Thursday, December 28, 2006

Random Dumping

Right, I should have gone to bed earlier (I was tired & sleepy) but I wanted to get some things done first, so I didn't. And now? Having just gone to bed? I decided I'm not only not sleepy, but also seem to be hungry. On top of that, I've a hundred random things floating through my thoughts.

So, by snacking while blogging, perhaps I can eliminate some of those problems ;)

Oh... And I'll get my council tax payments sorted out too. I keep thinking of that when I can't do anything about it and then not thinking to do anything when I can. That'll be something else off my mind so I don't need to worry about leaving it too late.
...Right, that's that sorted.

You know, I cannot for the life of me imagine why, but I happened to 'notice' the lyrics to this song earlier...

And I'm thinking, thinking, thinking, think
Thinking till I'm nearly dead
Do you remember when you were young?
Do you remember what your mother said?

She said, don't ever think, ever think, ever think too much
and don't ever think, ever think, ever think too much
and don't ever think, ever think, ever think too much
and don't ever think, ever think, ever think too much

So that's Don't Ever Think (Too Much) by The Zutons. Ho hum. ;)

I think I had a pretty good Christmas, all things considered. Oh, it even started a little early when I received a surprise 'present' on Christmas Eve Eve :) (Well if Christmas get an 'Eve', surely Christmas Eve can have one too? ;) )
I can't say I specifically missed Mrs M over Christmas. But then I don't really in general at the moment. Hey, my crisps have a "best before" of only February! That's only like three months since I bought them. Bit of a rip off. (Err, sorry, I just finished a packet of crisps and the empty packet is sitting in front of me)

...When anyone asks, I relate it to a weekend alone. Everyone likes a nice weekend alone for a change. It's like that, but long. I assume a bunch of stuff will properly hit me at some point.
Why do I assume that? Well, I catch tiny hints occasionally now... And... If I don't, I think it suggests things were worse than I realised. And I'd feel guilty for not feeling anything. Most of what I do feel at the moment is guilt.

I've not regretted my decision at all (yet). I wonder at the fact I'm looking at buying expensive things like a bed and a sofa and lots of furniture, as it does not suggest temporary. On the other hand, I haven't actually bought any of those things yet ;) So maybe sub-conciously I don't want to do that... Or perhaps, just perhaps, I'm not so good at making decisions ;) Well, I think that varies. In this case, I've just not really formed enough of an opinion on anything yet.
Oh, I don't think I want a divan base on a bed though. As I've said earlier today, I don't think the drawers would be THAT useful, and a great big space could be useful if you have something obscure to put under it...
Also, it's a great hiding place, under the bed! ;) I can't tell you how many times I nipped under the bed to surprise Mrs M when she came up and I was nowhere to be seen ;) Hey, yes it's silly, but does it matter if it gets a smile? :)

I have felt for some time that I suspect at some point, even if I decide I do regret where I am and want to go back, I am going to have to challenge myself and confront some of my worries. Still, I've always liked a good challenge ;)

After all, as Ripley said in Aliens... "I say we take off and nuke the whole goddamn place from orbit."

Oh wait, I wanted the next line...

"It's the only way to be sure."

I think I'm done for now. I've got some more generic Christmassy bits I'd like to blog at some point, but they're not important to right now and all that's zipping through my mind.

Ah, and as The Feeling - Never Be Lonely plays, I remember hearing Jakatta - Ever So Lonely earlier. Well bugger me, being an uneducated heathen when it comes to music, I only just found out that was a cover of a song by Monsoon in the early 80s. Completely failed to be able to check the lyrics though. Strange how some songs have like 100 pages up with lyrics but others don't seem to have any. Anyway, I remember when I first heard that song I simply liked it. But in times since then, and I'm talking quite some time ago here (I think before I had even thought about starting a blog), feeling sad as I thought about it. Gosh, what a musical post this has turned into!

Well. Not a musical post. It's not loading a song in the background now, or some terrible plinky-plonky ring-tone to play at you ;)

But... anyway. There's everything that's gone through my mind. Perhaps if my brain were in a reasonable state I would continue my path of denial on some of that as usual ;) (Well, not denial... more just... public non-admittance ;)


Slightly less hungry now. Still not actually sleepy, just bloody tired. I think I'll flop onto my sofa. It may be inflatable, but it's still floppable onto :)
Oh, although sitting on it much in my trainers isn't a good thing. I seem to turn into a large battery.

Good night ;) Congratulations on making it through my ramble to the end ;)

Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas One and All

Wrapping presents until 12:30am Christmas morning is a perfectly normal thing to do.

As is taking a short jaunt around the M25, departing town at 1:40am. Funny, was even quite quiet ;)

Will I be awake to see the other end of Christmas morning? Uch, I'll get back to you ;)

Have a wonderful time everyone.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

This week I harrv been mostly...

- Feeling thankful towards all my wonderful friends, both in real life and online, who wished me a happy birthday :)
- Hanging decorations... Something I need to do more of now, after most fell down. I bought some drawing pins, so perhaps they'll help, but I want to be very careful about where I use them.
- Getting ready to wrap presents.
- Getting ready for when my parents & sister come over on Sunday.
- Getting ready to go back with my parents & sister on Sunday.
- Wishing Mrs M Happy Christmas as she headed off to her parents for Christmas.
- Being glad I don't need to go in to work for a while :) (And also: Spending 2.5 hours at the pub on Friday, yet also actually managed to do some work in the afternoon)
- Getting into the Christmas spirit.
- Throwing away cream cakes after greatly over-buying, and nobody being able to manage (m)any the next day. (I'm truely very, very sorry ;)
- Inflating my two sofas, and wondering how I will rearrange the furniture in the room. I'm thinking I'll move my desk to the other end of the room. Trying to also consider the layout that I'll want when I have more stuff. Oh, I think I'm happy with where my Christmas tree is though :)
- Speaking of which, it's probably a good job most houses don't have round rooms. If I can spend this long thinking about four walls, I may die of old age in a round room ;)
- Gossiping, and having some very enjoyable natters :)
- (Hopefully) enough shopping to tide me over the holiday period, as well as for everyone on Sunday.
- Causing a mess in every room within mere moments of my tidying it ;)

Speaking of which, how many presents do you think I had wrapped after this little mess?

That's... Seven rolls of wrapping paper, two pairs of scissors, Sellotape (sorry, is that "sticky tape"? ;), assorted bits of ribbon, bow and gift tags, one pen (the other was a present for someone at work that I forgot I needed to wrap by Friday), one Christmas card, two presents which are there because it's where I happened to empty that bag, one Netgear wireless box to have something to lean on while I wrote.

And the answer?

Yes, it takes me a long, long time to do any wrapping ;) (Not helped by the fact that I had to do a lot of running around trying to remember where I had hid some of my accessories, cooking my tea at the same time, and helping someone with his network issues. Phew!)

I'll be on and around over Christmas to wish people a Merry Christmas, but if I don't see you...

