One and two years ago

Third week in July 2015

My blog from a year ago can be found here. Nothing in it about the weather so I can only assume it was not as distinctively hot as has turned out here in the last fortnight.

Eternal revolution

Change pic from a year agoThey key feature that strikes me is the uncertainty that was around all that time ago with the threatened restructuring at work. Well that is sorted now though the resolution has not long been finalised and new staff are still being recruited. However I find myself in a good place not least because I decided what I wanted and stuck to my guns. Not always easy nor comfortable but a good lesson to learn.

Fatter now but doing more exercise

lose weight now Interesting to note then that my weight was 13-6 so I am half a stone heavier now. This is not good news. I had just started on my journey back to the gym then after tearing the ligaments in my hand and ending up in a caste. I was only doing exercise that didn’t involve using my arms. And I was still trying to do long purposeful walks. However something worked in that because I was lighter. Food for thought there. Is it that my diet is worse now and I drink more alcohol?

Save the world

I was also thinking about the importance of frugality and the mantra of reduce, reuse, recycle. This is something I still believe in not least to preserve our precious planet as much as possible. Nothing makes me think we are any less screwed in terms of global warming and dangerous over-consumption.

Eternal clear-out

I was also indulging in the therapy I still practice of clearing out papers and emails. I believe in trying to delete stuff and not carry baggage. This does not necessarily mean I am having less crap to deal with. Rather I am simply persisting in trying to get rid of sufficient that I can feel what is left is manageable.

Lucky bastard retires to Spain and is happy

Spanish flagFascinating that I recorded about lunch with my colleague who was planning to retire to Spain. That wasn’t just an idle threat. It happened, he’s there now, and we had a What’s App phone catch-up very recently. Delighted to say he is doing great and has no plans to come back to shitty London. Though he may have to find a Spanish guy to marry post Brexit so that he can stay. He is particularly busy going to the gym, having siestas, and learning Spanish – envy, envy, envy!

Confidence in what I am doing

It makes me thoughtful that a year ago we were getting ready for the upcoming Sheffield bootcamp for the six projects we had selected to fund and support under our Tech for Good pilot programme. Lots of apprehension then about how things would work out. This shows the importance of believing in oneself as they all completed, two have won awards, and one has obtained further funding from us. There has also been a knock-on in terms of more ‘normal’ applications to us centring on digital service delivery and our reputation as a Tech for Good funder is secure. Indeed, we are currently preparing the next TfG programme starting in Autumn.

Some other bits then worth noting

  • I was feeling constantly knackered and attributing this to doing too much at work. I feel less tired now though I still work over the hours I am paid. An inherent problem I have is the pride I take in doing a good job to the extent that I strive for perfectionism and to be ‘in control’.
  • My lovely friends Em and Trish’s had the ceremony to convert their civil partnership to a marriage. They have now emigrated to live in Australia. Hopefully we will see them again in a few years’ time.
  • I met up with my mate Daisy for dinner, was enjoying foreign language cinema (though not a queer film), and was reading fantasy and horror respectively by Sir Terry Pratchett and Clive Barker.
  • Then I was saying Corbyn was a disaster and I’m still saying it now. Interesting how Labour as a party has a complete inability to cut itself free from leaders who are leading it to defeat – Foot, Kinnock, Brown, Miliband, Corbyn. Perhaps the best thing would be for Labour to split and for there to be a fundamental political realignment?

Third week in July 2014

Not planning for the future

When I started my blog just over two years ago, I had no dates to identify the weeks I was blogging about. How stupid was that? But it gives the sense that I did not think I was writing for a long-term purpose. That I was not thinking of keeping this up for years to come nor considering the possibility of looking back on it. Here is the site for all the July 2014 blogs. I have to guess that which blog on this page was the third week of July and particularly consider that in terms of where I was then and where I am now.


gremlin It was hot and I was using up leave again. But there is a sense of disappointment in myself. And I was trying to pace myself at work as ever and not be overwhelmed by it. I felt I had not made big progress in some key areas such as language or digital learning. No good cinema seen. Plus I was caught up in reading a very long conventional thriller (I don’t normally do straight thrillers) and I can remember now being disappointed with it once finished. I suppose a sense of failure is like a gremlin that hangs around and we just need to learn to ignore its petulance and get on with living.


Previous week I had been in Birmingham and Stoke to discuss the Wavemaker (digital exploration centre) project that is now real. I do like Birmingham as a wonderful industrial city. Though I’m pissed off that it was so ambivalent on voting for the UK to remain in the EU. A pity as it is such a brilliant cosmopolitan melting pot itself. Suppose I need to remember Gisela Stuart is the MP for Edgbaston.

Glasgow, the World Cup, Andy, people

Two years ago I was also visiting Glasgow – another great city and one that voted to remain. Other stuff happening included the World Cup, Israel invading Gaza, the Russians shooting down the Malaysian airliner over Ukraine, and stirring of an organisation to campaign about staying in the EU. On the positive side I had a meet-up in London with my friend Andy. Sadly does feel like where I am now that I haven’t seen him for ages. Interesting also that meetings with certain people were what was keeping me positive and inspired.

Style progress

The style of my blog then disappoints me. So many words without sub-headings or pics. But I had attended a WordPress training day and that clearly had an influence in the evolution of the blog. Is it worth thinking about doing something similar to kickstart a revamp of my site now? Modernise or die – true in life and most definitely true in e-world.

Thank God for Sir Terry Pratchett

Sir Terry PratchettAmazing how brief my blog was then (now I just write for pleasure and if it is pleasing for others to read then that is great). And I was only doing the gym and/or jog twice in a whole week so progress even though half a stone heavier, etc. Fascinating that I was reading Sir Terry Pratchett. I have worked my way through the Discworld series and loved everyone of the books. Indeed a sort of sadness hovers over me that he is dead, there will be no more books and one day I will have finished reading every book in the series. Strange how his genius is one of the things that has been a steady of my recent life.

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