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December
31
- Up around 8am. There's something wrong with the PC all of a sudden!!! It did NOT boot-up on power-up as normal!!?? Eventually thankfully got it going only for the clock to be all wrong. If I'm 'lucky', just the CMOS battery gone perhaps? Great. Something else to worry and be down about, and probably end up having to somehow replace or do without. :o( So - if this ends up not getting updated for ages you'll know what happened!!! :o( . . walked - as it turned out, all angry and still gripped by an awful black mood, making me feel all 'heady' and just totally removed from the world. Jeeze - ain't this gonna make just managing to get through this day a ball! :o( . .wandered up the garden and had a daylight look at the carport roof and fence etc. Without the keys to move the car which was in the way, I couldn't fully open the side door to the garage to see if it would fully open under the reinstated carport roof - or jam part way as it did for months when the builders put the temmporary roof supports in. Damned if I'm gonna go knocking on doors begging for my keys back! FFS! At least one of the lower runs of fence appears to have been all screwed back secure at last. With not 'too' much work, it 'should' be possible for me to reinstate the old wooden gate (by screwing it to next doors newly rendered garage wall!!!) to enable me to return to being able to 'shut-off' the carport area from the rest of the garden. Only problem with that is the fact that it's currently still propped up by my full of garden-refuse dustbin, to block the two feet or so wide gap, where the builders cut down part of MY garden wall so they had room to do their re-build! I WANT THAT PUT BACK!!!! FFS! FFS! FFS!!!. . . checked back in on the PC and once again it wouldn't boot as normal. I DO have a 'problem' with it. FFS :o( PCd this, feeling angry, angry, angry!? . . a postman delivered a letter and left leaving the front gate wide open. I went out and called after him asking him to please close the gate next time!!!!! I'm in a dangerously uncontrollable 'bear with a sore head' mood with everyone and everything!!!!!! :o( . Noticed next door out working on his garage so went straight out and asked for the car keys back. I also asked that, since everything was being put back as it was, the missing section of garden wall should be rebuilt. He said he'd been meaning to speak to me about that, because I HAD admittedly suggested some months ago, that the resultant gap 'could' serve me as a pedestrian gateway to the lane (albeit completely inappropriately across a bit of his property). Referring to when I'd said that, I made the mistake of saying 'that was when I was just trying to be helpful. I think we're beyond that now.' That IS how it was, and is. There was an awkward hesitation as though he was gonna carry on doing what he was doing, so I kinda forced him to go and get my car keys from inside his house, right then and there! Oh dear. I guess I've succeeded in causing some 'ill feeling' over 'trivia' haven't I. Just like that, I AM become one of those I hate! :o( . . Mum called in with the paper and food donations, for a coffee and chats. I couldn't help it - everything she said seemed like UTTER nonsense and meaningless trivia, and I just couldn't wait for her to be gone!!! . I so, SO need to be around absolutely NO ONE right now!!! . . drank wine while PCing just a bit more of this (once I'd managed to manually boot the PC past the checksum-error, which halts every boot attempt now, prior to having to dismiss warning messages and reset the clock every time! ) . Fuck this year - again - and fuck all the rest - with now only ever the prospect of worse to come. . ate pork pies, crisps and chocolate . . napped . . walked in the wind and rain. . tu. . TVd/PCd . . drank wine . .got off the PC just before midnight and watched the London fireworks on TV. It all seemed so silly and such an enormous waste of money to me. Someone somewhere will be dying in a violent assault aroundabout now - or a little later, on their drunken way home. Happens every year to someone somwhere. Why ARE all those crowds of people SO happy and 'celebrating' like that? I don't get it. Never have.. ate chopped ham and pork rolls and then bowls of co-co pops . . to bed around 2:30am.
30 - Up around 8:20am after a pretty poor nights sleep. At one point I was woken by Bella (sleeping on her duvet in the bedroom) sort of 'howling', in her sleep I presume!!? . .raining. Got all togged up in full weather gear and eventually set off pretty late again. As I opened the front door, next door was coming up his path. Exchanged the usual 'good morning' pleasantries. As I was about to carry on with the walk , he suddenly announced that the builders were going to be attending today - with the intention of putting my carport roof back up! !!??? He went on to 'just casually' drop into the conversation that his insurance company were (allegedly?) NOT prepared to provide any more money for a re-build of my carport, so the builders were just going to put it all back as it was! Just like that - well thank you very f***ing much for letting me know!!!! I said I was just setting off to walk the dog and would be gone for at least an hour, at which point he said he'd like to move the car so as not to hold them up! I didn't say too much and didn't particularly 'lose it' I don't think, but it MUST have been pretty obvious I was really VERY pissed off. I DID say angrily/despairingly 'just do what you've got to do', and that at the very least, my priority in all of this is that I should have a secure garden back so I can let Bella out there, and could they sort out the fences. Unwrapped all my weather gear, found my doorkey, reached in and grabbed the car keys and handed them to him and just told him again to 'do what you have to do'. .Eventually carried on with the walk - absolutely f**ing fuming - and feeling confused, utterly worthless, and as though I'm just in everyones way and can be ignored and walked-on whenever anyone sees fit! . More than ever before, I've NO IDEA if these feelings were in ANY WAY justified or not - because I just have absolutely NO understanding WHATSOEVER of what is acceptable behavior towards others these days. If the situation had been reversed, I would not have treated MY neighbour like I have been, that's for damned sure. . I even found myself tempted to return and ask him for the name of his insurance company, just so I could check someone wasn't making a nice little profit out of me!!!! (I'm always going to wonder about that now aren't I!). . eventually returned to see the car had been moved - somewhere, and people 'milling around' in my opened up garden. I couldn't muster what it took to go and see or be any part of whatever it was they were intending to do with MY property. I just want them to finish whatever it is they intend to do ('to me') and all just f*** off - so I can then see what sort of a state I'll be left in. . I guess I have to admit, I live SUCH a psychologically (and financially) 'precarious' existance - it doesn't take much to 'mess me up' and feel like things are spinning dangerously out of control. This was enough to do it to me. It did it to me pretty bad. I couldn't even bring myself to watch - I retreated away from the back windows and ended up just sat in front the TV in a real up-tight, panicy, worthless, 'state'.

making a coffee at some point, I dared to look out in the garden. I was surprised to see the carport roof and guttering all back in place, and even a section of the old fence (at last!), more permanently re-affixed to the wall of next doors garage. The upper part of the fence, where part of my wall had been removed looked unchanged, and was still blocked with my old garden gate, held in place by my garden waste dustbin. :o( I guess they aren't planning to paint the rebuilt rendered walls then?

Mum called to touch base and say she'd been chatting with Sis1. Sis1' had mentioned that her daughter wanted her old laptop when she replaces it, and she was sorry that she'd suggested I could maybe have it.. . Touched base with Sis1 and said OF COURSE her daughter should come first. . . .
ate tuna and mayo sandwiches, crisps, banana and biscuits . . napped . .briefly put the back outside light on, to find my car had been put back on my hardstanding under my carport roof and the gates all closed back up etc. (So where are my car keys?) I couldn't bear to go out there. . walked in the drizzle and did NOT play ball. tu . . Gave Bella her food and while she ate, went out back in the dark drizzle in search of my car keys which I'd imagined may have been left in the car! They had NOT been!? Had my first look at the carport roof back in position - by torchlight. On the whole. I guess I have to admit that it generally hasn't been done 'too' badly. I guess I got off pretty lightly. A big lump of 4x2 has been screwed to the new garage wall and my carport roof perched on top of, and screwed to it. The plastic roof sheets no longer reach to the wall, and the 4x2 is fully exposed to the rain, so it's gonna allow water to soak into and down the wall beneath the carport, while the timber rots. Great. :o(

. . TVd the evening away (absolutely nothing on to watch) feeling oh SO very VERY down! Very, VERY down!!! Worst I've been for ages. Involuntary meticulous thinking-through of how to sort things out to be done with it all and gone. Hardly moved a muscle for hours. Expressionless, face like stone.

. forced down a tin of hotdog sausages with four pieces of bread and butter and some chocolate . . to bed around 1:30am.
29 - Up around 8:30am. . slow getting going. Walked late, well after 9:30am! Breezy - and chilly as a result. . PCd a bit. . . .ate the last of the turkeyrice concoction with four pieces of bread and butter, followed by a banana and some chocolate. . TVd . . napped until 7pm. .tu . . walked. . TVd . . returned Mums ansaphone call . . TVd . . ate tuna and mayo sandwiches, crisps, banana and a couple of mini chocolate rolls. . TVd until bed around 1am.
28 - Up around 9am. . The 'landscape' of my recent sinus suffering (my whole world at the moment!!) appears to have maybe changed for the better, just a little more. A slow, SLOW change, but fingers crossed. . . A heavy shower just as I was about to set off, so got all togged up in full weather gear, only to then do the whole walk pretty much in the dry all overdressed. . TVd/PCd. E-bay really could almost shut down over Christmas, what with the lack of new listings throughout the period. .PCd this . . cooked up a pan of rice and peas, and a tin of chicken soup with a sprinkle of garlic salt and the two packets of turkey pieces I scored cheap in the shop the other day. Ate half with four pieces of bread and butter. . .napped the afternoon away until the alarm at 7pm . .walked in the chilly (around 5C or less) strong breeze. Coffee and cigs in BGdns before eventually returning . . guitarred/TVd the night away with the fire on quite a bit. Ok - it isn't 'particularly' cold at the moment, but the room really does seem to be performing much better at staying warm for a while, now I've done all that draughtproofing and can shut the hallway doors to the rest of the cold house. (I used to have to leave those open, come what may, to allow Sally to get to her food and water in the kitchen. The opening between the living room and diner has solved that issue.). If I put the gas fire on (only ever setting number two of four) for an hour, it'll warm the rooms up to a (in all my winter layers) quite comfortable 17/18C (even with one of the french doors wide open - which is the norm, for Bella to have free access to her food and water in the kitchen). I usually then end up turning it off for quite a while until it starts to cool down and then repeat the process later. Probably still gonna cost a fortune in gas bills, but it's noticeably better than it used to be, when leaving the fire on all the time would NOT warm the place up like that. It was a LOT of effort getting that insulation under there, but WELL worth it. . TVd . . ate bowls of rice crispies before to bed before 2am. s
27 - Up around 8am. . walked the woods. Much mud and squirrel chasing. Played ball as usual in BGdns before briefly encouraging Bella to wash her feet on the beach again (me too) . Back via the store for bread and milk. Lots of stuff in their 'reduced/going-out-of-date' shelf, and couldn't resist buying a bunch of it. . . TVd and ended up having a glass of red wine from the box. Turned out there wasn't much left, so had another glass and finished off the box. Blimey - that box didn't last long did it!!! Oh dear. It really would be the easiest thing in the world to slip into doing that - um - well - a 'LOT' of the time!!!!! Got pretty tipsy (to say the least) after having eaten so little for so long!! Monitoring the scanner, someone was on the local repeater and made the mistake of mentioning he was doing decorating, had been advised to try using lining paper to make the walls smooth, and that he'd never used it before! I couldn't resist that! Felt obliged to have a word and bestow him with my knowledge on the matter!!!! Broke my golden rule - of NEVER go on the radio when 'tipsy'!!! I undoubtedly MUST have sounded like an utter idiot, complete with slurred speech and all, but I 'think' I 'may' have gotten away with it, given the time of year and all! :o\ Turned the radio absolutely OFF and then ate six pieces of bread turkey slice sandwiches, and a pack of mini sausages wrapped in bacon. Mostly quickly sobered me up - but also gave me an instant hangover type headache!! . napped the afternoon away . . tu . . walked. . . guitarred/TVd/PCd the night away, until deep into early. Gone 5am I think!!!! da
