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Chernobyl

“On 25 April, prior to a routine shut-down, the reactor crew at Chernobyl-4 began preparing for a test to determine how long turbines would spin and supply power following a loss of main electrical power supply. Similar tests had already been carried out at Chernobyl and other plants, despite the fact that these reactors were known to be very unstable at low power settings.
A series of operator actions, including the disabling of automatic shutdown mechanisms, preceded the attempted test early on 26 April. As water flow diminished, power output increased. When the operator moved to shut down the reactor from its unstable condition arising from previous errors, a peculiarity of the design caused the power to surge dramatically.
The fuel elements ruptured and the resultant explosive force of steam lifted off the cover plate of the reactor, releasing fission products to the atmosphere. A second explosion threw out fragments of burning fuel and graphite from the core and allowed air to rush in, causing the graphite moderator to burst into flames. The graphite burned for nine days, causing the main release of radioactivity into the environment. A total of about 12 x 1018 Bq of radiation was released.
Some 5000 tonnes of boron, dolomite, sand, clay and lead were dropped on to the burning core by helicopter in an effort to extinguish the blaze and limit the release of radioactive particles.”

I can’t believe that was already 15 years ago, yesterday. I still remember it happening. I remember how we (all the way in Holland) couldn’t eat spinage or use tealeaves for months. And ofcourse the horrible footage all over the news. Also a scarry thought: similar, but modifed reactors continue to operate in Russia and Lithuania. For more info check, The Uranium Institute | Nuclear Industry Issues | Chernobyl.

Blackwater Park

My favourite band at the moment is Opeth. Click here to view The Official site or buy Blackwater Park, their latest release. It is one of the last bands I really want to see live, but haven’t had a chance to. Hope they’ll play Graspop this year!

Fine

Here’s what I watched last night. One Fine Day (1996): George Clooney (playing someone rather like though not identical to his ER character) and Michelle Pfeiffer play a pair of lonely single parents, both afraid to get close to someone and be hurt again. No big surprise, when they end up having to split child-watching duties on one hectic day, they go from attraction-disguised-as-hostility to falling in love. But hey, it’s a romantic comedy. Just because you know where you’re going doesn’t mean the journey’s not a lot of fun. All four of the main characters (parents and kids) are attractive and multi-faceted, and the misadventures are funny and touching, both. The kids are real people, the lines are funny, the chemistry works… this isn’t a *great* movie, but you could spend two hours a lot worse. Check it out.

Breathing

Sometimes I find myself taking in very shallow breaths of air. A while ago I read a book on Yoga from the local library and there was also chapter on breathing. However I didn’t really have to time to go into it at great length. But when I was standing at the busstop this morning I was reminded of it, and made a mental note to myself that I needed to look it up online. So I did. You should check it out. Hatha Yoga breathing: Yoga recognizes three separate forms of breathing – diaphragmatic, intercostal, and clavicular. Complete yogic breathing combines all three, and constitutes the ideal technique.

Moving

I found out yesterday that e-Vision (where I work) is moving from Zijlbaan in Leiderdorp to Rooseveltstraat in Leiden. [Map of Leiden] I’m looking forward to seeing it. I’ll let you know.

Remi

“Alleen op de wereld (Alone in the World or Nobody’s Boy)” by author Hector Malot is one of my all time favourite children’s books. It’s about this boy, Remi, who is all alone in the world. It’s very sad. But that matches my current mood. To make things even worse Winamp is currently presenting me with the beautiful, but quite depressing, “Who wants to live forever” by Queen.

Anyway, I feel a bit like Remi today. My brother is going on vacation to LLoret de Mar in Spain this week, and my parents are going to Paris for a week and a halve starting wednesday. Also half the country is free, because the schools are always free the week between Queensday and Liberation day. But that isn’t relevant for me anymore, because I have to work. Sigh. Well, atleast I have monday off, and I’m thinking off taking friday and the monday after that off also. I still have 2 free day’s from april.

Keyboard

Goodmorning, friday oncemore. Last day of the week! I have to say I’m looking forward to it. My shoulder and neck hurt like crazy. I have been reading up on the situation, but I haven’t read anything I didn’t know already. Anyway, the following page was quite useful. Keyboard Retraining II – “Mousing” – Articles – TIFAQ. I think I’ll have to make an appointment with my local Reiki master again. That seemed to do the trick last time.