Missed it

It, being the official opening of our building. Feedback I’m getting is that it was all good, if a slightly short visit by An Taoiseach.

We continue to work through the different workpackages, slower than I would prefer, but I’m not the chairperson, so its not up to me.

Miguel and I provided free entertainment for a restaurant full of punters last night. When we returned from the days meeting, we just walked a block or two to find a restaurant. Things looked promising as it had the name in English, better yet, the menu had English discriptions as well. So we ordered something, but we really weren’t quite sure what. The waitress arrived back to the table with a big pot (various joints of beef, knee’s etc, carrots and some thick noodles), stuck it on a gas burner (in the middle of the table), wandered off again, and then came back with raw meat and veg and plonked it on the table beside us.

What we didn’t know was that we are suppossed to cook it ourselves. Obviously the waitress had a bit of a chat with her co-workers and they decided that if they didn’t do something we would be there for hours. So this poor girl started cooking and showing us how we were supposed to cook the food. This caused much amusement in the restaurant. We got the hang of it eventually (rice noodle not withstanding).

I think she was a bit shocked with the amount of the tip we left, but she did help us out . Total cost for dinner including two beers (640ml bottles, must figure out why that is.) and the tip, €12.

Work begins today

Yesterday, we decided to go out and about to get as much sunlight as possible in order to recover from jet-lag. It was difficult to get up this morning, but we managed. After breakfast we headed for the science museum, as it was quite close. Unfortunatly it was closed. After a quick discussion, we decided to head to the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, where we had lunch, then to the Jade Buddha Temple were we watched a craftsman at work.
craftsman at work

Today, work begins. We are here for a meeting of the Enable project, that we are working on in the TSSG. It will be 3 days of powerpoint, discussion, argument, more discussion, argument and hopfully, consensus, as to the continued direction of the project. Also, it is an opportunity to meet the partners again face to face, and continue to build working relationships with our project partners.

34 hours

Something along the same vein as Bernard’s piece. We arrived in the airport, immigration cards filled in, only to get stuck in the queue behind a group of American’s who obviously hadn’t filled theirs in properly (and at that point it was too late to change our queue). In fairness to the officials, they did begin opening up more gates as the passengers were getting more and more frustrated, and finally we (Miguel and I) were free (or so I thought).

“We just need to check something, it won’t take long”

For somewhere between 10 and 15 minutes I was standing beside the passport control desk, positive that I was going to be on the next flight home, as other passengers were nervously going past me. Finally my passport was delivered back to the control desk (and to me with no explanation) and I was let through (phew!).

We were having a good laugh about it while we were filling the ‘baggage declaration’, when Miguel noticed one of the questions asks “Do you have any Radio Transmitting or Receiving equipment”. BALLS! As I normally carry a VHF/UHF handheld Transciever in the laptop bag, I didn’t relish the thought of being asked to ‘step aside’ for a second time (I had great visions going through my tired brain after about 27 hours travelling). Thankfully I had seen the good sense to take it out before heading for the airport in the first place.

We found our hotel and set about wandering around the city with the sole purpose of getting lunch, and attempting to stay awake as long as possible. After getting a fantastic pizza (hunger is a great critic!), and been offered everything from “Cheap” Watches, Cameras, Hash and other stuff that I won’t go into (I must look more dodgy than Miguel, I seem to get more offers, but who’s counting?)

It’s been over 34 hours now, thats about how long it is since I got out of a bed (Thanks again Mr. & Mrs. K) to head to Cork airport, now I’m about to get back into a bed again (in Shanghai), and I’m really looking forward to getting some sleep, I’m shattered.

Leave the feckin lights off.

After getting up at 5 am to get to the airport, there i am 100% Colombian, just about to nod off to sleep, after a smooth take of, and they turn the lights on to sell newspapers… grrrr.

Anyways, Schipol is slightly foggy, relatively stress free flight (lights issue not withstanding), now I just have a 7 hour wait for our connecting flight to Shanghai. Just about enough time to check how Bernard’s holiday went. Looks like he had a good time.

Time vs Distance.

Based on the information supplied by the AA site, I went to Tralee via Cork and returned via Limerick, I thought to try both routes to compare them and I logged the mileage in both directions, but alas not the time.

Tramore to Tralee (via Cork) was 149.5 Miles, I stayed with a friend on the Killarney side of Cork the night before. I’m really not sure what how long the drive down was, neither am I sure how long the drive onto Tralee was (I’m guessing less than 90 mins).

Tralee to Tramore (via Limerick and Clonmel (to say hello to mum) ) was 143.8 Miles, time was about 3h 20mins, but it felt tortous compared to the trip up, even considering the trip to Cork was in milling rain, and the trip back was in glorious sunshine. Suffice it to say, no matter what the AA say. I’ll probably never ever drive that way again (I’ll probably never be asked back either, but that is another story!).

Now, before anyone mentions it. I went both of those ways to compare them (curiosity), If I didn’t have a reason to go to Cork or Clonmel, I wouldn’t have gone either of those ways. I would have consulted the encyclopedia that is my Dad, for the shortest path (though not necessarily the best roads) between those two points.

As well has having APRS running in the car, I also made good use of the SEARG Repeater Network as well as a long chat with Tommy, EI2IT on S18. Many thanks for shortening the Journey.

APRS in the South/Southwest.

I had to travel to Tralee for a meeting yesterday (Monday the 9th of October), so I had APRS running in the car. It suited me to go via Cork and return via Limerick, so I downloaded my track when I got home to see what the coverage was like.


Coverage can be seen to extend (the blue track) from the Tipperary Limerick border (purely a co-incidence I’m sure) to the far side of Dungarvan. Unfortunately the Digipeater in Cork wasn’t running as it would have extended the range a long way down into cork.

If you look at the bottom left of the picture you can see EI7IG-3. As I was nearing Macroom yesterday morning, I heard the dolcet tones of PCSAT (NO-44) and switched configurations in the Kenwood TM-D700 to digipeat through it while it was within range.