Sunday, 22 May 2005

It’s been a busy weekend. Worked part of the day yesterday, then went to help a friend with their new computer. We went for lunch, then I headed home. I managed to sneak in a little flying time at Hartkopf Park, about 1/4 mile from my house before meeting family for dinner.

I woke up early today and the weather was so nice, I went back to Hartkopf for some more flying time. It was almost perfect: sunny, not too warm/not too cold, and a good breeze. I got to the park about 0800 and packed it in around 1030 or so, just as it started to cloud over.

I flew the Bullet both yesterday and today. With the wind as strong as it was, the Hawaiian Team Kite might have been a better idea. The muscles in my legs, arms and shoulders certainly would have appreciated it.

I really love that kite (the bullet) and really need to figure out were to do some traction kiting in town. It would also be nice to find someone who can take some pictures or video so I’d have something to show rather than just writing about it.

Sunday, 08 May 2005

Sort of on my way to Patrick’s house for dinner and tech talk Saturday afternoon/evening, I got a chance to fly the Bullet for a little while.

The weather was kind of cloudy all day and it rained in the morning. To my delight it started clearning in the early afternoon and I wasn’t supposed to be at Patrick’s until 1830, so I figured I’d give it a shot. Leaving the house around 1530, I headed out near his house and found a park.

Vetran’s Park in South Saint Paul turned out to be kind of small, but I didn’t need a lot of space. With the short lines on the kite, I only need the rough equivalent of half a football field to have a comfortable place to fly. Thankfully the only people in the park were using the playground and not the ball-fields. The park is surrounded by houses, so low-altitude work wasn’t going to be easy, if even possible.

Once the kite was ready, I spent maybe 15 minutes warming up with some basic turns, spins and dives, then settled in for the real workout. The wind was running about 12 mph gusting to around 20 or so, which made it interesting on occasion.

Occasionally the wind would just die, but other times I’d catch a gust just right and get yanked around a bit. I came away from it tired, but exhilarated. My legs, shoulders, and arms are sore from pulling against the kite, but it’s a good kind of pain.

At one point I brought the kite through a ground pass (flying across the wind window with the wing-tip close to the ground) and caught an unexpected gust of wind. The result was grass stains on my shorts after I got dragged 20 feet down the field. That’s my favorite part.

I want more. More flying time, and more adventure. I’m looking into either a landboard (kind of like a modified skateboard) or a buggy. First I need to find a good field to practice on, then I’ll buy the extra gear.

I also need to figure out a way to get pictures too.

Wednesday, 23 July 2003

Another month, another trip. This time it was San Diego on business. The weather was great. First day we worked from eight in the morning, broke for lunch, then stayed until three…in the morning. Second day was more reasonable, 9:30am in, 4:30pm out, then we hit the beach.

While in San Diego, I bought a new kite. Originally I was going to bring one with, but couldn’t collapse anything far enough to fit in my baggage. With a trip to the beach in the works, I was really jonesing for something to fly. The end result: over lunch I hit a local kite store that one of the guys in the office recommended. The owner, Victor, is a great guy and knows his kites. He treated me right and I ended up with a 2.5m Flexifoil Bullet. It’s a four-line stunt kite with a wingspan over 10 feet. Lots of control and lots of power. People wave-board behind these things. It’s more than I originally wanted to spend, but still worth every penny.

I never thought I’d say this, but…I can’t wait for winter. I’ll have some pictures up in a few days.

Sunday, 27 April 2003

My week did get better as it went on. Got some kite flying in yesterday and today. Not often I can afford the time to go flying two days in a row, but the wind was so good I couldn’t pass up the chance.

Dashed up a new sidebar for the main page today: On the Nightstand. Nothing big, they’re just books I’m reading right now.

One of these days I’ll get off my ass and put up a couple new stories. If nothing else, I have some vacation time coming up at the end of May, maybe I’ll do it then.

Sunday, 20 April 2003

It was a nice, lackadaisical spring day today. In between rain showers, I managed to get in about 45 minutes of kite flying today.

The Easter Bunny also made a visit in the form of my nephew Brekken, wunderkind and all-around good guy. Hard to believe he’s 11 already. 11! Suddenly, I feel so very old.

Saturday, 15 March 2003

Spring is finally here! (Weather-wise, at least.) It was such a nice day outside, I went and flew my kites. Tried the Hawaiian for a while, but the wind was too low and I switched to the lightweight. Sadly I was flying solo, so no pictures. They are on the agenda some time this spring, and maybe some video if I can arrange it.

More train cars last week too. Three British Columbia Railways centerbeam flat cars. In the real world you see these hauling lumber—lots of lumber.

Finally, a new story is on the way. It’s ready to go, save some minor editing, which I should finish this week.