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   Although I considered bicycling to work today it just wasn't going to work out.  The sun did not come out yesterday as forecast and so the ice on road surfaces really didn't melt away.  In addition I was asked to come home slightly early to assist with heavy lifting which I could not do on a bike.  So, for the first time in over a month I did not bike to work during the week.
 
   Started the morning at 5:00 am and worked on the sidewalks and driveway for about 50 minutes.  We had a couple inches of snow on the ground, but fairly fluffy.  It cleared off pretty easy but there was a thin layer of ice under the snow from yesterday's transition from rain to snow.  This made the surfaces slippery.  I suspect once the sun comes out this will go away pretty quick.
   The real question is, how are the roads going to be for tomorrow?  I would like to bike to work.  I can bike on packed snow, but not on ice.
   Just a bit of snow after work.  It started with rain that quickly turned into snow as the temperatures dropped throughout the day.  The drive home was slick and slow.  This was the first hazardous driving conditions of the year and it didn't waste anytime getting started only being late November.  People were, for the most part, driving cautiously.  So despite being a slow drive home I did not observe any accidents.
Xiphos works on his boat

Xiphos works on his boat

   Xiphos has been working on this boat for our D&D campaign for couple weeks now, and it's starting to come together.  While I am a big fan to sketching up exactly what I plan to build and then following my blue prints to the letter, Xiphos starts with materials we have on hand and seeing what he can make them do to obtain a result.  While we have different styles Xiphos often creates really impressive results.  His informal methods often gives me ideas I would not have otherwise considered and keeps me learning new things.
   While is may not look like it, this is the most complicated clamping I've had to do.  The walls of the structure are somewhat bowed, and in order to properly clamp the floor in place took at lot of thought.  It was a matter of getting a starting point and moving clamps around until the structure was aligned correctly.  Once in alignment, the clamps could move to the locations they needed to be while the glue dries.  It was a lot of fun.
   Coldest bike ride to work thus far with temperatures somewhere between 10-20 °F (-12 to -6 °C).  While I had enough layers to stay warm by biggest problem is moisture.  My bottom layer of clothing is always soaked by the time I arrive at my destination.  The last stop on the way home for lunch resulted in a very cold restart of the trip as my wet clothing made going back outside that much worse.  This time I stopped at a coffee shop I knew had a large radiator I could sit next to.  I used it to try my T-shirt and sweat shirt before returning to the ride.  That did the trick, but I worry this won't always be an option.  So it's time to look into some way to get moisture out without getting rid of the heat.
   Pictured is the very frozen waters of Wingra Creek as seen under the John Nolen Drive bridge on my ride home.
Frozen November

Frozen November

   This has been an unusually cold November, and there are only hints it will be warming up sometime this upcoming weekend.  I enjoyed a cup of hot chocolate at a coffee shop and took this picture out the window of ice and traffic.  This is a style I shoot from time to time.  The focus is on the ice crystals.  I purposely left the shutter open for a long time to blur traffic, and the shallow focus allow the background to be soft.  The window glass also allow reflections from the light behind me.  It's hard to tell what the picture is really about.  The light at the center top is the focal point.  Two diagonal lines from the top inward move the glance down where it usually falls on the red light.  But what one is suppose to look at is up to the viewer.
   Today both Xiphos and I went to work on our projects.  Here Xiphos is using our "stationary" belt sander.  He is making a boat and cutout some shells using the jigsaw.  To smooth out the rough edges one could use a file.  But a belt sander upside down in a vice is much faster.  Using this setup Xiphos was able to make some nice rounded corners for his project.  I cut some 1/8" strips of wood for the next part of his project which are now soaking in the sink.  In addition, I cut over 25x 1/16"x1/2" strips for myself.  I did this using a nice piece of pine and made more sawdust and strips as the saw blade is thicker than the width need for the strips.  But I knew that was the case and my wood is cut.  This project is going to be fun.