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, my friends! :)

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Bare Faced Bloomin' Cheek

Look at this!

Look at this!
When will I get a new car?
Well, let’s put it this way, I take longer to make that decision than IM does to choose a bed!

Can you believe the cheek of some people!?

Would you like to explain to me, please, what exactly it is that is wrong with my bed?

See, that's a perfectly fine bed, that is!

Got my lamp on the bed-side cabinet there, and a clock too.

And yes, before you ask, it is mine! :-P

So there. Dianne, I demand an apology.


[Clears throat]

Come on then.

I'm waiting.


[Inspector Monkfish attempts to look innocent]

[Inspector Monkfish looks suspicious attempting to look innocent]

[Inspector Monkfish attempts to whistle innocently]


Fine, if you don't believe it's my bed, here's another picture, to prove it's mine.

After all, they do say perspective is everything...

What!? ;)

Ok, so just because I think the lamp and the clock may be about to fall over, and it took me some time to balance my airbed on top of those two boxes, it doesn't mean it's not a perfectly nice bed! ;)

Anyway, I can't hang around here all day. I need to go and put my boxes back ;)

Tuesday, December 19, 2006


No, that's not how old I feel ;)

But it is the total number of page loads that I've had since I added a counter at the start of June.

Just happened to notice it was a nice round number :) Northern Monkey wins the prize for being the 5,000th hit. Not that I have a prize, you understand, but still, it's the thought that counts ;)

Meanwhile, the courier companies got together today to belay my fears of gifts I had ordered online not arriving for Christmas :)

Which was nice. :)

Had some slightly down-pangs today (popped out at lunch to get my last two Christmas cards - as I said yesterday, choosing one for my wife was difficult), but overall my good mood from last night has carried through :) Had a later night than I was intending last night (thanks to a delightful unexpected online encounter, complete with plenty of juicy gossip, etc. ;), but woke up well this morning. I'd even have been on time were it not for the twenty minutes it took me organising my food together into bags and defrosting the car ;)

Plus, I now have a vast amount of food on my desk (two tubs of biscuity things, four packets of Walkers Sensations, three packets of peanuts), and a vast number of cream cakes downstairs, ready to stop work and spend an hour eating & chatting when we have the next round of tea :)

Monday, December 18, 2006


Been a bit of a mixed day.

Felt stressed after I got up thinking about work. There's still stuff I'm behind on that I know I should be better at and should (could) have done. Oh well.

Was running around town and stuff today buying various things.

- Got my hair cut (hmm, I seem to be getting it cut more often recently... but then I always used to feel I didn't get it cut enough, so I guess it swings both ways)
- Bought some Christmas cards. I feel I should buy one for my wife, but... it's not easy. You read what they say, and they're kind of all taking the piss at the moment given our situation. Selection appears to have been slightly narrowed by of the three "big chain" card shops in town, Birthdays has closed leaving two separate Clintons.
- Bought two inflatable sofas. One is now inflated. I was going to buy one sofa (when did I start saying 'sofa' instead of 'setee' I wonder?) and two chairs, but they had no chairs, but they did have two sofas :)
- Bought a vast amount of cream cakes and other random nibbly things. It's my birthday tomorrow (along with the whole host of thoughts that brings with it - from being 27 - which is definitely not arguably 'mid-twenties' anymore, to that making it six years since I think of us as having first/last had sex. Great), and it's company policy that you buy cream cakes on your birthday. It's my own personal policy that I shall buy lots of things that look good and forget how many people I'm buying for, leaving us with vast excesses of food :D
- Bought a quilt, cover, and sheets from Roseby's, who claimed to be having a sale. Still, not bad for just over £50. No bed yet, but I can still use with airbed and at least will feel more like a proper bed, until I have a proper bed. Is what I figure.
- Definitely been feeling a bit more... mixed... as a result of everything recently. Can just feel it looming more ominously. Not sure what it is I'm feeling specifically (if anything yet), just concious of feeling a bit more 'wibbly' in general (a term Mrs M used to use to describe that state).
- Had had something delivered to Mrs M's so picked that up earlier while she was at work (she did know :). Was the first time I'd actually been back in the daylight since I'd left, so that was a little odd, actually seeing it more.
- Thought she had done a nice job with her Christmas decorations.
- Noticed three of the five lights in the house have changed :) (Well, tube in kitchen had just recently broken, and we never liked shade in the living room, so glad she was able to get that light changed [it was attached to the shade], and a new shade at the top of the stairs)
- Following recent dumb-founded astonishment from both Roses and Ing that I had nothing alcoholic in the house, bought some random bottles of alcyhol. Well, not entirely as a result of their astonishment, as I'd been thinking about it for a while, but didn't want to when I had a lot to carry. That reminds me, I still need to make a third trip down to the car ;)
- Ordered pizza tonight, my first delivered take-out here (and only my second fast food at all). Hoped I'd be able to finish downloading the first episode of The Hogfather before pizza arrived, but the download stalled half-way. Leaving all those other bastards with Sky to watch the second half. Bastards! :)
- Had a few vodka & cokes with pizza. Now have a large chunk of chocolate log :)
- Inflated (originally said "blew up", but felt that was ambiguous ;) one of the blow-up sofas, and watched a Stargate SG-1 ep from it while eating pizza and drinking vodka & coke. We started watching SG-1 early this year, after I bought Mrs M the film. I'd remembered her saying she'd not seen it in a while, so we watched it, and then she commented she'd like to see all the episodes from the TV series on order. Downloaded the first couple before the film had finished playing :D (I love the Internet ;) ). We watched most of the first series as something to do on honeymoon, and had watched up to mid-way series 5 together since then. It does feel a little odd to be watching it alone as I have been.
- Decided to give out my contact details to those who had requested them. Anyone else who would like them, or who would like updated details, should let me know.
- Was a little low earlier. Feeling better for pizza, vodka, coke, sofa, Stargate, cake, phone call to my parents/sister, or good online company. One or all of the above ;)

Ummm... I think that's about it! ;)

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Check Aht Mah Groovy Christmas Tree!

Good, innit? :)

What? What do you mean, "I can barely see it" !? Well, ok, you could try this one, but it looks kind of flat being all lit. Unfortunately, I'm taking all these pictures on my phone at the moment, since my sister maliciously STOLE my proper camera! Stole it I tell you! Cheeky cow. :)

But anyway, if I had that, I'd whip my mini tripod out (calm down, ladies), and snap a few off with that, which ought to show it better :)

Here's a close-up of my pretty angel :)

I made a light to go above her because she couldn't really be seen :) I bought a battery-operated li'l lamp thingy from B&Q, then took a bit of card, lined one side with tin foil and the other side with wrapping paper, wrapped it around my lamp, and woila! Instant angel illumination :) Suspended from on high by "white-tac" though, so I'm a tad nervous it could come crashing down ;)

And, after I spotted this and thought of Roses' recent post, here's just the one more:

Well, I say "one more"... I mean for tonight, obviously ;) If you think I'm done yet, you've another thing coming ;)

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Thunderbirds Are Go!

