Tag: New Year

Bye bye 2008

Almost the end of the year.

I should post about all the things that have happened.

But I won’t. Can’t. Will not, regardless.

I could recap the books I’ve read.

But I won’t.

Maybe list the new bands and albums I discovered?

Nope, won’t do that either.

Or perhaps just relive the best of the posts from this very blog?

I definitely won’t do that, too narcissistic.

Instead I’ll continue as I always do, dreaming, planning and pondering. Random thoughts of random things, all loosely intertwined. I have dreams for what 2009 may hold, but then I had dreams for 2008.

Still, now is not the time for melancholy and blue. Too easy to slip into that realm, the future looming large into view with the New Year on the horizon, a dark and scary mass, tentacles and fire reaching out to terrorise my thoughts.

Instead I will focus and change to a light. A single bright beacon to which I’m drawn. One path instead of five, although even as I type I know that that will not hold true. I will hop and skip here and there, snagged on branches, tripped by potholes, for such is the path of my life. And yours. I know that all too well.

But then isn’t that all part of the fun? Bumping into everyone else as we navigate ourselves, pinballing and careering towards… something.

Perhaps it will be enough that I move forward.

And so, with that in mind, I won’t be looking back. No lists, no best ofs, no recaps and remembrance here. Instead forward, hurtling towards the what ifs, the maybes, the laughter and pain, the suffering and joy.

Raise your glasses, one and all. Here’s to life, and everything it will throw at us. I know we will get there.

I just wish I knew where there is.

