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Blog Update (New Years Resolution Post for Sept 2021)

I didn’t write a post for July or August. I was focused on navigating the Atlantic Immigration Pilot process, which will allow me to stay in Canada without having to worry about temporary permits all the time. I’ve been working a bit more too, a minimum of 61.5 hours a week (compared to 37.5 when I last posted)

I did migrate all my projects to a single server, utilizing LXC containers. I was expecting issues in migrating over the Asterisk PBX but surprisingly that went smooth. My real issues were a wordpress redirect loop and getting mastodon running a little more smoothly (still working on that one, thinking the redis cache needs some tweaks)

While it’s unfortunate that I broke my resolution, the point of it was to make enough of a commitment and see if I’d actually stick with it or not. Could I write content and maintain the server or would I lose interest? I’ve had enough changes between then and now that this doesn’t feel like a failure, I’m still writing posts (I have technical ones that came out of the migration work mentioned above, getting ironed out in the drafts folder too. Also some travel related ones, but they’re in bad shape. Not even close to publishing that set.) So I feel like the spirit of that resolution is still great, despite a few major things happening I didn’t quit.

My June New Year’s Resolution Post

I’m going to do things a little differently this month. instead of writing a post as a summary of the whole month, I’m going to write it a paragraph at a time, more or less as it happens.

June 7th

This is kind of an interesting month, Nova Scotia is reopening. We’re going to head to Ottawa for some essential errands and when we get back, we’ll have to quarantine for two weeks while everyone here is getting back to normal. It’s the right thing to do, but it feels rather surreal.

We’re at Leon’s getting a new couch for our new apartment, only one person per household at a time is allowed inside. It’s the hottest day I’ve felt since I flew here over 10 months ago, not the best day for a game of pandemic musical chairs but we’re making it work. At least I have some shade under the trees and my platypus water collapsible water bottle with me. (I highly recommend it for taking up very little space empty, hooking to my bag or belt when full and saving a ton by filling up at the water fountain VS buying bottled water everywhere. Not sure how it’ll work in the future with Covid-19 closing so many water fountains, time will tell)

June 14th

All of the planning seems to be done, it’ll be the longest road trip I’ve done in at least 3 years. It will be a different experience with Covid-19 now, but we have an idea of what to expect from our PEI trip in November.

I’m going to be packing lighter than I usually do, made possible by the surface tablet replacing the laptop for this trip.

I’m trying to push myself into exercising more, taking longer walks like I used to and lifting weights (nothing major, just simulating what I did at factories and warehouses before.)

Thankfully the weather has made that easier, our climate is a much nicer summer (in my humble opinion)

Over the weekend walking around, I was able to see a submarine manoeuvring around the Bedford Basin, I’ve seen ships and helicopters but this was the first time for a sub.

July 1st

I was trying to decide if I should wait a little more for some details to wrap up or publish this and add that to July’s post. I decided there’s enough here to go on. I didn’t manage to do anything for ARRL Field Day due to the driving. I should have taken more photos on the trip, but I got some new & different shots of Niagara Falls to add to the collection.

It was weird to see how different the reopening plans had been between Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia first hand. It was nice being able to relax a little in Niagara Falls & Quebec City, get my new work permit activated & help Awen with some of her errands too.

We had to apply to enter New Brunswick and there was supposed to be a check in at the provincial border, the structures were there but nobody was manning them. Lunch Break maybe? Quebec and Ontario had already reopened their borders since the third wave died down.

While in Niagara Falls I went to the Lewiston–Queenston Bridge, stayed in the Canada only lane asked if I had anything to declare and then directed into a parking area for people who didn’t need to test and quarantine, handed my papers and waited for my permit, If I hadn’t started a podcast right before I wouldn’t have known how quick it was, whole thing took about 15 minutes. It was weird seeing four of the five bridges being fairly idle, only exception was the International Railway Bridge.

Coming back, we had to go to a checkpoint in Edmundston, NB (on the Quebec Border) traffic was light here and the whole process was fairly quick. Because of our 1st shot of the Pfizer vaccine we were allowed a pretty much normal drive thru New Brunswick, as they reopened to all of Canada. It took a little longer getting into Nova Scotia, more traffic midday. Even then we were continuing on in 20 Minutes to home.