Well, Manda mentioned that seeing me online, and it seemed as good an expression as any ;)

As with the post just prior to this one, I thought I'd take the opportunity to post a few pics that I've taken recently but hadn't got around to uploading :)

Microsoft Windows. Microsoft Office. Microsoft mice and keyboards. Microsoft XBox. Microsoft Halo. What's this?

...Why, it must be Microsoft Cutlery ;)

Here's how I ended my first night...

Here's a pic I took around the next day. I think I need to find out about getting a shelf there ;)

(My shaver's a self-cleaning jobby so stays plugged in all the time - not that the lead will reach! :) )

My kitchen-related purchases from Sunday just gone :) (Except the kettle. That just looks good ;) )

My Christmas tree as of a few nights ago. I just managed to find some more decorations that I wanted today, so it should be getting a spruce up soon :D

Thunderbirds Are Go!


7th December

11th December

14th December

That's better. I'd needed a clock in there ;)

Monday, December 11, 2006

Steady Progress

I think that overall, I'm happy with the amount of progress I'm making in terms of getting myself sorted out :)

I've now managed to buy a lot of those little things that technically you can do without, but realistically it's a pain to do without :)

Such as:

  • An airer (£30 from Homebase - spotted same one later in Tesco for £22) (I needed somewhere to hang washing) (Not COMPLETELY got the washer/dryer figured yet - took some towels out the other day which had a good hour+thirty mins drying time, and yet were so hot I could barely touch them, but so wet I could wring them out in the sink! Also, looks like if I use the dryer function I may very well actually have to do some ironing - to do: buy ironing board ;) or: wear more jumpers ;) )
  • More glasses. I bought four small-medium sized ones (there was a collection of glasses for various spirits when I moved in - no 'normal' glasses) from Asda on the first day or so, but they were too small as I kept having to refill my glass half way through a meal :) So I bought four pint glasses from Tesco. I'll buy a set of proper ones at some point :)
  • A bath mat (to stand on when you get out the bath, not one that goes in it) (Still want a rug/mat to go around the basin pedestal and the toilet)
  • A toilet brush (Stainless steel, £5 from Tesco)
  • A drainer (Stainless steel, £5 from Tesco - BUT, I notice it's missing one rubber foot, and it doesn't have anywhere to put your cutlery!)
  • Cutlery. I had been thinking on going for some proper 18/10 stainless steel stuff, but I had trouble meeting my criteria for style, quality, cost and availability. I.e. there was one lot I quite liked in John Lewis, but it was bloody expensive (Roughly £5/item). I also quite liked an Arthur Price set, BUT it was designed by Laurence Llewellyn-Bowen, and I'm not sure I could admit to buying it ;) So in the end I went for the cheaper 18/0 set from Argos :) Oh! To do: Buy cutlery tray thingy for drawer.
  • Saucepans (Tefal; 3 saucepans, frying pan, wok - £50 from .. from .. somewhere in town that I forgot the name of. High-street shop, think it was someone's name (Like "John Lewis", but less posh ;)
  • LOADS of kitchen utensils, containers for tea/coffee/sugar, biscuit tin. Good value from Wilkinsons - saw some stuff that looked very similar later for 3x the price in Marks & Spencer.
  • A Christmas tree! :) Yay! :) 6footer from B&Q, was only like £7.65 or something daft (I happened to go in when it was 20% off all Christmas decorations).
  • Lights for Christmas tree (white, multi-function). Also from B&Q, also for £7.65 or something. Might rearrange them again yet, as they're a little uneven. I don't have any tinsel yet. It seems to be in short supply.
  • A tape measure. I took the majority of my toolbox contents (screwdrivers, wrenches, pliers, hammers), but left behind the tape measure as Mrs M was 'always' measuring things :)
  • Coloured Christmas lights. Not worked out where to put them yet. Got one big multi-function set and a small set. They take the same bulbs, so bought several spares at the same time :) (From Wilkinsons)
  • Baking trays (Woolworths), and a holey one (advertised for chips, but did a good job with a pizza) (Tescos).
  • A set of kitchen knives. Again, I'd been pondering how much I wanted to spend on these (I wanted a 'decent' set, but I don't know enough or make enough use to go spending vast amounts), so got a set of 6 for £20 from Argos.
  • A touch lamp from Homebase. Was a right bugger tucking up into bed last night and then going "Oh bollocks! I left the light on!" It's surprisingly tricky getting into and out of a sleeping bag on an airbed. A small wriggle turns into a bigger bounce ;)

I'm dead chuffed that I have a tree up :) And that I got so much kitchen stuff. Most of the kitchen stuff that had been left was a bit manky, and I'd wanted some non-stick pans. I've now filed away the glasses, cutlery, knives, kettle, and general kitchen utensils that came with the place. I'm still using their crockery at the moment, but I can live with that for a bit and concentrate on more important things. Like even a bed perhaps ;)
Now, that WILL take some thinking about ;) Fortunately, I think there are like three... No, four places with a lot of beds nearby.

Hmm, or maybe I should sleep on it... ;)

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Mickey Waves

Remembered to get myself some oven gloves while shopping last night. They'll do for the time being ;) Started to get my fridge, freezer, and cupboards stocked up now too :)

I put my desk/table together last night (we had a spare in storage), so I now have somewhere to sit. Also got the PS2 out the box (I forgot how tiny these new ones are!) and checked it worked (no time to actually play though), and my new monitor. It occurred to me that my whizzy new 20.1" widescreen monitor is now bigger than my aging 14" telly ;) Haven't used the monitor yet, as unfortunately they shipped it with a European power adapter. Under normal circumstances, I'd probably have a few spares kicking around, but not today. Nabbed one from work for the time being ;)

Anyway, I did today finally get around to ordering a microwave, having spent countless hours staring inanely (or insanely? ;) at them. I quite liked the look of the Samsung ones (feature-wise it sounded clever, and it was black, which I thought looked quite nice, and I think it would go with appliances of any other colour in the kitchen), but I don't think it looked practical to use for everyday things.
Took the KISS points from everyone on board (That's "Keep It Simple, Stupid"), and went for a nice "microwave-only" jobbie which comes without grill, convection oven, and kitchen sink attachment. I didn't want a white one as they're booooring. The stainless steel ones look like they'll be a bugger to keep free of finger prints... But I ordered one anyway.

