That crazy satellite phone

Tue 9 Feb 2010 23:48
Well, I really don't want to be writing about satellite phones. This is supposed to be a sailing story. . . .

Today the new USB-serial adapter arrived ( -- overnight shipping for $2.99 from NJ). It looks great, and even blares "Best Compatibility" on its packaging. So I installed the drivers from the CD, and then with trembling hand got ready to attach the adapter to the phone. . . . NOT!

The 9-pin M end of the plug on the adapter is perfectly sized for the 9-pin F end on the phone. However -- as if the cruel hand of fate has not tormented me enough yet in this matter -- BOTH plugs have large screw bosses protruding from them. The screw connections are not compatible. Both are F and both stick out so far they won't allow the electrical contacts of the plugs to meet.


I considering sawing one set off with a Dremel tool. But I really didn't want to risk destroying the nearby electronics. My solution now is to order a $3 serial cable that has both M + F ends, and has either no screw connectors or both M.  I went on Ebay and quickly ordered three different cables from different vendors in NY and NJ, hoping at least one of them would arrive by Thursday or Friday. At this point I can only laugh. Maniacally. Bitterly. But still, I can laugh about it. . . .

On other fronts, we got a lot done in the horse department -- picked up 20 bales of shavings and got then into the barn for Jeff, who will be taking care of our horses while we're away. We also threw down about 100 bales of hay from the loft and stacked them in a spare stall, so Jeff can access them more easily. We picked up heartworm medicine for Joe the dog. Things are getting crossed off lists.

We met with Isabel and Rose's teachers today, who are being absolutely phenomenal. They had lessons all prepared in advance, materials organized for us to bring, and much more. They were helpful, thoughtful, encouraging. . . . We were blown away by their kindnesses. More on this later.