Our quarantine will be over on Sunday presuming that tomorrow’s vaccine test is negative, we’re glad that Nova Scotia made that change apply retroactively. Now we’re just trying to prepare for a heat wave coming.

My May New Years Resolution Post

This has been a kind of crazy month. I’ve been working on unpacking, preparing for my new work permit and trying to adapt to the current restrictions here. Toughest restrictions I’ve experienced since Covid-19 started, but not the toughest Nova Scotia has had.

I’ve slacked on posts here this month, haven’t even really touched the drafts even. Same for my journal too.
I’ve done more tinkering with digital modes on Amateur Radio and studying to upgrade my license. Honestly I’ve done more with the former.

This is the first post written with a new Surface Pro. I must say it was nice setting up outside, feeling the breeze and sun while typing on something that can run for a day on it’s batteries and waiting for the sunset.

Lastly, learning (read: playing) with my camera settings and figuring out how to take better shots. Here’s one from the new place.

My April New Years Resolution Post

When I originally set up this blog, I imagined having having several blogs going with different topics. This one would be my personal space & also cover personal technical projects. In the end I sat on this for months before I launched it. I kept wanting to tweak the theme, adjust settings on the backend to make it lighter & load faster. Then I wound up moving to another country and decided I needed to launch it and quit nitpicking on little details or it’d never happen.

In the end I scrapped the plans for most of the other blogs in order to really focus on this main one. I can’t really travel now, so why launch a travel blog? That’s oversimplifying the thought process involved a bit, but this is kind of what played out in my mind for every topic. I recognized there’s enough to justify posts about my Immigration here, but I’m no expert and not enough content to justify a blog dedicated to it. Finance, well I’m sure I can share what not to do, cause I’ve probably made the mistake at some point. Amateur Radio, Linux, Networking and similar can go here, personal projects for a personal blog.

One thing I’ve tried (and in one post already, failed) to do is avoid politics of all kinds, domestic (Canadian or US) foreign, office, tech community and (I imagine) more. I’ve already been too vocal on social media (and I do feel like I’m mild when compared to my friends) and at the same time I’m debating internally exactly how much I should keep to myself or when I should speak up.

I think all sides can agree that there’s too much crisis (even if there’s disagreements on whether certain events are a crisis and on knowing people on different sides of it too.) and for me that’s part of the problem I have trying to be silent, it’s become painful. That said I’m definitely going to be careful, as I don’t want to cause more hurt either.

My March New Years Resolution Post

I swear I’m trying to get to a point where I’ve got more content here than just monthly personal updates and one paragraph tech tips. I don’t like giving out teasers but I’m making an exception today for a few that I intend to have out over the next month.

After a lot of trial and error, I finally have a working APRS and Winlink station. I think I had at least three different things working against me, I’m still not sure what some of the issues were but in the end I switched the cable and USB soundcard out for a Signalink USB & 20 minutes to tweak audio levels. I’ll go into more details on this in a later post. I was delaying my March update just for this, after three months of this I really wanted to be able to say it’s working! (In fairness, a lot of that time was waiting on shipping parts, trying out the parts, ordering another little trinket & waiting on shipping again)

I’ve been working on creating my own little Debian software repository & I’ve started to learn how do make Debian packages. I’m slowly learning docker, which seems like something I should have done a long time ago. Alongside this I’ve been studying for various certifications & licenses. Thanks to my employer I expect to be a Splunk Core Certified User before summer.

I still wish there were things I could do in-person again, Covid-19 has made that a real challenge & I get it, I want everyone to be safe but zoom calls, social media posts, online chats, mailing lists & instant messages just aren’t the same. I haven’t been able to see the Halifax Mooseheads play in person, they’re playing three more games (two at home, then heading to PEI for a third, which I can’t go to due to the current covid-19 rules) and then I don’t know (every game after that is on June 24th, which just isn’t possible, I’m guessing they are just doing a few at a time until vaccines are out and/or guidance from various local authorities across the league are clarified, using that date as a placeholder)

Don’t get me wrong, it could be worse. My hometown team the Erie Otters have 5 postponed games from the 2019-2020 season and they’ve not played a game since March 8th 2020. I could be working somewhere with others, worrying about each wave again too.

Last thing for the month, I’ve been going back over past projects and catching up on documenting what works so I don’t have to go through so much trial and error if I ever rebuild them. Some of these I’ll share on the blog, so that it may help everyone.