So I ordered one of these li'l numbers from John Lewis, as recommended by Good Housekeeping magazine, don't you know ;) Was 'only' £124 including delivery, courtesy of a £15 off voucher I was able to 'locate' ;) That might sound a lot for a microwave these days, but given the amount I'm likely to use it, might as well go for a quality one ;) If it lasts ten years, that's only just over £12/year, which is well worth it in my book :)

My ever-lasting search for quality at a justifiable value/price-point continues... ;) (i.e. I'm a tight git, but I'm happy to spend money if it seems worthwhile ;)

Next on my list? Hmm, in the immediate future, I think I need an airer, or at least somewhere to things I wash. I haven't used the washing machine yet, and ought to give it an empty spin first just to give it a rinse out. I haven't got around to doing that yet, as I want to 1. Do that when I'm there, and 2. Not do it too late at night.
I also still need to file away a lot of food I've bought in the kitchen and make homes for everything. Then I still want to give everywhere a good going over with the vacuum cleaner (I nabbed our Dyson from home, as that was something my work clubbed together and bought us as a wedding present), as I think that would help the carpets look better. Again though, it's so noisy, I don't want to do that too late at night.

Oh, so busy! :)

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

"Well, that went about as well as could be expected..."

Had a busy evening. 'Home2' first with new monitor and Playstation. Oh, and I was able to clean the funny blue stain out of the bathroom basin too :D And plugged in the phones too charge. Oh! And pumped up the airbed ;) Then out via Currys to look at microwaves for a bit. Hmm, do I want one with a grill? Or even a convection oven? See you ask me a question about computers and I know what to look for in a computer, or if not, where to find out. But where's a good site filled with microwave reviews!? :)
Some of the Samsung ones look kind of nice (and have grills and convection ovens), but they're a little pricey. They also have this "Smart Cook" feature of something, which alledgedly scans a special barcode on stuff and then uses a combination of all three things to cook it "perfectly". I'm sceptical on that for starters, before even pondering how much stuff has this special barcode. And it feels like being TOO lazy ;)

Anyway, then off to 'Home1' with Mrs M who had ordered Chinese for us both. Chomped through that swiftly, while looking for a manual for the hot water tank and one of the storage heaters that I don't have manuals for. Not figured the water tank out yet... It has two switches on the wall that enter different points on the same tank. Only one switch has a light on it though, so I'm not sure if both are needed, or only one, or one is optional, or... Who knows :)

Anyway. Then dismantled my PC and ran madly around the house for some time getting all the other "last bits and pieces" together.
I think I arrived back at 'Home2' around 10:30. Played with my phones for a bit and was pleased to see line seems happy :) Kudos to BT this time ;)
Cleaned the bath... Had a shower... Went to bed. :) Slept ok once I had stopped squiggling (I like that word :) around in my bag.

And was only 2mins late this morning! ;)

Fortunately, the ADSL checker had turned around today to allow me to place an order. PHEW! :) So, I've placed an order a li'l while ago :)

Anyway. I'm off to look at microwaves again. And then to do some shopping.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Off Into The Sunset...

Right, I'm dismantling my computer now, and will be spending my first night in my home away from home tonight.

I think BT were able to activate the phoneline today, but how long it'll take for ADSL to get installed, I do not know. I remember checking it could get ADSL, but rather ominously the checker today told me:
Your exchange has ADSL broadband.

However, despite an engineer's visit to your premises it has been proved not possible for your telephone line to support broadband service. Please accept our apologies. We are continuing to look for alternative technology solutions and this site will be updated with developments as they happen.

Thank you for your interest.


Hopefully once they've actually realised the phoneline is active that may change.

In the meantime, take care all :)

I'll still be on from work, and at least I'll have plenty of time to clean & shop during the evenings and weekends ;)
(Oh, also, I got a new Playstation 2 [I left the old one for Mrs M] and a new 20" widescreen LCD monitor to play with ;) )
Oh! And Mrs M told me we had an electric pump that I have now nicked after explaining my problem to her ;)

Anyway. See you all when I see you :)

Oh, anyone who wants any other contact details should, err, contact me ;) (Via e-mail or something - as I say, I'll still check them from work)

Right then. Here goes!

Busy Busy Busy Busy Tired

So, came back from my parents with my sister in her car.

Chained her to my new kitchen where I forced her to clean it, whilst I sodded off to move more things around ;)

Several trips back-and-forth, and a trip to-and-from storage as well sees me now fairly well prepared. Oh, a couple of trips to Asda helped with that too :)
Speaking of which... What's up with that! I went to buy a pack of two DECT (cordless) phones from Asda... I just couldn't though! Couldn't!

You know why? They were EXACTLY the same price as a pack of three phones! Same model, same manufacturer (BT), same bloody price down to the penny! What's up with that!? :) Who could manage to buy two, even if they only wanted two? :)

Home at the moment. Probably move computer tomorrow. Not slept there yet, and still here tonight too.

Sorry, little rambly, bit tired (lots of to'ing-and-fro'ing and carrying and lifting). Off to bed now, night night :)

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Of the Two Options...

I went for the third.

A trip around the motorway to my parents.

Told them this evening what was happening. Mum was very shocked and upset and hadn't been expecting it, despite the fact she had apparently pondered about some things (E.g. we didn't order the wedding photos yet, we still never did send any thank you letters).

Both, of course, were supportive though, and acknowledged that while they'd like us to be together, my happiness was more important. etc. (Sorry, I'm summarising roughly, but I'm tired and mind is hibernating for the night ;) )

Anyway, I need to get to sleep so that I can be ready to head back and do some moving tomorrow!

Friday, December 01, 2006

A Picture Paint a Thousand Words

There we go then! Those are my keys and that's my hall in the background, that is. (Gosh, I have a hall! We don't even hall at the moment ;) )

On the plus side, I have now completely 100% furnished the master bedroom:

I don't think I really need to bother getting anything more for the whole place at all now ;)
Bed... laptop... That should do ;) Oh, although I do have no Internet access for the time being. I expect that to take a couple of weeks to sort out. I'll still be around at least this weekend on-and-off, and from work, though.

Incidentally, the airbed is only about 50% blown up. But after a good 1.5 hours of pumping at the bastard thing, my feet are about done for. I think the pump is a bit faulty, and loses AT LEAST as much air out the sides as comes out the hose.

On the plus side, at least I have a choice of beds available to me for tonight ;)

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Moving Swiftly On...

...Is something I may be doing tomorrow.

They were unable to locate any skeletons hiding in my closet (either I don't have any, or they're well hidden - I'm not telling which ;) ). Consequently, I now have tomorrow afternoon off, for an appointment at 2pm with the agent. I shall be paying the remainder of the "up front" fees, before progressing on to the property itself, doing the inventory/condition check, and then, I rather believe, I get the keys!


Meanwhile, Mrs M is actually off this evening until Sunday to see her parents, and to tell them what's been happening.

We'd already discussed the possibility that my move could be happening this weekend, and agreed that even if it did, I'd at least come back for one night, so that she didn't return to an all-of-a-sudden empty house.

I think I need to possibly perhaps just maybe start doing some packing.

I may drive over to see and tell my parents at some point this weekend too, but I've not worked out a "schedule" yet.

Well. ... ... Nope, that's all I've got to say :)

Of Drink & Debauchery (Well, at least one of them, anyway)

So, I got back from town, and immediately had to start figuring out what to do about the evening, having spent the rest of the day being indecisive about the flat ;)

I'd worked out what I'd be wearing to drive and get there in - given I was already wearing it when I went to town ;) (I was looking at a 1hour+ drive, so I didn't fancy driving in my suit so I could change in my room when I got there and feel more relaxed).
I have two suits - a black one and a blue one - but I only tend to wear the black one these days, be it occasional for business-related purposes, or for the occasional "evenings" such as this one.