26 - Up around 8:20am. . walked late in the damp. Not raining but just grey and always SO damp - and muddy! . a couple of women were just drying themselves off after having been swimming in the coves as we walked past! Jeeze - that would absolutely KILL me! . played (new)ball in the mud like usual, before taking Bella down to the cove to throw the ball out and have her swim a little, just to wash off some of the matted mud she is ALWAYS covered in. . Mum called to touch base . . sat around once again wrestling with my 'symptoms', sneezing and blowing my nose and having things get gradually worse as the day wears on, and until my daily headache reappears, usually by around midday or just after. This is really just wearing me out - day after day - week after week now?! :o( It is possible things have 'improved' a little (literally like 1% or somesuch from its worst?!), but if so, it's happening SO slowly, it'll be NEXT Christmas before I'm likely to be feeling less dire and actually able to do anything other than just sit around suffering with it all!!!! :o( . . . PCd a bit. Radiod locally just very briefly, missing bits of the conversation when I had to 'trumpet' my nose, etc!! . .PCd this, suffering my increasing headache for as long as I could, before eventually calling a halt to go sit in front the TV - again - to suck and crunch my daily annadin tablet. . . . TVd . . ate a pile of cheddars crackers with some grated cheese sprinkled on top, gently microwaved . . . walked . . TVd all very bunged up. . finished the last handful of crackers and maltesers . There was the first of a new comedy show on tonight - starring David Jason ('Dellboy') as 'the Queens bodyguard'. Found it so, SO disappointing. It briefly started off real funny, but then just decended into awkward, 'slapstick' type, utter farce nonsense. It just did NOT work for me AT ALL. I just BET the whole rest of the world will think it's really funny! I imagine they were thinking they had a Mr Bean type character to play with - but with (old) Jason as the lead, it just SO did NOT work for me. If they'd had Rowan Atkinson doing it, they may well have gotten away with it. SUCH a shame. YET another new series of dumbed down alleged humor I won't be able to stomach watching. :o( Why oh why do the powers that be at the BBC, go for such poorly scripted and thought out stuff these days? What happened to 'clever' comedy script writers, like those who penned all the old, widely acknowledged 'classic' masterpeices? It may be terribly dated and silly, but it's hard to find anything new these days that can hold a candle to the likes of the utterly brilliant Dads Army, etc. Moan moan moan. God I feel SO old and out of it! . . . eventually ate bowls of rice crispies before to bed around 1am. a
25 - Up around 8:45am. . . walked. Bella fumbled her ball and it disappeared over the nearby low cliffs! Spent ages searching for it. They cost a bit and I don't give up on them easy when that happens. Eventually spotted it in a rock pool (tide was pretty low) and managed to climb down and retrieve it! . . sat around in front the TV, blowing my nose and feeling pretty miserable again. Christmas? Absolutely Fing HUMBUG!! . . touched base with Mum briefly and then just carried on sitting, sneezing, blowing my nose and feeling very awful. Just another day to get through then! . finally decided to get a DVD Sis2 once sent me 'out of the way'! It's been sat there unwatched for - um - a year or more is it now (together with another I've yet to even open!)?!! Disney's 'A Christmas Carol' with Jim Carrey. One of these new computer generated type animation things. Figured if I didn't watch it now, it'd sit there for YET another year, because you just can't watch that sort of thing at any other time of year. Drank a glass of wine and settled down to watch it. First impressions were wow - ain't that clever, in terms of the CGI and all that, but after I'd sat there watching it for an hour or so, it soon became 'tedious' and just another of its 'type' - where all the cleverness of the possible effects seemed to overwhelm what it really should have been about! Some of those old classic film versions really can't be beaten. I do wonder why SO many are SO often re-made - when the new versions seem to have so little if anything to add!? I DO have a cynical suspcion, it's just about making money on a safe bet! It's a shame. Just seems to be stiffling new and creative ideas. . drank a couple more glasses of wine, trying to get a bit 'out of things' - and frankly failing. They say alcohol is a depressant? Sure turned out that way for me this day.!! :o(. . I HAD been planning to try to do some cooking to go with some Mum donated turkey slices - roast potatoes and the like - but I ended up just unable to face all that work for a brief few moments of eating. Can't really 'taste' anything right now anyway! Cooked and ate a pepperoni pizza with extra cheese followed by a trio of Mum donated mince pies. . . really really didn't want to, but eventually walked - in a light drizzle. Felt pretty unwell and suddenly unexpectedly threw up lots in BGdns!!! What a waste of food! . Bella lost her ball again!? Searched and searched by torchlight for ages but couldn't find it. That put me in a pretty foul mood! . . sat around in front the TV yet more, feeling really VERY down and even pretty sorry for myself. Fifty years of age, and there really is 'no one' isn't there. Shocking. Pathetic. :o( . ate a whole cheap tin of chopped ham and pork in sandwiches followed by most of a box of gifted maltesers. . TVd nothing until bed around midnight. a
24 - Up around 8:35am!! 14/4C in/out. whilst saying good morning, Bella seemed to pause and have a damned good sniff of my blocked nose!!!?? (worrying!). .walked . . gave Bella the lamb bone Sis1 had saved from her meal yesterday, and sat at the top of the garden with a coffee and cigarettes in the sunny spell while she ate it. Felt pretty rough and could so easily have curled up and fallen asleep on the seat up there! . . suffered with my nose, in front the TV for the whole rest of the day again. . ate four Mum donated ham rolls, crisps, banana and a coupleof mini chocolate rolls . . TVd . . BB called briefly . . walked and actually went to BGdns via town just for a change, just to see how busy things were. All VERY quiet down there. The local pub appeared to be pretty full and buzzing as I walked by on the way back. . . drank a glass of red wine and TVd despite there being nothing on worth watching - again. Actually watched most of 'Nanny McFee' or whatver the film was called. WHAT the hell was all THAT about!??? lolol. . felt 'slightly' better for a few hours!?? Not 'quite' so runny/bunged up. Wanted it to last and stayed-up till early! . .ate half a tin of beans on grated cheese and two pieces of toast and then half a buttered golden syrup cake . . TVd and then PCd until bed around 3am! a
23 - Up around 8:15am. . left Sis1 sleeping and walked. Back just as she was leaving for Mums . . . sat around headachey feeling awful, just coughing, sneezing and blowing my nose again. Briefly had a quick look at Sis1s laptop to be able to answer her question about how easy it would be to transfer all her files to a new one when she buys one. Turned out she DOES have quite a lot on there (mostly photos) and a USB memory stick type thing would NOT do the job. Far easier for her to get the new one and network them I think. It's actually quite a functional laptop allbeit a bit 'old' by todays standards. I HAVE asked if I can have it when she eventually upgrades! . surfed the net a little and finally got round to looking up sinuses and the like. Pretty quickly determined I have a sinus infection I think. The symptoms seem to pretty accurately reflect my ongoing 'suffering'. The daily headache was described as something that could be mistaken for tooth ache. Yep - that pretty much sums it up, as it builds up throughout the morning. Whole left-hand side of my face seems to be eventually affected with a seeming teeth/jaw ache! . according to what I read, it 'should' normally clear up within a couple of weeks. Well - mine seems to have been going on for about that long already! I think I'm gonna just get these holidays out of the way and then if it hasn't improved by the new year, I'm gonna HAVE to start thinking about buying something from the chemist at the very least! :o(. . . cooked and ate a defrosted meat pie, half a tin of baked beans and chips, followed by a little chocolate. . . Mum and Sis1 called in for chats. .outside temperature dropped quickly to around 3C . walked in the cold . Saw a neat flaming meteorite, kinda going from west to north, just as I lined-up to throw Bellas first muddy slobbery ball of the evening. . My doorbell bulb appears to have blown (already). That's a shame - it just about gave out enough light to be able to see to sort my doorkey out and get it into the lock. :o( . . .sat around suffering some more . . ate a Mum donated pastie, banana and some chocolate . . TVd until bed around midnight. a
22 - Up around 8:10am. . 15/9C in/out. . walked. . . did laundry/PCd this at length just wasting away and getting through yet another pointless day . .as usual as the day wore on, the congestion in my nose increased and the 'cold' symptoms returned with a vengeance . . ate corned beef and mayo sandwiches, crisps, banana and biscuits. . TVd . . walked . . TVd some more until eventually Sis1 arrived . . chats and a glass of wine . . cooked and ate two cheeseburgers . . to bed around 1am. ad
21 - Up around 8:30am. . 15/11C in/out. . walked. Back via the store for a few supplies . . TVd/guitarred a little/PCd but soon started to have some serious (left nostril) problems with sneezing, blowing my nose and being all blocked up again. Badly headachey too - again! . Right - this 'left nostril' thing. I'm gonna record something of this here, just for the record, even though you definitely don't wanna read it! lol My recent 'cold' or whatever the hell it is, has been really unpleasant and all of that - but it hasn't been the real 'cause' of some of the problems I have been having with it! :o| There is something else going on with me. My right sinus/nostril kinda acts normal and I can blow it through and all of that in the normal way (cold allowing). My left one is very different. It acts as though there is some form of permanent partial blockage up there ALL the time. I can never 'blow through it' freely as I should. Any attempt to do so, results in a substantial 'interference' with the air flow, uncomfortable 'back pressure' (in my sinus?), and I end up with that sort of uncomfortable 'trumpety' vibrating type noise you get from a partialy blocked nose. Now, it IS possible, that something was deformed when I got beaten-up and my nose got broken all those years ago, because with hindsight, whenever I've exposed myself to toxic levels of DIY/brickdust etc, IT has always 'featured' in the background of my resultant 'discomfort' and congestion - but eventually returned to (my)'normal'. In more recent times, it HAS been clearly getting 'aggravated' by my continuing-come-what-may, addiction to smoking! -//- No - no - no - I just decided not to - I'm not gonna type all this related unpleasant stuff! Suffice it to say, especially with this cold, a lot of the time - but NOT all the time, my left sinus (if that's even what it is?) is packed with uncomfortable 'congestion', that no amount of blowing out forward will ever clear. There must surely be no doubt, I AM SIGNIFICANTLY starting to reap the rewards of all my chainsmoking! And what am I doing while typing this and constantly blowing my nose - smoking of course. And what's the first thing I need once I've finished choking and throwing up in the dark in BGdns most evenings - a cigarette! Funny ol world innit! :o/ . . ate a trio of ham rolls, crips and some biscuits. Felt just awful and all bunged up again. . lay down to nap but couldn't because of much 'amused' banging of doors and laughing noise from next door! SO bad, it had the old radiator on my bedroom wall and coathangers in my wardrobes rattling! Actually lost my temper and got back up and stamped on the floor a few times before then stamping all around the house for a bit. Traumatised Bella a bit, but seemed to have the desired effect, as it went much quieter from then on. . sat around feeling oh SO unwell, and pretty angry . . . walked feeling poorly and a really quite a bit 'out of it'. Some passing dogwalker got into conversation, and at one point asked Bellas name. I said it was Sally, realised my mistake, and then couldn't immediately remember her name!!!!!!?????? What the HELL is going on with me??????. . returned Sis1s ansaphone call . . TVd the evening away again. . drank a glass of red wine and ate two burgers, and later a little chocolate. Can't seem to taste anything much. . TVd (Film 'Alien V Predator:Requiem' - UTTER rubbish - and almost all of it filmed in such darkness and with such rapid editing from different angles, it really was almost impossible to figure out what the hell was actually happening! What a waste of such a huge budget. ) . . TVd until to bed around 1:45am. aad
