We got the blame thing working. I still suspect somebody, somehow managed to block the exact octet we had been using, somewhere in the chain of more-or-less managed switches between here and there -- but I also don't care, as long as it's working. Someone else can unearth and defuse that UXB at some future date; it won't be me. The likes me and my old-technology peers of aren't allowed into the managed switches because, well, golly, if the specially-trained professionals can foul them up so badly, think of the damage us ignorant, blundering Philistines might do? A-hem.
Afterward, I went for a walk in the very breezy outdoors and visited the biggest milkweed patch that I can get to -- sweet-scented and filled with bugs, including a gracefully flittering Monarch butterfly. They're home to many of the good old red-with black spots, capsule-shaped milkweed beetles, who will test your hearing by chittering at you in very high frequencies if you pick one up and hold it to your ear -- if you can; they're wily and quick, and will drop like a rock if your shadow crosses them. I can't hear them any more, so I don't try to catch them. The milkweed, some plants standing nearly six feet tall, is also popular with iridescent, metallic-looking Japanese beetles, an invasive species but interesting-looking. But it's the big bumblebees that like them most of all; I only saw one one honeybee* but every plant had at least two bumblebees fighting the breeze to hang on, and one cluster of blossoms had three of the large bees, getting in one another's way as they loaded up with goodies to take home.
It doesn't take away the stress, but it makes it easy to bear. Just about to the end of this project and then I'll see what's next.
* Apparently milkweed is a risky venture for the smaller bees -- they can be trapped by the flowers! Man, nobody's got easy work, not even the bugs.
BUILDING A 1:1 BALUN
4 months ago