Monday, October 23, 2017

Oct 22 - getting there

I've done most of the work on the RUSA tax return.  990EZ, Schedule A and Schedule O are ready to go.  That's a learning experience, doing a US Corporate filing.  Now I can tackle Trump's returns, as long as he releases them to me.  I now have to check it over and ensure that it "flows" correctly, i.e. if I closed the books right now on 2017, would I be able to use the QuickBooks results as is; that's the objective.  I did make the minor accounting change to treat the credit card as current vs a payable; we'll see.  There are also a million yes/no boxes to check and I'll make sure that I didn't miss any.

Cassie got a boat ride and lots of fetching.  The little island was busy with three other couples on the island. 

The TV is working; we've got a stronger signal here that we get up north !  I'm sure that the northerly dish could use some tweaking (and perhaps replacing !).  One of the outputs doesn't work.  That dish has been in place for more than 15 years.

We ate at the SYC last night.  It was relatively quiet at the Tiki, windy so there weren't any no-see-ums. 

I think that's about it.  Nothing else notable. 

Onward !

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Oct 21 - we have TV !

That's not exactly exciting, but at least that job is done !




With a 78" mast anchored at the foot and at the side of the gable, it was pretty solid ... but that's what ripped off the last time (the conduit clamp at the gable broke).  So I also added the two arms that anchor to the roof.  It's easy to say "that's not going anywhere" but guess what, with huge wind it still won't hold.  I'll have to decide whether or not to bring it in, sans mast, in the Spring.  Oh, btw, the cables are now secured as well.

I rode again, south this time with the east wind.  Progress is being made getting back into shape.  I've also gone to the gym the last couple of days, now that my bar-code-card is active again, so that helps my back.  I've got an appointment with Dr. Wendy on Monday and shortly thereafter, with Bergens for a teeth cleaning.  Yes, all the minor and major projects are getting knocked off one by one.

Today, Sunday, I hope to finish the RUSA taxes.  I've got to get those out the door.  I have to see where I stand, personally, as well, so that I can keep my estimated taxes in some reasonable proximity to what's going to be due at the end of the year.

I may take a look at those ceiling fans for outside; we'll see how the day goes.

Onward !



Saturday, October 21, 2017

Oct 20 - oh yes, I forgot ...

I decided that I really should pull the cranks on the Litespeed after riding in all that water.  The water had drained out of the tubes but there was water in the bottom bracket and it was feeling a little rough rolling, so I went ahead and replaced it from my spare parts bin.  It's way past needing replacement, time-wise and mileage-wise anyway. 

I should also pull the tires and tubes as I was getting some dripping ... didn't get that far.

Onward again !

Oct 20 - started but not finished

So ... on several fronts ...

I took down the non working fan on the underside of the top deck.  Can you believe that it was hung there with three pieces of 2x8, side supports, 3/4" plywood, all attached to the 2x6 deck above.  Now I have to figure out how I want to hang the two new fans.  I've got the fans in hand and wires dangling above.  I'll need conduit, water tight boxes etc etc.

The new satellite dish is installed on the roof.  2" heavy duty pipe, foot attached to the roof, bracket at the side and then brackets to the upper level.  It's a brute.  The LNB holder didn't arrive in the mail until after 5pm and at first I couldn't figure out how it would be installed; figured that out as it was getting to dark to work up there.  I was finding a signal but no cigar yet.

... and I did figure out why the power rear hatch in the X5 wasn't working.  It took some back-and-forth on the bimmerfest discussion group but I finally found what looks like a VHS tape -- really -- and has three big connectors.  It even opens like a VHS tape, once you cut the seal.  Inside, it was completely corroded. At some point I've had water coming in there, which I've got to track down but even with the rain here in the last couple of days, it's dry, so whatever problem there was ... isn't.

So that was the good news.  The bad news is that it's an expensive part.  I'll take solace in the fact that it would have cost more for BMW's diagnosis and installation; a lot more.

I took Cassie out in the boat but the tide was way too high.  At the local sandbar, there was a good 18" of water and a very fast current.  I came back home and left the boat in the water, waiting for the tide to go down.  Cassie stayed in the boat for about 1.5 hours.  She knew that the boat bag was in the boat and she wasn't going to miss out !  We did go and she got some running, fetching and swimming.

This morning I'll get that dish oriented, hopefully, and then go for a bike ride.

Onward !

Friday, October 20, 2017

Oct 19 - more deliveries, more work

A new bed arrived; Sandy took care of that.  The old one is gone. She's been campaigning for a King-sized bed for some time.  It was supposed to be a little softer but I'm not sure that it is, after sleeping on it for one night.  Life goes on.

