Friday, March 25, 2011

Chickens and Nuclear Plants

The chickens are still alive!!! Woo!! They have eaten their weight in feed already. I only got up once in the night to check on them. They need to be warm (90-95 degrees) but I also didn't want to end up with roasted chicken. I was paranoid that the temperature would magically spike up but it didn't. We go back today for the Delaware, so then we will have the whole crew. So far, we have named the Rhode Island Red and the Americana. Their names? Patty (get it? Chicken Patty? I crack myself up! ) and the other one James named 'Big Martha,' because she is bigger than the others. Leave a comment if you have any name ideas.

Jeff has been incredibly busy with a project at work. He was even on a conference call starting at 10:15 last night. Its around the clock! He has basically lived at a nuclear facility all week. He has already sprouted a third arm, which is going to come in really handy when fixing the car. Saves me from having to help!! Just kidding. They are very careful about making sure that no one receives more the 'safe' dose of radiation, or something like that. Poor Jeff, he has worked 18-20 hour days plus an 1.25 hour drive, which as you can see leaves no time for sleep. Then yesterday afternoon he found out he had to go to an hour or two. Lovely. Its been a bit crazy around here because of all this. So, would you like to hear a few tidbits about going to a nuclear plant? Of course you would! First of all, you have to have a nuclear clearance. They do various checks on your before you can ever set foot in the place. (Jeff has had that for a long time now) Then you have to go through various layers of security. It can take 30-60 minutes, or more. One of the steps is to go through a 'puffer.' That is a device that sends blast of air past you and collects the air on the other side. Then they analyze the air to make sure you are not carrying explosives. The guards all have their M-16s and handguns at the ready (not slung over their shoulders). Once through all that, you have to have an escort babysit you the entire time. If you have to pee, the whole group has to go with you. (Well, at least they wait outside the door for you) If you have to get a paper off the copy machine, the whole group goes together. Jeff doesn't have a work laptop with him (which he needs) but the plant computers have so many firewalls and security features that you can't do much at all. Every tool/implement/etc. has to be on a lanyard, to prevent it from falling into any part of the equipment. You can't climb a ladder without leather gloves. Since only a few people had gloves, they had to climb up and throw the gloves down to the next person. The nuclear industry is very, very regulated to make sure that the plant remains safe. Even 'checking out' of the facility takes about a half an hour. They scan you for radiation when you leave. Its all quite a process. Jeff and I will both be very happy when this ordeal is over (hopefully by next week). He's supposed to get back late tonight, and hopefully he was able to sleep for a few hours last night. (He didn't get in to Pittsburg til after midnight)

(This is totally unrelated to anything in Japan in case you are wondering. I feel terrible that those people have the worry of radiation on top of the other disasters there.)

I'll try to post more chick pictures later. :)


DayPhoto said...

This is a great post! Thank you!


Ms. Mc said...

Names for chickens: Noodles, Cordon Bleu, Little Jerry (from Seinfeld), Kenny Rogers (that's just funny), and in honor of Jeff, Tina Turner the chicken