Merry Christmas

Afrikaans: Geseënde Kersfees
Afrikander: Een Plesierige Kerfees
African/ Eritrean/ Tigrinja: Rehus-Beal-Ledeats
Albanian:Gezur Krislinjden
Arabic: Milad Majid
Argentine: Feliz Navidad
Armenian: Shenoraavor Nor Dari yev Pari Gaghand
Azeri: Tezze Iliniz Yahsi Olsun
Bahasa Malaysia: Selamat Hari Natal
Basque: Zorionak eta Urte Berri On!
Bengali: Shuvo Naba Barsha
Bohemian: Vesele Vanoce
Bosnian: (BOSANSKI) Cestit Bozic i Sretna Nova godina
Brazilian: Feliz Natal
Breton: Nedeleg laouen na bloavezh mat
Bulgarian: Tchestita Koleda; Tchestito Rojdestvo Hristovo
Catalan: Bon Nadal i un Bon Any Nou!
Chile: Feliz Navidad
Chinese: (Cantonese) Gun Tso Sun Tan’Gung Haw Sun
Chinese: (Mandarin) Kung His Hsin Nien bing Chu Shen Tan (Catonese) Gun Tso Sun Tan’Gung Haw Sun
Choctaw: Yukpa, Nitak Hollo Chito
Columbia: Feliz Navidad y Próspero Año Nuevo
Cornish: Nadelik looan na looan blethen noweth
Corsian: Pace e salute
Crazanian: Rot Yikji Dol La Roo
Cree: Mitho Makosi Kesikansi
Croatian: Sretan Bozic
Czech: Prejeme Vam Vesele Vanoce a stastny Novy Rok
Danish: Glædelig Jul
Duri: Christmas-e- Shoma Mobarak
Dutch: Vrolijk Kerstfeest en een Gelukkig Nieuwjaar! or Zalig Kerstfeast
English: Merry Christmas
Eskimo: (inupik) Jutdlime pivdluarit ukiortame pivdluaritlo!
Esperanto: Gajan Kristnaskon
Estonian: Rõõmsaid Jõulupühi
Ethiopian: (Amharic) Melkin Yelidet Beaal
Faeroese: Gledhilig jol og eydnurikt nyggjar!
Farsi: Cristmas-e-shoma mobarak bashad
Finnish: Hyvaa joulua
Flemish: Zalig Kerstfeest en Gelukkig nieuw jaar
French: Joyeux Noel
Frisian: Noflike Krystdagen en in protte Lok en Seine yn it Nije Jier!
Galician: Bo Nada
Gaelic: Nollaig chridheil agus Bliadhna mhath ùr!
German: Fröhliche Weihnachten
Greek: Kala Christouyenna!
Haiti: (Creole) Jwaye Nowel or to Jesus Edo Bri’cho o Rish D’Shato Brichto
Hausa: Barka da Kirsimatikuma Barka da Sabuwar Shekara!
Hawaiian: Mele Kalikimaka
Hebrew: Mo’adim Lesimkha. Chena tova
Hindi: Shub Naya Baras (good New Year not Merry Christmas)
Hausa: Barka da Kirsimatikuma Barka da Sabuwar Shekara!
Hawaian: Mele Kalikimaka ame Hauoli Makahiki Hou!
Hungarian: Kellemes Karacsonyi unnepeket
Icelandic: Gledileg Jol
Indonesian: Selamat Hari Natal
Iraqi: Idah Saidan Wa Sanah Jadidah
Irish: Nollaig Shona Dhuit, or Nodlaig mhaith chugnat
Iroquois: Ojenyunyat Sungwiyadeson honungradon nagwutut. Ojenyunyat osrasay.
Italian: Buone Feste Natalizie
Japanese: Shinnen omedeto. Kurisumasu Omedeto
Jiberish: Mithag Crithagsigathmithags
Korean: Sung Tan Chuk Ha
Lao: souksan van Christmas
Latin: Natale hilare et Annum Faustum!
Latvian: Prieci’gus Ziemsve’tkus un Laimi’gu Jauno Gadu!
Lausitzian:Wjesole hody a strowe nowe leto
Lettish: Priecigus Ziemassvetkus
Lithuanian: Linksmu Kaledu
Low Saxon: Heughliche Winachten un ‘n moi Nijaar
Macedonian: Sreken Bozhik
Maltese: IL-Milied It-tajjeb
Manx: Nollick ghennal as blein vie noa
Maori: Meri Kirihimete
Marathi: Shub Naya Varsh (good New Year not Merry Christmas)
Navajo: Merry Keshmish
Norwegian: God Jul, or Gledelig Jul
Occitan: Pulit nadal e bona annado
Papiamento: Bon Pasco
Papua New Guinea: Bikpela hamamas blong dispela Krismas na Nupela yia i go long yu
Pennsylvania German: En frehlicher Grischtdaag un en hallich Nei Yaahr!
Peru: Feliz Navidad y un Venturoso Año Nuevo
Philipines: Maligayan Pasko!
Polish: Wesolych Swiat Bozego Narodzenia or Boze Narodzenie
Portuguese:Feliz Natal
Pushto: Christmas Aao Ne-way Kaal Mo Mobarak Sha
Rapa-Nui (Easter Island): Mata-Ki-Te-Rangi. Te-Pito-O-Te-Henua
Rhetian: Bellas festas da nadal e bun onn
Romanche: (sursilvan dialect): Legreivlas fiastas da Nadal e bien niev onn!
Rumanian: Sarbatori vesele or Craciun fericit
Russian: Pozdrevlyayu s prazdnikom Rozhdestva is Novim Godom
Sami: Buorrit Juovllat
Samoan: La Maunia Le Kilisimasi Ma Le Tausaga Fou
Sardinian: Bonu nadale e prosperu annu nou
Serbian: Hristos se rodi
Slovakian: Sretan Bozic or Vesele vianoce
Sami: Buorrit Juovllat
Samoan: La Maunia Le Kilisimasi Ma Le Tausaga Fou
Scots Gaelic: Nollaig chridheil huibh
Serbian: Hristos se rodi.
Singhalese: Subha nath thalak Vewa. Subha Aluth Awrudhak Vewa
Slovak: Vesele Vianoce. A stastlivy Novy Rok
Slovene: Vesele Bozicne Praznike Srecno Novo Leto or Vesel Bozic in srecno Novo leto
Spanish: Feliz Navidad
Swedish: God Jul and (Och) Ett Gott Nytt År
Tagalog: Maligayamg Pasko. Masaganang Bagong Taon
Tamil: (Tamizh) Nathar Puthu Varuda Valthukkal (good New Year not Merry Christmas)
Trukeese: (Micronesian) Neekiriisimas annim oo iyer seefe feyiyeech!
Thai: Sawadee Pee Mai or souksan wan Christmas
Turkish: Noeliniz Ve Yeni Yiliniz Kutlu Olsun
Ukrainian: Srozhdestvom Kristovym or Z RIZDVOM HRYSTOVYM
Urdu: Naya Saal Mubarak Ho (good New Year not Merry Christmas)
Vietnamese: Chuc Mung Giang Sinh
Welsh: Nadolig Llawen
Yoruba: E ku odun, e ku iye’dun!

Consistency of message

My role in our company isn’t strictly defined so, outside of my work with the Publications team that I head up, I also get involved with other areas of the company either because I can help, or because there is a vested interest. That brought about the creation of our development community website and more recently has seen me involved in a company wide information project.

The main aims are to provide a consistent set of information to our customers, throughout their relationship with us. So from initial contact right the way through to rollout and future upgrades, we will have a coherent set of information that is updated accordingly and a clear idea of how it will all be communicated to the customer.

This is one of those ideas I’ve long had so it’s exciting to get something like this in place, agreed and set in motion. We are lucky in that we are still a small enough group that we tackle something like this without a huge amount of overhead, although obviously the main reason we are doing this is to help us be more successful.

