And it is gone

If you click on http://www.rayriepl.com you will see that my website is gone.  Oh well.


Understanding isn't accepting

"Potholes form with the expansion and contraction of water after it has entered into the subsurface of the pavement. When water freezes, it expands, taking up more space under the paving, which then causes cracking. As temperatures increase, the water then thaws, leaving gaps or voids in the subsurface of the pavement. The voids allow for more water to enter under the pavement, creating a vicious freeze/thaw effect, which eventually weakens the pavement. As the weight of cars and trucks pass over the weak spot in the road, pieces of the roadway material weakened by the freezing and thawing effect get displaced or broken down from the weight, creating the pothole."

All I can say is: FIX 'EM!! ( right Rick?)


In the meantime

In my last post I said I will let my website die at the end of the year but possibly move it to a new one on Apple's hosting site. But during my decision making period I have found a way to keep somethings available for those who are interested. If you look in the top of the right hand column you can see a few links to some of the content on my old web pages. Let me know what you think, and if there is anything else I should add, if I can.


The ever changing internet landscape

Around the time of Y2K I decided to put up a website on the world wide web. The internet was still something that a lot of people had not yet discovered or embraced, but always wanting to be on the cutting edge I didn't hesitate in obtaining my domain name and server to host my site. Over the years I have posted pics, movies, lists of books I have read, B&Bs at which we stayed, miles ridden on my bike and a memorial to my truck. How many people have visited my site over the years? My guess? Well, I would have to say it is a very small number, and as the years went by that small number shrank to what I would describe as zero. Phanfare has become the place where I now post pictures and I have this blog to share thoughts. I hope phanfare is getting more visits than this blog which I hope is getting more visits than my old site. So, things have changed over the years and I see no reason to keep my old site up and running. BUT, I may replace it with a new site hosted by Apple. I am in a trial period to see if it is to my liking and sometime in January I will make a decision. It will be a slimmed down version of my old site. Very bare bones. No one cares about B&Bs, but I will still keep my miles ridden and perhaps my books read. As I said it is just in the idea phase. But as of the end of this month my present site will cease to exist.


The ever changing Rte 35 landscape

For those of you unfamiliar with Rte 35 in central New Jersey you should probably stop reading now. For those of you who wish to continue reading, I will continue writing. Apparently it has been some time since I had driven down 35 as far as Sears, or it might be that when I drive I develop tunnel vision and just aren't an observant driver. Is your interest piqued? Things change so suddenly that if you aren't on the road every day it is hard to believe that they can. Some things, though, aren't so sudden, but have just changed. So, here are my observation over the past week or so. The Home Surplus store just north of Cliffwood Avenue is gone. At least the original building which was replaced by a new one built next to it. The thing I remember about that old building was the lot next to it that had hundreds of vanity tops and sinks. Moving down the highway we are now at the light by K-Mart. Sitting at the light the corner gas station that was on the north east corner is gone. I knew it was going because it was closed and there was a sign that a bank was going to be built in its place. Just what we need around here, another bank. But the last time I drove by it was still an abandoned station. This time the bank is complete. Again, I guess I am just not observant. Moving only a few feet further down the highway we come to the diner. Originally it was the Red Oak Diner, but opened under new ownership as the Adelphi Diner. On my last trip, when I noticed the bank, I also noticed that it was once again the Red Oak. Interesting. Finally, as we continue our drive south, we come to the two shopping centers opposite each other in Middletown. The one on the opposite side of the highway is where there is a Chili's and a Macaroni Grill. Not anymore. The Macaroni Grill is closed. That was a shock. I never thought they were lacking for business. It was the one chain restaurant that I enjoyed going to, especially for the wine and bread. So, there you have it. In a blink of an eye things change.


Traffic solutions

Isn't it frustrating when you are sitting at a traffic light with more than a few cars in front of you and when the light changes it takes half a minute until you can move? If the first car doesn't move immediately that of course takes some time so it would behoove the first person to be paying attention. The following cars must also pay attention and not leave to big a gap. But the ultimate solution is for everyone to pay attention and when the light changes, everyone, and I mean everyone, begins moving at once, leaving no gap, other than the one that is there while waiting for the light to change. After passing through the intersection each car could then return to a safe following distance. Such a simple solution; don't you think?


Tree lighting

Two years ago we bought a new Christmas tree for our den. The tree in the living room (yes, we have two trees) is decorated with small lights of green, white and yellow. In the den we were looking for something different and found a tree with the lights already attached, but the unique thing was that the lights were C7s. These are the regular bulbs, not the miniature lights. I thought, cool. I wouldn't have too string lights on at least one tree. First year was a breeze putting it up. Second year a few bulbs were out, which wasn't surprising. But this year I set up the bottom half and before adding the top half I checked to see how many lights were out. There were more than a few so I proceeded to see if tightening up the bulbs would get them to light. I did a few with good results, but in tightening one white one I heard a small pop seemingly on the opposite side of the tree and half the lights went out. After some investigation I saw that there were actually three strings on the bottom half of the tree and one whole string had gone out. I checked the fuse in the plug end of the string. It was okay. I went along and wiggled each and every light but the string stayed out. Then I plugged another string into the end of the faulty string and that one lit. Electricity was going through the dead string, but just not lighting up the bulbs. Totally frustrated I sat there and tried to think what I was missing. Then I took the time to undo all the twisted wires that were holding all the bulbs and wire to the branches. Not an easy task. Once I had the whole string off I examined each and every socket, twisted each bulb, checked the wire for cuts or fraying, and still no lights. At this point I gave up and went to the store and bought a string of C7 lights. We now have a tree that is prestrung with lights except for the bottom string. I fully expect that next year another string will be dead. At that time I just might take all the strings off and have it become a regular tree.