Sunday, January 06, 2008

Soggy Homecoming






















First time home since bringing Ostaajje (more on the wolfling's status later). It's been storming pretty badly in Northern California and I was lucky to be able to get here. Earlier in the day a redwood fell across the Redwood Highway (appropriately enough) about 8 miles outside of town and blocked traffic for hours. I waited for Caltrans' all-clear before I set out.

Getting across the bridge into Marin was surprisingly easy due the low traffic. Lots of people were still off work and school for the holidays. Monday will, no doubt, be a mess out there.

Tried to make the drive as quickly as possible. I only stopped off in Garberville for a bathroom break and to check in with Angie.

Severe and close lightning strikes while driving through the forest. That was a bit scary. In a couple of places the hail was so heavy I couldn't see anything ahead and the road was frozen.

Proof that best-laid plans go astray came in the form of running low on fuel just past Orrick. Normally, a full tank takes me all the way home with a good safety margin. Not so this time. I had a reasonable amount of concern since it's pretty much nothing but forest for the rest of the trip and you can't get a cell signal there. No problem though. I could make Klamath pretty easily and fuel up at the reservation gas station there. They stay open late on Fridays.

So I got myself to Klamath, on reserve, pulled into the station and ... the pumps were all down due to power problems. The place was locked up with storm doors on the front which, oddly enough, had 2 big "OPEN" signs stapled to them.

Now the dilemma. I can get about 25 miles on reserve in Black Betty. I had just driven about 20 to get to Klamath from Orrick. It's another 16 miles to Crescent City where the next 24-hour gas stations are. I could run out of gas deep in the forest, in the middle of a storm, with no cell phone and at least a 3-hour walk to get out. I considered going through the reservation and looking for the Casino. I've seen it in the distance before. There might be another gas station there and, even if there isn't, I could ride out the storm until things lighten up. But I figured it was too easy to get lost on a night like this and on an unplanned journey. Best bet was to slog through to Crescent City.

Fired Betty up and took it slow to conserve fuel all the way through. Fortunately, the last mile or so is a downhill twisting route that dumps you into town. I rolled up to the first all-night station along the highway and...the power was out! There were three power company trucks parked near the pumps with crews working. But next door the Chevron station was alive, alive, ALIVE! Tanked up and made it home safely.

This is another "working weekend" and I'm doing some remote Failover testing from home. Hoping the power will stay on and the network will stay up. A few months ago I took my local servers down to the San Francisco data center. It's expensive to run servers here. So I'm very network-dependent these days.

2 comments:

HACKER said...

Like Dsaka tells me all the time:

you get a raise everyday...........
to the 4th floor!!!

Bob said...

Wow. What a hair raising story. We had 90 mph gusts here on Grizzly Peak. And I had a couple of power glitches at home and lost my cable link for about 30 minutes.