Categories
Ireland

The cheapest petrol in the county

Petrol in Ballinspittle is only €1.819/lt today. That’s the cheapest I’ve seen in a long time.

After listening to this Planet Money podcast about the cost of gasoline I wonder if we will have expensive petrol and diesel forever? Reason being, it’s unlikely that new oil refineries will ever be built again as demand for oil products plummet in the next decade. A guest on the show predicted that a barrel of oil will be $20-$30 in ten years time.

Electric cars are becoming a lot more attractive, but I won’t be looking to buy a new car for quite some time.

For you, my American reader, there are 3.78541 litres in a US gallon. That means the price of gasoline/petrol here is $6.89/gallon.

Aside from all this, the reduction in oil production will have a detrimental effect on sulphur production. It’s a by-product of that system and used by the metal and fertilizer industries. It’s cheap as chips now, but if there’s a shortage, the price of food will skyrocket.

Yikes. Any good news about the future?

Categories
Animals

Tetanus? I’m good for another ten years

Ah, Mommy Cat. We have two cats. They’ve lived with us for more than 13 years. Originally there were five but the three boys wandered too far and unfortunately were lost to cars on a nearby road.

Mommy Cat, the matriarch of all she sees, brought her kittens to us way back in 2009. The only girl of the litters she bore is Hoppy, so called because she’s missing a part of her back foot. It doesn’t slow her down though. When she wants to she can run like the wind, or hunt silently and bring us “gifts” to the back door.

Mommy Cat is still half wild. After all these years she will barely tolerate us touching her, and only while she’s eating cat treats. For many a year she would sit on the window sill, rain or shine, hail or snow, looking into the kitchen. She would never come in unless the back door was left wide open.

Until a few weeks ago that is. Much to our delight she came in and didn’t flinch (too much) when I slowly and quietly closed the door behind her. She ate some food. Looked around. Wandered through the legs of the kitchen table. Sniffed the legs of the chairs. She even went over to the dog’s bed, and lay down, watching us through lidded eyes.

We were amazed. At 15 or 16 years old she realised she didn’t have to run out the door when we approached. She realised it was nice and warm inside and she was safe inside. After a while she went out again into the night, and her bed outside in a kennel.

Things only got better and better. First thing in the morning she came in with her daughter, meowing in a croaky voice. Slightly unsteady on her elderly feet, but she still has an appetite.

Soon enough she was staying in the bed all day until I coaxed her out, but then she started staying in all night. She obviously has good bladder control as she had to be pushed out in the morning!

This continued for the last two weeks but she’s the worse for wear. Her fur is matted, her paws are yellowing. We could see she was doing better being inside in the warmth but one morning we smelled something nasty. Her matted fur was the source. Out she went again and my wife washed the dog’s bed, adding bleach to help get the smell out. We decided something had to be done.

Later that afternoon we acted. Mommy Cat needed to be brushed down and cleaned. I now wonder what the hell we were thinking we could do since she was half wild. Our attempts lasted all of about two minutes. Wearing kitchen gloves, I slowly crawled up to her, put my hand out to catch her. Quick as a flash, she twirled her head around and bit down hard on my finger!

Mommy Cat ran out the door and blood pumped out of my finger as I ran cold water over it into the sink. It slowly stopped but was very sore to the touch.

Of course I had to then get a tetanus shot. The last time I got one of those was in the mid-nineties. Thankfully this time it was in the arm. I have a dose of antibiotics to take for the next week, and my finger is all bandaged up. It’s still very sore but hopefully the infection won’t go anywhere.

On the way back from the doctor we stopped at the local vet to get a trap. It’s a small cage, about a metre long with a panel that slides open at one end to put the food in, and a door at the other end that swings up and is held up by a spring loaded catch. When the animal steps on a plate the door swings down behind them. Our vet knows how to handle cats. They’ll be able to clean her up and check her health.

Mommy Cat? Thankfully she didn’t take off. She came back later in the day looking for food. This morning we put out the trap. Hoppy had to be kept out of the garden because we knew she’d go into the trap without a thought for any food. Mommy Cat is smarter. She must have been starving but she never went into the trap, even though we put tuna and cat food in there. I think it’ll take a few days for her to become used to seeing it. We’ll leave the trap out for the next few days and hopefully we’ll be able to get her to the vet.

She’s in again tonight. It’s cold out. Best place for our elderly cat.

Categories
Photos

My dog is the master of this

Any time we go out Diego does his best to let us know that we can not possibly go out without him. This is why I’ve been spotted carrying him around supermarkets in a special carrier bag, or been booted out of other supermarkets for having him in that bag or in town where life would really be much less stressful if he wasn’t with us.

Being cute is very tiring
Categories
Photography

The old Nik Collection is still free

After the sunset, edited in Silver Efex Pro 2

Nik Collection 4.0 was announced recently but comments here say that if you have a previous version it always shows an update warning that can’t be turned off.

Within a couple weeks of usage, I received the on-screen notification when launching the software below telling me to update. However, clicking on that “Install Now” button neither downloads nor installs a software update but instead, takes me back to the DxO website and prompts me to purchase brand new software.

If you’re curious, the original Nik Collection that was made free by Google in 2016 still works. You can grab it on Mac and Windows from this page at archive.org.

Categories
Cork

Great Parking

I was back and forth to the car a few times while we were in town. Each time there was someone trying to reverse into that space before realising they wouldn’t make it.

Until an old Nissan Micra pulled up and reversed in like a champ. I hope they had room to get their car door open.

Categories
C64

Yes, it is at home

My Commodore 64 is in my home office. How did they know?

Categories
Ireland

I would have liked to meet Ted Baldwin

The gravestone of Edward (Ted) Baldwin in Durrus, Co Cork.
“I told you I was sick”

This is a gravestone in the graveyard of St. James’s Church in Durrus, Sheep’s Head as pictured in 2014. Ted died well before his time at a young age and I have no idea who he was but to judge by his final message he must have been an interesting character.

I came across this after posting today’s photo of this church in Durrus on my photoblog.

Categories
Life

It’s after 8am

Is it ever too early for chocolate on Christmas Day?

Categories
General

Why do you do it?

I might miss something that makes my blood boil or make me feel sad that the world is so messed up.

I’m better off giving this little guy a cuddle. 😍

Thanks Reddit.

Categories
Ireland

CervicalCheck Protest in Cork

More than 800 people marched through Cork on Saturday to protest the CervicalCheck scandal where 209 smear tests were misread and 18 women have died already.

Terminally ill Emma Mhic Mhathúna appeared at a protest today in Kerry.

In a poignant protest in Tralee town centre on Monday evening, the very day that she was told that her cancer has spread even further to her vertebra, Emma, in a moving and emotional speech, said that she would continue to fight for reform of the health service. 
“I am sick of being treated like nothing. Our health is the last thing that these people care about. The Dáil needs to realise that if they are going to take responsibility for our lives they better do it well or they need to be fired,” she told the crowd. 
“I promise my death won’t go unnoticed. I will make sure that they pay for what they have done to every single family in Ireland, whether you are on a waiting list too long or whether you are not being treated fair. Tell them you’re my friend and I’ll come and sort them out.”
“I can’t save my life but at least I can save yours and your children’s lives.” 

https://www.independent.ie/regionals/kerryman/news/kerry-stands-together-in-solidarity-as-emma-faces-death-sentence-36910803.html