Thursday, 17 December 2015

11:37 – I don’t generally read the tracking emails that USPS sends me. For each kit, I might get a dozen or more emails, one for each milestone along the way. I have a filter set up in Thunderbird that automatically moves them from the inbox to the USPS directory. I do generally read the ones for foreign shipments, just to keep on top of them. Here’s one from a kit I shipped to Canada last Friday. Everything except for the second line looks normal. (The ISC is the USPS international shipping center in Miami. Everything goes there before heading out of the country. Even if we lived in Detroit and shipped a kit to Windsor, ONT a few miles away, it’d go to Miami first.) As for the second tracking line, I’m prepared to believe that the kit made a stop in London, ONT, but not London, UK. The times are all local, so it’s (barely) possible that this kit actually did go through London, UK, but I’d be very surprised if it did.

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Shipment Activity Location Date & Time
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Departed Vancouver, CANADA December 16, 2015 8:23 pm
Departed London, UNITED KINGDOM December 16, 2015 5:47 pm
Departed Miami, UNITED STATES December 15, 2015 9:45 pm
Arrived Miami, UNITED STATES December 15, 2015 5:28 pm
Processed Through Sort Facility ISC MIAMI FL (USPS) December 14, 2015 4:07 pm
Arrived at Sort Facility ISC MIAMI FL (USPS) December 14, 2015 4:07 pm
Arrived at USPS Facility MIAMI, FL 33112 December 13, 2015 9:52 pm
Departed USPS Facility GREENSBORO, NC 27498 December 12, 2015 3:50 am
Arrived at USPS Facility GREENSBORO, NC 27498 December 11, 2015 9:39 pm
Departed Post Office SPARTA, NC 28675 December 11, 2015 4:31 pm
Picked Up SPARTA, NC 28675 December 11, 2015 3:20 pm
Pre-Shipment Info Sent to USPS December 10, 2015
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We’re busy today moving stuff around, putting up towel bars, and so on. A lot remains to be done, but things are starting to shape up. We need to get anything that’d be damaged by freezing out of the garage and into heated space. Conversely, we’ve got a lot of bulky stuff that’s not temperature-sensitive that needs to be transferred into the garage. Oddly, that category includes cases of lab thermometers, whose reason for being is to be temperature-sensitive, but they’re not damaged by temperatures within their measuring range and it’s unlikely that it will get lower than -40C or higher than +120C in our garage.

We’ve decided to leave my desk downstairs, at least until the Christmas stuff is taken down and repacked. I can check email and websites upstairs on my Kindle Fire, and that’s really all I need to do for now. When I need to do serious work, I can just come downstairs to do it. That’s better for Barbara and Colin as well, because they won’t have to tip-toe around while I’m trying to work. I may find somewhere upstairs to put the Brother 3070 Ethernet printer and a supply of paper and labels. I’ll keep the 5250DN USB printer downstairs on my desk.

We’re watching series one of Bosch on Amazon Prime streaming. It’s not as good as the books, but it’s pretty decent for a TV series. We’ve also got a lot of stuff in the on-deck circle. I was considering dropping Netflix streaming and signing up for Hulu commercial-free, but I think I’ll do all three for a while so that I can decide if we want to keep Netflix, Hulu, or both in addition to Amazon Prime.

I’m reading James Wesley, Rawles non-fiction prepping book. My main issues with it so far is that he’s drunk the Kool-Aid with regard to shelf lives of canned food and that he recommends the Big Berkey water filter. That device is defective by design. Suspect water goes in the top container and passes through the filters into the lower container, from which it’s drawn off and consumed. The problem is that the seals on those filters can (and have) leaked, allowing suspect water to contaminate the supposedly-pure water in the lower container. And it’s by no means always visually obvious that such contamination has occurred. I wouldn’t use a Berkey water filter on a bet. If you already own one, I’d strongly suggest selling it on eBay and buying a Sawyer PointZeroTwo, which is half the price of the Berkey and uses a hose from the source container to the destination container, making it obvious if suspect water is leaking into the destination container. The Sawyer also has immensely longer filter life than the Berkey, whose replacement filters are very expensive. One thing: if you buy the Sawyer, consider keeping it in its original package until you need it. The Sawyer filters aren’t affected by freezing until you run water through them. At that point, allowing the filter to freeze will destroy it.