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Winter ramblings

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Post  Elizabeth Lynn Mon Nov 08, 2021 12:45 am

It's entirely too quiet here.  It's like the entire world is in hibernation as the days grow shorter.

Speaking of short days, do any of you struggle with the shrinking day length?  I started noticing the effect in the mid 80's when I moved to Minot North Dakota.  Minot is at a high enough latitude that winter days don't see daylight till around 9am, and it gets dark at around 4 pm local time.  Not quite as bad as Alaska and Canada, but still, that first winter was tough.  I experienced my first bout of clinical depression then, though it went untreated because in those days, and particularly at a Strategic Air Command (SAC -nuclear, bombers and missiles) to admit to any time of mental health issue was to open yourself to the high potential of being boarded out of the service, even for medical people.  It was hell for the missile launch and bomber crews.  T'wasn't seemly or manly for a SAC Trained Killer to admit to needing any sort of help to accomplish the mission.

And so I give you pointless ramblings on this Sunday evening from SW Idaho.

~  Liz
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Post  MichaelaSJ Mon Nov 08, 2021 4:04 am

I am not affected by 'SAD' (Seasonal Affective Disorder) and I have mixed feelings about the short/long days.

My main hobby is astrophotography and while the Fall/Winter months afford me a longer time to shoot a galaxy or nebula, it is cold (for me cold is <45°, and I freely admit to being a wimp); with my COPD I can't stand outside too long.

Then Spring/Summer comes along with all of the real neat astronomical thingies and I can't start shooting until around 9:00 PM, but at least it stays warm for me.

Liz, I mentioned in a previous PM I had a high school friend who did his Vietnam service (1965-69) in Minot servicing B-52s out on the line. He lost one ear lobe and part of his nose to frostbite during your wonderfully frigid Winters. (Did you know they don't heat the B-52s when someone works on them!)

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"Disobedience in the eyes of any one who has read history is man's original virtue. "—Oscar Wilde.
If you don't want a man unhappy politically, don't give him two sides to a question to worry him; give him one. Better yet, give him none. Let him forget there is such a thing as war. If the Government is inefficient, top-heavy, and tax-mad, better it is all those than that people worry over it. Peace, Montag.
Fahrenheit 451
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Post  Lesley Niyori Mon Nov 08, 2021 5:17 pm

Most suffer from Feb blahs. For me though, it's August blahs.

I thrive in cold and darker shorter days.

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Post  Elizabeth Lynn Tue Nov 09, 2021 12:15 am

Well, I swear I posted a response to Miki's post from yesterday, but somehow it hasn't appeared so I am not sure what happened. Weird as weird can be.

My assignment at Minot AFB encompassed 3 winters in the mid 80's. Each had its share of storms, blizzards and far below 0 degrees F. One notable winter had static temps in the -40F and wind chill at -100F. Yeah, the wind blows like a hurricane in the winter.

One of the winters one of the aircraft maintenance squadron commanders decided he was going to show just how tough and mission-committed his squadron was. He had them working on planes out in the open. Mind you, these were fully mission capable aircraft. We had lots of visits to the ER for cold injury and physical injuries. Gloves don't hold on to wrenches and other tools well, but to take off gloves to do the job correctly and safely was inviting frostbite.

A couple of days after the worst of it, the base commander showed up at my office and wanted to chat. Turns out the bomb wing commander had taken notice of this brainless act and stopped it, but then wanted to know the extent to which his maintainers were injured. So, quietly, he and I did an ER records audit to identify the numbers, types and severity of the on-the-job injuries incurred as a result of this foolishness.

It was enough that the squadron commander was relieved of command and received non-judicial punishment (article 15, UCMJ). Which was a career ending consequence for an officer. Dumb ass. He brought his squadron to a not mission capable status to satisfy his own ego.

~Liz
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Post  Celia Eriksson Fri Nov 12, 2021 6:26 pm

Hi Everyone!

Here the nights draw in too, as you and I walk down the long, cold, dark, road towards Winter..... season of death and decay!!!!!

It's dark here by about 4.30 just now and light comes about 7.30, by December it's less than 8 hours light here in the very Southy bit of Blighty.

The weather in England is about as predictable as a Cat pulled out of a sack..... thick fog, well actually a sea fog or haar yesterday, cold rain this morning and sunshine this afternoon.... it can be really cold one night, mild the next. I just leave the heating on, on, on!!!!!

But as for that very naughty air force man Liz, he got his just desserts!!!

BTW.... the B52s were one of my favourite pop bands back in the day.....

Celia xx


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Post  Kidagakash Sat Nov 13, 2021 4:46 pm

We just had our first winter storm of the year. It looks like we got well over 6 in maybe up to 10.

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