I haven't had much lately to report about. I ended up getting whatever California cold is sweeping through lately, and have mostly been puttering around the apartment, watching documentaries on Hulu, and getting some shop class machining instruction from Tubalcain on YouTube.
This guy is great. I'd adopt him as my grandpa if I could. And since my high school didn't have any sort of shop class, I'm now finally starting to learn some basics. Then, it's a couple machinist books to read up on the theory behind it all. Hopefully, by the time we get settled into a house somewhere, I'll be ready to get a lathe and a mill, and at least have a good start on how to use the things. I just can't contain myself when I think of the ability to make my own dropouts, hubs, braze-ons, task-specific tools... oh man!
My sister came to visit, so I got to play tourist and explore a bit more around here. I took her to see a couple trails through the redwoods within a few miles of where we live. I don't think I could ever get tired of walking through redwoods.
This is a gnarly redwood in the local state park that they say suffers from some sort of gigantism. It barely resembles the other redwoods, but I think it's still pretty awesome.
This is inside of a redwood, that had been turned into a honeymoon suite back in the mid-late 1800's, and it's still alive. You can see where there was once a window carved out in the tree, but it has since healed back shut. These are some pretty incredible trees.
After that, we went for a little wine tasting. My sister has run various bars over the years, and has become quite the expert in cocktails, beers, and wines. She had carried one particular wine from David Bruce, and wanted to try out some of his other offerings. We of course went along, and man am I sorry I did. I don't think I can ever look at wine the same again, after having at least two of the best tasting wines that I've had in my life. I try not to be a snob, and still believe that there are great wines to be had in the $8-$12 range. But tasting a particular $55 bottle of a dry Syrah/Petit Syrah mix ... all I can say is that it blew my mind, and I didn't know wine could do what this one did. It's flavors were so pronounced, yet balanced and not overpowering... yea, all I can say is now I understand why anyone would ever want to pay that much. Not that I can/will anytime soon.
Some of David Bruce's vineyards.