Tag Archives: hunting

A quiet weekend

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It has been a quiet weekend, more or less. I visited my parents in Thy, where I picked up wind boards produced by my father. There are many boards and they probably weigh more than 100 kg in total, which meant I had to drive very conservatively on my way back. If you’re in doubt, they are for my ceiling insulation project, where I need to direct the wind over the layers of insulation. It was super awesome that I could “order” the boards from him, and I’m starting to understand – with additional inspiration from Bonderøven – that the process of building or fixing something is as important as the end result. It’s important to involve family and friends. I also managed to sit with my rifle in a hochsitz for a few hours in the rain (without seeing anything) and to buy some art for my many walls at a charity store. When I wanted to go to bed at my parents’ house, one of their dogs – Birko – had stolen the bed while I brushed my teeth 🙂

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Actually, I had planned to start working in the attic today, Sunday, as I finally have everything I need for the first eighth of the project. It didn’t happen, though, as I had a pile of clothes that needed to be washed, the weather was suddenly suitable for a run, my conscience begged for a run, logs needed to be splitted and brought to the stove, my kitchen needed to be cleaned, a better (sturdier) toilet seat purchased the other day begged to be installed, etc. In addition, I decided to relax in an armchair this evening with a foot bath, a quietly burning stove and The Expendables 2.

As always, I’ve been digging around the net for metal stuff, and I’ve found something that means a lot to me. Back in 2003 when I started at Aalborg University, a friend introduced me to metal music. There were also other friends pointing me in the metal direction, but one friend stands out. None mentioned, none forgotten. I humbly say thank you. It was through Nightwish and Within Temptation, I learned to appreciate metal. When viewing and listening to this pot of gold – Within Temptation playing for two hours with the Metropole Orchestra in the Netherlands in 2008 – I seriously don’t understand why many people like the boring music that gets played on the mainstream radio stations. Being on the subject, let me wholeheartedly recommend the documentary Metal: A Headbanger’s Journey.

Hot shortcuts to the aforementioned pot of gold:

Within Temptation will release their new album Hydra on January 31, where we will see guest performers Tarja Turunen (ex-Nightwish, see this Hydra-video) and Howard Jones (Killswitch Engage, see this Hydra-video), among others.

That’s all I wanted to share for now 😉

A Visit from Thy and Vice Versa

Friday, August 30, I was visited by two friends from Thy. I served something simple and something that was at the top in my freezer – venison from roe deer. I remember having shot it with my own rifle in the winter season of 2012. Very delicious. It was accompanied by crispy bacon, scalloped potatoes and cold lager.

Most days I don’t really need a dishwasher, but it’s a really nice invention, when you have people over for dinner, and you want to spend time with them rather than stand in the kitchen. If you remember to open it while the dishes etc. are still quite hot, they’ll even get dry without your intervention. The view on Saturday morning:

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Saturday I visited my parents and brother in Thy, as my father turned 54. We celebrated his birthday by taking the ferry to Feggesund and eating lots and lots of eel at Feggesund Færgekro. The eel were accompanied by potatoes, parsley sauce, Porse Guld (beer) and Rød Aalborg (schnapps). We often joke that the only good thing about the small island Mors is the view of Thy, and in fact the view is not something to complain about:

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On Sunday, my father and I got up at 3:45 in the morning and went hunting for geese and ducks together with three other hunters. My father’s plan was to let me and the other guys have the best chances, as he lives closer to the hunting grounds and can go there any other day. The geese hadn’t heard his plan though, so they flew mostly over him, enabling him to shoot three of them. I helped pluck their feathers and got two of them with me home in return. In the following picture I’m trying to hold the geese up high, but they are actually quite heavy.

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The weekend was concluded by a few hours of extremely serious work, where a colleague and I were on site at Netic performing a planned upgrade of MySQL from version 5.1 to 5.6 on a very important database cluster.

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A sign of life in a busy period

I’m quite busy for the time being, which is why I haven’t posted for the past eleven days. Real estate trading, friends visiting and many active projects at work are the topics that have demanded my attention. Not something to complain about, to put it in the typical, cup-half-empty Northern Jutland style 🙂

Regarding real estate trading, I’m in the process of buying a house. That includes getting the paperwork right, taking out a mortgage and vacating my current, rented apartment. It’s a big, big thing. At the moment, everything is on track. I have done my homework, and I will continue to do so. I’m very much looking forward to having my own place. It will probably be easier to grasp, when I’m past this uncertain phase. Three years of savings will be converted to bricks and I will be in debt for the next 15 years. I have never been in debt for more than a few consecutive months, so that’s another new experience. Also, I will be driving to work. For the past three years and a half, I’ve lived 1–1.5 km from work and used my bike or walked. My Aygo will probably be happy to drive more often.

