Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Just Thinkin

I have been doing a lot of that lately. Just reading and thinking about everything. BUT, dont leave the page yet, this will not be another "I can't decide what to do with my life" post.

I have been reading Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac and its an awsome book, I really recomend it to anyone who hasn't read it and is interested in another way of living.

The IT world has been going pretty decent, just learning and learning and staying caught up in a world that moves at the speed of light it seems at times. I have been trying to get focused on getting my ceritifications and trying to move up maybe here at the city but that will tell in due time. We have been working on several big projects and trying to increase our productivity and overall response time. Its really exciting and the technologies we are working with are super fun. Its challenging to say the least.

Well, it looks like Im headed to lunch. I brought my lunch today as an effort to start saving money for the big trip, but, I can always start on monday right? Right!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Small Craft Advisory

That was the call for Galveston Bay saturday as we had strong NE winds all day friday and then ESE winds at 15-20kts on saturday, effectively whipping the bay into a frenzy. It was clear and cold as hell as we met up at the boat, me, Damien, and my buddy Chris (the guy I raced last weekend). Chris starts putting on foul weather gear, being the experienced sailor that he is and is looking at me like Im totally retarded. I have on jeans, 2 shirts, and a good hoodie. He tells us its going to be cold and wet but we head out anyways.

As we are motoring through the channel and under highway 146 I noticed the lack of boats but I thought it was just the cold keeping them from coming out. As we approached the mouth of the bay, that's when I realized why there were hardly any boats out. There were 2-3ft waves and just chop everywhere. We started beating through it and I was up getting the mainsail ready to be reefed when I noticed the prop on the outboard was coming out of the water because we were bashing through so bad. The foredeck was getting soaked with each wave and I was catching chilly 50F water in the face. Chris informs us that we are heading back to the lake. He doesn't know my boat that well and doesn't really trust the rig that well yet. We headed back into the lake and let her run under full sail. We initially sailed on some light points or maybe the wind was just slacking a little because when we tacked back across the lake we started healing hard. I had a good puff hit me and I dropped my beer for the mainsheet to let it out a little to ease the heel and being her back under control. We sailed across the lake a few more times and on the last one at a close reach we were hauling ass. I didnt have my GPS so I dont have a speed but it was a solid 6kts for sure.

The rest of my weekend was pretty uneventful. I rode a dirtbike for my first time this weekend and immediately caught on to that and had a blast. It was a 200cc but had been modified a little and that damn thing was pretty fast.

I hung out with Sabinka last night and we watched a good movie and enjoyed some wine. It was the perfect end to my weekend and I had a good time. We talked about life and goals and missions a little and shared ideas with each other. Yup, now Im in the office, dealing with 25 something emails about tech crap. yay.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The race was ON!

A Beneteau 34 we passed

My boat. Yea, my jib needed to be hauled higher.

Healing pretty good here.

Chris on his Morgan25

Closeup of the Morgan25 I raced

I had a great day sailing on saturday! My Dad and my step Dad both came down to sail with me and I prepared them for the race that was going to take place against my friend Chris in his Morgan 25. We got the boat clean and loaded up with some lunch stuff and headed out.

We met up in the bay just outside the channel markers and we started raising the sails. Chris faked me out with reefing at first and I followed only to look up and see him under full sail. Damn! I unreefed and got the main and jib up as fast as I could and had my Dad at the helm start us on our first tack off to starboard. We quickly caught up to him and passed him and we turned back out to the bay as we were getting into some shallow water and I draw 4ft. All day Chris would get me on port tacks and I would hang right with him or gain on him on the starboard side. We did finally pass him and slamdunk him when I was at the helm and controlling a lot of the mainsheet. I passed within 15ft of him and completely stole his wind. What a great day! Later that night I got some praise for our performace that day. Not tooo shabby for some newbies.

Sunday brought colder weather with a northern wind and I decided to go out. Well the wind was dying off more and more throughout the day and by time we got a ways out the bay, it went totally calm with maybe 1-2kts of gust. Blam, we were becalmed. We decided to just hang out and drift and have some drinks. We had a good time and even motored over to some big 40ft Hunter and got them to give us some chips. It wasnt really my idea but it was funny nonetheless. We eventually had to motor all the way back in and as we were coming in, it started picking up again so we motorsailed all the way back to the slip.

Im really starting to get the hang of this I think. Its so incredibly fun out there. Im working on the boat and getting more and more things replaced and getting her looking good and sailing right. Ill be working on the rigging again soon. I still need to do my brightworks but, thats not at the top of the list. Enjoy the pictures.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Im Saaaaiiiling Awaaaaayyyyy

Yeeeaaaaaa!!! Well, the weather is looking like it is going to cooperate this weekend for some time to go sailing. I plan on sailing the whole weekend again if I can and spending the night on the boat saturday night.

Work has been a little easier as it has calmed down some. Thats good because it was stressing us all out pretty badly. I thought it was just me but our network admin and my friend called me the other night and asked if I was the only one who thought it was just going totally nuts at work. Its friday now, and Im hoping that it will be just nice and quiet today with the occasional issue and leaving me time to get some more important things done. I reeeeaaallly need to clean out our server room/tech bench.

So yea, sailing. Im stoked. There isnt much surf to speak of so thats what Im doing all weekend. Speaking of surf, we have been having a pretty wierd winter this year. Usually this is the time to get decent and frequent surf here in Texas but lately, nothing much has been happening. We've had a few good days dont get me wrong but its been nothing to write home about thats for sure. The water isnt too cold and is hovering around 59F at the moment.

