It’s been a busy couple of weeks for us! This week’s blog is a little later than usual. It’s amazing how little free time you have when you are taking care of a little one. I’m just now finding the time to sit down and write to you what’s been going on with us.
This was the view I have been seeing all too often lately. So in this week’s sign of the return of normalcy, we’ve survived our first couple of business trips. Trips I had put off at the time of the end of pregnancy, so I could be there at the time of the birth, are now stacking up on themselves.
Last week, I went to a Hazard Awareness Course. It was really an interesting safety course, where they went through several scenarios where seemingly unrelated events led to a very dangerous event. The main example that was talked about was the Buncefield event, the largest detonation of a vapor cloud in England’s history. The blast was felt over 60 miles away. It’s shocking to think that a simple thing like, because the events leading up to the explosions happened on a weekend, it was allowed to build to the magnitude it did.
The highlight of the course however was the various demonstrations of what could happen if things did go wrong. Here’s a video compilation of some of the things I saw.
My personal favorite was the jet fire (the second demonstration). It was over 100 feet long and so loud! It was awesome!
The course was in Carlisle, up near the Lake District in northern England. I had been wanting to go up there to see it because I had been wanting to see Hadrian’s Wall. I was really excited when I did get a chance to see it in person!
I also woke up early one morning and walked down to Carlisle Castle at sunrise. It was a really cool sight to see.
Our friends were really great to Libby and The Duke during this time, too. Some of her friends came over to meet The Duke and hang out. One of them actually came back later that night to let her take a nap and sneak in a cuddle (with the Duke! Get your minds out of the gutter…). The next day, our neighbor and her young daughters came over to let her rest. Babysitters in training! They start them training young here. Libby and some of the new mums group met up for coffee. After a three day trip, though, poor Libby was exhausted, even though I was the one who traveled. It was so great to see her again. She’ll tell you though that simply having someone else there is enough to let you mentally take a break.
It didn’t get much easier this week as I had to travel again for work, this time to Darlington, basically the other side of the Wall. It wasn’t a terrible time though. I got to see a friend of mine and meet his family. I ate at my first Michelin star restaurant. I had never had grouse before, but it was delicious! I got to see a HUGE fabrication facility. This building is over 100 feet tall. In this facility, our buildings that will house parts of our control system will be built. It’s hard to convey the size of this place. All in all, it was not a bad trip!
The thing that kept me going on this trip was my wonderful wife sending me lots of little videos and pictures throughout the day. How can your day not be brightened when you see something like this:
We hope your week has been good and full of laughter!
Derek and Libby and The Duke