April 2021 Introduction:
Here we go with another year from my old journal. As is often the case each year, January and February were pretty quiet, so I’ve combined them together. There wasn’t a lot to talk about, but there was a bit of socialising with friends in Exeter, some building work going on at home, more DVDs for my collection, and other random bits and pieces of news. So I hope you enjoy this latest set of posts.
Monday January 2, 2006
Happy New Year! I’m back from Exeter, and today’s a bank holiday of course, so I’m back to work tomorrow. I had a good time with my friends A & S. On New Year’s Eve we went to the Swan’s Nest, where we met up with one of A’s support workers. I had steak for my meal, and we all sang Auld Lang Syne together when the new year started. And I rang my parents to wish them Happy New Year of course.
On Sunday we had lunch out at another pub, after walking into town via the river from A’s house, which was a nice long walk. We were going to go to the cinema, but ended up being too late, as we had our food mid-afternoon. So S went home, while A and I had a few drinks in a pub she knows in Heavitree.
And then today wasn’t much different. With S having gone home, A and I had lunch out before we went our separate ways.
When we were at A’s flat, we played Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? on DVD and watched The Two Ronnies Sketchbook, which I’d copied on to DVD for her. And we spoke to a few other old school friends on the phone too. And that’s about it really. It was just nice to get away for a couple of days.
Friday January 6, 2006
First week back at work for the new year, and not much to report. The temp guy we had has finished his time with us, as there isn’t enough work to justify keeping him on. We all popped into the pub at lunchtime for a drink to say goodbye to him.
Home’s been quiet too. Our builder’s coming next week to do some work on the bathroom and back bedroom upstairs. The bathroom and toilet are being merged into one big room, with a step-in shower. We won’t have a bath, as we never use it. The back bedroom will be done like Mum and Dad’s room, and a double bed will go in there eventually, as it’ll help when selling the house in the future to have 2 double rooms.
Friday January 13, 2006
It may be Friday the 13th, but nothing’s gone wrong today. In fact, it’s been another quiet week, with nothing special to report. At work I’ve got a fairly big project on which is keeping me busy. And at home, our builder’s been here since Monday working on the back bedroom..
I also saw an interesting news story about a French entrepreneur opening a new restaurant in London next month, called Dans Le Noir (In The Dark), where customers are served by blind waiters and eat their meals in pitch darkness. I hope it does well, I think it’s a novel idea.
Friday January 20, 2006
The taxi drivers are all saying what a quiet time of year it is, and the same goes for me. Work’s carrying on much the same as usual, apart from a colleague inviting us all to his wedding anniversary party in March. And our builder’s getting on well with the back bedroom upstairs at home, although it has meant our dinners have been later in the evenings. And that is quite literally it!
Thursday January 26, 2006
I’m doing my weekly entry today, as I’m going to stay with A for the weekend from tomorrow. Not much to report at work, but it was a colleague’s birthday today, so we had our usual cream cakes. And we’ve gone in for the Euromillions draw, which now stands at a stupidly insane £100 million! Still, among a syndicate like ours, that’s under £10 million each if we win, which is more reasonable!
We’ve done a couple of lines at home for the Euromillions too. We’re playing the Lottery online now, as it’s very easy to do. Our builder’s pretty much finished the back bedroom, and has started knocking the toilet and bathroom into one room. We needed to replace the toilet upstairs anyway, it hasn’t always been flushing properly recently.
And that’s about it. I don’t think A’s got anything special planned for the weekend, but I expect we’ll find something to do.
Monday January 30, 2006
Nothing special to report from my weekend with A. It was a good weekend, but we didn’t do anything remarkable apart from going out to have a few drinks and watch some TV at her place. We didn’t get to meet any of A’s friends, so it was just us this time.
In terms of eating, we had a takeaway on Friday, finishing it off on Saturday. And for Sunday lunch we had a meal in a Wetherspoons pub called George’s Meeting House. We each had roast chicken with 2 Yorkshire puddings, roast potatoes, vegetables and gravy, plus a drink, all for £6.99. And that’s a very good deal, considering we only paid £5.99, as A knows someone who works there! It was absolutely delicious. It’s not just roast chicken on that deal – there’s a roast beef option, or a nut roast for vegetarians. To add a pudding was just another £2, so A had treacle sponge and I had a chocolate chip cheesecake. Not as nice as the dinner, but still good.
Back at home, Mum, Dad and I have won £103 on the Euromillions! Not quite the £105 million jackpot, but still good. We’ve only been playing online for a couple of weeks, and they emailed us to say we’d won something. They just put it straight into Dad’s lottery account, and I’ve transferred it to their debit card. The jackpot, incidentally, still hasn’t been won – next week it’s £125 million at least! It’s still got until February 10th to roll over!
Our builder’s now made a start on the bathroom. We managed to have showers this morning, but that’s now gone until the new one’s put in. And the back bedroom looks good, it’s easier to sort out my clothes now!
Friday February 3, 2006
Another quiet week at work really, but my section manager and I had a go at putting together a Powerpoint presentation about the new CD/DVD burning and printing machine they’re planning to buy. They’ll give the show out on discs to potential customers, and the prices are pretty cheap too. And we had more cream cakes today, as it was another colleague’s birthday this week.
