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Monday, January 25, 2016

Cold Days in Key West!

Why blog about the weather! You can’t do anything about it but move south! Well, if we move further south, we will have to swim! Last night was cold for Key West. It dropped to 63 degrees here at Trumbo Point campground. At the airport, I’m told, it was a mere 56 degrees. The problem with this is the constant wind. The same wind that makes us comfortable when it’s 87 degrees, also makes us feel cold at 63 degrees. This morning at 5 am, I got up and fired up the furnace for the first time. It worked flawlessly. I had it set to 67 degrees and that was just enough to take the chill out of the camper. I got breakfast going and with the water on for coffee and a frying pan going for grilled toast it was toasty!
Offshore the weather was even worse. Twenty to twenty-five knot wind, with three to five foot waves inside the reef. On the Gulf side of the reef, the waves ranged from eight to ten feet. Not a pleasant place to be. The Coast Guard rescued two guys on a sailboat way offshore in 20 foot swells. The two had to jump off the sailboat into the water and swam to the Coast Guardsman tethered to the helicopter. A commercial salvage company is going to recover the sailboat.

Action in the sky

This morning I was outside when I noticed another one of those C130J Super Hercules flying over the water near Fleming Key. A sure sign that they were going to parachute into the water. Four safety boats were spread across a broad area and a Coast Guard rubber rescue craft with several crew members came up the channel from the other direction. Oh yeah, a sure sign for a drop zone off shore. The pattern is nearly always the same. They do several dry run flybys. You’ve got to be patient, if you want a really good photo. After several passes and 45 minutes of waiting, I zoomed in towards the rear of the C130J and spotted five or six objects coming out and straight down into the water. Maybe sandbags or something similar to see how the wind was blowing. Another half-hour and no jumpers out of the plane. Ok, I’ve had it and leave, so did the C130J.
The WiFi Repeater Test

We left the campground and headed for my new antenna/repeater wifi system test. We would do the test first by login into my new personal network (Travelnet1). Than do a site survey and select a WiFi free hotspot such as McDonald, Wendy’s or in this case Publix’s Supermarket. My login went flawlessly. Now comes Helen’s iPad which at 400 feet would not be able to access the hotspot. My repeater was set to WPS which enabled Helen’s iPad to sync in quickly. One more login with my iPhone and now we were ready for the ultimate test. I went on line and went to YouTube and streamed a video. Helen did her thing and put the phone through its paces. Success! We continued for a good half-hour with no drop in speed. I’m happy! We’ll be able to access free WiFi hotspots easily in the truck camper as we head out to the West Coast next summer.
Traveling back to the campground, what do you think I spotted floating down from the sky? Yeah, six parachutes and the plane banking to the left. No camera in the truck! Oh well, maybe next time I’ll be lucky.

That is what we saw and did!

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