Friday, August 29, 2014

Busy Week

Sandhill Cranes Near the House
Mark Applen and I had been discussing his current wheel house situation for this years up and coming ice fishing season and apparently he decided to do something about it.  There were some deals floating around the area for a few 2014 Salem Ice Cabin wheel houses and some of those were actually pretty good.  Mark ended up purchasing one at a dealership in Mankato and in the process, arranged to get his floor spray foam insulated.  He generously offered to haul mine down and drop it off at the insulating company, Reichel Insulation, the same day he would pick his up new house and it really worked out slick for me.  As stated last week they called and said that it was done and to come and pick it up on Friday afternoon.  It's a nice drive to Mankato and after meeting the owner's son and looking at the nice job they did, I'm pretty impressed.  The house should be a lot easier to heat using less propane as well as be more comfortable to spend your time in.  With Mark having the identical house its been fun to help him not make the same mistakes that I have!  With summer winding down it's time to start getting it ready for the winter as the inside floor/wall joints need silicon caulk, hopefully I can get the new door under the couch installed for extra storage, and Mrs. Sipe can finish the last curtain.  On Tuesday morning I headed to California for work.  Driving by the field just across from the old PDQ station there were 2 large sandhill cranes eating the grain stubble left from the combining that was done earlier.  They are magnificent birds standing close to 4 feet tall, they are certainly becoming more numerous around the area.  Stopping along the road I snapped this picture of them pecking in what was left oats that were planted to keep down the erosion.  Like the resident bald eagles that next down where the neighbor Blair has the boat launch on the Mississippi River, it's nice to see these exotic looking birds.  As long as they stay out of the garden, there fun to have around.

Pacific Ocean Sunset
Tuesday morning caught me getting on a flight to Los Angeles (LAX) for a number of business meetings. California is a great place to visit, especially if its February but to be honest, just too many people!  Like the old Mama and Papa's song, It Never Rains in Southern California, they are in the midst of a severe drought.  I don't know, it seems brown there when ever I go but it is pretty dry.  We have a couple of employees in the Los Angeles/San Diego area so it's nice not to have to rent a car and fight the craziness of their what seems to be a constant rush hour.  Tuesday night we connected with one of our suppliers and had dinner at the Chart House Restaurant in Cardiff, California. Sitting practically on the beach, we had a stunning view of the sunset looking out over the Pacific Ocean, it was quite amazing.   It didn't make up for the sorry state of the oysters on the half shell, they were pretty bad for an upscale seafood place.  On Wednesday I was relayed to Mike Schubert where we headed to Dana Point to check out the incoming fishing boats.  With a hurricane developing off the coast of Baja Mexico, the waters were pretty churned up, great for surfing but not so good for fishing.  Never the less we did see some yellowfin tuna carted off the boats heading for a weighin and cleaning.  Mike had an hour meeting at the American Legion, a great place to hang out before we went to his favorite place in Huntington Beach, Longboards (what they call surfboards).  There the oysters were in perfect form and about a third the price from the night before, as well as their entire menu was extremely reasonable.  They had an interesting side drink, a shot of vodka with cocktail sauce added then topped with a raw oyster.  Not afraid to try anything, it was pretty good.  Being from Minnesota it was quite unusual to sit outside on the sidewalk patio, it's 76 degrees out and they have the propane patio heaters going full bore.  I suppose with a strong wind coming in from the ocean, it's something people expect there.

The countdown to Lac Seul for next week is still being decided.   All that is known is I'm driving so the boat needs to get ready.  It's going to be pretty exciting to have my boat there, it will give me a great opportunity to explore the areas we fish with the electronics, not that it's needed.  I am worried about the sand and have assurances from Pete that he'll keep his shoes off the gunnels, I think we'll be ok.  With some family things going on this weekend, fishing next, a wedding on the 13th, as always, I'm running out of time.

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