20 - Up around 7:45am. . 14/7C in/out. .the builders turned up next door for the first time in a while. I 'mostly' managed to contain my anger I think, but I DID end up popping out and saying I wanted my fence put back (temporarily) 'at a the very least'!! I confess I was suprised to find they HAD kept it, and it was inside next doors garage (!??), and they agreed to replace it (I think?). . . walked and carried on down town to tour the charity shops and buy dog food. One store was all out of stock and the other only had eleven tins, so that was what I returned carrying (and a couple of burgers from the butcher). .TVd/PCd as my streaming left nostril in particular started causing me big trouble again! Started feeling awful again! . the builders were out back rendering. I didn't dare go or even look out there! :o( . . . drank a glass of wine and ate a pastry slice and tin of sausages in baked beans with a little grated cheese, followed by a little chocolate . . napped until just before 7pm . . walked and got caught out without a coat as it started to rain again. Cigs and coffee under the roof before just having to bite the bullet and walk back in the rain. Luckily I didn't get 'too' wet and I dared to just let my clothes dry on me as I sat in front the fire for the evening. . TVd but so little on again, I ended up firing up the old living room PC and having a bit of a poke around on that, having a look at sofas on e-bay and the like. I don't know why I bother to keep looking at sofas on there. Without any form of transport, all I ever seem to do is see some really neat bargains going to other luckier people. I seem to have developed an obsession with the idea that an 'ox blood' coloured leather suite is what I'd like in the living room. A high backed (NOT Chesterfield) two or threee seater, one chair and a footstool would work. I've seen some REALLY nice ones going on e-bay. A bit of decorative wooden framing, a drawer beneath the seats, not too high in the arms - that type of thing. There ARE quite often 'businesses' selling some second hand ones, at around the 400 mark (!!), but they are ALL absolutely miles away! I need to be able to sit in one to know if they are any good for me and my bad back, and even if I was going to go for one, without having even seen it (in desperation), I'd still have the trouble and enormous expense of having to arrange to have the thing collected and transported - somehow!?? Transport costs alone would make it a REALLY expensive gamble (- AND, I don't have a good track record with e-bay 'gambles' do I!)! Auctions are where the real bargains go with such things - but even MORE problematic with regard to arranging transport if you don't have your own van and willing helpers! Another funny thing I've noticed while I've been looking of late - the majority of these type of suites that I've seen come up for sale, have been up north - Yorkshire, Lancashire way. Dunno why they were so popular up that way - or why people up there are suddenly upgrading for new? Interesting demographic mystery. lol . . I've watched in some 'little agony', TWO different auctions come to an end recently. The one that caused me most 'pain' was in West wales. A beautiful suite it looked, in fantastic condition complete with a matching footstool of the type I like, being sold I think it was because the (elderly) owner was downsizing property and it wouldn't fit. I really did think VERY carefully about possibly hiring a local man and van - but pretty soon came to the conclusion it just wasn't viable becasue of the distance/time and costs. Well - whoever won that auction must be absolutely laughing. I think it went for no more than around 65!!!!!!! I probably should have gone for that one - somehow! :o( I guess I need to stop (addictively) looking, and just accept the reality of my situation and that I'll never have any such thing this lifetime - which frankly, in a broader, more fundamental sense, is pretty much what I've had to accept with most everything I've ever really wanted isn't it! Yeah yeah, there's plenty worse-off - but there ARE MORE, much better off, and seemingly without having to try quite so hard! :o| . . Eventually ended up watching the first half of BBCs 'A Night With The Stars' with physicist and presenter Professor Brian Cox using the Iplayer on the actual TV. I'd missed the beginning but watched the second half when it was on TV the other night. As ever, many of the concepts were beyond my poor understanding, but absolutely SUPERB stuff nonetheless. Only thing that REALLY irritated me was why oh why did they feel it necessary to make such a program with an audience of alleged 'celebrities'? Were they paid I wonder? Whatever happened to the old fashioned (cheap, 70s Open University-esque? ) idea of someone like Cox just standing in front of a camera, just talking to us and educating us - without the need for all the 'dumbed down' unecessary fancy graphics/celebrity irrelevance that EVERY single TV show seems to now HAVE to have! (I'm thinking 'The Ascent of Man' by Jacob Bronowski aren't I) Even the TV news directors seem to have lost the plot and been sucked into this nonsense. News items now frequently have a reporter speaking his piece, but pausing when he announces some percentage or other as it appears behind him on a big screen. Like - yeah - thanks - I really wouldn't have had a clue what you meant by the term '20%' if you hadn't introduced a pregnant pause and indicated to it as it glossily appeared in big numbers on the screen behind you! FFS!!!!!! Why DO they insist on reporting LIVE (k?) from somewhere dark and empty, where something fairly insignificant may have happened hours ago - and even then, simply do an introduction to a pre-recorded piece, before then appearing live again just so they can hand back to the studio? They've all gone mad!!! Oh, and by the way - I don't give a s**t what YOU are called - just read the fffing news - faster - with more of it! . . sick and tired of trying to find something on the TV - ANYTHING, that wasn't made for a gibbering idiot (and failing!), I ended up just giving up and playing with the on-line stuff on the TV. . Bizarrely ended up watching a bunch of 'educational' videos on Youtube, trying to get a grip on understanding gravity and Einsteins general relativity and such delights!!! Sadly, I definitely simply do NOT have the mind to really 'get' all that stuff. Certainly, all those equations are TOTALLY beyond my understanding. Nevertheless, every now and then I'll have a little flash of insight sufficient to 'get' bits and pieces, enough to realise, that absolutely IS how it IS - and oh WOW! Gravity is something I have difficulty really understanding. Modern computer graphics help, but not so much the oft used 'trampoline' type models of space-time. Things made MUCH more sense to me when I bumped into a real short video showing a more three dimensional representation. VERY cool. That's MUCH more how my head tries to picture and make sense of it. Do wish I was more intelligent and could really grapple with all that stuff. Humbling, how many people are and can. . eventually to bed long after 2am. a
19 - Up around 8:45am. . . walked late. A lot of smashing glass noise drew my attention across the water to Churston cove. A group of four 'youths' had found the carrier bag of beer bottles I'd collected up down there the other day, and they were happily throwing them around and smashing them all over the rocks and the beach. ffs :o( Don't think I'll be walking Bella down that way for a while then! First day of the school christmas holidays is it?. .TVd . . this business of the next doors builders having removed the fence at the top of my garden, leaving me wide open to the lane, and giving free access to and from my garden for anyone or anything to come and go as they please, has really started to 'get to me'. Not being able to securely let Bella out into my own back garden - particularly given my health and the weather of late, has been a real 'inconvenience' to me. On the occasions I HAVE dared to let her out there, I've had to stand out there 'on guard' and make sure she doesn't spot a cat or some such, and take off out of the garden after it! One of the wooden fence type gates which has been removed from where my carport used to be, I've put in desperation laying down across the lower gap where part of my wall has been removed, as a token albeit pretty ineffectual barrier! For the past MANY weeks, it'd been possible to tie that to the bit of fence on top of the wall, and make it 'fairly' secure. With that fence now removed, there is no way of propping it up like that! Blah blah blah - anyway, it's really started to get to me that they decided to remove that bit of fence and just leave me wide open like this - particularly given the erratic nature of their 'drip, drip' attendance on site and the fact that this inconvenience seems to be just dragging-on forever, and there is absolutely NOTHING 'I' can do about any of it!!! They KNOW I have a dog. They KNOW if there is one thing which is vital to me, it's to maintain the fencing (even if botched and temporary). I feel I've been pretty damned accomodating of everything for them up to now - and this is how I'm treated? Unfortunately it's become a festering sore in my mind. Every time I dare to look out into the garden now (part of it covered in my carport roof and garage roof guttering of course!), I just get more and more angry about it all - especially when I never know who I'm liable to see working on MY property whenever I do!! Drip, drip, drip - how long has this all been going on for now? All my 'goodwill' act has been used up now (even to the extent that I'm starting to question how they've got away with building such an enormous, imposing, and frankly ugly replacement 'garage', towering above us all like it now seems to be when viewed from the kitchen window!). I'm aware I'm in danger of 'saying something angry' to someone, and potentialy creating an unpleasant situation! As a result, I'm just trying to stay away from them all - and almost never go out in the garden anymore - especially if I see the workmen out there! :o( . . going up to my garage to get some tools and stuff out, I had a bit of a go at moving the bit of blocking gate (rotting in its pool of rainwater on the floor), in a failed effort to improve how it blocks the gap in the wall! I went out in the lane and had a good look around, but could find no sign of the bit of my fence they've removed!! :o( . .feeling just possibly 'slightly' improved healthwise, I managed to muster the energy to get back under the floor and try to do some more 'draughtproofing'. Stuffed fibreglass up into as many as the 'floor-perimeter' gaps as I possibly could. Took ages of course and very unpleasant trying to wear a dust mask with a runny, sneezing nose in that twelve-inch-high-maximum gap under the kitchen/diner floor!! . I've long been under the impression that all the rear of the house airbricks had been blocked off. It was even mentioned on the survey when I bought it. Turned out, one of those airbricks actually IS still open - once I'd reached in and removed lots of rubble and debris (the only other IS bricked up!). That's kinda good AND bad news. Good news in that there is now once again a proper airflow through from front to back under the floor, which should assist with the obvious damp problems in the rear wall of the property. The bad news is that the airbrick opening to the outside, near the kitchen window, is almost exactly at 'ground' level!! If that stupid little, problematic, outside drain blocks up and causes a build up of rainwater (as it can and HAS, given that I am taking all the rainwater for the whole bloody rank!), it'll pour into the underfloor area rather than escape in any other way! That so, SO needs altering!!!!!! Easiest thing in the world for me - just me in the whole rank!! - to genuinely suffer a 'flood' here!! That whole first tier of patio out back adjacent to the conservatory, should be dug out (below the slabs) and lowered, by at the VERY least, a good four inches!!! If that was even possible, it's further complicated by the old original concreted-in-place manhole cover, which would also have to be somehow cut down and lowered!!!!! Arrrggggg!! There ARE some MAJOR issues with ALL of that area out back. Under the floor, the whole of that back wall of the house is showing a LARGE amount of damp - and even the same, in an area of the concrete slab in the vicinity of the outside drain!!! On top of that, while doing the firbreglass anti-draught work, I've also discovered that where I think an old original back door used to be (under the kitchen window?), the (damp) wall hasn't been built as it should have been, whenever those alterations were done!!!! There's a weird gap I can get my hand into, which suggests to me, a whole portion of the inner skin of cavity wall (hidden behind the sink unit and kitchen cabinets) is somehow kinda floating in mid air (!!) - and/or sat on top of the original floorboards!!!!!!!!!!?????? Bit of a nightmare all that! One more thing for me to worry about all the time, and not have the money or means to correct! :o( . . eventually back out from under the floor, I found that the gate I'd tried to jam in place across the opening up the top of the garden, had been blown by the wind and fallen back against the side of the car making a few marks in the paintwork!!!!!! That just served to increase my anger yet further!!! :o(. .Right then - that's the draught proofing 'around' the downstairs floors pretty much done with. A few lengths of the walls I did NOT do, because the gaps were just too tight to get any insulation in - but one assumes therefor they also can't be producing any appreciable draughts. In short - that's pretty much about as good as it's ever gonna get (short of installing blocks of insulation between the rafters under the bottom of the floorboards - which I'll never be able to afford). . pointless having the remaining little bit of that fibreglass just sat in the garage, so I climbed up into the attic and layed out the remaining little bit over part of the ceiling of the PC room, for all the good it'll do. . vacuumed just a little . . cut my hair/beard etc . . TVd/PCd . . walked in layers and ended up overheating a little. As forecast, it's definitely warmed up a little from what it has been. Funny thing is, the temperature inside the house seems to remain between 13 and 14 degrees C, no matter what the outside temperature is doing. Not sure I understand why that is. Sadly, sitting around motionless at the PC or in front the TV, that IS too cold for comfort, and I HAVE been using the fire and electric heater rather a lot of late!!! !!! :o( . . .TVd, strangely not feeling hungry at all despite not having eaten all day . . showered and got clean . . drank a glass of red wine and then forced down a cheese and mayo and two corned beef and mayo sandwiches, two bags of crisps a banana and some chocolate . . TVd nothing until bed around 1am. a
18 - Up around 9am. . .walked . . just sat around sneezing and blowing my nose, and feeling awful again still. This really is dragging on. I'm just 'getting through' the days - day after day!! :o( . . .walked . . TVd/PCd/sat around . . ate a trio of chicken and stuffing slice rolls, crisps, cheddars and biscuits . . touched base with BB . . napped . .walked in double trousers and layers. . TVd the evening away . . ate corned beef sandwiches, a tin of oxtail soup and some chocolate. . .TVd until to bed around 2am. a
17 - Up around 7:25am. 13/2C in/out. Snotty, headachey, and still a bit deafer than usual in my right ear!!!! Annadin, coffee and cigs for breakfast . . walked. Back via the store and bought six packs of the chicken and stuffing slices that were all going out of date and being sold off cheap (99p each) . . briefly screwed the chrome towel ring I'd scored in a charity shop a while ago, to the stud wall in the bathroom. It'll do for the meantime . . did dishwashing and laundry (handkerchiefs!) chores. . Mum called in with the paper and food donations etc. . ate a pork pie, pastry slice, crisps, cheddars and biscuits . . napped . .walked in the cold dry . . TVd/PCd the whole evening away, feeling poorly - with the fire or electric fan-heater on, pretty much all that time! . .ate bowls of rice crispies before to bed around 4am or later!