More details will follow in a later post 😛

Let me share a few pictures… First, look at the view I had on Wednesday, June 19, when I was hunting for roe bucks with my dad:

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I didn’t see or shoot a buck, but I saw a doe twice (that’s a female).

On Saturday, June 22, I cooked roe deer venison with bacon and new potatoes for two visiting friends:

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It was very delicious.

Last night I assembled my new grill, which I hope to inaugurate soon:

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I should have looked around the store for a smaller starter 🙂

… or for a bigger grill, as some people would probably say 😛

Looking at real estate, hunting, changing tyres

For a few months I have been browsing real estate on my laptop. I’m not in a hurry to buy anything, as I’m not particularly tired of my current rental home. It’s close to work, requires very little maintenance on my part, and the rent is relatively low. I think, however, that it would be nice to have my own place, to have more space, to have a covered place for my car nearby, to be closer to nature, to not have the city busses driving outside my bedroom window, to not have five washing machines spinning next door all day long, to have a larger garden, to have a greenhouse, to have a dedicated room for working out, etc.

I am looking in an area in Jutland contained between the cities Dall, Frejlev, Nibe, Aars, Nørager, Arden, Terndrup, Bælum, Kongerslev, Storvorde, Klarup, Gistrup, Dall:

At the moment I’m considering making an offer on a house in the small village Lyngby, marked with a blue dot on the map above. Without going too much into details, I like the location, but due to the condition of the house it would be more like buying a craftsman project than buying a house. The offer price is relatively low, but the refurbishment will be costly and time consuming. A few pictures:

     

     

Today I’m visiting the house for a second time, this time bringing my parents.

In a totally different category, I’ve been out hunting two times this weekend. It was together with my dad, and it was on a – for us – new piece of hunting ground, in our new, homemade hochsitzes. I observed fallow deer Saturday morning and roe deer Sunday evening. I haven’t fired a single shot, but my dad shot a roe deer buck, which I gutted. Look at the fine weather on a Saturday morning:

On my way out hunting Sunday evening, I was stopped by the police for the first time in my life. It was by two motorcycle cops on a small road in the country side. They wanted to see my driving license, ask me if I had had any alcohol that day, and in general where I was going and why. “Are you in the military?”, the cop asked, to which I replied “no” rather puzzled. “Aahh, you are going hunting?” he then asked. My hunting clothes are from a military surplus stock… 😉

Finally, I have changed the tyres on my car. Now my car is equipped with brand new Michelin Energy E3B summer tyres. It involved a bit more work than I had imagined, as the rear rims had to be loosened with a hammer due to rust. In addition, it took quite a while to polish off the rust, clean the surfaces with gasoline, apply grease to different parts and to do a bit of maintence on the old, winter tyres. Note to myself: A hammer, coarse sandpaper, a wooden block, a vacuum cleaner, a can of gasoline, a tub of grease and wipes are very useful things when changing tyres! I ordered the combined rims and tyres online (dækonline.dk) and had them delivered to my workplace. Here’s a few pictures:

     

  

while true; do live; done

Yes, I’m still alive, and yes, so is this blog 🙂

In Denmark we’ve just had long weekend – some people might even think of it as a small vacation. Thursday, May 9, was a holiday, and most people, including me, had the day off on Friday. I visited my parents in Thy, where I ate a bunch of great food (e.g. pork roast in different ways, asparagus soup and roe deer goulash), helped my parents change the wall-to-wall carpet in their living room, went for a few walks with my parents’ dogs, ran in the forest (near Tovsig Sø), built, painted and placed hochsitzes for the upcoming bow hunting summer season, celebrated mother’s day (we bought her flowers and I went to the grocery store early for rolls), and visited my grandmother and grandfather in Øsløs. Oh, and I was on call for work the entire week and was woken up by alarms three or four nights… Argh… Well… I’ll survive.

