Mt. Rainier and Lenticular Clouds - Dec. 2008 copyright: JMM

March 30, 2015

A Costly Mistake

Woke up last Wednesday to the news that a fuel tanker had crashed at the Bourne Rotary and the bridge was closed.  About 5,000 gallons spilled out (out of about 11,000 gallons), soaking through the soil and getting down the storm drains.  A small slick appeared in the Canal.

It had happened around 11:30 on Tuesday night and the Bridge remained closed till about 9:30 am on Wed.  Traffic on the other side was at a complete standstill as there was only one bridge to accommodate rush hour traffic and everyone was being detoured and trying to use it.  

Apparently the driver failed to notice that there was a rotary at the end of the bridge.  I'm not quite sure how that can be.  It's a huge mound with 'Cape Cod' written in shrubbery, and still glowing white with snow.  Plus the speed limit coming down that side reduces to about 30, so he must've been flying.  A witness said that he tried to turn right at the last second but it was too late.  He smashed into the curb and the truck rolled.  He was able to get out and was taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

Hazmat was called, fire retardant foam was sprayed, fire departments from four towns showed up.  I can't believe the truck didn't explode. That was a bit of luck anyway.  Web image

All I can think is that he'd either never been here before, or got it confused with the Sagamore Bridge, because the Mid-Cape Highway is on the other side. It's a smooth ride downhill off the bridge and onto a highway.  Web image

I saw the stories on my newsfeed when I got up at 7:00 am. News reports said that the Bridge wouldn't reopen till about 8. I decided that this was probably a once in a lifetime opportunity to see the bridge completely devoid of cars.  So I jumped in the car and headed up to an area where there's Bridge access along the's actually an old bridge approach from the 70s before they built Highway 25.

This is looking down 25 where normally there would be tons of cars and trucks headed over, but they were all detoured into Buzzards Bay and Wareham.

Wow.  Not a single vehicle.  How often does this happen during the day? Almost never.

Then I drove over to the park at the Railroad Bridge to get a full-on shot of the empty bridge.

Then of course I had to get a couple more pictures...since I was there and all.

The environmental cost and pricetag to clean it up is going to be really bad.  The Canal should be fine; I'm sure it sees way more fuel sheens from the marine traffic.  Containment booms were deployed but it dissipated in the sun fairly quickly.  But the soil and the rotary area are contaminated and must be dug out.  This is going to take at least two weeks, which means a traffic nightmare for the region as the rotary is now down to one lane.  As for the driver, I can only imagine that he must feel pretty mortified that he caused this.  He is facing DOT fines, probably the loss of his job and CDL, as apparently he didn't have the best driving record to begin with.  I saw that his company is going to be responsible for the cost of cleanup.  A very costly mistake indeed.

March 28, 2015

Blue Goldstone Blog Hop!

Back in January, my buddy Liz over the Bead Contagion offered up some free blue goldstone round and donut beads to beat the winter blues, if she could get some crafters to create something with them for the big reveal today.  Blue goldstone is a synthetic glass stone and sooooo gorgeous.  Dark blue with pretty sparklies, how could I turn down the opportunity to participate??  I received my package of beads and then started to wonder how best to use them.  I've never worked with donut beads because usually people do wire wrapping or create a beautiful hanger from peyote stitched seed beads.

My first thought was maybe I could create some kind of hanging thing for a window or porch or something.  I started out one afternoon at the beginning of February and I wasn't 100% crazy about the way it was coming out.  I got frustrated and started to mutter, 'what have I gotten myself into?'  It was at that point that I noticed the smallest donuts were drilled through the top and bottom.  The large one wasn't but the small ones were.  I abandoned my hanging thing idea, and ended up reorganizing my glitter and watching the Superbowl while I obsessed mulled over what I should do about this project.  I decided that I'd go the jewelry route.

The following day, we'd had some awful weather and that was the day I fell on the ice.  Decided to go ahead and work on the project because I was unable to stop thinking about it (this is what happens to me when I have an idea....I wake up all night thinking about it too), despite the fact that my back was killing and hunching over the table wasn't the world's smartest plan.

Since the goldstone beads were such a dark blue, I had a hard time matching any other shades of blues with it. Clear, silver and white pearl go with everything so I knew those would be the additional elements.  But I really needed something to punch it up a little bit, so I opted for dark red Swarovski crystals.  I had enough donuts to do a matching pair of earrings.

I was able to fit some small crystals in the center of the little donuts. 

The donut center beads alternate clear and red.  Aren't the goldstone beads pretty?  

I'm not a wire wrapper, and I'm not so good at peyote so I just ended up doing a real basic wrap and loop for the larger pendant.

I wish my pics had come out better.  I had hoped to shoot photos of this set outside, but the snow took forever to melt and my friend Clair wanted to purchase this from me so I didn't want to make her wait until the weather got good enough for me to finally take pictures outside.

Thank you, Liz, for hosting the hop.  It was an honour to participate!!!

March 27, 2015

Technical Difficulties

New computer died, old computer won't come up either.  Not sure when I'll be back.  Lost a whole bunch of pictures AGAIN....which can be recovered.  I backed them up on Sunday but the new stuff from this week will have to be recovered off Facebook and my camera.

