Monthly Archives: August 2012

Road Ragers

This accident happened just north of Sokeh’s Shopping Center. This is one of the two cars that was in the accident. I was told that the incident involved passing. Outside of a car people here are patient, respectful, and deferential. Giving way to others is automatic. Once in a car, however, some of these same people are impatient and anything but deferential, attempting to pass even on a curve. Despite the lack of highways, Pohnpei remains a dangerous place to drive

Two car crash due to passing between Kolonia and Sekere
Two car crash due to passing between Kolonia and Sekere

So this morning, Monday 20 August 2012, I was headed up to work at 6:55 A.M. Coming into this same curve I came up at 40 kph behind a car moving at a relatively slow 20 kph. I slowed down, planning to pass once both cars cleared the curve and were on the straight stretch through Sekere. A car came up fast behind me and as the three cars entered the curve, the car behind me swung out to pass me. I was too shocked to grab my camera and grab a picture – it was a blind curve pass on this very same stretch of road. In the morning. Which, as any local keenly knows, means there is a high probability of Kolonia-inbound traffic from Kitti.

Sure enough, as soon as the passing car came abreast of me, a car appeared moving at speed from Sekere. A head on collision was in the works.

I had already hit my brakes – anticipating just this eventuality. The car that was attempting to pass swerved to the right. Because I was ahead of the game – having hit my brakes when I saw they had swung out to pass (pilot training eons ago: react ahead of a potential problem) – when they swerved to avoid impending death, there was space for their car in front of me. As soon as the Kolonia bound car was past, the driver of the car immediately swung out and passed the slow moving car.

An emergency? Not hardly. The driver with an apparent death wish pulled into the gas station not 250 meters further down the road. It was the woman who opens up the gas station at 7:00 each morning.

She almost died this morning trying to save mere seconds for something that was certainly not an emergency. On this same curve.

I wish people could step back from their preoccupation with getting to a place and think in terms of the time differentials. I know, I am a numbers guy. But the time differential is usually mere seconds, maybe minutes. How many times has a taxi recklessly passed me, only for me to catch back up with the taxi a couple minutes later in town traffic? Time gained by passing? None.

In the twists and turns between Sekere and Kolonia the maximum speed at which my car can remain on the road is somewhere just above 60 kph. The speed limit is 40 kph and that is a typical speed for me. The distance is 3 km. If I am stuck behind a car doing 30 kph, the time gain in passing is in the seconds, not minutes, over that stretch. There is no point to passing – not against the risk of injury or death.

 

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Pohnpei Sailing Club Calendar fall 2012

The tentative fall 2012 calendar has been set for the Pohnpei Sailing Club. The schedule is subject to revision.

Date Time Coach Theme
Sun 08/26/12 pm:13:00-16:00 Kazuo Sailing exercise
Sat 09/01/12 pm:13:00-16:00 Kazuo, Umezu Monthly race 4 races
Sat 09/08/12 No sailing
Sat 09/15/12 pm:13:00-16:00 Kazuo, Umezu Sailing exercise
Sat 09/22/12 pm:13:00-16:00 Kazuo, Umezu Sailing exercise
Sat 09/29/12 am: 09:00-16:00 Kazuo, Umezu Cruising camp picnic to Misko
Sat 10/06/12 pm:13:00-16:00 Kazuo, Umezu Monthly race 4 races
Sat 10/13/12 No sailing
Sat 10/20/12 am:l0:00-16:00 Kazuo, Umezu Cruising camp
Sat 10/27/12 pm:13:00-16:00 Kazuo, Umezu Monthly race 4 races
Sat 11/03/12 pm:13:00-16:00 Umezu, Ichihara Sailing exercise
Sat 11/10/12 No sailing
Sat 11/17/12 pm:13:00-16:00 Umezu, Ichihara Sailing exercise
Sat 11/24/12 pm:13:00-16:00 Umezu, Ichihara Sailing exercise
Sat 12/01/12 pm:13:00-16:00 Kazuo, Umezu Monthly race 4 races
Sat 12/01/12 Evening Kazuo, Umezu First anniversary celebration
Sat 12/08/12 No sailing
Sat 12/15/12 No sailing
Sat 12/22/12 No sailing
Sat 12/29/12 No sailing
Sat 01/05/13 No sailing
Sat 01/12/13 No sailing
Sat 01/19/13 To Be Determined
Sailing
Sailing exercise
Saturday saw an unusual northwest wind fill the sails
Saturday saw an unusual northwest wind fill the sails

Ohava, clean teeth, taekwondo, badminton, and a picnic

Ohava provided a meticulously assembled desktop unit with industry standard parts and careful attention to detail. The Ubuntu machine replaces a Nobilis that ran Windows XP.

Ohava computer
The new Ohava machine is far more powerful than its larger predecessor. The machine also does not redline its quad-core CPU when one runs JavaScript, Flash intensive sites, or video.
Teeth cleaning
This week also saw everyone get their teeth cleaned, from the youngest to the oldest.
Taekwondo continued as the summer heads for an abrupt end in mid-August.
Taekwondo
The end of summer brought the start of the August badminton tournament. Taekwondo winds down in a week, badminton will run into September.
Badmitton
The last official weekend of summer brought a round island drive with a road stop picnic.
Pohnlangas picnic

Pohnpei Sailing Club regatta finals and awards dinner

On Saturday August 4, 2012, the Pohnpei Sailing Club held the finals for the Pohnpei Cup Regatta. Two sets of preliminary races and a semi-final during the past month set up a four person final. Wind and weather conditions were ideal for the final races and the competition was spirited and friendly. Four final races were held with LP winning three of the four races and JL crossing the finish line first in the fourth and final race of the day. The finals were followed by an awards ceremony and regatta dinner at South Park Hotel. Based on points, the overall winner was LP who took home the first Pohnpei Cup. Taking second place was JL. Sailing her way into third place was CS. The awards ceremony included remarks from Club Chairman Andrew Lucky and Race Director Kazuo Ishikawa. The Pohnpei Sailing Club thanks all those who have assisted the club in this first Pohnpei Cup including Chief Lucky, Dr. Kiyoshi Umezu, Dr. Ishikawa, South Park Hotel, the skippers and their families for their support.

Race supporter gazes out on the course
Race supporter gazes out on the course
Dr. Kazuo Ishikawa gives race directions
Dr. Kazuo Ishikawa gives race directions

Four finalists heading out across the starting line

Four finalists heading out across the starting line
Swimming in from mid-course
Swimming in from mid-course. All of the club members are strong swimmers.

Living on an island I have always wanted my children to be strong swimmers. Seeing my daughter dive over board in the middle of the lagoon and swim all the way back to shore made me proud.

A skipper brings in her boat
A skipper brings in her boat
Ready for the regatta dinner
Ready for the regatta dinner
Lining up the awards
Lining up the awards

Dr. Ishikawa brought the awards in from Japan.

The top eight competitors
The top eight competitors

The top eight skippers.

First place
First place, second to his left

In first and second place.

Third place
Third place
Fifth place
Fifth place
Seventh place
Seventh place
Chief Andrew Lucky addresses the young skippers
Chief Andrew Lucky addresses the young skippers
Dining at South Park Hotel
Dining at South Park Hotel
My son gives a brief thanks
My son gives a brief thanks