Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The first thing that I did today ...

... was to empty the composting toilet. I've been neglecting it for a few days, what with one thing or another. And of course, once you get started you'll be surprised at how many other things there are. But it needed to be emptied, such is the exciting life that I lead these days.

Second job was to cut a mound of wood. I've been running the pile down this last week or two and so I set about sawing up a big load of wood that will keep me going for the next few weeks. All done by hand with this new saw, and I'm as impressed with that as I am with the galvanised steel dustbin, which hasn't featured so much in these pages of late.

Third job was to rescue the old anenometer that I had mounted on the side of the house and which I had taken down when I had put the wind turbine up there. This was in the lean-to but it's now screwed to the fence by the front door. The main reason why I put it back up is that its temperature gauge is much more accurate than the one that I'm currently using to measure the air temperature.

This afternoon, with the sun blazing down and the heater upstairs working flat-out, I reckoned that this is a bit silly as there is so much more that I ought to be doing with the surplus electricity that I have. and so remembering the heady days of spring and summer 2011 I dismantled the old 12-volt immersion heater that I had made out of an old xylophene drum and which corroded through when I was in Canada, checked that the important bits, like the element, were still working (and you would be amazed at how quickly it boils 1.5 litres of water) and then built another heater using a 4-gallon plastic water header tank. I'm not sure how long the plastic will remain viable, but for a while anyway it will hopefully give me hot water and I can do my washing.

But all of this got me thinking. When I was setting out on the road of doing all of this, I remembered mentioning to someone who I thought was a friend of mine my plans for maybe having a microwave oven here. A short while later I stumbled across a thread in a newsgroup somewhere where this "friend" and his mates were openly ridiculing my thoughts about this. Of course, such a friendship had to peter out after that, but I do wonder what this guy and his mates would be saying now when here, in the middle of winter, for the last three days I've been running an electric heater up in the attic.

Serve them right. 

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