Aftermath

Sometimes when I sit down to write a blog post, ok MOST times when I sit down to write a blog post, I’ve only got a vague idea of what I’m going to write about. I start to type and the words flow and my brain forms ideas as I go and more often than not I end up at a different place than I expected, writing about a whole other thing than the original premise. Most times I’m lucky that it kinda flows together and makes some sense and I can finish what I’m writing without too much effort. But sometimes whilst the first few hundred words flow out easily, I start to get bogged down more and more …

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And then she got married

I can remember when I opened the packaging and laid it out in all its glory. I put my Action Man down on the bed to compare and was delighted to find that my new outfit matched his perfectly; head to toe camouflaged jumpsuit and red beret. I knew my parents would be home from the hospital soon so I put it on and decided to hide in the large fuchsia bush in the front garden, a perfect spot with its dark green foliage and red flowers! Soon my parents pulled in to the driveway – and they definitely did NOT spot me in my hiding place, nope, no way! – and after they recovered from their surprise when I …

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Art in the woods

I am my mother’s son. Growing up my mother’s penchant for a list was well documented, lists of things to do in the garden, lists of presents received at Christmas/lists of thank you letters to write, lists for shopping, lists for holidays, it’s something that I picked up without really realising but looking through my Notes app on my phone and it’s full of, yup you guessed it, lists! Right now I have a folder in there called Lists with the following: Things to do Places to eat Books Hard to kill houseplants Sipping Tequilas Set lists (from a gig) Bucket List Present Ideas And it’s from that first list that we ended up visiting Jupiter Artland last week, a …

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I can read

I stopped publishing my weekly Weekend Reading posts last year. As I said at the time: 3 years and 161 posts later and I think it’s time to admit that this is now more of a chore than I’d like. Sure it’s mostly automated, but over the past few months I’ve started searching out and filtering what I read knowing that it will appear in these posts, and that’s not why I started doing it. It isn’t supposed to be a chore, it’s just supposed to be an extension of what I already read, and it no longer is. Since then I’ve read about the same number of articles but shared a wider variety, or at the very least I …

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Life is a beautiful ride

It starts when I get my leg over. And it’s always my left leg due to whatever odd reasoning of biometrics and learned habits dictates such things, always the same one I swing up and over the saddle and, after a quick re-positioning of the pedals, we’re off. After the first few metres of making sure shoes get clipped in and the right gears are selected we are soon on our way and, without fail, a smile spreads across my face. I always get the same feelings of nostalgia when I get on my bike, the simple childhood pleasure and sensation of speed all come rushing back, and isn’t it funny how we don’t remember all the scrapes and bruises …

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Julius Caesar

July is a quiet month. Not for any specific reason, more happen-stance than anything – only a couple of gigs and a stag do for my brother-in-law-to-be at the end of the month – but I’m glad of the quieter couple of weeks ahead, a chance to get properly back into routine after our wonderful holiday. It’s also well timed as next month is lining up to be a doozy! August kicks off with Becca’s birthday right at the start of the month, the following weekend I’m in Edinburgh for the traditional day at the Festival with my friends, and then the weekend after that there is a wedding to attend on the Friday (which means I’m missing The Cure …

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Writing space

Since moving, I’ve struggled to get back into my writing habit. I’m managing to keep my blog going although dropping the schedule I followed in 2018 has also had an impact – looking back it’s clear that some of the posts are not great – but I now have two rough ideas for a novel/novella which are currently stalled in draft purgatory with no signs of moving anywhere fast. I am blocked and uninspired. Now, I could blame many things for this; that I no longer have a separate desk and a nice adjustable chair, that I don’t have a separate space for when I’m writing, or that I’m just too busy with other things. But these are all excuses. …

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App Trends

It started with Evernote. When I first started using it I was delighted with such a simple, fast loading, feature rich note app but over time it ended up a slow, bloated product focused on ‘teams’ and ‘work’ (neither of which I needed). The email app I use, Spark, appears to be headed the same way, adding ‘teams’ and ’email delegation’ to the list of features which is of no use to me for my personal email account. And recently it seems Dropbox is headed that way too. When it was first launched it was a godsend, a very simple file/folder storage app that sync’d and integrated with many different applications. It did what it did brilliantly well and became …

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That was America

Back home after two weeks of travelling around parts of the East Coast of the USA, which went a bit like this… We flew in to Stewart International Airport (courtesy of Norwegian Airlines who we recommend) we picked up our hire car and headed up to Framingham, just outside Boston. The following day we spent wandering round the gorgeous city of Boston, doing nothing much except enjoying the sights and sounds of a new city. It really is a lovely place to stroll around, with a nice mix of old and new buildings and areas. Thankfully it was a little overcast, perfect for a day of walking around being a tourist. My second visit to Boston and I think it …

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20 Years

In 1996 I attend a day long training course to learn how to use a new technical language to publish text on the internet. I was working for a small firm in Helensburgh at the time, the internet was still new, we’d only just upgraded to Windows 95, and I was put in charge of creating their website. That technical language was called HyperText Markup Language (HTML) and still powers the bulk of the internet today. The default browser of the day was Netscape Navigator, and webpages looked very basic consisting of little more than black text on a grey background with some oddly placed images. In the last hour of the training course we were taken through some new …

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