March 26, 2015

Treasures from the Sea!

Spring is making a valiant effort to assert itself in this region, so I couldn't help taking advantage of the nice weather yesterday and head down to Scusset Beach for low tide at 10:00 AM.  My hope was that very few people have been out to beachcomb so maybe I'd have some decent luck.  With no wind and warm sun, I soon got too hot in my winter jacket.

Well I think we've found all the missing sand from Town Neck Beach on the other side of the Canal....

Low tide is the best.  I walked slowly up and down the 'up and down' I mean from the tide line down to the sandbar, like a zig zag, from the parking lot path all the way to the breakwater.

This was my first wow-factor find of the day.  A yellow flat backed glass blobbie (like the kind you put in vases and stick on jars that light up.  Very nicely worn too.

And then......OHMYGOD!  A perfectly worn former-clear marble.  Could. Not. Believe it.  I'm always hopeful to find a marble, but they are exceedingly rare.  This is the second one I've ever found.

It's so beautiful that I'm thinking about having it set into a pendant somehow.

Found a few olivine coloured bits today, and beautiful cobalt  blue although I didn't take any pics of those.

Nice piece of green.

Are you kidding me?  ANOTHER flat backed glass blobbie?!?!?!?!  I know this one looks like a marble but it's not.  And the prettiest shade of blue-green.

Walked out on one of the bars.  Went pretty far out.

Not quite the length of the breakwater, but still pretty big.

Speaking of the breakwater, there is so much flotsam and jetsam stuck between the rocks.


Tons of wood

 A lot of people's walkways torn loose and tossed like so many matchsticks.

Looking across at Town Neck Beach...the large building is that Horizons restaurant I posted a pic of last week; the one that didn't card anyone.  A lot of the sand stripped from that beach is on Scusset now.  

Look at all that debris!

The beachcombing gods were very good to me!

Unusual stone with a hole.  The other stones are pretty too, esp. when wet.

An olivine piece shaped like California!

One of the best beachcombs since Glass Beach in the 90s!

March 23, 2015

Bits and Bobs, Dribs and Drabs

Hard to believe March is almost over.  With the exception of that one day I got to the beach, it's been mostly cold and snowy.  We're all so tired and beaten down by it.

Sagan had his 10th birthday on March 11.  I can't believe he's 10.  He still jumps around and runs up and down the hallway like a crazed puppy.  I've had him over 9 years now.  Where has the time gone?

"Take dis dum fing off mai head."

So of course they got special peanut butter cheese treats after dinner.

"Huwwy up and make mai birfday tweat!"

Pushy pups!  I'm cornered AGAIN!

*Sigh*  This was March 15th.  We had another snow event on the 21st too, another 2".  At least this time of year it melts off pretty fast.  Go home Mother Nature.  You're drunk.  Still below normal temps with a cold wind.  Really hoping this is it.  I know I keep saying that....but....

I cannot remember if I already posted pics of this celestial needlepoint.  Not happy with the frame but it works for now.

I really should be working on my custom cross stitch projects for people, but I couldn't resist whipping out this wizard in about 2 weeks' time.  Here it is before the beads....

....and after it was completed.  This was way harder than it looked in the catalog picture. The dark blue floss against dark blue perforated paper was really hard to see.  

We spent most of the month taking care of routine medical and paperwork stuff.  I got a letter from Premera Blue Cross, saying that their site was hacked, last May, and millions of people's info was stolen.  I haven't had that health insurance since 2008, but I signed up for their offer for two years' worth of free credit monitoring and ID theft insurance.  Why can't the hackers use their powers for good?  

My craft muse is still on an extended vacation so I haven't done anything new.  I went through my Pinterest boards, craft pics on my hard drive and a bunch of tutorials and nothing, and I do mean nothing floats my boat.  I have my resin jewelry kit but....meh.  I don't want to blow through all the stuff I bought.  All I really feel like doing is colouring and cross stitch so that's what I'm doing.  Lord knows I have enough kits and books to keep me busy.

Speaking of books, I just finished The Mighty Fitz: The Sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald by Michael Schumacher.  It was really quite good, although I got teary eyed and emotional on more than one occasion thinking about those poor guys that died, and how awful it was for their families. Plus I had Gordon Lightfoot's song stuck in my head the entire time and that didn't help.  They were so close to the safety and shelter of Whitefish Bay when they went down.  After all this time, there is still no real way of knowing what happened out there that stormy night.  A lot of theories, but no proof.  It's a really good read, if you are interested in shipwrecks.  

Other than that, I've been living on my heating pad b/c my back's been so achy, and when I'm not reading, colouring or cross stitching, I'm cooking lots of homemade soups and baking cookies (most of which I've given away.  I love to bake but I really don't need to be eating 3 dozen cookies). Hubby's birthday is the end of the month and I'll be fixing him some of his fave foodstuffs and attemping a pineapple upside down bundt cake.  

This is what I see peering around the corner of the cabinet at me every time I'm cooking or baking. Always ready to help.