Normally (i.e. the last six years of Christmas dos ;) ), I would wear my black suit and a colourful shirt, and an appropriate tie to match shirt. A nice red or green shirt is good for the Christmassy colour :) I also have a Christmassy tie (with an annoying tune playing thingy in it) that my sister bought for me a few years ago. This year, I didn't really fancy wearing something Christmassy yet, as despite the fact it's technically our Christmas party, there is still a whole month to go :)

In fact, I actually decided that it was time for a change from the norm, and that I would in fact wear... a black shirt!
I've had a black shirt lurking in my wardrobe for a couple of months now, but I hadn't found an appropriate juncture to actually wear it :) I decided that it'd work well this evening with a shiny silverish tie :)

I gathered together whatever else it was I thought I needed (shaver, toothbrush, etc.) and went to print out the information I had on where I was going and when I was getting there. Unfortunately, I had that information at work, and it turned out that I was completely unable to connect remotely to work all of a sudden. DOH!
Fortunately, I was fairly sure I could remember which hotel it was we were staying at, and a quick Google revealed a familiar website.
I couldn't be certain what time the meal actually started (as I couldn't get in to my work e-mails to check), but I decided to assume 7. Given around 1.5 hours to drive there, I needed to get my skates on as it was already coming up for 5pm :)
After having got outside, I then spent about 15mins swearing at the 100 assorted cables that my new GPS bits had, before eventually managing to leave at around 5:05pm.

Fortunately, the journey there was somewhat uneventful.

And I think that's about all that happened really, not much springs to mind after that ;)

What!? ;)

Well, I arrived at 6:45pm, and was pleased to find out that the meal wasn't until 8pm, so I did have some time to go up to my room, get changed, and relax from the drive.

Watched a bit of Planet Earth. It was a repeat, but I hadn't been paying much attention the last time it was on ;)

Anyway, I made it downstairs for about 8pm, and within moments had acquired pint of Grolsch. Menu selections were made in the bar area, before proceeding off to sit down for the meal. What did I select? Ermmm... Some sort of "oriental" starter (it was three things, quite tasty, not sea-y though - or I likely wouldn't have ordered it ;), a 10oz sirloin steak (rare), and... Oh wait, I didn't order dessert at this point, which is good, as I can't remember what it was anyway ;)

At this point, I switched from the beer to red wine. Now, at this point, I also feel compelled to disclose how much I drink of an average week ;)
An average week for me sees me have a pint of a Friday lunchtime, and that's me lot. Sometimes, only sometimes mind, I might stretch to a pint and a half ;)
Now, on top of that, I weigh just under 9 stone (that's... under 126 pounds for any Americans ;) ). So, what I'm saying is, I probably can't drink that much ;)

However, throughout the meal, I did get through three glasses of red. And it was a very nice meal :) Glad I said "rare" on the steak - I had pondered "medium rare", but it appeared to be an over-eager chef, and I've probably had more rare "mediums" than this ;) (Eugh, especially the first time I had steak in a restaurant - "well done" in France beats "rare" here on the "ridiculous amounts of blood" levels ;) Still, not complaining, I enjoyed it anyway :)

'Ey, and I tell 'ya what, I pulled a couple of crackers that night though...

(You know what's coming, don't you, and yes, I apologise in advance)

Yep, I pulled one with m' colleague Needles (sitting to my left), and one with Loud Jack's partner (sitting to my right). The company had also bought us each a li'l silly book. I have "the little eBay book" which tells you about "the website's most weird and wonderous". Others included "Management Bollocks" and "Insulting Gestures".

I think I had a fruity cheesecake for dessert. It was ok, but not special. Several other people were unimpressed with their desserts.

Shortly after that, BB's wife, who had been very restrained throughout the evening until then, asked, "So, come on then Monkfish, what's going on with your wife?", or something very much along those lines ;)
Some shifting of seats took place. More wine was suggested, but we discovered we'd already got through most of the 2nd set of bottles, so I ended up getting a glass of white as there wasn't any red left.

We adjourned to the lounge for a bit, where the subjects continued to be varied, and occasionally coming back to me. Some expressed "Awh, leave him alone!" opinions, but to be honest, I wasn't all that bothered answering questions. I'm comfortable enough at the moment with talking about it to be able to do that, and I didn't expect any to really be poignant enough to get much out of me ;)
At some point, someone did ask something like, "So how often do you have sex?" to which I'd drunk enough to reply with, "March."
(Yeah, like I'd have drunk enough to say "Just coming up for six years actually, but we last had a bit of a fun fondle back in March" - I don't think so)
Someone did thoughtfully point out that March was when we got married. "Yes," I said. "It was."

Drinks check: 1 pint Grolsch, 3x Glasses red wine, 1x Glass white wine.

Now, I must confess, I did something many of you will perceive as downright unacceptably dispickable behaviour at this point, for someone in this situation with an unlimited supply of free drink.

That's right... My next three drinks were tap water ;)

I could feel at that point I was already really quite drunk and I needed a breather from drinking. At some point, I decided some fresh air would be a good idea.

I nipped outside and after a short while decided a short run around the car park would be a good idea. Running around a wet and slippery car park in the dark when you feel you've had too much to drink isn't THE most sensible idea that one can come up with ;)
I slipped over turning a corner, and landed on my left side, bruising my leg and grazing my arm. I dusted my suit down, before returning inside, feeling glad that nobody else had been around to see me ;)
After a couple of minutes, I decided to inspect my war wounds, so hopped up to my room. Tidied my suit up some more (no permanent damage, it was just a little grubby in places) and ran my arm under the tap. Apparently I did take about 20minutes and they wondered where I'd gone ;)

After returning, I was eventually happy to resume drinking again, and had a couple of Southern Comforts. It was at some point now that we noticed two or three hotel staff 'enthusiastically' escorting someone from the premises.

It was probably around 2-3am that I decided to nip outside again. This time, I was more careful to trot carefully around the car park ;)

Upon returning to the hotel entrance, I was surprised to find the automatic doors did not open as I approached them. I took a few steps back, and tried again. Nothing. I lightly tried sliding it, but could tell it didn't want to. "Oh," I thought, "I guess they turn them off automatically opening from this side once it gets late."
As I began to look for some sort of doorbell, I was aware of someone else arriving.

"They appear not to be opening automatically," I said, as I located and pushed the doorbell thingy.

The other bloke appeared to be a little less patient than myself, as he rattled the doors in frustration. Lightly, at first, but then with excessive force.

