Monday 23 November 2009

Cloudy with a chance of meatballs...

Which has nothing at all to do with this blog entry, though it is cloudy and it's supposed to rain (again). It seems to be getting very good at doing that - rain and rain and rain and rain. Lots of heavy rain in a country known for it's semi-continuous bits of piddly mist and light rain. They just got a foot of rain in Cockermouth (where do they get these name?) in Cumbria - the most rain ever recorded at one time in the United Kingdom. It's late November and we haven't had any frost. In fact, we haven't even had any cold nights. The trees still have about half of their leaves as well. I'm sure it's not climate change or anything so silly. It's more likley to be an al Quaeda plot or perhaps the fault of Obamacare.

Oh, what a world, what a world, what a world.....!


Life continues to progress in a distinctly lifelike fashion. I just applied for another job - I don't actually expect I'm going to get it, as I'm missing some of the 'key skills', but it sounds cool, and it would be a big salary increase, which would be a GOOD THING. The weekend was rather boring. Shockingly, it rained. I didn't manage a bike ride - nothing like cycling in 50mph wind and hail. David and I did to to a house party on Saturday night. David thought it was one person's party, but it actually turned out to be another person, with the same name. Oh how embarrassing - fortunately, he noticed this little tidbit of information before we actually got there. We had a bit of an epic journey to get there as well. The first train was cancelled 'because of a person under the train' at Euston Station. I mean, really - how inconsiderate! So we schlepped to the next station, where we got on the next train, where someone decided to let off a stink bomb. The Tube has a lot of bad smells, but boy, stink bomb on crowded train pretty much takes the cake! The party itself was a bit odd. It was more a collection of groups of people. There were the 'cool kids', who, for some reason totally incomprehensible to me, seemed to disappear off to the bedroom for short periods of time - usually in groups. They would then come back into the room distinctly chirpier. I'm sure they just went back there to discuss the future of British politics, or perhaps to look at pictures of puppies. I felt distinctly left out with my boring beer and small talk. Dear diary... ;-)

Oh - random things I've seen in Hackney at lunch lately... 1. A dead person being wheeled out of a building on a gurney. 2. A guy on a very large unicycle riding down Mare Street (main drag), weaving through traffic while texting on his phone (not the dead guy, I'm pretty sure, though you might wonder).

So anyway, I should go cook up my lunch for tomorrow, shower, be fabulous, stand on my head and such - the usual evening things...

Friday 13 November 2009

Who ate all the cookies?

Blah. So, I tried to do a blog entry yesterday, but the website crapped out and that was the end of it. 'Computer says no...' It's Friday evening and wet and windy outside. David and Robin have gone to the supermarket. I went last night, in the pouring rain. So, I thought I'd just hang out and read things online. Unfortunately, I bought a package of really large chocolate chip cookies yesterday, and they are really yummy, and I just ate two of them, and now feel like a complete hippo. Oh well, I'll run a million miles tomorrow and cycle on Sunday (or stand on my head and play the zither - I get confused).

I was reduced to taking the train into work today, as I had to go to a meeting at City Hall this afternoon (about heat mapping and community heating systems - something I know, amazingly, nada about). I figured it would be bad form to show up looking like a drowned rat, particularly since most people seemed to show up in suits. Hello, suits? In local government? What is this about? I felt a little underdressed in my jeans, long sleeve t-shirt and hiking boots. Oh well - I'm sure they will get over it. Anyway, I managed to slip out early and play hookey. Had coffee with a friend of Robin's I ran into, then went to the gym and had my new gym-member health check. Apparently my morning diet of eggs and bacon has not harmed my cholesterol, and my endless cycling means I have a resting heartbeat of about once per week. Not bad...

So yeah, in other words, a slow news day, so I'm going to go back to reading about the general awfulness of the world, or the current conspiracy regarding swine flu. I'm quite enjoying that one - especially since I have yet to meet a single person who has had it... Hmm...

Wednesday 11 November 2009

And now is the time when we are SILENT!

Blah. So, today was Remembrance Day, and also, apparently, this is National Mouth Cancer Prevention Month. I don’t have any particular comments about the second (except don't chew tobacco - it's icky), but as for the first, well, work, in its usual level of thoughtfulness and sensitivity, had two minutes of silence this morning at 11am. Now that’s all well and good, but they chose to start and finish the two minutes’ silence by sounding the fire alarm. I’ll tell you, nothing gets me into a more reverent mood than hearing the fire alarm!

Anyway, I’ve been exceedingly bad at keeping this up lately. I have interesting and amusing thoughts every day (well, interesting and amusing to me, anyway), but I never actually get around to writing them down. Then a week has passed, two weeks, etc. Very sad.

So, the glory of autumn in London (snigger) has notched down just a bit. About half the leaves have fallen, and the rest seem to just be clinging on, being stubborn. We’ve had a few cold and rainy days, and some chilly nights. You’d think though that, given the sudden preponderance of heavy coats and scarves, we were in the middle of an ice age. Londoners really are weather weenies. At work, the heating has been on since Oct 1, and, just for good measure, the air conditioning is on as well, b/c the heating makes it too hot. That’s energy efficiency for you!

I had to be off my bike for several days. As luck would have it, a gear cable gave way when I was off in the most inconvenient part of North London. That’s usually how it works. At least it wasn’t raining. Anyway, four trains and two hours later (for ten miles) I finally made it home. One of the funny things about cycling around London is that it opens up the entire city for easy exploration. Unfortunately, the flip side of that is that when something goes wrong, which it usually does, one is usually as far away from a useful train as is humanly possible without being in a place that doesn’t actually have trains (yeah- don’t interpret that statement too much there). But now I’m back cycling my 30ish miles per day, which makes me happy. Oh, and I’m scheming two big bike rides for the summer. One of them is from Trondheim, Norway, to a ski town in Sweden called Are. (That’s Are with a little round doodah over the A). Why? Well, for one, it sounds completely random – just the sort of thing I would do, and the other, I’ve been talking to someone online for a while in Are, and it occurred to me that this was the perfect flimsy excuse for me to cycle through the wilds of Norway and Sweden! (Going to try for the summer solstice). The other ride, for later in the summer sometime, will be from Bern, Switzerland, to Milan, over the Alps. Why is this? Well, I know people on both ends (so, of course, it’s very sensible), but mostly, it sounds like a ridiculous challenge, so why the hell not? I’m applying for my UK citizenship in January, and it’s just sort of beginning to dawn on me I have this whole, interesting continent to explore, right there. Of course, it would be better to have a better paying job… Baby steps… Oh, and David and I might cycle on the Rhine in the autumn. He’s not much for the hilly rides… (And both he and Robin think I’m a wackjob for wanting to do them, but that’s pretty par for the course).

Anyway, I’m about out-blathered for now. I’m going to really really try to be better at this. I’ve even set myself a daily reminder!

Oh, and the low light of winter must be here, b/c I'm craving carbs like you wouldn't believe! Time to get out the happy lamp!