The problem: The electric motor operating the gates is
not working. Perhaps there is a power cut, or it could be very cold
weather. As a result we would not be able to get our cars out of Burrium Gate.
Opening the Electric Gates Manually
Firstly, you have to believe it's possible to open the automatic
entrances at Burrium Gate with an Allen key.
Start by locating the communal Allen key, it's probably in a whitish, utility-looking box at the pond side of the gates. Gotcha, you
need a triangular key to get into the box containing the Allen key!
Note: The North and South gates each have a different Allen key, so one size won't fit all
Once you have the metal rod with a square end in your hand, it's a matter of sequencing; one gate opens
before the other. You can check the logic by examining the overlap at the centre.
Locate the female slot for the Allen key at the very bottom of each gate, near
its hinge. As to whether it turns clockwise or anti-clockwise, you have to
experiment - gently. Again, the belief that you can do it is more important
than detailed instruction.
If you have the foresight to bring, a rope, or a
cloth to tie-back each gate - take a gold star! Failure to take this precaution
means that the metal
bars will flap back and damage your car. Remember at this stage you
have placed the gate in its emergency state, there is no electricity, hence
no electro-mechanical over-ride to protect the cars as they pass through,
for this reason remember to lash the
gates to their posts until the cavalry from the gate company arrive!
Suggestion: We declare one Sunday morning as test time;
when interested parties can gather and help each other practice this mechanical method of
opening the gates.
Key Pad I heard that Barrett's original plan was for
residents to have a keypad to operate the gates, thus making the community
more secure. I also heard that this option was ruled because it would
cause delivery problems, specifically the postman, and possibly the emergency
services also objected to this plan.
Camera Surveillance As a security measure we could
mount one or more cameras to monitor the roads. I mention this as an
idea people have floated.
Guy's Position Security does not come naturally to
me, fortunately, this an area where Pauline is very keen and has natural
aptitude. In a nutshell, I now see the importance of security, but I
am a follower rather than a leader on this topic.
Request: Ideas and Comments
If you have ideas, or tips concerning the gates, or security then I would be delighted
to extend my knowledge.
I pace back and forth, sure that the gates will close and we will miss
our plane. As the other passengers board I am nervously waiting for my
sister to come back with her cup of Starbucks.
Of course we don't miss the plane. As usual, she manages to make it just
before the doors close. She smiles at me. "Oh, they're boarding already,"
she comments. I don't have to answer because the flight attendant announces,
"The gates are about to close" as we scramble onto the plane.
After we settle comfortably in our seats, she turns to me and says, "You
and dad would be the first ones in line at the concentration camps."
She hit the nail on the head; our differences in personality go way back.
I am like my father -- always early, doing everything yesterday; and she is
like my mother -- always late, doing everything tomorrow. Both equally
We arrive at the Detroit Airport, Gate Number 10, and scurry down the
concourse to Gate Number 59. I'm in a panic; we have only 40 minutes before
our connecting plane takes off. Somewhere around Gate 40 she decides we have
time to stop for lunch. I'm nervously tapping my fingers while we wait for
the lunch to arrive.
When our sandwiches finally get to the table I pay the bill and make my
sister leave with sandwich in hand. "What a dumb idea to stop for lunch," I
say to her. "We have only ten minutes before the flight boards."
I run her down the concourse to Gate Number 59, anticipating a closed
gate. Of course I'm wrong. The plane is not even there yet. A 20-minute
delay is posted. She gives me a dirty look as she walks off to get another
cup of coffee. I just slink into a chair and wait.
We make it on the plane and to our destination with only one other
mishap. She almost left her suitcase in the airport. But as usual,
everything worked out for her. It always does, although I don't know why.
To her credit, she is a very efficient designer working two jobs, while I
am retired, with less pressure. On the other hand, she has set a pattern
whereby everyone expects her to be late, and would be shocked if she wasn't.
And her last-minute-itis has been passed down to the next generation. I've
heard her son say, "Mom, we have ten minutes. Do you want to go see a
I guess it goes back to when she was a three year-old stage performer
singing, "I'm a slow poke now."
I guess nobody told her that it wasn't supposed to be a lifetime project!
This is more of a driving licence than a passport story.
To be sure, your man Prawo Jazdy is a slippery fellow. He's wanted
for 50 different driving offences all over Ireland. Now, Prawo is clever
because every time we book him, his driving licence has a different address.
All the Gardaì in Ireland have a different theory about how this 'Scarlet
Pimpernel' escapes the clutches of the law. Finally, the penny
dropped, Prawo Jardy is not a Hungarian name, but the Polish words for
The Garda had caught 53 different Polish drivers, but thought they were
dealing with the same man. Naturally, the Polish community in Ireland are having a good
laugh about Mr Prawo Jazdy.
*Garda is the Irish Police force, it also means one policeman.
Gardaì is the plural.
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