"Calm down, mate," I offered by the way of advice. Clearly a sign I had been drinking, as I didn't think anything of saying it ;)

He ignored my presence however, and decided to start banging on the glass. It sounded a surprisingly loud bang. At this stage, hotel employees had arrived on the other side. I noticed that the glass appeared to have been shattered outwards from where he had hit it - not smashed, and still in place, but cracks emitted to every corner from the centre of the pane.
"I told you to go away!" exclaimed the hotel staff, or something along those lines.
The bloke suddenly ran off to my right, straight past me. The hotel staff turned and walked back into the hotel.

I looked around for a few seconds (at the empty lobby on the other side of the door, at the broken pane of glass, at the direction the bloke had run off), and rang the doorbell again. Someone let me in without any difficulty or even questions.

Curiously, luckily perhaps, I appeared to have remained remarkably unnoticed throughout the whole affair.

I hadn't realised until someone else told me, but the bloke was the same one as had been "ejected" from the hotel earlier. Nobody actually has any idea who he was, who he was with, or what he was doing there.
Bad news though, as the bar had decided to stop serving drinks at this point. My boss complained at the reasons given for this. ("I don't mind," he said, "If it's because of that bloke, but if it is, just say it is. Don't come up with some bollocks about [whatever the silly reason was but I wasn't really paying enough attention]")
This news was immediately enough for Loud Jack to decide he was straight off to bed then, thank you very much. After 5 minutes, he returned to pull his partner up too, complaining that he hadn't seen her for 10 days as she'd been to Antigua.
BB insists he actually said, "as I haven't had sex in 10 days", although I don't think he actually SAID that, but clearly MEANT it ;)
Shortly after this, BB and his wife also departed for bed - apparently they had decided earlier to make sure to outlast Loud Jack and his partner, after she had been boasting about "always being the last one up".

By now, this left only myself and my boss (the other one having gone a couple of hours earlier). We chatted for a bit, and watched the police arrive and talk to a couple of hotel staff about the incident.
After a while, the night manager came over to us and apologised for having closed the bar and offered us both drinks (I'm not sure who was actually paying for them, though). I declined at first, but then joined my boss with another half of Grolsch, my final drink of the night.
For those paying attention, that's:
1 pint Grolsch, 3 x Red wines, 1 x White wine, 2 x Southern Comforts, 0.5 pint Grolsch. Overall, I think I did fairly well ;)

I think my boss said afterwards that he thought we went to bed at around 3:45am. I know I didn't actually get to bed until 4:15am, although that could be related to the fact that after I got up to my room, I eventually realised (with, may I add, only a bare minimum of noise) that I had left my key in the room when I had retreated there earlier in the night.
Back downstairs I popped, where I was easily and swiftly furnished with new key (The advantage of keycards, I guess). The night manager apologised again for the 'incident'. I said something along the lines of "No problem, these things happen sometimes. And besides, I've been a bit of a plonker for leaving my key in my room."
It was something along those lines anyway. It was quite late, and I was quite drunk ;)

I made it back to my room ok after that (sure enough, the original keycard sat glaringly in the middle of the desk upon my return), and as I said, I think it was 4:15 before I had flopped properly into bed. I set an alarm for 10am, on the off chance I wanted breakfast which finished at 10:30.

The next time I looked at the clock it was 8am. I actually have no recollection of sleeping, so I think I must have been kidnapped by aliens ;) (hey, if you're going to lose track of a few hours, at least I was in my bed, rather than a bathroom or something ;)
I got back to sleep swiftly, and woke up at 10 when the alarm went off.

Oh boy, did I ever know I'd been drinking the night before ;) On the occasions I do drink a lot (for me), I don't often feel seriously hung over in my head, but I can tell you I did right then ;) Throbbing headache, all noises too loud, all light too bright, the full works ;)
I shuffled to the loo, then back to bed, and put the alarm back to 11. I didn't really get back to sleep though. The pain was one thing, but I gradually started feeling a bit 'ill'. Eventually, come 11, I decided enough was enough, and I had to move to the bathroom which would probably jog me into being properly ill ;) Which would be reeeeasonbly fortunate as these things go, as that's the room you want to be in at that point ;)

Over the years, the times I've drunk enough to throw up probably number less than five. Having said that, I don't recall having been sick for a reason other than excessive alcohol ingestion at all over the last seven years (An easy number to pick on, being the time I've lived here).
And I was very properly very 'ill' ;) Fortunately, not in any 'wrong' places ;)

Once I was done being ill, the headache and general nausea somewhat subsided, and I was left more feeling very drained and still somewhat drunk. I left the alarm (well, my phone; I'd been carrying it back and forward with me since 11) on snooze the whole time, to ensure I didn't fall asleep anywhere silly ;) (Or even in bed, once I made it back there). So I spent 20 or 30minutes in bed not quite getting asleep, before I decided eventually I really should move at 11:45, bearing in mind checkout time was 12 ;)

I didn't bother shaving, and within 30 seconds you couldn't tell I'd brushed my teeth ;)

Once I made it downstairs to checkout (12:15), several of my colleages had already left, but some were still around. I sat around for a bit and chatted with them. I drank a couple of cups of tea, had a biscuit, and leafed through some "Sport" magazine. The interview with Ronaldinho didn't do much for me, but there was an interesting article on some people who are going to the Southern Pole of Inaccessibility (POI). Basically, it's the point pretty much in the centre of Antarctica. The only people ever to have been there were some Russians in 1958. The Russians did it with huge military vehicles. The current team will be pretty much walking there.
The coldest natural temperature ever recorded on Earth is -90degrees celcius. This was recorded in Vostok, Antarctica, a Russian research station. The POI has a higher altitude and is further inland, so stands a chance of hitting even lower temperatures! Crazy stuff :)

It was about 2pm before I left the hotel. And then I spent about an hour playing with cables and GPS in the car, and trying to work out how to tune a radio-station in ;) I also just recently got one of those thingies that lets you transmit an MP3 player or whatever onto an FM station to be picked up on your car radio so you can play it over the car speakers, and I hadn't got around to playing with that at all until now :)
I was quite happy taking my time, as I didn't really think I was in a state I should be doing all that much driving.
Eventually, I headed towards Southampton and did some random driving around there.

Being so close to both Dianne and to 'Manda, I'd have loved to have met up with one or other of them (especially my good friend Dianne, whom I really should get around to at least phoning one of these days ;) whilst I was at that end of the country, but did not for a variety of reasons. Probably for the best, as I really doubt my conversation skills were doing that well, let alone my breath that could cut through bank vaults, and not having shaved ;) Still, on the other hand, at least I'd have some great excuses if they didn't enjoy my company ;)

Eventually arrived home at 7pm. Had a great time :)

RIGHT THEN! Is THAT enough detail for you!? :) Ok ok, I know, too much there really, but I don't really do much of that whole "drinking" thing, so it's all interesting to me ;)

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Saturday Part 1, and Property Progress

I was going to call this "Saturday Night", but then I realised I'd include some of Saturday day too. Plus, there was a very real and terrible danger of my quoting Whigfield ;)

I managed to get downstairs by about 10am. For a Saturday, that's pretty good for me ;)

Looking back at the time I made that blog post, I am genuinely surprised that it was as early as 11:40 that I had made my decision. It felt like hours ;)

I'm often not "worried" specifically (or at least, conciously) about making the wrong decision. But this sort of one, this is the sort of thing that could be life-changing. Ok, not on the scale of having decided to do it in general, but the dilemma was thinking about where and how I want to spend the next six months.