As for home, our builder’s getting on fine. He’s just finishing the tiling in the bathroom now, and he’s got the big stone shower tray in there, which is better than a plastic tray. It’s a bit frustrating not being able to have a shower, as I can’t wash my hair properly in the little sink we’ve got downstairs. Still, we can live with it until the work’s done.
And in the news this week, Doctor Who star and Little Britain narrator Tom Baker is the new voice of BT text messages. When you send a text message to a landline, he will replace the synthesised voice for the next 3 months. It took him 11 days to record over 11,000 phrases, and he can say anything you want (including rude words). Even abbreviations like gr8 and xx (kisses) are recognised. BT feel it’s better than a computer voice, and Tom’s is instantly recognisable by many people. So that’s quite fun.
Saturday February 11, 2006
Another fairly quiet week at work, although we didn’t get a survey out until it was over a day late, due to problem after problem! You solve one, then another barrier pops up. Still, we got there in the end. And we’ve sent off the CDs with our presentation and CD artwork to a firm who will do the personalised discs we’ll be sending out, to advertise our CD/DVD printing & publishing service. Should be good if we can get enough custom. It helps to vary our services too.
As for home, the bathroom’s nearly done now. We’ve been able to use the shower, and it’s much better than the old one. The buttons light up, and are nice and big. The flow on the shower head can be adjusted, although we haven’t needed to try it. The cubicle’s nice and big, and the floor is non-slip.
There’s also a very tall heated towel rail with lots of rungs for towels, and it’ll also be very good for heating the bathroom in general. The sink and toilet are in there now too – the loo’s got quite a long seat and a small cistern, and has got 2 buttons for flushing, as going for a pee doesn’t require as much water. The black wall tiles look great too, as the white shower, sink and loo show up in good contrast against them. It’s better than the nearly all-white bathroom (with a centre stripe of blue tiles) we used to have. And there’s much more room now it’s been knocked through of course. Our builder’s also adding a cupboard next to the bathroom, that we can store all various bits and pieces in.
And in London, Nan’s got a new 23-inch Panasonic integrated digital TV. My Aunt and Uncle got it for her. But the 2 of them couldn’t work out how to turn it on, so they took it back thinking there was a problem, and the girl just laughed as it’s so easy. Nan’s alright with it now though, and I’ve spoken to her about using the red button and BBCi, so hopefully she’ll be well away with all that.
Chip & PIN comes into force on Valentine’s Day (Tuesday). Mum can’t see well enough to use that, but was told by our bank on Friday when she popped in with Dad that it would be better to use a chequebook rather than the alternative Chip & Signature card, even though we know Mum is entitled to it. She’s going to ring them again on Monday to try and sort it out.
And talking of money, 3 tickets shared the Euromilions jackpot of £125 million, making just over £40 million each. I’m glad it wasn’t one person. The winners were from France and Portugal, not the UK sadly.
Saturday February 18, 2006
Things are a bit busier at work this week, with the financial year end approaching. And I’ve now finally got a swipe card with my proper job title on it. The photo’s not bad – my manager took it with a digital camera and emailed it to the team who make the cards.
I’ve had a couple of nice bits of mail this week too. Firstly I won my second £50 prize on the Premium Bonds, and that’s before the latest amount I invested goes into next month’s draw.
And I’ve also received most of my latest Amazon order. I haven’t ordered from them for a while, as I’ve only just about finished watching my last lot. But this time I got:
- The Simpsons – Season 7 – 25 episodes, should keep me going for a while!
- Goodnight Sweetheart – Series 3
- You Rang, M’Lord? – Series 1 – I haven’t seen this since it was first on when I was young.
- Are You Being Served? – Series 3
- Dad’s Army – Series 5
I’ve just got the new Wallace & Gromit film to come now.
Other than that, our builder was only here on Monday to do a few little bits, like turning on the heated towel rail and putting in the cupboard between the bathroom and bedroom. He’ll be back next Monday to do a few more things.
Friday February 22, 2006
I’ve had the day off work today, as I’ve had to have an engineer come round about my JVC recorder again. This time, it’s the power supply. Our builder was here Monday and Tuesday, and had to turn the electrics off at one point, and it wouldn’t turn on again after that. We changed the fuse in the plug, still with no luck.
The Comet guy came about 1pm, and opened the machine up. He immediately said the internal fuse had gone, and changed it. But when he turned it on, it sparked – the power supply itself had actually gone, not just the fuse. It’s only a 2-amp fuse inside, so it doesn’t take much to blow it (the plug is 5-amp though). There must have been a surge when our builder put the electrics back on.
Anyway, he’s ordered a new power supply, and they’ll be back on Tuesday March 7 to put it in. So I’ll probably book off the Monday as well and have a long weekend if I can. I’ve got days owing, and I haven’t had any time off for a while, so it shouldn’t be a problem.
Our builder’s work has gone well, and he’s finished now until later in the year, probably around September. He’s put the cupboard in on the stairs, put handrails and a fan in the bathroom, and fixed my bedroom door, as it didn’t close properly.
I’ve received the Wallace & Gromit film on DVD, which looks like it has plenty of extras. And another quick delivery means I’ve got the second set of reissued Status Quo albums, which are remastered and have bonus tracks. I had bought a few albums after the last reissue collection of their 70s stuff, but I can get rid of any old duplicates. These CDs were mostly £7.99 each, so it’s not costly. So I think I’ve got all their albums now, which is cool. I’ve just got to decide who to get next. Suzi Quatro has got a new album out next week, so I might buy that.