August 29, 2002

Good Morning All:

Weather pattern appears to be back to normal. Yesterday was alternately cloudy and sunny, but no rain. This morning is overcast, which is a minor blessing right now as the table we do our computer work on here at the Mine House is next to a plate glass door. At this time of the year at this time of the morning, if sunny, that bright yellow thing is right in my face. Hard to see the monitor screen with shades on.

Got moving a little slow yesterday due to the over-night disturbance caused by this cough I've picked up. Doesn't seem to be getting worse but not better either, and seems to be most active when I'd rather be sleeping. Nature's fickle that way, n'est ce pas? Anyway, it was another specimen preparing frenzy here at the cottage. Rob was busy sawing and watergunning most of the day, while Jonina, Sarah and Shenade sorted and wrapped. As soon as I could get my act together I got out of their way and headed to the mine.

Found Dave and Andrew in the middle of their anticipated damage control after yesterday's somewhat over enthusiastic blasting regime. The real victim was the east tunnel. The blast had done a nice job of moving the face into the back of last year's Solstice Pocket, but had taken out four timber sets in the opposite direction. Fortunately none of the timbers were cracked or broken so after some mucking, the guys got to reassembling the structure. I told Dave that by having to timber this bit twice he had a chance to correct any mistakes he made the first time around. He replied that this was an optimistic way of looking at the situation, but I'm not sure it helped much. Didn't take him long to have it all put back together, though.

Byron was, of course busy collecting, this time in the West Cross Cut. The area where he was working was showing fluorite but despite moving a lot of rock he wasn't coming up with anything really good. I decided to try my hand at another spot that looked promising. Unfortunately, the area was in serious need of being mucked out and the uncomfortable little nitch I found myself resting in was actually a bowl that quickly filled with water from the hose I was using to wash away mud. Found a few modest specimens but when the roof decided to let go of some rocks I decided it was time to vacate as I had definitely reached the point of diminishing returns with that spot. Byron had dug himself a long narrow little rathole, which due to some large rocks at the mouth would have taken serious effort to open up. The day was getting late by that point so he decided to leave that job for another. All in all, a frustrating day on the collecting front.

Dave is going on holiday with his family for a week starting tomorrow so it was decided that today will be our last full-time day at the mine. With Dave gone there is no sense paying for the compressor so we'll get the Eimco stashed in a drift somewhere and have the rental company pick up the compressor on Monday. Next week will be hand collecting only. There is some good stuff showing in the Dipper (the little cubby hole along the east tunnel Byron and I started in June) so I'm sure Byron will be kept busy. Jonina has contacted Shenkar, the shipping agent and despite the fact that they seem as disorganized as ever, we have a container loading date of September 9.

Got back to the cottage and found Jonina feeling under the weather so Byron and I had a dinner of Stilton and crackers. Not bad, really. David Rennison came by and picked up more fluorite and says he'll have some money for us on Friday. Promises, promises, promises…

The clouds have now parted and the sun is in my face so I guess it's time to get moving. Today's photo is of Dave in damage control mode.


Jesse, Byron and Jonina

Anything worth doing once is worth doing twice....

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