5 commissioners doing what ever their special interest constituencies what them to do, will fix anything.

Ghandi stated
"When the people lead, the leaders will follow"
I believe this to be true.

I wanted to live in Grand Marais since I was a child. I guess what I really wanted was
 to live in Mayberry.
(the fictional setting for The Andy Griffith Show)
Well this ain't it 
and the sad part is that I think it could be 
  but it's going to take 5000 people to come together enough to make some positive changes.

 Rolling around in the back of my mind all this time 
(lots of room for rolling back there)
I have been planing some kind of interactive, organic blog that might help and
 this was the perfect week to put pen to paper for the rough draft and outline.

The week was perfect because Cook County was having a large jury trial that was expected to last the week.
I know this doesn't seem like much but up here jury trials are somewhat uncommon and I haven't seen one before.
Monday  morning I showed up at the courthouse with pen and note pad knowing there would be slow times to think and compile my overview and outline.
The blog I'm thniking about  would give every person a voice,  a site were they could post and read positive suggestion's and solutions,
maybe inspire some out of the box thinking,
any avenue to bring a community together.
After three and a half days in the courtroom,  my note pad is pretty full of ideas,
 and final arguments in the trial are complete and the case is in the hands of the jurors. Around 1:00 in the afternoon  I left the courthouse to run some errands.
I had left my number with someone to call me when they had reached a verdict, receiving no call I headed back to our house around 5:00 pm. By 5:15 my phone started to ring with calls that there had been a shooting in our courthouse and that people I know and care about are shot and or traumatized

Where the f--ks my Mayberry?

I will try to get the new blog running soon so we won't have any political views on this blog but if 5000 people can't get it right were screwed as a society.

Friday, December 09, 2011

The Wait is Over, Now It's Learning Time

Our wait ended today.
After a waiting period that felt longer then a performance of Madam Butterfly that I attended
some years back,
our copy of Maxim DL Pro was in the mail box!

I'm very happy we had to order the boxed software instead of the downlodable version because a 402 page manual was included, it's around $60.00 dollars more but not having to print it was worth every dime, besides its nicely printed.

Out comes the yellow highlighter, reading glasses and coffee with Baileys.
I need to read just enough right now to make sure all our drivers are 64 bit and compatible,
understand what hooks up and determine the last of our cable needs.
We are coming up on two year anniversary of the project and this blog and I would love to be showing you some photos of at least the solar system by then.