Rock Gathering Party

As you know, Joan LaFreniere and Bob Banville lost their home to fire including their beautiful fireplace.  To speed things along for them, please join us in bringing a load of rocks, all sizes, to their site on Paideenog Road on Sunday, September 16th by 4:00.  Food and refreshments will be served then.  This will be a fun and worthwhile day!  Thanks so much.

From The Mailbox

I've received several emails asking why I use such tiny pictures on this site so I thought I'd better explain.  When you come across one of those little pictures, they are what's referred to as a thumbnail - a miniature of the the "real" photograph.  The reason for making the thumbnail is so that when you arrive at a page the load time (time it takes for your computer to fully bring up the page) is shortened considerably.  While many people have fast connection times, there are others who don't.  With a thumbnail, a visitor has the choice of just looking at the tiny photo or clicking on it to see the full size picture that takes much longer to load.  So, when you come across the little ones and if I've forgotten to mention in the article that they are thumbnails, just run your cursor over it, if it turns from an arrow into a hand you'll know it's "clickable" into the larger picture.  You will have to use your "back" button on your top menu bar to return to the original page.

Another comment is that some folks aren't able to "see" slide shows.  The reason for that is your computer must be what's called "java enabled".   You can check to see if your computer is able to "read" java by going up to your top menu bar and clicking on "tools" and "internet options".  Under the internet options you can go to the "advanced" option and scroll down to see if you are enabled.  If not, just click on the appropriate box, save and reboot.  You should be all set then.

What's H&D Been Up To This Week?

All photos in this article are thumbnails, please click on the photo for the full sized picture, use your "back" button to return to this page

The crews have been mainly working on three separate sites.  The sidewalk down by the point, the giant septic tank, the airport and with the airport job is the running of the asphalt factory at the west end of Welke airport.

The sidewalks, according to the engineer, are all 4 inches thick except where there is a driveway where it is 6 inches thick.  Every fifty feet they have inserted a strip of felt, called an expander, so that as the weather changes from hot to cold the concrete can adjust accordingly and not break.  Expanders are also places on either side of driveway entrances.  This week they have been pouring the sidewalk from Bob and Sue Welke's home to the Gull Harbor road.

sidewalk1.jpg (95316 bytes)    sidewalk2.jpg (94700 bytes)

Due to time constraints this week I wasn't able to get to the giant septic tank area where all the sewage will be sent from the downtown area.  I'll catch that on Monday if possible.  In the meantime, I did go out to the township airport to see what's been going on there.  If you haven't seen it in awhile, you are in for a surprise.  All the trees from the road back are now gone.  Certainly the safety factor has increased dramatically however the new "bald" look is going to take some getting used to.  A couple of the men mentioned how much the deer seem to be enjoying all the "new" growth coming up where full grown trees were.

The airport is being both widened and extended.  Due to short legs and not wanting to get in the way, I only walked a little way down the runway to get these pictures.  

airport1.jpg (96904 bytes)    airport2.jpg (87790 bytes)

Upon my return I realized that now, with the trees gone, the original terminal building was still there and it's sure hard to believe that we used to stand around in this tiny one room building that had wood heat waiting for Joe McPhillip's Flying Service all those years ago.  The new building is much more comfortable and certainly larger.

airport3.jpg (98613 bytes)    airport4.jpg (94426 bytes)

So where is the material coming from to do the actual paving?  It's being made right here on the island at the east end of Welke airport.  H&D has brought in an asphalt factory that sits along side the huge piles of gravel.  When the paving is being done, this factory seems to be running around the clock loading a special grade of gravel and asphalt together.  The gravel is washed before being mixed with the asphalt.  H&D has built three ponds for this purpose.  The mud settles to the bottom and the clearer top water washes the next batch.  That smoke you see?  That's steam from the heating plant.  Asphalt must be kept at 350 degrees to spread correctly.  Quality control is on site constantly checking the content the end result by taking samples and "baking" them in a special oven until the asphalt is burned out.  The numbers have been right on the money for content every day.  Every few days a gentleman goes out and takes core samples from where ever paving is being done.  While the factory is operating trucks roll in, fill up and head out again every 6 to 10 minutes.  Each loaded truck has a cover over the top to keep the asphalt hot until it arrives at its destination.

factory1.jpg (93312 bytes)    factory2.jpg (91043 bytes)    factory3.jpg (94941 bytes)

factory4.jpg (88794 bytes)    factory6.jpg (81974 bytes)    factory8.jpg (81097 bytes)

factory5.jpg (84336 bytes)    

Below is a close-up of what the asphalt being laid here on the island looks like, it's not just the smooth, black surface we see when we drive upon it.

factory7.jpg (85406 bytes)

And the season is starting to change

Certainly after Labor Day, things around here quiet down.  Some days you could shoot a cannon ball down main street and not even hit a stray dog.  Of course that can't be said about this year with all the construction on the roads.  However, the human population has certainly taken a step backwards as summer folks and tourists have returned to the mainland.  A few still come, but not in the numbers they did all summer.  While out this week covering all the H&D jobs, I noticed that even though it's only early September some of the trees are just beginning to change colors.  Can't help wondering if the Farmer's Almanac is going to be correct... a "hard" winter with lots of snow.  I'll bet we DO get a blizzard within the next four months though.  Anyhow, here's a peek at what Mother Nature has in store for us as a color scheme for the next month or so.

fall colors Tights.jpg (97512 bytes)

Page Two of the News on the 'Net