16 - Up around 7:40am. 14/2C in/out. Well - looks to me as though we simply didn't get anything like the storm they'd been warning us about for days. Apart from a huge amount of rain, it seems to have passed through relatively peacefully. It was certainly all FAR worse the other day. Right - when's the next one? :o( . . walked. Delayed returning and sheltered under the roof with a handful of other dog walkers as YET another heavy rain shower passed through. Boy, have I had enough of all this rain. The ground is utterly saturated. . PCd/TVd the day away again, still all full of my cold - which actually DOES seem to get 're-energised' and get worse again every day, after I've sat around in the cold for a while! :o( . . ate corned beef and mayo sandwiches, crisps, cheddars and then a pile of biscuits . . napped for an hour or two until woken by the demands of my cold again!!! :o( . . walked. Back damp, after being mostly only drizzled on. . . TVd with the fire on/PCd in the cold while constantly blowing my nose, sneezing, etc. At some point my hearing appeared to go seriously weird! Increased deafness in my right ear and an extraordinarily loud, 'rushing' type of tinitus in both! The effect was like being sat next to a small river after lots of rain!!!?? It continued like that until sleep! . . ate bowls of sugar puffs before eventually to bed around 2am.
15 - Up just before 9am. . walked mostly between showers and back in a sunny spell, as the outside temperature rose to around 8C. Around 14C inside . . sat around, still not feeling up to doing anything much. Feel as though I'm just enduring getting through the days at the moment, almost constantly cold and damp! It just seems to sap all my (limited) energy! My 'one day wonder', 'cold' type thing, does seem to have 'mostly' abated. Just feel mostly tired, and achey all over - which is pretty much back to 'normal' isn't it!! :o( . .spent a bit of time in the garden sweeping up leaves. Long overdue but thought I'd better clear at least some of them, to prevent any possibility of them blocking the drain, what with the forecast storm for later. Filled a dustbin! . . drank a glass of wine and cooked and ate, bacon, black pudding, chips and half a tin of baked beans. .rain arrived and kept falling for the rest of the day. . postman delivered unexpected stuff, apparantly from DS . . TVd/PCd and all of a sudden while sat in the cold at the PC, it felt as though I'd caught a cold all over again!!???? My nose started running, and I seemed to be back to square one! :o( . .sat around in front the TV/fire. . felt pretty rough, and with the rain absolutely bucketing down outside again, I made the decision I was NOT going to do the evening dog walk (for the first time since I've had her?)! Sorry Bella - I just can't face it in this sort of weather again - if I did, I think I may be running the risk of getting seriously ill. All my stuff still hasn't yet dried out from the other night! The 7:10pm coastguard weather forecast on the scanner, was talking about 'severe gale force 10 imminent'! Tried to explain to Bella as best I could and then let her out in the rain in the garden briefly . . TVd the rest of the evening away, a lot of the time with the fire on!, sneezing, blowing my nose, and feeling pretty damned lousy again. :o(. . ate corned-beef and mayo sandwiches, crisps, cheddars and a little chocolate. . let Bella out again briefly before to bed around 1am.
14 - Woken early by a bout of sneezing and nose blowing! Snoozed on for a bit before up around 7:30am. <14/3C in/out. I'm not even sure what I'm feeling now - but it isn't good. A bit headachey and achey generaly - and definitely pretty fragile. Last nights remarkable constant flow of liquid from my nose appears to have turned into more of a more usual 'bunged up' state - or not?. We'll see. I think I may be feeling just a little better than yesterday. Chest pains have 'eased' at least. . .walked and then headed down town to buy tins of dog food. Returned with fourteen 56p tins from the co-op on my back. :o( Missed the heavy showers at least. I guess I have enough tins in now, to see me through 'the holidays' at least. Oh - and by the way - this year - I'm absolutely NOT doing Christmas - AT ALL - not one little bit. It does NOT exist for me. I've even already made it clear to Mum, I do NOT wish to join her for some food on Christmas day, as she'd suggested. . . sat around not feeling up to doing anything, except feeling yucky and tired . . . PCd this (in hat, gloves, layers and handkerchiefs). What weird weather! One minute it's sunny, the next it's raining and as dark as night, and I can't see my keyboard to type! The forecast for Thursday is hellish bad again! Worse than the other night they are suggesting! Ohhhh dear!! :o( . . TVd/sat around . . ate a trio of ham rolls, crisp, cheddars and a little chocolate . . napped for only an hour or so before woken by more sneezing and nose blowing! :o( . . .walked, mostly between showers. Tired, aching and quite a struggle. Back via the store for milk. Feel worse than earlier!! . . . TVd and ended up watching some nonsense show on Channel 4. 'A Superscrimpers Christmas' - how to have a frugal christmas. Utter piffle, and even somewhat aggravating I felt. Aggravating specifically in that the 'experts' on how to allegedly save money on everything, all appeared to be clinically obese!! Bit of a glaringly obvious contradiction there isn't it? Imagine how much they'd 'save' if they didn't eat so much! The one single thing in the program which WAS of interest to me, was when they made some liqueur drink using blackberries, sugar and vodka. According to what they said, the blackberry and sugar liquid would all turn to alcohol if left for long enough - and each bottle allegedly ended up costing 2. I need to try that (next Autumn?) I think. In fact - I DO have some blackberry and apple in the freezer don't I. Hmmm? Funny how the TV schedules are trying to reflect the state of the economy and how we are all being screwed and having to cut back on everything etc. I dunno who's making these shows, but they don't seem to be in touch with reality at all. They certainly don't ever seem to show any of the really struggling masses on the 'real', lower incomes. There was a show on the other night, documenting various different families living on 'the average family income'. This allegedly 'average' income, amounted to a staggering 40k!!! That sounds like really rather comfortably well-off to me - and I'm sure many others! Am I SO out of touch with current wages? Maybe I am! All this talk about the recession and having to tighten our belts - seems as though there are huge numbers of people who are hardly touched by any of it. Look at the marina still full of yachts down town - or even just go on e-bay and see what sort of money people are still able to throw around at crazy pointless stuff. There really is a terrible inequality about what's going on - and such nonsense TV shows are happily going along with it, rather than being more like the cutting-edge expose journalism we once used to see. Oh dear - back up on my 'everything's turned to s**t' soapbox aren't I. :o( . . PCd/Tvd until early . More cold showers blowing through and some lightning flashes somewhere down south. . ate bowls of rice krispies before to bed around 2am.
13 - Woke earlier then up around 6:45am feeling all bunged up. . .walked in the breezy dry. Well - there ya go then. That dead tree I was concerned about, had fallen in the night!!! It was so tall, you could tell from the debris aroundabout, it'd obviously hit the path (down which I walked last night)! Some early walkers had obviously cleared some of the broken branches off the path and into a heap on the grass nearby. Weird. I all could have ended right there last night! Wonder what Bella would have done if I had? :o| . . . I don't feel so good. I've a horrible feeling I may have developed a cold - in my left nostril in particular!???? My nose is just streaming constantly, and I feel a bit woozy and headachey. Not good at all. Very rare for me to get a cold, if that's what it is!?:o( . . briefly messed with the modem/router and TV again, because I'd forgotten to have a look at the BBC Iplayer function on the TV. Hmmm - not bad at all, but probably better and more fully functional on the PC again. . .a fraction after 11am my bulk shopping delivery arrived. The driver started sorting stuff out and pretty quickly informed me they'd been out of stock of one of the items, and I hadn't got all I'd ordered. It was the tins of dog food! Would you f**ing believe it! Having all the dog food delivered was really what the whole order was all about. I'd ordered ten packs of twelve tins - they'd sent me just one! I could cry. All the other food stuff I've ordered is going to keep me going for months - so I won't be able to do another big buy like that, and qualify for the over 100 free delivery, for absolutely AGES!! So, for the next several months I'm stuck with constantly clearing the dog-food shelves in the local store (also more expensive) and having to carry them all home on my back! I'm so, so, SO disappointed and annoyed. Having said that - I guess it could have been worse. They DID at least supply the three 17kg sacks of Wagg worker complete I'd ordered (@10.49 each). If they hadn't supplied those (far too heavy to carry), I'd have had absolutely no choice but to order an alternative from somewhere (?) at a higher cost, AND PAY to have them delivered! . . helped bring everything up from the van and dumped it all on the floor in the hallway. The driver suggested people DO have bulk orders of stuff (he mentioned a lady with bulk cat-food deliveries) , and said I should call the helpline. . Mum called to touch base . . before checking everything off and putting it away, I DID call the store helpline, and DID manage to get to the bottom of how to reliably bulk order stuff in the future. Apparantly what I need to do, is order everything on-line in the normal way, but do so at least seven days before I expect delivery. I should then get on the phone to them and point out that there is a bulk order of items (tins of dog food) which they need to order in specially. Humph! Well - it'll be months before I end up being able to give that a go now won't it! Wish I hadn't ordered so much food and stuff now. I've (over) ordered SO much, I really am going to be running into multiple 'sell-by date' issues if I'm not careful! :o| . . took the very considerable amount of time to check everything off against my reciept, and crammed everything into overstocked cupboards. Bizarrely - for MY first time - I actually found an error in what they'd supplied - and in MY favour!! I'd ordered 8 tins of their 'Basics', dirt cheap (35p each!) sausages in baked beans. They'd sent me 9 tins! Would most people just keep quiet about something like that? Because I was so angry about the dog-food thing, I DID dabble with the idea of just keeping it, to serve them right! It's utterly bizarre - but even for the sake of a trifling 35p, my conscience wouldn't easily allow me to do so for goodness sake!!!!!???!!!!! I ended up phoning them back (I bet the phone call cost me more than 35p!) and informed them of their mistake. I think it caused the guy on the phone some amusement, but he quickly thanked me for my honesty and said I should keep it. :o/ As soon as he'd done so, he then tried to get me to do a customer satisfaction survey thing! That struck me as being a bit inappropriately opportunist after having just 'buttered me up' by giving me something for nothing! I declined - but mostly because I was actually still really angry about the dog-food issue, and would most definitely NOT have been a satisfied customer - AGAIN! Remember - the last time I shopped with them, because of their 'substitutes', I ended up being 5 out of pocket! I've YET to be satisfied with an on-line shop from them! . . sat around for a bit feeling increasingly poorly. . .eventually forced down pepperoni, mayo and grated cheese sandwiches, crisps a banana and some chocolate biscuits . .tried to nap but only managed maybe an hour or less before sneezing and fluid 'flowing' from my nose, had me back up to sit around feeling awful some more. putting the fire on and warming the room up for quite a while did seem to make things just a little more tolerable. I need more handkerchiefs!!! . . walked in a huge amount of clothing - many layers - determined to stay warm and as dry as possible, whatever we encountered. I really very much would rather have not - but I didn't want to let Bella down. Thankfully managed to miss the showers for the whole walk. . . sat pretty much motionless in front the TV all the rest of the evening - just constantly blowing my nose! I have NEVER experienced anything like this before in my life, as far as I recall, specifically in respect of the fluid emanating from my nose! It just kept coming - like water!?? (Eeeewww lol)So much so, I kinda couldn't keep up with it!!!! Drip, drip, drip nonstop for hours! NEVER experienced or even seen such a thing before!?? I was also experiencing plenty of stabbing pains in the left hand side of my chest too! (Noticeably more than I have become accustomed to. It 'may' be something to do with constantly 'checking' Bella on her lead - it may be my worsening scoliosis back-pain related - it may be the smoking and DIY dust putting paid to me - who knows. I'll find out eventually won't I.) I honestly DID start to wonder if I was entering 'the end game' - and worried for Bella! :o(!!! . a long unpleasant evening! Spent much of it watching 'Conan The Destroyer' (with Arnold Schwartzengar and Grace Jones) for goodness sake! What an extraordinary 'epic' that film actually was! . . ate bowls of rice krispies (had to eat something) before eventually to bed around 1am.
