Thursday, June 30, 2011

Trip Day 4

Miles Driven: 10
Mean Temperature: 77f  (Oh thank god.)

Are you 420 friendly?  Good for you, I'm not.  Not only am I not, but I am actually allergic to members of the Hops family... which include Cannabis.

Why does this matter?  Well because the office I am working at today shares a wall with a Medical Marijuana dispensary.  It didn't start off to bad, but as the day has gone on, the bathroom smells like it escaped from the 60's and the air vent blowing cold air brings the distinct smell of misery along with it.

So I'm sitting here with a pounding headache, scratchy eyes, and throat that itches like mad.  Just trying to get through this so I can be done with this and go back to the hotel room and shower.

Fortunately, workwise things are doing fine so I am likely to get out of here early.  I typing this whilst staring at a progress bar which should be the last thing I have to do here.

Trip Day 3

Day three:

Miles Driven: 266.
Mean Temperature: 95 f

Driving in the morning wasn't so bad, got to the site and in spite of there being one more computer then inventory accounted for I was able to get everything up and running with little problem.

Came out to the car... and the dash thermometer read 103 f.  Local temp was about 95 f in the shade with no hint of wind.  I should mention, that my little SUV being of the Alaskan variety does not have A/C, so cooling is either accomplished by 2-75 (2 Windows @ 75 mph) or by closing the windows and usi
The latter is not as cooling, but means a difference between 22 mpg and 28 mpg with windows up.
ng the vents at full blast.
Wandered around aimlessly trying to find a local coffee shop that took plastic, gave up and got iced coffee from Albertson's and threw in a Gatorade for good measure.

Which was the smartest thing I ever did.


Hit the road looking at ~2 hour drive, and went on my merry way.

About 30 minutes south of town, hit some road construction and had to come to a stop.

And wait... (finish the iced coffee)


wait...(drink the gatorade)

WAIT... (wish for another gatorade)

An hour and half later of baking on freshly poured asphalt, which I assure you was hella hotter then 95 f, we finally got moving again. I'd like to say we made good progress, but that would be a lie.  In spite of the posted speed limit of 50 mph, the lead semi insisted on going 25mph and there was no passing.  It took us another 45 minutes
to get to a point where people could begin passing...

So starving, thirsty, and super heated I arrived at Miles City 2 hours later then planned, and walked into a hotel room where they already had the A/C running at 55 f.  Shock nearly killed me.  It felt good, but a 40 degree temperature drop in a second, left me filling ill.

Not ill enough, that I didn't go out and have steak, with 4 glasses of lemonade.  Damn good steak from the Montana Chop & Rib House.  On my table less then 15 minutes from when I ordered.

Tomorrow, should be a simple install, another night in this nice little hotel room, and then friday home with a quick stop in Billings.  *fingers crossed*

I'm ready to be done with trip.

Now if you will excuse be, I have 12 bottles of gatorade calling my name from the mini-fridge.

*Edit: Blogger wouldn't accept posts last night, so this coming to you Thursday.*

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Trip: Day One & Two

Day One:

Miles Driven: 386.
Mean Temperature: 86 f.

One detour because of a bridge still being out, and one road reduced to one lane from post flooding damage.

There were some interesting vistas, sadly blurred by a high overcast or I would have taken pictures.

To make up for it here is the the view outside my hotel room.

Umm... well... unless you have an personal interest in farm equipment it probably didn't excite you much.

I expected to have trouble sleeping last night, as a rowdy group of BNSF trainmen took the room next to me, but they had a 4:30am callout so actually quieted down about 9pm.

The food at the Cottonwood was strange mix of excellent and mediocre. The burger was soggy and uninspiring, but the onion rings were perfect and the ranch sauce amazing (and I don't like ranch.) The burger's shortcoming were solved by dipping it in the ranch.

Day Two:

Miles Driven: ~5.
Mean Temperature: 91 f.

Equipment installs went pretty smooth, enough that I was done by 4:00 and back in the A/C hotel room by 4:30.

Dinner tonight was Chicken Fried Steak. Ummm... yeah...

Steak was burned, as in I can taste carbon; smothered in from-the-package gravy, and onion rings were soggy.

On the plus side, I got a mini-loaf of bread that looks good and a fresh salad with the amazing ranch. Weird. I hate ranch... but I want to smear this on everything...

Tomorrow I expect to be miserable, with expected highs of 94, 2.5 hours of driving to the site, ~5 hours of work and then 2.5 of driving to the next site. Wheee...

Monday, June 13, 2011

Plague update road trips and more

The antibiotics prescribed by the fine folks at ye local UrgentCare seemed to do the trick, and by Sunday I felt mostly back to normal.

However, Tuesday arrives and I start to develop the same symptoms in smaller measure. By Wednesday I was just as symptomatic as I had been the previous week before I started my antibiotics (although thankfully with out the green eye ooze from previous Friday.)

Back to UrgentCare, with a new stronger and (much) more expensive antibiotic prescription.

It seemed to clear up the symptoms a lot faster then previous batch, although my symptoms hadn't been as acute during my relapse.

Sunday rolls around again and I felt fine. I'll give it until the end of the week to officially declare myself "better." Before anyone asks, yes I will will take my full course of antibiotics.

Tangentially related... why is it a good idea to give someone who can't swallow at all pills the size of child's fist?


I was supposed to be in the North-east part of Montana this week doing some equipment installs. Obviously my scheduling didn't account for Tonsillitis, but in fact my trip was delayed by that little flooding problem they appear to be having. The direct route to my first destination has a bridge out/redirected. So far as I can tell the detour adds ~200 miles onto a 981 mile trip. The alternate route also passes through a section of road that has been intermittently reported as being underwater.

Also, the poor lasses at the office I would visitng... one of them has four feet of standing water in her basement, and the other one has lost the only drive way in-out of her property... so neither of them are likely to even be there should I manage to get to points North.

We are giving it two weeks before attempting the trip, which also give me time to be sure I am recovered.


And more...

Umm... truely I forgot what I was going to put here. So I will share with you my new favorite quote.

"The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But I assure you, it’s still on my list."

Friday, June 3, 2011

Plague Bonus!

Pink Eye!

Apparently not uncommon for these sinus / tonsil infections to wander up the tear ducts and Eustachian tubes, but really? My week isn't crappy enough?

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Plague Update.


It's not Strep.

If it were strep, they have super effective treatment which would have me better in a couple of days. Instead I am on a slower acting, but effective treatment that should catch all the other potential causes... but take 4-5 days before it is effective.

So 4-5 days of eating nothing but cream of wheat, of having to force every sip of water down, of gargling every hour with warm salt water....


But there is hope with the antibiotics, and the doc gave me pills that should knock me out enough that I can sleep through the night for the next 4-5 days.

Edit - 2 AM update. Apparently the doctor was being generous when he said 2 Hydrocodrone / Vicodin would "knock me out." I can't even tell if it's taken the edge off the pain... maybe a little since I did manage to sleep for four hours instead of two before my throat woke me....