Two ceiling fans arrived; they go outside over the sitting area.  The old one has finally died; doesn't turn.  Once the no-see-ums get bad, a fan is a must.

New tires arrived; now I have to get the X5 over to Tire Kingdom for installation.

What else ... oh yes, I'm going to work at installing that new flying saucer ... or is it a satellite dish ? 

Yesterday, I went for a ride.  I got wet but it wasn't from above.  I rode through water higher than my bottom bracket.  I should have dealt with that as soon as I got home, but I didn't first thing this morning I should pull the cranks and see what I've got in terms of water inside the seat tube / bottom bracket area.  I might also have rims full of water and of course all that pedaling in the water wouldn't do the drive train and pedals much good either .. ugh.  You might say that the tide was high ...

Onward, I guess ... oh yes, I forgot to have Holmes take a look at the X5 rear hatch operation (or lack thereof) ... I will take a look at that today now that I have some hints from a Bimmerfest post.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Oct 18 - a day on the phone

... or so it seems.  An hour with Deb Banks; an hour with the IRS trying to chase down a form for the RUSA filing; 2.5 hours with the RUSA Board call; a hour with Aetna ... ugh !  This is too much like work !

I did get the M5 airbag recall accomplished and I'm well along the way to finalizing the RUSA tax return.  I'm no further ahead on the satellite dish installation.  I did get the new T8-style LED light bulbs installed into the fluorescent fixtures in the garage.  Now you need sunglasses to go into the garage !

These were pretty easy -- open fixture, bypass ballast, using wire nuts apply hot to one end of the bulbs and neutral to the other ... done.  I won't have to touch those again in my lifetime unless the extreme brightness bothers me :).

We started the day with heavy rain and it had cleared up by the end.  Although today calls for scattered showers, I'm hoping that I can get out.

Onward !

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Oct 16/17 - small projects, perhaps

This and that - some RUSA work, perhaps we're gradually getting our house in order :).

I finally dug into the RUSA taxes.  They're due Nov 15 which means before we head to Oz.  Of course they're only due Nov 15 because I applied for and was automatically granted, the 6 month extension.  Once I do them the first time, the second should be easy.  In Canada, an outside accountant handles them gratis ... which reminds me that I have to close the books on Randonneurs Ontario's 9/30 fiscal year.  Groan.

I thought that I'd have to do a bunch of adjustments to move the numbers from the current semi-accrual accounting to cash, but it looks like I can use the numbers straight out of QuickBooks.  That's good.  The opening asset balance ties in, which is what I was worried about.  At the end of this year, if I'm paying attention, I'll pay off the Amex and there will be no receivables, making things just a little bit easier.  Susan had suggested going to Accrual accounting, but I believe that means restating our membership fees, a large chunk of which are paid in advance, so it just flips the problem around.

The coffee roaster part came in and a few minutes later Sandy was roasting coffee.  Thank goodness.  The two batches of beans that we'd bought can be thrown out.  Awful stuff compared to our roast.  Not my cup of tea ... er coffee.

The satellite dish came in yesterday and I did some work on assembling.  It's like a flying saucer.  HUGE !  I've got to figure out how I want to mount it on the roof and am also awaiting a part that they forgot to include, the LNB holder.  It's now in the mail and is due to arrive on Thursday.

The Jabra Freeway is now behaving itself, AFAIK.  I guess that it's a keeper.  There's still a lot of road noise; perhaps we have to play with location because the M5 is pretty silent.  I don't know how it compares with road noise with the X5.  I've not been on the receiving end of calls.

Back to the dish -- it takes a much bigger diameter pipe.  I'll stop at HD and see if I can find something or at least something that I can use as a collar to fit it to the old pipe.  I do have to figure out how best to anchor it to the roof; it's a beast. 

We had huge wind and storms last night, so much so that I closed three of the hurricane shutters - kitchen, loft and ICW-facing bedroom.  We had water come in under the kitchen sliders, the rain was hitting those doors so hard.  I don't know if there's something that can be done in terms of a sweep that would direct downward dripping water away from the threshold.  It wasn't a huge amount of water but enough to get the carpet wet.  Luckily that's just a 3x5.

My drug plan enrollment got messed up as my former employer's plan was already registered with Medicare, so the Aetna plan was rejected.  I called Medicare and they sorted part of it out but now I need Aetna to do their part which means a whole 'nother enrollment and that time on the phone.  I was pretty irritated last night with the 3rd of the Aetna people that I'd talked to. 

Doing a 1200k is faster and easier than enrolling for health insurance in the US ... I thought that was worthy of a FB post and then FB forced me to do it three times and then close the window and start again ... that should have told me something.

Onward !