Tag Archives: solar blanket

A slow Saturday

It’s a slow weekend here at Casa Poolman. Mrs. P is working both days of the weekend, including Mother’s Day, which she just loves (not.)

I am spending Saturday taking care of miscellaneous chores around the house.

I took a walk for exercise this morning and ran into my across-the-street neighbor, Judy. This was the first time I have laid eyes on Judy since last fall. She lost her husband to cancer several years ago, so she lives there alone. She has a son and his family here on the island and a daughter and family in North Carolina. She filled me on all her news, including a grandson in North Carolina who was born at 26 weeks gestation, but is now doing well. After about an hour of the update, it was time to get moving again. I excused myself and continued with my walk.

I ate some lunch and cleaned up the back yard. We have the solar cover still on the pool. The water is around 85 degrees, which is just getting to the temperature Mrs. P likes it. Hopefully, she’ll soon get the chance to enjoy it.

I am taking a two day course in “Communicating Science Effectively” which is being held on our campus this week. The problem is the course requires I show up with a functional laptop and a bunch of Adobe software. Our IT guys tell me my clunker of a computer won’t handle those programs. (I am due for a new laptop in July.) So I arranged to borrow Poolboy’s computer for the course. I am spending the afternoon downloading and installing trial versions of a bunch of software. Fascinating work. He will want his laptop back tomorrow, and then I’ll take it back again on Tuesday. What a pain.

I am reading / lecturing at 5:30 pm Mass this evening. I am just planning on a Papa Murphy’s pizza for dinner. Mrs. P really doesn’t like a big meal when she is working back-to-back shifts.

Tomorrow is Mother’s Day, but Mrs. P is working again. I’ll have a nice meal of barbecued ribs, hash brown potatoes, etc ready when she gets home. It’s the least I can do.

What will you be watching?

What are you going to be watching on Friday? There are two, big, televised events that may say a lot about who you are.

The Royal Wedding?

Day 2 of the NFL Draft?

What do you think?

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I had a nice thing happen to me this morning. I had just completed printing annual membership renewal letters, labels and insert tabs for a bunch of our foundation members. (Since I’m a one-man shop, my job runs the range from cool stuff like trips to barrier islands and research cruises to the absolutely mundane, like stuffing envelopes.) I was about to start the tedious process of stuffing the envelopes, attaching labels, etc., when one of our faculty scientists walked into my office.

“Hey, Poolman, my daughters (teenagers) need some more community service hours. Do you have anything you need done, like stuffing envelopes or something?”

“Funny you should ask…”

Talk about perfect timing. I don’t get lucky very often. I’ll enjoy this one for a while.

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We should be swimming within the next week. Our water temperature is up to around 82 degrees, if you trust my thermometer, which I do not. And Mrs. Poolman likes WARM water. I think it has something to do with growing up in Florida. In any case, I ordered a new solar blanket and it arrived today. These blankets have worked very well in the past. It is basically a blue plastic bubble-wrap that floats on top of the pool. It magnifies the sunlight a little during the day, but most importantly, I think, it insulates the pool from heat loss at night. If we keep having sunny weather, I should get a boost over the next few days and be ready to start the five month swimming season.

Getting ready for summer

We had sort of a lazy weekend, or at least we didn’t get anything major accomplished. I think I made up for it on Monday.

We had expected three home-repair type people to come to the house on Friday when Mrs. Poolman was off, but none could make it. Two of them postponed to Monday, and another to Thursday. So I took a vacation day on Monday to wait them out.

The first group was the tree crew who took out several trees that were shading our swimming pool, and seriously trimmed up several others. Later in the day, the TV repair guy showed up and finished the warranty-paid repair on our projection TV. All was good on both counts.

I took advantage of the day at home and some lingering guilt over being such a lazy slug most of the weekend, to do a fairly intensive house cleaning of the main living areas. This included dusting everything I could find, including door-frames, pictures, etc. and  vacuuming.

Once the tree guys left late in the afternoon, I cleaned the pool, which desperately needed it. We get an incredible amount of “biomass” from our trees in the spring. (Probably not as much the the next year or so, I guess.)

We have company coming this weekend, so I really wanted to start getting the pool warming with its new-found sunlight as soon as possible. For the past several years, we have used a solar blanket on and off.  It works, but it is a pain the butt to get on and off the pool. Essentially, it is just a large sheet of blue bubble-wrap, that magnifies the sunlight during the day and insulates the pool against cooling at night. Our solar blanket has sat, rolled-up in a tarp all winter, so the first step was to spread it out in the driveway and hose it off. Then I rolled it back up and attempted to put it on the pool surface.

Halfway through the wrestling match.

This is really a two-man job. I should have waited for Mrs. Poolman to get home, but I can be stupid stubborn sometimes. Eventually, I did get it spread and the bubbles brushed out.

If we have some good sun this week, we’ll see how warm we can get the water.