17 October, 2012

Time of the Season

Time of the Season was a favorite song of mine way back when. It was written by Zombies keyboardist Rod Argent and was recorded at the fabled Abbey Road Studios in 1967.

It's the time of the season
When the love runs high
The Zombies - From their 1968 album, Odessa and Oracle.

Wikipedia has a nice writeup of the song, which became iconic of the late sixties and the 'summer of love.' It was also when I went in the Navy and by that fall I was stationed at Treasure Island in the middle of San Francisco Bay. Try fitting in at the Filmore or Avalon with a military haircut. Uh huh. It went that well.

Well, so much for sweet memories...

You know at Casa Winjama it's the 'time of the season' when we start to pull down the awning (the shade cloth tent) and break out the pool cover and reel.
Awning Half-Down
This year we're only taking half of the awning down right now. The half that still shades the deck we're leaving up so that everyone can sit comfortably on the deck by the pool without roasting. The other half will come down probably by the middle of November.

I had Cody help me carry the pool cover and it's reel assembly from under the east breezeway back up to the pool deck. I hosed the Naugahyde-like reel cover down and removed it as hosing just wasn't cutting it. It was going to require a brush, suds, bleach, and elbow grease.
Pool Reel and its Cover
I discovered that since the cover itself had unrolled about a half a turn, that it acted as a great scoop for leaves and other yard debris during it's off-season. This included a good selection of dog bones… You read that right - bones. One of the doggies has been cheating on burying their bones. Now I know where somebody had been hiding their bones without taking the time or effort to bury them. Pretty tricky. They had been taking the ones worth saving and just nosing them under the cover in the breezeway,

Once I hosed the bubble-covered solar blanket off, I then unrolled the whole thing into the pool and hosed it off.  I was happily surprised how well the solar blanket cover had survived. It didn't seem to be getting brittle or anything like that and cleaned up right away with just the hose.

The reel cover was another story. I had bought the vinyl Naugahyde-like material at Cinty's, with no real expectation that it would stand up to the intense sunlight down here. But surprisingly, it's done very well.

I mixed up a bucket of Fabuloso (a liquid cleaner they have down here that looks dangerously good enough to drink) and some bleach, took my pool scrubbing brush and got to work on the cover - first the outside, then the inside. Then another good hose-down inside and out and put it inside-out over the cover reel to dry. It looks almost brand new.
Sparkling Clean Reel Cover
It'll be interesting to see if the water temp goes up from the 83° (f) that it was this morning. 83° (f) is sort of that magic temperature where anywhere above that, it's comfortable to be in the pool, and anywhere below, the jewels are in danger of disappearing. The temp at last New Year's Day Polar Bear Swim was a frigid 82° (f). I'll be pulling the cover off the reel for tonight to help hold the heat in. Maybe we can get the temp kicked up a degree or two by Friday in time for happy hour.
Direct Sunlight on the Pool
I'm amazed at how well the awning shade cloth, the solar blanket, and the reel cover seem to be holding up. This is heading into the third year and other than the 'solid brass' grommets rusting on the shade cloth, everything looks about as good as the first time we put it all up.

That's about it for pool winterizing here. We don't shut the pool down, we just shift gears a tad and keep on enjoying it year round.

Following up on a previous story that I did about the pump house door falling off due to rusted and broken hinges, everything is hunky dory now. Four new 'heavy-duty' hinges have been welded and painted and the door is now functioning better than it has in years.
Reinstalled Pump House Door


  1. Amazing... I went to San Diego for boot and then spent 1967 and until spring of '68 at Treasure Island. I remember that I got approx. $32 every two weeks (after taxes). That really didn't go too far -- but then it didn't matter since at 19 years old there wasn't a whole lot you could legally do.

    I remember that time fondly. I learned how to shoot pool very well, since I could get to the pool hall I liked on the $.25 bus off the Island. Spent a lot of time there. Great memories.


  2. Dave, meant to mention. Went to advanced electronics school there.


  3. Hi Julian,

    Paydays at TI were exciting for me too. I had enough money to take a bus over to the Army's Presidio to have a pitcher of beer at the EM Club - only place where an 18-year old could legally drink. That left me enough money to wash my laundry, get my inspection uniform cleaned and pressed, my shoes professionally spit-shined at the Exchange, and get a haircut. That was it till next payday. Back in the days when the Navy still paid in cash.
    We used to have weekend-long, continuous spades tournaments.
    It used to be bone-chilling walking from the barracks to the mess hall.
    That was the life!


  4. Yeah, I remember that ride back from the Presidio. They actually put straw on the floor in the back of that bus back to TI! What a time!

    You didn't happen to make it to the 16th Street and Mission Street Follies did you? Wow...

    Did you ever get to guard the pier out there? Only time I got to guard such a thing. Great view, but really boring - and cold. Next time I had guard duty it was topside watch on my submarine!

    We had a barracks where we were two to a room. And my roommate would throw his cannabis seeds out the window - hoping that they would grow. Can't believe he didn't get caught!! I decided back then that the stuff costs too much, I didn't know if I could control myself and I had 4 more years of the Navy so why go stupid. Luckily I never got back to that stuff again.

    Take care,


  5. Hi Julian,

    Never got to guard the pier. Ours was standing watch of the Radar 'A' School and barracks fire watch.
    Speaking of barracks - we had the old 'temporary' wood barracks from WWII, open bay, which meant about 50 or so bunk beds in one room. They were so decrepit that during a snow storm one evening, an upstairs double-hung window, jamb and all, fell out to the ground. We patched the hole with some cardboard. Barracks was cold from the get-go, and was absolutely frigid till they fixed the window.
    The Navy... It was an adventure!


  6. I started out in that same type barracks - but luckily moved out at the end of summer. We had a really nice guy that was a true native Hawaiian and he would love to go to Fisherman's Wharf and bring back and eat the absolutely worst smelling seafood I have ever experienced. We would all leave and he'd be smiling, sitting on his rack - eating away! LOL Good times...

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