12 - Up around 7:15am. Still waking up at the PC at 7:50am when the postman delivered a parcel. Wow - that was unexpected so soon - it's the Netgear DG834G v3 modem/router already!!! Post office have outdone themselves! Postage was 4.41!!!, so the guy who sold it to me didn't make much on the deal did he. Unpacked it to make sure it at least looked as though it was all there, and quickly read through the 30 (!!!) sheets of single sided A4 printouts of the manual, to get a feel for what I'll be facing, connecting and setting it up. . . walked in 5C sunny spells. Got caught out by a heavy shower on the way back, and got utterly drenched! :o( . . . set-to at the PC (cold and wet) and after surfing and jotting down a few settings I may need, slowly and carefully started connecting and setting up the modem. Initially just set about setting it up connected to the PC via the LAN cable. (The wireless side of things will have to wait, because I don't actually currently have anything with wireless anyway.) . oh wow - even taking everything real slow, by 10:30am it was up and running and connecting me to the internet! I hadn't at ALL, expected things to go so smoothly! (Early days yet!!!!! Consistancy of connection may yet rear its ugly head based on some stuff I've read on-line - and of course I haven't a clue if the wireless side of things is working at all yet.) Well - on the face of it, fingers crossed, it would appear I am at least half way to my goal. Even if the wireless side of things turns out not to be working, I have at least freed myself from those cheap nasty old speedtouch USB modems, which seem to immediately devour all (at least 70%!) of the USB resources in one go. .in fact - oh wow - that Logitech Y-BF38 USB keyboard I picked up in the charity shop will now happily plug-in (at the same time as my Microsoft PS2 keyboard - both working at the same time!) and straight away without loading any software, acts on the face of it as it should - complete with all the 'extras' like the sound volume control, scroll wheel, 'back' button, etc, etc. That IS actually a pretty neat keyboard. I could get used to some of those features. :o) . . right - I need to do more tests of everything, and then start thinking about the wireless side of things (if for no other reason than to make absolutely certain it's 'secure', even if I'M not actually using it). PCd a bit of this - right - lets make sure that new modem/router will happily upload this like normal - . It did. :o) . . pushed on with my time consuming messing around and eventually DID succeed in getting the USB wireless adapter from my old cable router working with this ADSL one - on both my main PC and then my old one down in the living room. Sadly it would NOT work when connected to the TV, which is really what I was hoping for. Turns out the TV DOES need a specific type of adapter, and of course they are outrageously expensive and out of the question as a result. . carried on experimenting for hours as a bad storm raged outside. Eventually moved the new modem/router downstairs and set it up right next to the TV , and connected it to the TV using a short standard network cable. That DID work - and enabled me for the first time to explore the Panasonic TX-P42G20B TV 'Viera Cast' functions. Pretty soon came to the conclusion it was mostly pay-per-view type stuff, and facebook and twitter, and there actually wasn't much on there of any interest or use to ME at all - EXCEPT - there WAS access to Youtube!! Image of a Youtube video on the Panasonic TX-P42G20B 'Viera Cast' On the face of it, that really was VERY cool - being able to search and play a youtube video, full screen if desired, all seamlessly from your TV remote control (albeit dreadfully frustrating for entering text for searches etc). Trouble was, it soon started to look as though not everything on Youtube was actually showing up!? I'm not entirely certain, (perhaps I just needed to poke around and familiarise myself some more?) but at the very least, it looked to me as though some sort of 'content filter' was holding stuff back or perhaps limiting the AMOUNT I could see? (I'm not having THAT!) In short - it was 'ok' - but frankly it's far better just using a PC - and the TV as the monitor! Now I've finally had the opportunity to see what it does, I don't think there's really ANY point in ME () pursuing it any further. I'd be far better off sorting out my old PC and IR keyboard setup which is already connected to the TV as a monitor (which I never use because it's become unstable and keeps crashing!) and starting to actually make use of that if I want to start playing such games - which funnily enough I never seem to! Blah blah blah - anyway, there went the whole day!!! I need to pause and take stock for a bit, now I have the greater flexibility of that modem/router, and really figure out what I'm after from everything I have. I HAVE got VERY used to actually having everything turned off when I'm not using it (and having the seperate modems on each PC). Having a single modem/router serving everything, would mean kinda leaving it on somewhere all the time - or else I'd have to potentially go into a different room just to turn the router on, depending on which machine I was intending to use - which is NOT at all desireable I think. Also - network cables are SO much cheaper (and more secure) than wireless. Yeah - I need to think this all through some more. . .delayed walking, and actually toyed with the idea of not doing so at all, because the storm was SO severe. Briefly let Bella out into the back garden while I debated with myself. My god it really was blowing a horrendous gale out there. She came running back in, drenched pretty quick. Had a chat with Bella and asked her opinion. She seemed to indicate she was eager to go - so against my better judgement, we went for it. Walked in full weather gear at around 8pm. Oh my god! It really was THE walk from hell. The rain was horizontal and the gusts were extreme. Bella and I were buffeted all over the place. At least on the way to BGdns the wind was behind us. The walk back was gonna be worse. The gutters were looking like rivers - and for much of the walk, festooned with Christmas baubles here and there!?? Someones garden Xmas decorations must have been blown away all over the neighborhood. Under such extreme conditions, none of my waterproofs were waterproof, and nor were those shoes I recently scored from the charity shop. We were both utterly soaked through, shortly after setting off! . actually did see one other dog walker along the way, but other than that, not another soul was stupid enough to venture out in such conditions - hardly any cars on the road either. . BGdns turned out to actually be pretty scary. The big trees were being buffeted SO hard, plenty of smaller branches were laying on the paths and all around, and there was obviously a VERY real danger of some of them coming down - and potentially killing either of us of course. In high winds a couple of days ago, I'd noticed the whole top of a dead-looking tree had broken off (down the path through the arch and off to the left, immediately adjacent to and above the well-worn shortcut path across the grass) . Rather than fall to the ground, it'd got snagged on some slightly lower branches, and was hanging precariously high up above, just threatening to crash down at any moment. It wasn't immediately obvious to anyone walking underneath, and I'd even toyed with the idea of ringing up the council, to warn them of the very real danger it posed. I didn't get round to doing so - but did at least warn a few of the regular dog walkers. It was PARTICULARLY worrying walking down that bit of the path - although as far as I could tell in the dark and rain, despite the howling wind, it was still 'hanging in there'! You'd hardly have believed it on such a night, but the waters of the bay, as ever in such westerly storms, were all pretty much blown dead flat 'calm'. . took a breather in a gun emplacement and on a seat under the roof, before eventually biting the bullet and heading back. The walk back WAS far worse. I don't recall EVER having had such an awful walk - and that's saying something because over the years I've walked in some pretty foul weather. The rain kept pouring and the gusts were extreme. Hard for BOTH of us just to keep making headway at times! At one particular point along the way, the wind literally stopped me in my tracks and blew me stumbling backwards. I was VERY close to actually being blown to the floor!! Shocking - for both of us! Can't tell you how glad I was to get all that over and done with and finally get back home and inside. Totally, totally drenched - the both of us! . toweled Bella as best I could before popping back outside to check on the garden, fences and drain. What the hell - I couldn't get any wetter! Suprisingly the drain was completely clear. Probably so much rain, nothing could stand against it to cause a blockage! . . TVd the night away, letting my clothes dry on me - or actually not as it turned out! Brrrr . . . It's very rare for me to do so these days for some reason, but I actually ended up watching a film that was on, from start to finish. 'Jumper'. Pretty 'glossy' and a kinda neat storyline type idea, but somehow, as they ALL do these days, I found it disappointing and 'blah'. I can't seem to shake that feeling of late - EVERYTHING about life seems to be disappointing and 'blah' and hardly worth the bother. All of it. Everything. :o( . . . well after 10pm I cooked two bacon, two eggs, half a black pudding, half a tin of baked beans and some fried potatoe and ate with four pieces of bread and butter. . .to bed around midnight.
11 - Up around 7:30am. 14/8C in/out - and actually more like only 13C or less in the PC room. That's cold on the typing hands and sat all motionless . . walked the muddy woods in my new socks and shoes, in an occasional hint of drizzle. Collected up all the mass of beer and cider bottles strewn around and left them in a heap behind the beach for someone else to walk out . . . aimlessly PCd a bit and then PCd this. It may be a little warmer out, but it still feels too cold inside to be sitting motionless at the PC for too long!! I HAVE dug out my old electric heater/blower, and have dared to use it in the PC room briefly recently, but I'm too frightened of the bill to do so much. Definitely warmer in the living room with the TV on and doors shut. Bella gives out quite an amazing amount of heat too! I can literally warm my hands on her when stroking her not-'quite'-so-hairy belly!! Gonna go do so now. Poor dog. lol :o) . . ended up dragging the Electrolux Enviro-Vac vacuum which recently burned out again, out of the cupboard to hopefully sort out the problem and fit the remaining spare belt I have. Spent ages de-dusting everything and trying to free-up the solid mass of dog hair wrapped around the roller-brush bearings, which was the cause of the thing having seized up and burned out the drive-belt (again!). The partially melted plastic cover on the end of the roller-brush, which is supposed to keep debris away from that bearing, is what's causing the problem. Cut up a bit of the absorbant fabric from a kitchen duster thing, and put that in the cover recess, in the hope it would maybe lengthen the time it takes for exactly the same thing to inevitably happen again. I SO need once and for all, a decent bloody vacuum that can cope with the extremes I present them with - i.e. dog hair and building/mud dust!! I'd even consider paying high and buying new, if only I could guarantee whatever I bought would ACTUALLY be up to the job and keep working for several years!! . eventually had it all back together and working again for the timebeing - for what it's worth. That model has SO little actual suck, I'm amazed they got away with actually selling any! Total ripoff.. Vacuumed and just seemed to end up filling the room with dust and having it settle back down on everything - again - as always! Another muddy handkerchief!!!!. . tu. . PCd . . walked . . TVd and watched a program all about the japanese tsunami. 'Captured On Camera' amateur footage from survivors. Breathtaking horror. How fragile we truly ARE! :o| . . . ate two sausage rolls, crisps, a trio of chicken and stuffing slice rolls and some chocolate . . struggled to stay awake until early to bed before 11pm!
10 - Up around 8am. >13/1C in/out. It understandably almost never happens these days, but some time in the night Bella had left her comfy sofa and joined me in the bedroom. Wonder why? Not sure it's connected, but I seem to recall the last time she did that was also after a grooming/brushing session. . Snuggled on the bed for a bit before getting up . .PCd a bit of this . . left the PC running malaware scans and walked in the low sunny spells. Eventually carried on down town specifically intending to buy some socks from a particular store. I long ago started only EVER wearing cushioned-sole combat type socks, and mostly in black of course - but every single pair I have now has holes in. I've even darned some of those in the past, and many of them really are pretty fit for the bin (like most everything else I wear(out)!!! All out of touch as I am, I've been horrified at the prices for new pairs, even on e-bay. The shop in question has boxes on the pavement outside, and the last time I was down there, I spotted several pairs of the type I wear, at what turned out to be (after I'd surfed and checked) a suprisingly decent price. . bought two pairs of 'Highlander Combat Forces Hard Wearing military style sock' for 3.95 each. I WOULD have bought more, but sadly that was all they had left. I do wonder if they got the price wrong - or maybe they are old stock? Can't find anywhere on the net selling them at that 'low' (!) a price. If they get more in (as they said they would) I bet they'll be more expensive. . carried on to tour the charity shops and yayyyyyy - scored a pair of cheap size 10 'Earthworks Mens Lace Up Boot In Black' for 4.50. They've been hardly worn - but they ARE cheap quality, so probably won't last (me) long. Still - much better for the bad weather than the 'slick soled' trainers I keep wearing. So - all in all, an unexpectedly 'expensive' walk through town. It 'almost' got more expensive!! In another charity shop (ignoring - with difficulty- the really rather decent, white logitec PC keyboard), there was a 'like new' box in a corner containing an entire 'BT Home Hub' modem/router setup with all discs paperwork - everything, like new and unused!! There wasn't a price on it, but that particular shop is often prone to doing some really good deals . Boy was THAT a temptation - even maybe just to sell on? I managed to resist the temptation - because I haven't 'researched' and really didn't have a clue what I was looking at. . . returned home, cleared all the mass of malaware the PC scan had come up with while I was out, and then quickly surfed looking up BT home hubs. Hmmm - thank goodness I resisted the charity shop one. They go pretty dirt cheap on e-bay apparantly - because they are 'locked' into the BT ISP! It IS possible to 'unlock' them and use them with different ISPs, but it isn't easy ('flashing' chipsets!?), and looked very much more complicated than I think I could have managed. Actually - that makes me worry even more about the one I've got coming off e-bay. I trust it isn't similarly locked into a provider?? (It's in the post today - second class - so at this time of year with all the christmas mail, it'll probably take AGES to get here before I can have a play and get all frustrated and disappointed.) . . . Mum called in with the paper and food donations. I must have recently mentioned something about darning socks in a conversation, because incredibly she'd taken it upon herself to buy me a pair of socks! A pair exactly the same as the two I'd just bought myself! WHAT a coincedence. Tried a pair on while she was here. Sadly they aren't as high up the leg as I prefer, but I think they'll do. . Chatted as people came and went in my garden out back! :o( I think they were just checking on the state of the rendering they did yesterday. Given how low the temperature dropped last night, I think they were lucky to get away with it all still looking ok. . ate the last of the mushrooms and bacon concoction with four pieces of bread and butter followed by a little chocolate . . napped until around 6pm . . walked in my new shoes. They'll do nicely - but I need to change the cheap nasty, string-like laces for something more robust. Overcast but very bright and slightly warmer around 6C. Raucous youths were having a birthday 'party' down on Churston beach and in the woods! . .TVd/guitarred the evening away in front the fire . . ate sausage rolls, crisps, mini apple pies and a whole packet of Mum donated jelly babies! . . to bed before midnight.
