John & Yuko Garrett, two old friends from Tokyo, were visiting San Francisco this weekend and brought a bunch of us together for a BBQ and to meet their daughter, Emma Peach. It was great to catch up with Tom Watanabe, his wife, and others from the Linc Computer crowd.
A couple of the people there are, like me, married to Japanese and are trying to raise their kids to speak Japanese. Two of the couples speak nothing but Japanese when at home which I admire. It’s not only good for the kids, it would be good for me. Izumi’s English is much better than my Japanese and, frankly, I’m too lazy and too easily slip back into English.
We also met Joshua (on the left) who is building a house completely powered by solar. He figures he will make enough energy during the daylight hours to sell power back to the local utility which will more than make up for any energy he has to buy from them in the evenings. The total cost for the system is about $20k but with various government rebates and credits, all in costs will be more like $13k. Amortize the loan over 10 years and it works out about $150/month which is about what he’d pay for power anyway. Once it’s paid off, it’ll just make money for him, especially when you think that the price of electricity isn’t coming down anytime soon.