On the following picture my dad and a fellow hunter are painting one of our hochsitzes. I helped paint another one (while also painting several parts of myself…).

The design is actually quite neat. Simple, stable and relatively lightweight. We did a Google Image Search to get inspiration. The green paint really makes them awesome. I look forward to the bow hunting season which starts tomorrow (Thursday, May 16).

I’m not going hunting tomorrow, though. I haven’t taken the day off from work, so I think I’ll be missed if I don’t show up 🙂 Actually, I do have a special arrangement for tomorrow… I’m going to the countryside to look at some real estate. More about that later – it’s time for metal music and heavy weights…

Daylight saving time

Here’s a glimpse of my Saturday morning:

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Freshly pressed Aeropress coffee made from freshly ground beans, a car magazine, a hunting magazine and a Puppet book.

The coming night, Denmark, together with many other countries, will switch to daylight saving time. This means we will advance our clocks one hour and therefore go from UTC+1 to UTC+2, or, alternatively, from CET to CEST. Less sun in the morning, more sun in the evening. Let’s say you get up at 6 AM on Monday. If the clock hadn’t been advanced, it would only show 5 AM. I’m just thinking out loud here… 🙂

I’m on call for my workplace when the clocks are advanced. That actually worried me a bit, but then I realized that I had mixed up two events – the insertion of a leap second on Saturday, June 30, 2012, and the switch to standard time on Sunday, October 28, 2012. It was the former that caused massive problems. As far as I know we (system administrators) rarely see problems related to the rather regular switches between standard time and summer time. Phew.

Renewed license to kill

In pure James Bond style, I’ve just received my license for the coming hunting season 🙂

I look forward to beautiful, warm summer mornings and evenings from May 16 to July 15, the summer season in Denmark for roebucks. I plan on keeping mosquitos from biting me using a hat with a net and several layers of clothes. Sunset, the smell of spruce trees, coffee, my rifle, silence… Sweet.

Since this is a public blog, let me just point out that I do not store my hunting weapons on my home address.

Totally unrelated: The chat service Microsoft Messenger is closing down, and I’m not switching to Skype for personal use. This means that if you want to chat with me after April 8, you have two options: mt@martintoft.dk on Google Talk or toft on IRC (EFnet, freenode and IRCnet). Non-geeky people should probably disregard the IRC option 😉

Smoke detectors and kitchen lighting

I have been looking at real estate for a few weeks, just for fun, but for the time being I have decided that it is much more sensible to move properly into my current home. To be honest, I have been living at Damstræde 108 for approx 13 months without proper lighting in my kitchen. That ended today when I put up two smoke detectors and two lamps. One of my favorite tools is my rotary hammer – it drills through hard concrete like it was butter. You actually have to be careful not to cause too much damage.

      

Update, 2013-03-16 19:45:00 GMT+1:

I celebrated the new lighting in my kitchen by pot roasting two ducks. As far as I remember, I have shot at least one of them myself. Packed in one bag, they were one of the oldest items in my freezer, so their time had come. They are probably teals – my mother have labelled them wild ducks and they are far too small to be mallards. They were quite delicious 🙂

   

   

For some reason, King Winter has returned, even though today is March 16. The snow is beautiful and brings a cozy atmosphere, but I very much look forward to summer weather.

Fighting cold weather

Me wearing a GripGrab balaclava and a bike helmet on January 30, 2013After a few days with temperatures between -10 and -15 ºC, I have bought a balaclava. Actually, I have bought two – redundancy is nice. It allows me to have one down for maintenance (washing) without downtime. The brand is GripGrab and I bought them at CyclingShop.dk. So far I wholeheartedly recommend the GripGrab balaclava. It will probably also work very well for hunting, but the winter hunting season in Denmark pretty much ends tomorrow, and I will not be hunting until the summer season starts on May 16. I imagine using a balaclava when going for a run on very colds days, but I expect it to get too hot after a few kilometres. It might also be difficult to breathe and get rid of snot while wearing it. Anyways, if the thought of wearing a warm balaclava can get me out the door on a very cold morning, it’s all worth it 🙂

By the way, try to look at Usain Bolt in slow motion:

At the workshop with posemand.dk, we started out by looking at sprinters and endurance runners in slow motion. It turns out most of them have something in common. Notice that the posture of Usain’s upper body is completely vertical and that he is very compact when hitting the ground (and very wide when he is not, which yields the insane speed). Also, he always he hits ground right underneath his body. At the moment I strive to achieve the same good posture, the same compactness and the same way of hitting the ground right underneath my body in each stride. Don’t get me wrong – I’m aiming for painless endurance, not speed.