9 - Up around 6:40am . .14/3C in/out . PCd this. . it would appear all the low scaffolding alongside next door's garage in my garden was left up there overnight! If I'd wanted any of my tools or anything from my garage I would have had to have quite literally crawled THROUGH the scaffolding!! FFS! . . walked in the cold sunny spells. Underestimated how cold it was and wasn't wearing enough. Very chilly . . the builders were in my garden starting to put what I assume is the top coat of render on next doors garage. All the scaffolding had been taken down and stored across the top tier of my garden by the rotary clothes line!! Another section of the cuttoff fence has been removed, and the section of guttering I'd carefully placed on top of my carport roof has been moved and placed across another section of the garden, poking through the fence into next doors garden!!!! In short - certainly as far as letting Bella out is concerned - I no longer have a useable back garden!! I'm really starting to get very uptight and unhappy about all of this. I'll be very suprised if I'm 'made whole' again, and don't end up having to find the money for 'something', after all this. Stayed in out of the way, just trying to pretend it wasn't happening and hoping it'll suddenly miraculously be returned to order. . PCd. I'd left a virus-scan running while I walked. (A bunch of trojans cleared!!?!!!!) Bizarrely it wasn't even half way through after I'd returned???? Investigated and found to my horror that I'd messed up some setting on the BCTool scanner program, and it had been recording EVERYTHING it'd been picking up, to an enormous mass of WAV files!!!!!! Gigabytes of the stuff!! Good grief - I wasn't even aware it could do that like that! (That 'could' actually come in useful some time. Clever.) Put in the time to better understand some of the program settings and actually succeeded in making the thing even handier and more automated for how I use it. Now when I just run the program, it loads, mnimizes, automatically connects to the scanner, AND automatically displays the smaller scanner remote control window! If I were to permanently leave the scanner in the on setting, and include the BCTool program in my PC startup sequence, because I've already got the BIOS automatically booting the PC at powerup, I COULD have the whole setup all come to life without touching a single thing apart from my single main, neon fused, wall mounted master switch! SUCH a cool (free) program! HIGHLY recommended - and I STILL haven't scratched the surface of what it appears to be able to do! . . did some MAJOR on-line groceries shopping. Haven't done that for a while and I badly need supplies of dog food and all manner of other stuff to see me through until 'next year'. Took me AGES!! Could surely have driven there, shopped, and driven back in the time it all took me!! Much of that time was spent pawing over stuff trying to find the most cost efficient deals on everything I wanted. Bloody nightmare, the way they price everything and deliberately con you into paying more for the same stuff in different packaging/quantities. After having burned my fingers on expensive 'substitutes' the last time, this time I explicitely stated they should NOT provide a single one! That'll undoubtedly mean I don't get a bunch of the stuff I've ordered - which may well screw me up a bit. We'll see. Fingers crossed - on the bulk order for dog food especially. . Although cleverly concealed in their pricing/packaging - EVERYTHING has gone up in price. :o( (I was utterly amazed (but shouldn't have been of course) to find that packs of warburtons bread rolls are a penny cheaper in the local store! You always assume the local stores are gonna be more expensive and couldn't possibly compete with the big name bulk sellers, but that really isn't how it's now starting to work is it. The big supermarkets move in with their 'loss leaders', kill off all the smaller local shops, and then ease their prices back up so we all end up having no choice but to probably pay more in the long run! :o( ) . . Bulk ordered huge amounts of all manner of stuff (to keep me going for literally months) and actually ran up a final bill in the region of 230 (although it'll end up being a lot less when they don't deliver all the stuff they won't have in stock)!!!!!!! Jeezuz - I've never spent so much on groceries before in my life!!!!!!!!!!! :o( . free delivery set for Tuesday morning. I look forward to having a glass of wine on Tuesday! . . .wiped down the living room bay windows. Long been covered in dust and dirt from all my DIY works, and the sun coming through was showing it up badly. . walked to the local store for a tin of mushroom soup. Remembered - and took my secateurs with me! The short cut to those shops (used by lots of people), goes through a narrow footpath, at the end of which all the branches and brambles have grown down SO low, I have to literally bend double to get through!! Been bugging me (and others I've spoken to in passing) for months! Cut a bunch of it back, stuffed some into gaps in the hedge and just let the rest of the cuttings fall to the floor. Dunno why someone who lives right there couldn't put themselves out just that little bit, for the benefit of everyone else?! In fact, instead of keeping it in good order, people living right nearby have obviously been dumping their rubbish and sacks of garden waste out there!!! It's a disgusting heap of rubbish and all manner of debris (including a full sized old Sony stereo speaker box!) , and really is an unplesasant treacherous walk as a result! What the hell is the matter with people! Actually, the results of a recent public poll were discussed on the news recently. It totally summed up and confirmed my opinion of how society has changed for the worse in 'recent' times (certainly during my lifetime). It absolutely confirmed that people today are more self centred, more selfish, less tolerant of others, less empathic, less likely to offer assistance to others, etc, etc, etc. Terribly depressing. :o( . . cooked up another of my expensive mushrooms, fried bacon, mushroom soup, garlic salt, grated cheese concoctions and ate half with a trio of Warburtons bread rolls. I'm gonna have to stop doing that meal. It works out SO expensive - must be a minimum of at least 4 per serving (? Yikes!!!) - and I could very easily sit down and eat the whole lot in one go!! It IS good though - and does at least keep me feeling warm for a while. . . napped . . walked in layers in the 3C cold with coffee and sat around in BGdns for quite a while . . dared to look out in the back garden. Actually the builder guys did seem to have done their best at clearing up a bit after their rendering. They'd even apparantly temporarily replaced one bit of the garden fence, although rather irrelevant since up by the garage there is none and its wide open to the outside. Moved the car back in and layed the old gate across where there's no longer a wall (being careful not to touch the new rendered wall) , as a token gesture at stopping animals/people from coming and going. . . TVd/PCd the evening away. Even ended up spending a bit of time looking at 3 piece suites on e-bay - but I don't know why, because of course they are all 'pick up only'. It's definitely the people with vans and trailers who can shift such stuff who must pick up the best bargains on there. So frustrating to see some of the stuff on there. There was even an 'ox blood' type coloured, leather three piece with wood trim which I would have jumped at and willingly paid high for, if I could have picked it up. Would have gone in my room SO well. Funnily enough, it was up in Bristol, not far from where I used to live - and somehow that made it all the more frustrating. I actually mentally explored how I could do it - but hiring vans and getting help and all that petrol etc etc etc - it just didn't make sense. :o( Such a shame. . . . ate pepperoni sandwiches and biscuits around 2am. . TVd with the fire on (2C out) and groomed Bella lots before finally to bed around 3:30am.
8 - Up around 8:30am . . walked in full weather gear in the strong wind and light rain. Not so cold at least - around 10C out. . PCd looking into the updating my modem/router thing some more. Actually dug out the old one I still have (bought for the cable setup back in Bristol years ago), but confirmed as I'd suspected, it wasn't the type for use on a phone line, and did NOT incorporate an actual modem - so that all got returned to the storage box. Really should try to sell that, but I'm sure by now it's practically worthless. . . Figured (against my better judgement!) it was worth pursuing buying one via e-bay. Missed out on one for a 10 buy-it-now, because I'd been so hesitant. Literally seconds before deciding I WAS going to go for it, someone else had just bought it! Would you believe it! It WAS a good deal. He who hesitates is lost. . . Mum called to touch base . . bid on another ending e-bay auction but was outbid in the last few seconds. . had a go at another "NetGear DG834G 54 Mbps 4-Port 10/100 Wireless G Router" and actually ended up winning it for 9.38 including postage. Given my e-bay record, I actually fully expect it not to work!! If it does, although not particularly up-to-date or fast, based on what I've read-up about, it used to be the type that the ISP supplied (FREE! - but only to NEW contracts - i.e. not me, a neglected existing long term customer! Sheesh!!!) so as a result, with luck, all the required setup details should be freely available on the net and/or their website. Anyway - worth a tenner thrown-away to dip my toe into the subject I figured. I wonder if the wireless USB dongle thing from my old router, would work with that one? I know nothing about any of this! Gonna be a frustrating, steep learning curve when I get my hands on it. . recieved a card from the vet. Bellas annual 'health check' and booster jab is due and I need to make an apointment. . TVd/PCd just sat around as the storm raged outside. Actually, it wasn't that bad of a storm here - not compared to the awful hurricane they seem to have been getting in Scotland. .Next doors garage builders were working in my garden with scaffolding and such much of the day. I couldn't even face going out to look! Hope the car is ok. . awful headachey and felt pretty down, and couldn't muster the energy to do anything but just 'sit' in the gloom feeling frozen. Ate a banana and biscuits . . . popped another annadin tablet and then reluctantly walked in full weather gear in the wind and rain. tu The rain had pretty much cleared by the time we'd returned. . TVd . . cooked and ate a pizza with extra cheese followed by a little chocolate. .BB called briefly. . struggled to stay awake until to bed around 11pm. aa
7 - Up around 7:45am . . still slowly waking up at the PC, when all of a sudden Bella went crazy, barking. Raced down to find one of next door's garage builders stood outside my conservatory!! Grrr! :o( They wanted the car moved because they were going to start the rendering on my side today. Grabbed shoes and keys and duly obliged, and left it crammed-in against the front of the garage, out in the lane - with hopefully enough room for everyone to 'just' get past. Even more of my fence, adjacent to the carport gates appears to have now been removed! I good strong wind could well possibly knock those gates down now I reckon, without that bit of additional lateral support!!! Arrrrgggghhhh!!!!! :o( . . . walked and got rained on by a passing shower. Back via the store for a few supplies . . . spent the whole morning and deep into the afternoon sorting out my accounts and the foot-high pile of papers and bills I've not attended to for - well - months (because I've just been doing 'doors' and nothing much else, and constantly adding to the pile of card receipts buying stuff at the builders yard and on e-bay, etc!)! Eventually sorted it all and balanced. Yayyyy. Always SUCH a weight off my mind when I finally clear it after having neglected it for so long. I really should just keep on top of it. It really gives me a feeling of, quite literally permanent, anxiety when I leave it to pile up like that! For the first time in a couple of months - on that at least - I can relax for a bit. . in the middle of all the paperwork, while putting some stuff in the recycling bin in the conservatory , I was drawn to lift the cover and check on the guttering downpipe etc drain by the kitchen window. Would you believe it! Beneath the cover, the drain grating was all blocked over with moss and debris and needed some pretty urgent clearing. ALREADY!! I only cleared all that a little while ago for gods sake!! Couple of weeks was it? Spent all that time up a ladder trying to brush half the roof tiles clean, and yet I STILL have masses of moss and debris causing a blockage almost immediately!! Actually, I also have a huge amount all over the top of the conservatory too - so presumably THAT at least actually came from higher up, on the bit of MY roof I didn't sweep clear?! I don't understand where the hell it's all coming from! I'm a slave to that damned drain! :o( I may well have to broach the subject with my neighbour at some point, and suggest he have a downpipe too. That way, at least my problems would be reduced to only collecting all the water (and debris!) for TWO of the houses in the rank, rather than all four of them!! :o( . . .cooked and ate a tin of baked beans, four sausages, two eggs and four crusts of bread and butter, followed by a little chocolate . . napped tu . .reluctantly went out to move the car back in from the lane but eventually decided to just leave it out there, to save me the likely hassle again tomorrow!! . . walked - overheating. It was only around 5C out, so must have been because of all that food earlier. Sat around with a coffee. Calm before the storm. . TVd/PCd the evening away. Surfed a bit trying to look into my inconvenient irritatingly low USB resources. Although probably largely a limitation of my PC, based on what I've read, I have a feeling things would be dramatically improved if I was using a different (more modern) self powered/stand-alone broadband modem/hub. After further reading, I can feel a desire to get a different one growing in my mind. If I got myself an upgrade to a wireless one (as recommended by my ISP (currently Virgin still) - not 'particularly' expensive - 20ish - like most everyone has these days) I may actually also be able to start moving towards using the full internet linking capapabilities of my fancy TV (if I invested more s in a wireless dongle or cables)! Ooooh - that's a HUGE temptation. I need to read up on all that some more. . ate bowls of cornflakes before to bed around 3:30am.