I have been thinking of a vacation with my older brother Cory for the summer. I dont have a lot of time like I used to with the old job so I guess Ill just go somewhere for a week and a half and enjoy it as much as I can. Now that Im making decent money, I have been thinking of dropping some cash on a flight and heading off somewhere, Australia maybe? I just dont want to think about it too much because it depresses me that I dont have the time that I used to.

Ill try and shoot some pics this weekend while we are out on the boat. Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Another Day at the Office

Its 8am.

As I sit down I notice the red "you have a message" light flashing on my phone.

3 emails are already in the box, waiting patiently to be read and tended to.

As I turn to fend off some emails, someone walks up with a laptop and tells me they are having logon issues with it, a problem that really doesn't make much sense. My focus changes now from the emails to the laptop in my face and I learn that this is a very unique problem, unique in a way that to fix it requires having a knowledge of a part of this network I have not yet learned. Another knowledge forms now in my brain, that knowledge is that the only person who does know this, is home sick. I wont call him and bother him because that is rude and my own struggle to have independant knowledge is stronger than my desire to call him.

IE7 is putting up a fight of epic proportions as it keeps crashing on close.

ICE Tcp printer configuration is out of whack.

We have a large amount of wierd traffic on our network causing congestion. is barely noon. Ohh how I want to be somewhere in Mexico right now with my only worry being that noon time wind shifts will soon turn the wind onshore and blow it out for lunch. Then Ill be forced to paddle in and eat and lay in my hammock as I wait for it to turn offshort again in the afternoon. I keep asking myself if signing up for this is really what I wanted.

Monday, January 07, 2008


So... this non posting business has gone on long enough. Its time to restart this blog!

Well, the latest and greatest news is I finally got the damn outboard back from the shop last weekend. Its very hard to be patient about something you buy and cannot use immediately, in fact, its been one heck of a lesson. Well, I got the motor back and God smiled upon me and blessed me with 2 full days of sailing in good winds in nice weather. Ohh, not to mention warm tempuratures as well.

The first day my step dad drove down. We prepped the boat and I went over a few things with him and we got her out of the slip and out into the lake. Ok, he has never sailed in his life and well, I have only been out maybe 2 times on other peoples' boats, never on my own. We decided to stay in the lake area and everything went well. We cruised around the lake for around 2 -3 hours under full main alone, I was a bit nervous about raising the jib too as this was my first time out. I practised tacking all over the lake and we made about 8 passes back and forth before we headed back in and called it a day. It was an amazing feeling to be out there and I was really having a blast. I went over to my friend Chris's house that night and had some drinks with him and his friends. He has a morgan 25 and has taken me out on his boat. He has been sailing for some 20 0dd years so he agreed to come out with me on mine the following morning to show me how its really supposed to be done and fully check all my rigging and make sure Im not missing something. I spent the night on the boat the night as I have been doing for the past weekends and slept great.

Rami showed up at around 11:30 am and I just returned from West Marine with my new mainsheet. I had totally shredded the previous one as it was the only line on my boat that I did not replace when I redid all the running rigging. We got everything ready to go and got some beer. Chris shows up and helps me with a stupid bowline knot I couldnt get to set for the life of me on the mainsheet. We start heading out and we decided to head out into the bay so we motor all the way across the lake and through the Kemah Channel. We had some asshole on a huge speed boat come from behind us s we were leaving the channel in front of the boardwalk and just blast through the middle of several sailboats and 1 other motor boat. The wake he left sent my 25' rocking violently and it really pissed me off. Is it illegal to shoot at someone with a flair gun???? We went out under a reefed main alone and cruised along nicely for a while. We could have ran a full main but we decided a nice easy sail was more ideal for the moment. We cruised along and headed way out into the bay and the wind slowly started dying down. About 5-8 miles out we unreefed and ran a full main and tacked back around and raised the jib. Even under full sail, we were barely making 2 knots but in no real hurry to get back, we just drank some beer and enjoyed the nice slow cruise with the waves now coming up from behind. About 45 minutes later, the wind started picking back up and we started gaining some speed. We adjusted our tack a little to be on a beam reach. Wow! We sheeted the main in a little and the next thing I know we are hauling ass! What a rush! Chris tells me we are making probably around 5-6 knots and we were heeling around 30 degrees maybe a little more. I loved the heeling especially and the smoothness as we effortlessly sliced through the waves. I let Rami take over on the helm and I went forward to the bow to just look around and take it all in. The weather was perfect, 75F, sunny skies, and now its 4:45 or so and the sky is an awsome color. Im looking at the sails, huge and filled with wind, carrying the boat along at this speed and giving us the ride of our lives. I could not have asked for a better sunday.

As for everything else, not much has been going on. I have been working a lot and just enjoying my time working in this environment and learning a lot. We have a great IT team here and Im glad to be a part of it. The surfing for me has been lacking. I can no longer do dawn patrols and gettin the surf to line up on the weekends perfectly just isnt happening. Ohh not to mention, the water is a toasty 56F and all I have is a 3/2. Bleh...

Today starts the day of my diet and goal to get into better shape and save more money. I know, I know, new years was last week, BUT, I never start my goals right on the 1st. I know how I think and I know most people fail. I give myself that extra week to still be bad and just get it out. Starting on the 1st is a daunting task, especially if you are super hung over the next day. The only thing Im thinking about is a nice juicy hamburger somehwere. So, I think Im ready. We have a mini gym in the garage now, so thats pretty cool. I really cant wait for this weekend. I hope the weather holds out and I can go sailing again!!!!