Day 372 – Pool lights

I wired up a couple of pool lights yesterday. We’ve never had a swimming pool light before, and We’ve never really wanted one, but the new place came with a pool with a light (that didn’t work) and so when we resurfaced the pool, it just made sense to replace the aging, yellowing light fitting as well. That then meant that we needed to replace the transformer for the light as well, which I finally got round to doing yesterday.

It’s probably not a good idea to just have a bash at installing a pool light transformer when you’ve never done it before and there’s 50,000 litres of salty water full of people on the other end of the cable. That’s why I elicited the assistance of an electrician friend who came round and helped out for the price of a cup of coffee and a damn fine braai afterwards. Everyone’s a winner.

And then, as darkness fell the pool light revealed itself. So cool:

A bit like this, worryingly:

Yes, folks: “a classic example of Cherenkov radiation is the characteristic blue glow of an underwater¬†nuclear reactor.”
Koeberg finally has a local rival. And were going to have no issues with loadshedding anymore. There may be other problems, but not having electricity won’t be one of them.

Honestly, I can’t see us using the pool light much. It’s a bit of a gimmick, but once we’re allowed to have people around again, it’ll be a very cool accompaniment to the party ambiance.

However, this pool light is going to get a lot of use:

This was another one that we wired in yesterday. The pool table was an impulsive Gumtree purchase. It used to be in a Stones bar somewhere (possibly this one?) before being refurbished by a guy who refurbishes pool tables. He needed to get rid of this one so he could use the space to refurbish his next pool table (a novelty L-shaped one, nogal!) and so added the very cool lights as a sweetener to the deal. I thought we’d put them up just to add to the look of the room which will eventually be our party/bar/entertainment room (yes, like the rest of the place, it needs a lot of work), but WOW – what a difference they made. You can even see the balls on the table now. No more excuses about weird shadows or dim corners. It’s pukka stuff.

I know that these are silly, nice-to-have things, but the work on this place will take many months – probably many years – and occasionally, we need to concentrate on more than just the essentials.

Right now though, it’s back to the rather more mundane jobs.

Day 369 – Tuesday Ephemera

A few short lines to document my thoughts today.

The goose drank wine.
Anyone else look at the title and have memories of The Clapping Song evoked? Yeah. Me too.

The beagle has lost its bark.
Yep. The beagle has a sore throat: a bacterial infection that was headed towards pneumonia before the vet and some antibiotics kicked into action in the early hours of Monday morning. There’s been some decent improvement today, but it’s still pretty glum about the whole situation. We’ll all be much happier when the beagle is bouncing around and chatting to its neighbourhood friends once again.
In Co-Amoxiclav We Trust.

Ramaphosa is addressing the nation this evening.
It was going to be at 7pm, but then there was this:

All the best, Noxolo.

There’s been much speculation about the contents of Ramaphosa’s speech. There are a couple of public holidays on the way and we have an incoming third wave due at some point (although our R=0.92 right now). So why is he bothering to talk at all? Will he close the beaches? Will he ban alcohol sales? Will he allow (much) greater numbers of people to attend religious gatherings? And if so, why? We have plans for the weekend. I’m sincerely hoping he doesn’t ruin them with some crappy pointless temporary legislation.

I have different music for different occasions.
No surprises there: you can’t reasonably expect to get away with Slipknot at your Granny’s tea-party. But moreover, I have different music for just me. Like this:

I’m still doing a lot of DIY around the house.
New lights here and there – and especially there. New sockets in the kitchen. New bathroom furniture. A touch of gardening. Some lying on my beanbag (not strictly DIY as we know it, but I did choose to do it myself). It feels like a never ending list. There’s some painting to do tomorrow. I can’t wait.

Unusual cover versions can actually be quite good.
I mean, Elbow’s Independent Woman is right up there. And here’s Future Islands covering Tina Turner.

Because, why not?

Day 368 – Bird added

It’s always nice to add to the list of “Birds I’ve Seen From My Garden” (subtly different from the list of “Birds I’ve Seen In My Garden“). And this one was a biggie. Literally.

A second (and now confirmed by other people) sighting of an African Fish Eagle (Haliaeetus vocifer) passing overhead.

Boom.

I haven’t managed a photo yet, although the camera is always at the ready. Next time.

Day 367 – Festival

It’s been a while since I went to a music festival. A long while. And while I love to listen to music, there’s nothing quite like proper live music with one act after another, weeing in horrific portaloos, and – optionally – sleeping in a tent.

6Music would love to be having their annual festival at the moment, but for some weird reason [checks notes] – apparently it’s the coronavirus pandemic – they can’t. So they got loads of musicians and bands into empty studios across the country and got them to play live sets as if there was a crowd there.
No, of course it’s not quite the same as a real festival, but it’s still a whole lot better than nothing. There’s some jazzy stuff (that pianist!), some electronic stuff, some happy folk rocky stuff, some just plain weird completely indefinable stuff (cool song, but I just don’t think that it works live) and some indie rock stuff.

That electronic stuff link is Bicep’s Apricots. It’s not my favourite song of theirs: they’ve done much better songs recently, like the dreamy Saku, but you have to just watch it for the lighting alone. So completely simple, so symmetrical, to straightforward… but wow. So massively effective.
You just want to be there, like a lucky pillar of blue light.

The whole youtube playlist is here, and is being added to, daily.
And if you just want to listen without pictures, check out the more comprehensive playlist on BBC Sounds.