6 - Up just after 7am. In/out <14/3C . . walked in the cold sunny spells (although mostly in the shade where we walk, because of the low angle of the winter sun and lay of the land). A dog walker told of how yesterday one of his dogs had been injured when throwing a stick for it! Turned out it'd cut the inside of its mouth under its tongue!!! He had to rush it to the vet to have an operation and have the wound sewn up - and hey presto had a 200+ bill just like that! Uhuh. :o| Bella has developed a habit of grabbing and chewing on sticks as we walk along, when I don't produce her ball. On a handful of occasions now (including just yesterday or the day before!) she manages to get a small piece of stick a couple of inches long, wedged across her mouth between her top teeth, and I have to quickly reach in and hook it out!!!! Difficult one to stop her doing! . another old, old dog walker (who part walks his dog while he rides in his electric wheelchair) is having trouble with a small terrier type dog, which they rehomed well over a year ago. He went into hospital for a while and apparantly ever since he came home, they've been having awful trouble with the dog. He even showed me a wound of pefectly dog-mouth shaped teeth marks on his arm where the dog had suddenly bitten him!!!! Apparantly every night at precisely 9:30pm, if they sit down to watch TV, the dog starts barking (it IS deafening when it does!) and they can no longer do so! They'd spent hundreds of pounds on having animal behaviorists in, but all to no avail. You could see from the look on the poor guys face, they really were going through hell and had reached their wits end - they were looking to re-home it! :o( So, SO sad - for them and the dog. Quite upset me to hear it. I CAN sympathise, given the troubles I've had trying to get a handle on Bella's behavior. Dunno what those expensive animal behaviorists they had in had to say, but it seems oh SO obvious to ME, that their little dog has assumed the position of 'pack leader' - at around the time the guy was absent in hospital. I'm CERTAIN that with appropriate training they could turn it around, but I couldn't really say so because the guy reckoned they'd tried everything. From what little he's said, and my observations of the dog with him, I think not. SUCH a sad sad shame. :o( . . . pottered around and finally got round to returning some of my tools to the garage and clearing up just a little . . . PCd this at great length - and then crashed the program without having saved, and had to start all over again. (It WAS better the first time! lolol). I'll be doing absolutely nothing today then! . . ate tinned salmon sandwiches, crisps and biscuits . . napped . . walked and got caught out in showers. tu . . TVd . . PCd trying to catch up on some outstanding stuff. Actually (bizarrely?) put in rather an absurd amount of time trying to do an e-mail to the guy who sold me the french doors, letting him know what has become of them, just in case he may be interested!!! lolol . . cooked and ate four sausage (four days past their sell-by date!) sandwiches (with tomato sauce to help disguise 'that' taste) and half a battenburg cake after 1:30am!! . . to bed around 3:30am.
5 - Up just after 8:30am. Sunny. in/out 14/4C A lot of condensation on all the windows! . .walked late. . worked on the doors. Planed down the tiniest bit off the side of the 'left' door to increase the gap where they meet, and then set about excavating the hole to accept the latch. Used the electric drill to make lots of small holes and then the mallet and chisels to cut all that out and make the rebate for the face plate, etc etc. Took ME a LONG time, but I got there in the end. Re-hung the door and proved everything was looking ok. Much careful measuring and 'eyeing up' (never mind straight and level - it just needs to LOOK right) before eventually fitting all the handles. How stupid are the manufacturers of those handles! A bit of the casting on the mechanism at the back of the handles actually protrudes just a fraction (one or even just half a millimeter?) beyond the back of the facing plate. i.e. if you just try to screw them onto a flat surface, they wont sit flat! Had to excavate a recess for that silly little bit on all four handles. No valid reason for them being made like that - just stupid lack of attention to detail making hassle for everyone! Tis the modern way of course! :o( . The final fiddly job of fitting the latch keep-plate into the side of the other door (the one with the flush lever bolts on the side and 'dummy' handles) did NOT go as well as I may have hoped. I was so, SO careful to get that keep-plate nicely rebated into the correct position. Marked and measured lots - but when I'd finally got the thing all cut and screwed into place, it turned out it was just the tiniest fraction further forward than would have been preferable. There MUST be a simple and obvious little trick of getting that ABSOLUTELY right (letting the latch mark the position on the uncut timber does NOT work) - but I've never learnt it. It's gonna be difficult to describe here - but the effect of that slight misplacement is, when you push and let the door swing shut against the other one, it'll be stopped by the door jam at the top of the door frame, and then slightly rattle as it eases back out against the latch keep plate where the handle is. To alter its position for SUCH a small amount, would take a lot of time. You'd have to first plug/glue-up the existing screw holes to enable re-screwing so close - and then you'd be left with a slight gap in the rebate around the front edge of the keep-plate to somehow fill/disguise. Frankly - I'm not gonna bother for the time being. I can live with it like it is for the time being. I need a break from spending all my time working on it! Image1 of my nearly completed french doors projectSuffice it to say, all the major work is done - AT LAST. Yayyyyy. Image2 of my nearly completed french doors projectJust some filling, sanding, painting etc to be done - i.e. 'decorating', which in time honoured tradition with me, is usually as far as I ever bother to go! lol The next owner of the place is gonna have an awful lot of 'decorating' to do - but given all the far more substantial 'construction' work I've done on the place since I've been here, without having a clue, they should think themselves lucky!! I have finally achieved what I'd initially envisaged around fifteen months ago!!! It's been a lot of work. Ironic - to spend so much time and effort opening up those two rooms - onlty to put in as much work trying to close them both off again! lolol I HAVE RADICALLY transformed the look, feel and funtionality of the place. Image3 of my nearly completed french doors projectI like it. I like it a lot (especially from the diner side when sat at the table). Image4 of my nearly completed french doors projectIt WAS the right thing to attempt to do. With those doors closed, the gas fire will heat up that room very nicely; kitchen cooking smells and moisture can be kept at bay and yet still benefit the dark diner area from the much needed light; if the need arises I can now keep Bella away from visitors, etc, etc. Aside from all the functional stuff - I think it just looks the part. I like it. Sadly, it DOES make me impatiently eager to get some decent furniture to sit on in the living room now! Having that old pink leather two seater sofa placed across the doors is ugly and impractical madness! Even if I were to keep the seating layout broadly as it is (I STILL can't decide if I would be better off moving the living room/hallway door - AND the TV out of the bay window?!) I definitely need at the very least a nice SINGLE chair where that sofa is. I even actually surfed a few furniture sites the other day, looking at leather suites, but I couldn't believe the prices of stuff I was drawn to. Over 1k!!!??!!! Totally out of the question. Aside from that - without transport, how on earth would I be able to shop around and try them out to, make absolutely certain they would be comfortable after hours of sitting in front the TV??? I also absolutely HATE these damned 'recliners' that everyone seems to be going for these days. Much rather have a good old fashioned footstool. And what style? What colour leather? Blah, blah, blah. Guess I'll just carry on with all the old rubbish I've got. Shame though - that room really 'could' look pretty special now if the seating/TV focal point was sorted differently and right. :o\ . . . slowly cleared-up, vacuumed sawdust and moved the table and chairs back into position etc after 4pm . . TVd. . walked in the cold. Back via the store for a few supplies and a 'celebratory' bottle of beer. . Tvd and drank the Theakstones old peculiar and got a little tipsy on an empty stomach. I'm not a lover of beer and didn't particularly enjoy it. I need to buy more wine! . . Mum called to touch base and tell of Auntie B having had what sounded like a REALLY nasty fall down the mass of VERY steep steps outside her house!!! Wow - sounds as though she really could have been killed!!! . . TVd with all the doors to the living room shut and the gas fire on for a bit, as the outside temperature dropped to around 4C or less. With all my (permanent for months) winter layers on, anything over 17C in that living room soon starts feeling too hot!! lolol . . ate a trio of pastrami rolls, crisps, chocolate and half a battenburg cake . . almost fell asleep on the sofa! To bed well before midnight. d
4 - Back up around 7:45am!? Well - that's today blown through lack of sleep then! . .PCd and googled the address of the keyboard seller and made some notes about how to get there. Gotta pick up the keyboard at midday, so seemed little point in walking Bella, returning home for a short period, and then having to walk all the way back down town. Figured I'd do the long walk through the woods and then waste time and pick up the keyboard before returning home. . . walked with a rucksack and coffee. Much frantic squirrel chasing by Bella in the woods. lol . played ball in BGdns and sat around for a bit in the cold breeze and hints of drizzle really feeling oh SO tired! Sleep deprivation really is THE most awful thing (especially when you don't get the 'revitalisation' that sleep is supposed to provide, at the best of times!) . Eventually headed down to the harbour. Sat on a seat near the Golden Hind replica (and now rather sad and past his best looking xmas Santa float) and drank my, by now, only luke warm coffee, wasting away more time until it was late enough to start heading off to find the keyboard sellers place. . boy - that was quite a climb, up out of the harbour up the steep steps and roads! . found the place no problem. The guy was in his garden, in the middle of cementing-in some slabs where a disabled ramp had apparantly once lead up to his front door and had recently been removed. Gave him a pound coin and a thankyou and in under a minute was heading back home with the keyboard in the rucksack on my back. Thank god THAT is over and done with! Dunno why they had to drag it out for a whole week like that! . . SO relieved to get back home out of the damp and cold wind into 'elative 'warmth'. . . TVd some old Audey Murphy cowboy film and ate a trio of ham, mayo and grated cheese rolls with crisps and the last of the packet of cheddar crackers . . need sleep - bad! . napped throughh until the alarm at 7pm. . walked and managed to miss the rain showers. Starry sky and a cold breeze. . . TVd . . PCd this (in hat and layers - in/out temperature 15/4C) using my new/replacement (and it really is like new) 1 RT2300 keyboard. So - all 'back to normal' in front the PC kinda - and plenty of spare keyboards to find some space for somewhere! lol . PCd this at length until deep into early. Oh dear - gone all nocturnal again all of a sudden . . ate bowls of cornflakes before to bed at 4am.
