Sunday, July 6, 2008

Red Cross training in Gillette

Just a quick update from Gillette.

The Escapade is over, and we are now in the middle of Red Cross training. We're in the same spot at the Cam-Plex in which we've been parked since arriving here last Saturday

Thanks to everyone who came by on Friday for the tour. I would guess we had about 30-40 people come through in the course of about two and a half hours. We probably got more comments about the hot tub than anything else, and I think one couple might even end up buying one.

Wednesday, I only managed to clean out one bay (tool drawer, actually). It was the worst of the lot, though, so it felt good to get through it. I added a bunch of stuff to our "free" pile, most of which is now gone. In fact, we only have a small handful of items left, including the toaster. People have also been coming by and leaving things on our free table, so we'll be taking more than just our own stuff to the Goodwill.

Wednesday afternoon I also made another pass at the Webasto. After all else had failed, I finally did what I should have done right off the bat -- I replaced the nozzle and cleaned the little flame sensor window with WD-40 and some elbow grease. I'm not sure which of those things did the trick, but the Webasto is now working normally. (I should have done these one at a time, but it's such a pain in the butt to open up the burner head that I just did them both while I was in there.)

The nozzle I installed was a used one that I had saved from the last time we had a full service on the burner. I'll now need to order a new one so that I have a good spare. While I am at it, I will order a spare fuel screen and a pair of copper washers for the supply banjo -- removing the banjo and checking the screen would have been the next step had these last two changes not fixed the problem. With the Webasto running well now, we've enjoyed soaking in the hot tub every night this week.

In a few minutes, I have to head over to the conference room to teach a Technology class. Tomorrow I'll be in the classroom all day, and Tuesday they boot us out of the Cam-Plex. We're not sure where we'll be next; if we don't get called up, we will visit Devil's Tower and then head to the Black Hills. However, we go on the availability list Wednesday, and, in addition to the ongoing flooding in Iowa, tropical storm Bertha is taking aim at the east coast.


  1. I'll be going to the Devil's Tower and Black Hills at the beginning of next month for the Surgis Motorcycle Rally, can't wait! It will be my first time there!


  2. "However, we go on the availability list Wednesday"

    are you a single resource for some kind for Incident Management Response team, or a team member?


  3. @Mike -- the whole area is already full of Harleys, and everywhere there are signs that the whole region is gearing up for the rally. You should have a great time. Don't forget to send us photos, especially if there are half-naked women in them...

    @Campbell Clan (James) -- I'm not sure I understand the question. We're just regular Disaster Response volunteers. We're at a level where we have bubbled up fairly high on the deployment list, because we are both qualified supervisors in the Technology function, which is a (relatively) rare skill set.

    That said, there is such a thing as a "Critical Response Team," and we are qualified for that from a training and technical standpoint (as well as time spent in the field). However, we disqualify ourselves because we really can't make the required commitment, which is to be on a two-hour flight standby for one month a year.

    We have chosen to respond to disasters in our bus, which means it might take us up to three days to reach the site, depending on where we are and where we are going. CRT members, by contrast, must be available on the ground in a matter of hours, which means flying to the disaster.

    Even if we wanted to do that, finding a place to safely store the bus as well as care for the pets would pretty much preclude us from heading to an airport within two hours of being called.



Share your comments on this post! We currently allow anyone to comment without registering. If you choose to use the "anonymous" option, please add your name or nickname to the bottom of your comment, within the main comment box. Getting feedback signed simply "anonymous" is kind of like having strangers shout things at us on the street: a bit disconcerting. Thanks!