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Monday, 10 August 2020 Dereel Images for 10 August 2020
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Finishing the cooking
Topic: food and drink Link here

Yesterday was spent in the kitchen, but I didn't quite finish: cook the Shanxi “planed” noodles. They come out very sloppy:


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Somehow they remind me of my fresh noodles. Maybe I can try that some time; these were not cheap.


Analemma accuracy
Topic: photography, general, opinion Link here

I've been taking photos of the sun at mean solar midday (12:25:00 AEST) for nearly a year now. Time to think more about assembling them all.

My method: place the Olympus E-30 with the Zuiko Digital ED 9-18 mm f/4.0-5.6 and a 10 EV neutral filter in front of a post in the garden. Take one photo at 1/4000 s, f/5.6 exactly at 12:25:00 (13:25:00 in the summer), and then another at 2 s at f/5.6 for the background:

 
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The purpose of the second photo is to locate the sun accurately: with programs like Hugin I can first align the series of second photos and then swap the image to have correct alignment of the sun images. I haven't decided yet what I do after that, but it's gradually becoming time.

But how accurate are the images? How accurate must the time be? Today I tried a comparison: take photos exactly at 12:25:00, 12:26:00 and 12:28:00, and compare them. Since they're on a tripod, I can just take a crop of the same part of each image (run the cursor over an image to compare it with its neighbour):

 
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So there is a difference: it takes about 2 minutes for the sun to travel its own diameter. Probably a second or two inaccuracy wouldn't be that bad. And yes, the times reported by the camera are inaccurate. It clearly doesn't believe in sub-minute accuracy. It must have been programmed by a mobile phone developer.


Dead kangaroo
Topic: animals Link here

On our daily dog walk today, just outside our driveway:

 
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Another dead kangaroo! This one appears to have been hit by a truck, breaking its legs. But who cut off an ear? I'm reminded of Tom Lehrer.

 
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Weed spraying for real
Topic: gardening Link here

Another sunny day today without too much wind. Back to finish the spraying I had attempted last week. This time I noted the foaming when filling the sprayer, as well as when spraying. Hopefully I won't forget again.


Cockatoos
Topic: animals Link here

We frequently have large swarms of sulphur-crested cockatoos flying over the house, but it's relatively seldom that they hang around. Today was such a day:

 
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New masks for Yvonne
Topic: health, general Link here

Yvonne has a new, reusable face mask, sent by Yana:

 
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I'm still trying to work out what it means.


Tuesday, 11 August 2020 Dereel
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More animals in the household
Topic: animals, general Link here

Living in the country, mice are inevitable. We had our first mouse in Stones Road just after we moved in, and it's clear that Piccola enjoys being in certain places in the hope of catching one.

But lately we've found more and more in the garage. Here's what it looks like two nights after last sweeping the floor:


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Where do they come from? What are they eating? It seems to be a combination of dog food and the old pink sponge cleaners that we have had for decades, and which I thought were of no use:

 
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I wonder why they like them. And how do they get at the dog food? It's sealed in the blue and purple containers to the left of the middle of the first photo, and there's no evidence of the mice getting in.

Where do they hide? An obvious place would be under the bottom boards in the shelves that I installed recently:

 
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The bottom of the other shelf unit (in the middle of the first photo) has nothing on it, so I lifted the board to see. Lots of droppings, but no mice. Where are they? They must be dozens of them. Do they come in at night and leave in the day? Time for Piccola to spend some nights there, and of course also for some mousetraps.


Sarawak laksa!
Topic: food and drink, opinion Link here

I've taken the hint from the current COVID-19 pandemic and planned to do more shopping online. An obvious choice is East Asian food, so today I went looking for likely suppliers and wrote a suppliers page for them.

Some look quite good, and I've found nearly all the ingredients I normally buy in Belmont, Geelong, and also some that I haven't seen. But one thing surprised me was a recipe for (apparently) Sarawak laksa. Clearly they're talking about Kuching laksa; I doubt they would have tried it in Sibu or Miri. It's surprising for a number of reasons:

Still, it's something to investigate.


This page contains (roughly) yesterday's and today's entries. I have a horror of reverse chronological documents, so all my diary entries are chronological. This page normally contains the last two days, but if I fall behind it may contain more. You can find older entries in the archive. Note that I often update a diary entry a day or two after I write it.     Do you have a comment about something I have written? This is a diary, not a “blog”, and there is deliberately no provision for directly adding comments. It's also not a vehicle for third-party content. But I welcome feedback and try to reply to all messages I receive. See the diary overview for more details. If you do send me a message relating to something I have written, please indicate whether you'd prefer me not to mention your name. Otherwise I'll assume that it's OK to do so.


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