I was still thinking about the two places I had seen and liked. The main points that made deciding difficult for me were:
- Furnished place I had not actually seen the one I would get
- Unfurnished place was unfurnished ;)

And then:
- Furnished place was furnished ;)

See, I had initially only been looking for (part-)furnished. But there aren't that many places around at the moment which are furnished (lots of regs regarding how fire/smoke-proof stuff is, I gather), so I had expanded my search into unfurnished.

Now, the problem with unfurnished is that there's no furniture ;) It still tends to include everything you'd want in the kitchen (with the exception of one of those things that stands in there and does the work for you ;), but that's about your lot. No beds, no chairs, no nothing.

So it's great that a furnished place you can just turn up at and there you go, you're sorted. Buuuut, on the other hand, the place I was thinking about would be completely fully furnished. Absolutely everything you could need or want already there. Well, great... But, actually, would I really want that? Can't get any of your own tastes or ideas in there then. Do I want to live with someone else's ideas for the next six months?

But on the other hand... Do I really want the time, expense and effort of having to buy it all? I mean on top of the cost it's the time and hassle of sorting out.

But then again, the unfurnished place is bigger...

Overall, I think it's fair to say I wasn't making much progress ;) Whilst I knew the unfurnished place had a viewing late Saturday, it wasn't likely they'd all of a sudden place a deposit on it. But I felt I wanted to make my mind up before Saturday evening really, so I could just stop thinking about it.

But thinking about it and doing random Googles on the areas and looking at Google Earth and Microsoft Live! Virtual Earth images (which interestingly the house doesn't even exist on, as it wasn't built yet ;) really wasn't getting me anywhere.

One thing I eventually did realise was that if the furnished one had gone, I'd put the deposit on the unfurnished one. If the unfurnished one had gone, I still wouldn't know about the furnished one, on account of not having seen it (I'm just concerned it might not be ready on time, or that there could be a more serious flaw with it).

So, I eventually convinced myself to just put the bloody offer in ;)

Went for a bath/shower after that, just to relax for a bit. Was about an hour, but I probably felt better :)
Filled it the form I had after that (That took longer than I was expecting - only about a page did I actually need to fill out, but thinking about it, and writing slowly and carefully all takes time :)
Left for town after that, with my filled-in (or was that filled-out?) form and proof of identity. Picked up the £200 cash deposit on the way to the Agent's.

What happens after that? Well, the next two major bits are doing a credit check on me, and writing to my employer for references, and to confirm my length of time working here (7 years. Well, 7 years employed here, at any rate ;), and my salary (an amount I am happy with ;).

I heard late Monday afternoon that the credit check came back with no problems, and they had posted the request for references to my employer. That request arrived today, and my boss has written a response back, which he'll be faxing back today.

Well, that took longer than I was expecting, so I'll have to "do" the evening later. Sorry to keep you in suspense ;)

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Jiggety Jig

Home again.

Drank too much. Didn't sleep enough. Had a good time :)

Might go into more detail later, but right now, I'm off to go try for some sleeeeep. :)

Saturday, November 25, 2006

And That, As They Say, Is That

Forms filled in. Deposit paid.

Now, I have to run around, get me whistle ready and scoot off quick to my work's "Christmas" party that's dahn saff a way :)

Well, people were all booked through December! :)

Anyway. Free food, free drink, free room for the night... I gotta get ready or I'll miss it!

Have a great weekend, all! :)

Let's See...

I just made an offer of £25 under the "asking price" on the unfurnished (#2) property if I go in and place a deposit on it today.


Rejected, they offered £15 under (had already heard that was feasible without really trying though). Offered £20 under ;)



Taking longer for phone call back this time...



I'll fill in the forms and pop in within an hour or two with the deposit.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Out of Place

Hmm, so, I saw one place last night and four today.

The 1pm appointment was a waste of time. It was one out the paper, and I had a poor impression of the landlord from the off. Having arranged an appointment for 1pm today, he'd asked me to phone him 30mins in advance. Why should I be having to phone him!?
Anyway, I did so, and he said the tenant was out or busy so I couldn't see at at 1 after all. "Forget it, then," I said. He rang back a minute later to say I could go "now" if I wanted after all for some reason. So, the current tenant showed me around - a shy Indian lady who was busy looking after two children and probably hadn't been expecting to do this.

I saw two with one agency after that. Should have been three, but there was a problem getting keys for the third. First one I discounted very quickly. Poorish state of affairs, and there was a large dent in the bathroom door where presumably someone had lost their anger with it at some point in the past. Second one I saw with him was alright, bit small for the money, but includes free use of a pool and gym.

But, there have been two I liked - one last night, one first thing this morning.

Last night's:

I returned during daylight in case you wondered ;)

Would have this view out the window.

Good: Fully furnished down to even cutlery, literally just been redecorated, nice view over the town (as opposed to where we currently are where we're facing the wrong side of the hill ;) ), landlord seemed a nice enough chap (spoke to the owner, he has it as a "pension fund")
Bad: Perhaps a little small, but fully furnished makes up for it. Quite steep getting up there, might be a pain come ice in the winter. Might get knackered carrying shopping up from the car climbing the steps up to it ;) (You can park closer than I have taken the pic, but the steps aren't really visible) And: I haven't actually SEEN it yet. I saw the place next door which his partner owns. The one I am looking at is in the middle of being decorated, so all I have seen is the wrong side of the door (I am mildly concerned by this, but he said should be fine to see next week).

This morning's:

Sorry for dodgy angled+sun in lens pic :)

Would have this view out the window.

Good: Pretty spacious, well decorated, have enjoyed my dealings with the agent who manages the property (they've actually contacted me very swiftly each time and felt pleasant to deal with, unlike most others, surprisingly!)
Undecided: Somewhat more "estatey", in the middle of a whooole lot of identical houses.
Bad: Unfurnished, and at the top end of my budget for which I had originally been thinking furnished.
The problem with unfurnished is the hassle of organising things, and being left with a bunch of stuff I might not want. On the other hand, might be nice to know it's my own things and to do it the way I'd like.

1 is closer to work by a "minute" according to AutoRoute, although on a bad morning or evening I reckon that could turn into 20 ;)
2 is closer to town, and may be in a slightly more pleasant area (My wife prefers the look and area of 2 from what I showed her just now - I've no idea what areas are "rough" particulary)

Despite being unfurnished, I do quite like the size of 2 at the moment, I think, which makes it quite tempting. I've e-mailed them for a 2nd viewing and some more details.
I can get a viewing of the 1st (as in, the actual one I'd be in) next week if I want one.