3 - Up just after 7am. . replied to the e-bay keyboard seller "Please give me an address to collect it from and a suitable time." . . PCd a bit of this . . walked . . did dish washing chores until Mum arrived for chats etc. .while chatting, the postman delivered what turned out to be the door handles I'd ordered. They'll do - although one had a less than smooth action, and only later did I discover it also has a small 'imperfection' !!!!! Would you f***ing believe it! I really should send it back I guess, but since they were listed as the last two they had (that packaging wasn't sealed - they KNEW they were sending me a shit one!) , that'd just give me a load of hassle and nothing to show for it, and back to square one unable to get on and mostly finish-off the doors thing! Given the really almost unnoticeable nature of the imperfection, and the fact that two of the handles are actually destined to be none-working 'dummies', just for show, on the door with the flush lever bolts, I'm just gonna keep em and go for it. Really - almost EVERY single thing I've bought off e-bay, old or new, has turned out to be faulty or second rate in one way or another!!!! I actually DO anticipate exactly that now, whenever I look at ANYTHING on there. I strongly resent the feeling, that some may dismiss a lot of my 'mental health stuff', as me simply being paranoid. Dismissing stuff as being 'paranoia', suggests there is no basis for the behaviour. Just look at what I consistantly actually encounter! It is NOT paranoia - it's fact - over and over and over again! Am I somehow special or does everyone end up with faulty rubbish or some other problem EVERY time they buy something or have to have work done by someone? Or - what IS it about what 'I' do, which is somehow causing these results? Now that IS starting to sound like paranoia isn't it!!! Can't win! Don't understand it! :o( . . . as soon as Mum had gone, I measured up the doors and handles and then surfed looking at the sizes of latch mechanisms. It's the last thing I need to be in a position to be able to get on and pretty much finish the french doors project (except for the painting/decorating of course). . walked up the little local hardware store with Bella (because the local builders yard was closed already?) and bought a 63mm mortice latch brass plated finish, for 3.25 . Right - that's all the 'pieces of the puzzle' now to hand. One more day of work to plane a bit off the side of the door and then fit everything I reckon. . . back via Mums to have a look at the wording of a new will 'proof' she's been getting done. I agreed with her concerns that some of the wording didn't look quite right and needed clarifying with the solicitor before she goes ahead with it. The will itself is only around 95 to do ( I SO need to get one done too - and may do so, as soon as Mum has done hers and proves how simple it is) but apparantly if the solicitors have to do anything more complicated, they'd charge 195 an hour for their services!!!! Bloody hell!!! They could work for just two and a half hours to acheive my monthly income!! I can't imagine what it must be like to have that sort of money! 'Warm and relaxing' I suspect. I'll never know. :o( . . . ate a scotch egg, cheese, crisps, cheddar crackers and an iced bun . . napped . . walked and returned getting damp in the drizzle. Someones ashes have been 'scattered' (actually poured in a very noticeable line of heaps) in the grass in front of my favourite seat again. Must have been a lot of people put there over the years. I CAN understand why, but I'm still not sure I'd want to end up there like that. All academic really. Who's gonna care but me when I go. . .TVd/PCd the evening away, acheiving nothing and not attending to all my mountain of bills and paperwork as I should have. Received a couple of messages from the keyboard seller, FINALLY giving me an address and suggesting I could pick it up tomorrow. At LAST!! I definitely feel as though they've messed me around, keeping me waiting around for a week like this. . . ate a tin of sausages in baked beans with grated cheese and cheddars crackers . . to bed at 4am!!
2 - Up just before 7am. 14C in / 3C out . . PCd a bit of this . . walked and carried on down town for tins of dog food. Returned with fourteen 56p tins on my back . . out front emptying stuff into the bin when some delivery drivers were calling at next door trying to deliver the new roller shutter for his garage rebuild. Butted in to the conversation they were having with his wife about trying to get it through the house (absurd) and suggested they park up the road and I'd help carry and walk it down the back lane. Helped walk a couple of the smaller bits down the lane before leaving them to it . . sanded back the bits of filler covering the screw heads on the door edge and slapped on a little more undercoat here and there, as next doors garage-rebuild workmen happily appeared, unannounced working in my garden again! I can't help it - it's 'irritating' me, 'not being a master of my property boundaries'! . . . the postman delivered the scanner stand. It all seemed ok until I came to try to attach the aerial to the supplied short, bolt on patch lead part!! The BNC fitment on the lead end wouldn't move or accept connection to the radio!!!???? Turned out the rubber boot was kinda poorly position hard up against the fitting, and the whole lot was all kinda glued together during manufacture!??? Breaking the fitment out of the glue saw it become useable, although had the undesireable effect of having the rubber boot dislodge from where it really should be. All very weird - as though it simply wasn't made right?? That would have been tolerable - but then I found that the SO239 female socket on the other end of that cable would NOT accept the screwing-on of a normal PL259 plug!!! How the hell is THAT possible????? Turned out, for some inexplicable reason, the actual thread on the SO239 socket was somehow 'different' to what it should have been!!!????!!!!! Hard to fathom? I dared to sacrifice a brand new PL259 plug, in the hope that I could use it to 're-cut' the thread! Put in a LOT of time in the garage with a couple of pairs of mole grips, the vice and a lot of oil, and DID manage to get the PL259 plug to eventually freely screw onto the socket. Completely destroyed the plug in the process mind you! What I didn't realise until returning to the living room to connect the aerial wire again, was that the dodgey socket had reworked the thread on the plug, NOT the other way around as required! In short - that lead is a duffer, can't be used and is fit for the bin. So - yet again - I've paid good money on e-bay for a piece of faulty crap!!!!! Same old same old. I'm well beyond being suprised any more. Despite that desireable part of the stand setup being of no use, I AM going to keep it - and just use my existing patch-lead, loosely pushed through the mounting hole. It's better than not having it at all. :o( . . Also had my latest BT phone bill in the post. It was noticeably more than usual!??? Turns out, because I go out of my way to use it as little as possible to keep the bill down (and lets face it - because I don't have anyone to call!), and because doing all this door work of late I hadn't actually made ANY calls (on the BT line) this month - I'd been charged 2.70 for the caller ID part of the service. They'd charged me 2.70 - for NOT using my phone - and included a statement saying that to avoid that charge in the future, I would have to make at least two chargeable calls in the period!!!!!! What F***ING B*****S! I despair. What sort of a sick society is it we have built for ourselves, where if you are the people who have very little, you are the ones who will have to pay more (in relative terms)!?? It's exactly this sort of injustice which is being played out with all this nauseating monstrously unjust financial deficit/economic crisis/we are all in it together bullshit. All those poor people (currently far worse off than I - although I seem to be fast getting there through no fault of my own, thanks to near zero interest on savings and soaring bills for EVERYTHING!) quite literally already living on the bread line, are the very ones who seem to be getting targetted the most for cuts and reductions in their means to be able to survive!!! I just can't believe how utterly self centred and selfish we all are for our society to just to go along with it! As long as I'm allright Jack! That's the fundamental bottom line isn't it. Something went horribly wrong when I was growing up. I never quite learned we are all actually like this. I kinda grew up mistakenly believing in a more socialist, dare I say 'civilised' and mutually caring society! There ARE individuals who are exceptions of course, but seems to me that 'society' as a whole has not one bit embraced the higher ideals for which humanity and 'civilisation' nauseatingly congratulates itself. Not one degree seperated from Darwins truth! . . I am alienated. I AM seperate from the world in which I find myself ! . . ate the remaining mushrooms, bacon and cheese concoction with four pieces of bread and butter followed by biscuits and chocolate. . napped until waking to escape an unsettling dream. Dreaming something or other about LB of all things!?? . . walked in the rain in what ended up being a foul mood. Got pretty cold and drenched. Lost my temper with poor uncontrollable Bella, and while wrestling to control her to wipe her down rather than have her cover the WHOLE house (yet more!) in muddy splashes, I actually had to just shut her out in the conservatory for five minutes and walk away - for her sake!! :o( . . TVd/guitarred the night away, with the fire on for some time trying to get dry and warm. . all of a sudden it would appear I'm feeling VERY down - and VERY schizoid! Not capable of enduring contact with anyone in any way right this minute. Silly little things, but the disruption in the garden out back, the 'faulty' scanner stand thing and this irritating ongoing keyboard nonsense seems to have helped push me into a black hole of complete alienation to the rest of humanity. This banking economic crisis thing (watching the news every day), has really screwed me - financially of course - but also by way of - um - a major deterioration in my general sense of manageing to get-by and just survive through everything. . ate six pieces of bread and butter tuna and mayo sandwiches, crisps and chocolate before eventually to bed somewhere around mindight. s
1 - Up around 6:20am. . received a reply from the keyboard seller. "Im sorry its taken so long to get back to you. My husband works away from home and normally deals with all the ebay stuff. You are more than welcome to pick up the keyboard from our house. What day would be best for you? i am un able to do tomorrow as i am at work, but any day over the weekend would be ok for us if all ok for you?" Are they messing me around? Still no address! For goodness sake - I mean, how long would it take to hand over a keyboard and take a in payment - ten seconds, twenty? I'm really feeling like I just need to forget it, to stop getting up-tight about it like I seem to be! I left replying for some other time - if at all! . . . made a decision and went ahead and ordered four door handles (because it was the last four they had) from an e-bay seller. Carlisle Brass Regency Lever Latch Door Handles No Keyhole DL26 x 2 Pair NEW for 17.98 including postage. . . . walked . . had to move the car out of the garage builders way again. Aggravating. . spent the WHOLE day working on fitting the flush lever bolts to the edge of one of the french doors!! Boy was that a nerve wracking job. The size of the rebates required for those locks was enormous!! Succeeded in excavating 'some' of the timber with various oh SO careful runs of the hard to so precisely control, electric router, before finishing off with stanley knife, mallet and wood chisels, sandpaper, etc. It would have been SO easy to have totally destroyed that door with a simple slip of the hand or little mistake, but thankfully I got away with it. Before actually fitting the brass bolts into the recesses, I gently filed and emery clothed a piece of the internal sliding mechanisms, just to smooth-off a bit of roughness of the brass casting and give them the best chance of operating smoothly. Dabbed on a little grease and oil and made them operate about as smoothly as they ever can. . Image of brass flush lever door boltsTurned out that every single one of the dozen supplied screws had a small bit of casting left on the underside of the screwhead, so I also had to laboriously file all those away!! Even then, the screwheads didn't quite fit perfectly flush into the recessed mounting holes on the bolts or their keep plates!!? Ended up having to very carefully 'ream' every one of those out with an attachment on the end of my electric drill!!! . . eventually had the bolts fitted and the door re-hung (again!) then drilled and cut-in the recessed top keep plate into the door frame. The bottom one I just drilled and screwed to the top of the floorboards, after having cut out a suitable hole in a carpet tile. Boy oh boy oh boy - what a bunch of work all that was! So SO glad to have got that piece of the jigsaw done. Except for having to fit a latch keep plate and the pair of 'dummy' handles, that's THAT door pretty much done with bar the final finishing and decorating. With those flush bolts now fitted, I can no longer plane down or alter it in ANY way. The final planing off of a millimeter or two to open up the gap between those two doors, will now all be done on the OTHER door - when I get and fit the handles and a suitabley sized latch mechanism. . dabbed on a little strong PVA/filler mix over some of the graft screwheads (being left IN the door) before tidying up and vacuuming lots as the rain poured outside. . the garage rebuild workmen disappeared at some point so I was able to move the car back in! Bloody pain in the rear this is getting to be. I'm in danger of running out of petrol!! . . just sat recovering from the work, looking at the doors for ages (!! lol) before mustering the energy to walk. The earlier heavy rain stopped just in time for me to get the walk done dry . . . cooked while watching TV. A 'DIY SOS:The Big Build' show was on where they were renovating and largely rebuilding a needy persons house. (God, I wish I could raid the skips they always fill with stuff I'd be happy to have in my house!) Good grief - they practically totally rebuilt the place in just seven days! How on earth do these people manage to do stuff SO quick - when it takes me a whole day just to fit a couple of poxy door latches???!! . cooked up an expensive mushrooms, fried bacon, tin of mushroom soup, grated cheese concoction and ate most of it with four pieces of bread and butter (unusually at the dining table, with both french doors open for watching the living room TV). . TVd/guitarred just a little. Bizzarly at gone 9pm there was a strange bunch of noise. Turned out it was one of the residents of next door, out in the dark and damp, trimming back a hedge with his hedgetrimmer!? That was LONG overdue - and I suspect was being done at that hour out of desperation - because it had all grown across the front of his satellite dish. It MUST have been degrading the signal for AGES. I've been long amazed they were getting any signal at all! We would both benefit from an easier life if they removed that damned plant! I would. . ate half a buttered McVities cake before to bed shortly after 11pm.
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