The model itself is simple, with 4 layers of information:

  1. Marketing Information
  2. Business Sales Information
  3. Technical Sales Information
  4. Reference Information

In the real world the layers are not distinct, but by and large the model should help people understand what they should be writing, and what they can re-use across a variety of documents.

Naturally all of this will impact on the technical documentation, with many of the Business Sales level content helping us answer the question ‘Why would I want to use XYZ?’. It’s likely we will share a lot of information with the Technical Sales layer (architectural overviews and the like) but the bulk of work will remain the creation of reference information about our product and its capabilities.

We are still tweaking things, and will continue to do so into the New Year, but the very fact that we’ve started to adopt this approach is half the battle.

The war, of course, continues!

The festive period

December the 24th is Christmas Eve. I mention this not as a startling revelation but because it’s the first of eleven days that I have off work. So if I discount the 25th and 26th of December, as well as the 1st of January as I’m Scottish and by law we are not allowed to go to sleep until at least 4am on New Year’s Day, I have approximately 8 days or so with nothing planned.

That will, of course, change.

I reckon, if I’m generous with my estimates, I’ll have five or six days to myself. I’ll say five just to be on the safe side.

That’s five whole days in which I can, within reason, do what I want. Watch some old movies, play some games, read a book, generally chill out. That kind of thing. Five days is a lot of time, so let’s presume I do some chores around the house as well, a little decorating or general DIY bodgery.

Yes, I could get a lot done in five days and I have to admit I’m looking forward to the time off as it’s been manic these past few weeks and whilst it’s probably partly because the holiday is getting closer, I’m definitely feeling a little ‘punchy’. Yes, five days is plenty to recharge the batteries all the better to start the new year afresh.

Except we all know what’ll happen.

Person X will decide to pop over and that’ll turn into dinner, which’ll turn into tidying up, shopping for food, preparation, entertaining and finally punting them out the door sometime before midnight.

Person Y will suggest that we could go out for a meal and a movie, which’ll turn into a late afternoon meal, a movie, then drinks and we’ll get home sometime after midnight.

Person Z will phone and ask us over for dinner, or just to see if we are going to visit and that’ll turn into “well if we are seeing Z, we could go and see Y and if we are seeing Y we are as well staying over with X” which means that we’ll need to prepare, pack an overnight bag and leave early morning, getting home sometime later the next day.

And before you know it it’s Sunday the 4th of January, 2009, I’m back to work the next day and I’ve not done anything that I’d hoped to do and I’m probably more stressed than I was on Christmas Eve.

It’s the same every year.

So, this year, I’m not planning to do nothing, and I’m not planning to do everything, instead I’m expecting to be busy most days and to make the most of the moments inbetween.

P.S. Persons X, Y and Z are interchangeable and do not, in any way, correlate with members of my family (immediate or otherwise) or any of my friends. Honest.

Happy New Year

2008.

No resolutions from me as I don’t bother with them, and also because I decide what mine would be back in November. That said, the traditional “must lose weight” makes an appearance, as does “must read more”. The former is largely down to the fact I’ve not been running… and because I’ve been using that as an excuse to eat everything in sight with the proviso that “I’ll diet in the New Year”.

The latter is mainly because I’d like to get away from BUYING books that go unread until I take a holiday.

So, really, 2008 will be the year of “NO”. I need to protect my waistline and my freetime!

Ummm, right. Two resolutions then.

What are yours? Do you bother with them? Is the whole thing just a sham? And, this might just be, why is the room spinning? Is it anything to do with staying up drinking until 7am??

The weekend! It's the weekend!!

I’m sitting on the sofa with some weird MTV programme blaring at me, but my niece seems to be enjoy it, despite my protestations…

Yesterday was the first Xmas ‘event’ of the year, namely the Development Team’s away day. 50 of us, crammed into a nearby gastro-pub, crackers, crap toys, and turkey. All washed down by … Guinness. Still the food wasn’t all that bad, and it was good to unwind, the last two weeks have been manic as we headed towards a release deadline.

And so my attention turns to Christmas. We are heading through to my parents today to help put their tree up. Something I’ve not done for many years, and at some point I’ll need to start thinking about buying some presents.

It also means I now have time to get on with those other things I had hoped to get finished by Xmas. A website or two, another 100 CDs to rip and get into the loft, not to mention considering what I’m going to buy in the New Year sales.

Toying with a super-compact camera, for when my current camera is a little too big, Sky HD, or… umm.. a PlayStation3. The latter is expensive and scarce and I might hold off for another 6 months or so… which then brings the Wii into play, presuming I can get hold of one.

Decisions, decisions.