Still alive, still rocking

If I wrote more frequently, I could write smaller and more specific posts 🙂 As usual it is easier to have good intentions than to do something about it…

One of the newsflashes since my last post is that three of my close friends have had problems with their female partners. I know, or at least knew, their partners, so it affects me to some degree as well. I have never really tried this, so it is a new experience for me. The problems range from temporary separation (that’s the most recent status known to me) to infidelity with an ugly divorce as a result. It’s sad and complex when children are in the middle of it all.

Barefoot running at posemand.dk workshop in Aalborg on January 20, 2013In an entirely different category, I have attended a workshop where I was taught how to run without getting injured. It was a workshop by Claus Rasmussen, the guy behind posemand.dk, and it was an absolute pleasure to be a part of it. The general theme was to avoid injuries in the long run (haha), but the specific solution was to do barefoot/natural running and to do it with the right technique. As you might know if you have read this blog before, I have run in FiveFingers for some months. Around Christmas, i.e. approx one month ago, I was actually running 10 km training passes (in Vivobarefoot Evo II) using what I thought was correct barefoot style. The initial video of my running at the workshop immediately revealed that I was landing on my feet in front of my body rather than underneath it. Moreover, I was forcing a forefoot landing and wasn’t relaxed at all in my ankles and feet. Claus taught me and all the other participants a number of exercises for correcting our posture and relaxing our limbs. It will of course take a lot of practice in the near future. I recommend the book/pamphlet Proprioception – Making Sense Of Barefoot Running by Lee Saxby and one of the accompanying videos.

On Thursday I visited the library in Hobro, where the two extreme runners Johnny Wulff Andersen and Andreas Carlsen shared their experiences and gave advice. Johnny talked about his participation in Jungle Marathon in 2012, which was a 256 km race through the South American jungle in Brazil. Undoubtedly too extreme for my taste, but it was great mental preparation for my participation in this year’s Copenhagen Marathon. Andreas had planned to show his documentary Ultra, but the electronic devices he had brought and the ones at the library wouldn’t cooperate, so he ended up given a talk instead. He is clearly a runner with many great experiences in his backpack and I look forward to watching Ultra at some point.

I have been using my new media center to follow e.g. NCIS and How I Met Your Mother, and I have also watched numerous semi-old Top Gear episodes. People keep telling me to give Game of Thrones a chance, but fantasy doesn’t normally catch my interest. I’m not saying never, though. The media center (based on a Raspberry Pi, an external hard drive, a wireless keyboard and the Raspbmc software, as you might recall) works pretty well. It is stable and able to be the secondary, authoritative name server for my domains at the same time. It would have been nice, however, if my music collection was properly tagged. Bugger. What a daunting task.

On behalf of the seller, the German Amazon has cancelled my order for the Cablesson HDelity HDMI Audio Extractor (ARC). I don’t really know whether they cannot or will not deliver the device, but the cancellation bugs me a bit, as I was looking forward to having the device solve my digital to analog conversion problem. The somewhat cheap alternative is a similar device by the brand ViewHD, but the seller apparently only ships from the USA at the moment, which means I will end up paying more for postage, import tax and fees than for the device itself. There are also more expensive alternatives, like devices from Luxi Electronics, but I refuse to pay four to five times the price of a Raspberry Pi for the functionality. At the moment I “survive” by using the DAC is my tv, i.e. my amplifier is connected to the headphone out on the tv. I have discovered that it doesn’t produce as bad sound as I initially thought. The volume on the tv just have to be set to max. The sound quality is decent, but the solution is a bit impractical, as the tv must be turned on and I have to remember turning the volume back down when disconnecting the amplifier. Oh well… It’s the little things 🙂

Update, 13:52:42: I almost forgot that I have been out hunting with Nordthy Jagtforening on a cold but very beautiful Saturday. In total, 10-12 roe deer were observed, while two were shot. I missed on a forest snipe. The headline was fox hunting, but no foxes were shot. As far as I remember one was observed, though. The day traditionally ended with yellow split-pea soup, sausages, bacon, potatoes, mustard, beetroot, schnapps, etc.