But first. Coffee. And some more painkillers…

First run of 2007

Still trying to get rid of the lurgy, I decided “bugger it” and went out for my first run of 2007. Bloody glad I did because I feel GREAT now! Gotta love those endorphins! It was a busier than usual session, a LOT of new people.. can anyone say New Year Resolution?

12 days after?

Apparently decorations are supposed to stay up until 12 days after Christmas. Balls to that, this site will revert to a more subdued hue tomorrow. Similarly we’ve taken down our decorations. Back to the grind it seems.

But not before repairing the broken garden fence which we received as a new year present (at about 7.30pm on Hogmanay). Yes, that’s right, the concrete post snapped. Admittedly it was old and crumbling, and we do live at the top of a hill so it can be pretty exposed… but still, it was pretty bloody windy!

We ignored it though, and headed down to our friends house, returning home at 4.30am, lightly sozzled and ready for the New Year. Well, ready for bed at least…

The next few days will be busy for me, a few things to complete before I start my new job, and hopefully I’ll finally manage to shake off this bloody cold that has plagued me since Christmas Eve.

Anyway, it’s now 2007, time to look forward, and whilst we don’t make resolutions, we are both determined to continue with our ‘get healthy’ plans that we started in the summer. Needless to say we’ve regressed slightly… ohh ok, a LOT over the past few weeks, but I’m positively itching to go out for a run, hopefully at the weekend.

After that, who knows?

Here’s hoping 2007 brings people everything they desire and deserve.

Thief and nonsense

Right, give it back. Come on, it’s not fair and it’s not right. It’s bad enough that I regularly lose little bits of it without you whipping all of it out from right under my nose.

I mean, seriously, who the hell stole the past six months? One minute it’s January and the next… WHAM. It’s August. How the hell did that happen?

I distinctly remember thinking, in a warm sunny evening in January, that I should set some goals and see how I’m getting on with them in six months time. Only problem with that is that I’m not a great believer in the whole “New Year Resolutions” thing preferring to take a more realistic approach. If I’m not in the mood to do something, I won’t. Plain and simple. So, instead I came up with this:

I’m determined that 2006 will be the year of proper personal priorities and other potentially possible pastimes. It may also be the year of the alliteration but I’ve not really decided on that yet.
Personal Priority Ponderings

So, taking that as a starting point, how as the first half and a bit of 2006 been? Well it’s been kinda hit and miss. I’ve turned on my Yamaha keyboard a grand total of 7 times (7 more than the year before mind you), on average I’ve read about a book every fortnight, and, as I’ve mentioned, the garden is coming along nicely. Add in my recent ‘get fit’ efforts and you could say that 2006 has been pretty good so far.

Trouble is it doesn’t feel that way. Events of the past 12 months —including some things I haven’t mentioned here— have left Louise and I drained and jaded.

So, as we are celebrating our 10 year wedding anniversary at the end of the month, we’ve taken some time off work and are heading off somewhere to relax and recuperate. We can’t wait.

Too early

As the light slowly creeps across the buildings I find myself sitting at my desk, somewhat dazed and bemused. Surely it can’t be time to go back to work already, time to haul my body out of bed whilst it’s still dark, time to force cheap instant coffee down my throat in a valiant (if doomed) attempt to waken myself, just in time to go home.

Yet I sit here, looking at my calendar and my task list, pondering where to start, how to start. I’m sure I used to be able to do this, in a time long forgotten before the days of eating, drinking and sleeping (rinse, repeat). I used to be productive, I used to be busy!

You’ve got to be busy of course, you can’t be anything but these days. If you’re not busy you are as good as dead, forgotten, left behind. Gordon McLean? Ohhh I heard he wasn’t busy these days… Yes I know, awful isn’t it…

So much to do, so little inclination to start it, instead I find myself hoping to hold onto these last few moments of normality. The last remnants of a time just passed. Maybe it’s fear of the future, that gaping chronological chasm waiting to be bridged, that keeps me looking back, holding on to the quiet days. Maybe it’s my inherent laziness, my desire to spend my days doing nothing but follow my whim, or maybe it’s fear of being found wanting, not able, a failure.

New Year is supposed to be a time of hope, of resolve, of promises and excitement. Yet I find myself hoping for easier things, resolving less, promising nothing and praying for a quiet life.

Of course life will deal me the hand it decides and nothing I do will influence that, so I’ll mind myself, take care of those that I care for, and keep myself busy. You’ve got to be busy, if you’re not you can pause to look ahead and you’re never really sure what it is you are seeing in the distance. Must keep busy.

[a pause]

Gosh, that’s all a bit melodramatic and melancholy, isn’t it? Yet it just came tumbling out like that. Most odd. Maybe it’s just lack of sleep or the shock at being up this early. Not sure. Maybe I’d better make a start on this coffee.