Time to sleep on it :)


Thursday, November 23, 2006

Not Again...

This is getting silly, the last few times I've taken a little holiday, I've finished it thinking... I need a holiday! :)

Long day today, and somewhat worn out now. Even had a li'l nap when I got in, so I feel a bit better for that, actually :)

I saw this fellow around today, and I thought Roses and Ing would appreciate the pic ;)

Bigger and taller than me, but I suspect Ing in his body armour and helmet would be more than fair competition :)

He was a bit quiet and motionless, but I think he was just preparing to leap into action should he spot a platoon of Covenant warriors around the corner :)

I gather he's "between jobs" at the moment, hence the reason he's hanging out here in a computer games shop, rather than out saving the world. He does expect things to get fairly busy sometime next year, though ;)

What else did I do? Oh, I bought... some wrapping paper.

And, I was outraged, outraged by BHS's blatant display of astoundingly good value on Christmas cards that left me lost to know what to do.
I thought, since it always takes me roughly six bazillion years to choose cards, that I'd have a quick glance around at the Christmas cards. I find choosing something that 1. I like, 2. I think the other person would like, 3. Has acceptable words, quite awkward :)
Anyway, didn't want to spend £6 on one in Clintons, then saw some nice hand-made ones in BHS for only £2.80 (30% off)!

BUT... BUT... I started picking one up I liked... And it was six, yes SIX for £2.80! Now, as I was thinking of cards for family, I don't want to send those cards to different people! And I also can't send them the same cards for six years! ;)
So stuck in that confusing quandry, I ended up not buying any :)

I'll try to blog again later on other stuff. Right now, I've just put on Shawshank Redemption, and we have pizza :) More importantly, I have Chicken Strippers, Potato Wedges, and Chicken Dunkers :D Yum yum :) Fancied this after a long day, today :)

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Right then

That's a little more like it.

- I have one viewing that I'll scoot off to shortly.

- Five booked for tomorrow.

- Cancelled an old phone contract (Well, actually, moved it from contract to PAYG, so that I didn't need to provide written notice)

- Found out I couldn't migrate another old number to a new contract (I should have found out weeks ago, but better late than never)

- Cancelled a credit card (Surprisingly easily! Was quite shocked! Thank you Mint!)

Not bad! :)

Well, so long as a viewing turns into more than that :)

Remain Calm

I can't see that and help but think, "Remain calm, Kryten. This is your CPU speaking. There has been an accident. Both your legs have been crushed beyond repair. Your ambulatory system has been destroyed, and your life expectancy is currently estimated at 67 minutes. If there is any further news, we will keep you updated. In the mean time, here is a little music." [Cue muzak rendition of "Copacabana"]

Anyway. I've spent a few hours looking at places online today. And what progress have I actually made? Measurably? None. Grrrrr.

This is the sort of thing I'm not very good at. I'd normally leave this sort of thing to Mrs M who is better at it. I don't like getting wound up about stuff normally (either do it and be happy, or don't do it and don't bother getting stressed about it), but this is exactly the sort of thing I want to try to challenge myself to do over the next few months, and I'm struggling already.
At least I'm trying, and putting effort in, but I'm still feeling frustrated by it all.

So there :-P

I'd like to say I feel a bit better for that, but all I've done is waste more time ;)

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Last Weekend, Next Weekend, and the Bits Inbetween

Well, the weekend just gone, I did roughly nothing.

Yesterday, as you know, I told several of the people I work with. My other boss also knew by the end of the day and talked to me about it too.
I told the other couple of people I thought I should tell at work today (one had already heard rumours off the jungle drums ;) (hmm, who used that phrase recently in a different way?). That only leaves one person, and I don't feel a need to specifically tell him, as we hardly know each other.

Loud Jack (Well, I thought I'd aim for some slightly imaginative pseudonyms ;)asked whether I had another date lined up for Saturday already! lol :) (Neither do I have one, nor would I want one)

He then appeared to "recommend" I "try" some young, single mothers...

lol, it didn't occur to me until I began writing that line, that the description could apply to Roses and Dianne ;) Ok, just let me point out for the record that that IS just a coincidence ;) No offence, ladies ;)

I've not put enough effort into looking for anywhere since Friday. With that in mind, I've booked Wednesday and Thursday off, to give me a chance to concentrate on booking some more viewings and easily having a chance to make them without worrying about missing out on work.

Obviously, there have been some questions so far, but overall, I've had time to "adjust" to the situation, so it's not like they're too difficult or shocking to answer. I suspect the fun will start Saturday night ;) Especially after BB's wife is a couple of drinks in - he said he asked her to promise not to ask any questions, but, well, she has no fear ;)

Saturday should be fun though, and I think overall I'm probably looking forward to it :)

Monday, November 20, 2006

Deep Slow Breaths


Well, I just told the people I work with what's happening.

Told three of them in one go, since they all happened to be in the room at the same time, and those were the three I'd wanted to tell first (one of my bosses, two of m' learned colleagues).

Whilst I knew several had suspected something was up, I think it somewhat took all of them aback.

It's my work's Christmas do this coming Saturday (everyone happened to be booked throughout December). This year, as well as the food and drink being paid for, they've also paid for hotel rooms for us all. I decided it would seem odd to go with Mrs M. Of course, it will seem at least as odd not to. I had been hoping I could have been moved out by this point, but, it seems not.

Phew. Was that really only three? Felt like a lot more ;)

Aaaaand relax.

Friday, November 17, 2006

We'll Chalk That One Up To God


That was a waste of an hour.

You may have guessed it did not go well ;)

Actually, it was arguably worse than that.

I found the place on yesterday, and ticked the "Send more details" and "Arrange a viewing" boxes. She phoned this morning and we arranged a viewing for 4:15.
"And could you e-mail me confirmation of that?", I asked.
She did so. The e-mail confirmed the time, and the name of the property.

I went back to Rightmove to check where it was on the map that was included under the property's details.

"I'll leave at 4", I thought, "Will probably only take ten mins to get there, and then five mins looking for it."

Well, I didn't count on the London Road traffic actually not moving. By 4:30 I had made it as far as "almost around the corner". My phone rang. I said I was "almost around the corner."
"Ah right," said the voice at the other end, "The person going to meet you is stuck in the same traffic, so she's not there yet either."
"Phew!" I thought.

It had been pretty dismal by the time I left work - it's been bucketing it down all day, so by the time I actually made it to the road it was just plain dark. I had a feeling as to which side of the road it was on (from the map, and the picture of the place). Drove up and down two or three times (and it's a long road) before I spotted a sign for it, on the other side of the road to what I had been expecting.
I was just turning in when my phone rang again.

"I think I've just got here. I'm next to a sign for it now. Has Whats-her-name arrived then?" (I was speaking to someone at the Agency, rather than the person I was actually meeting)

"Yes, she's been there about 15 minutes now, and she has another appointment to be off to soon."

I described what was around me.

"Oh. You're in completely the wrong place."

" ! "

"You're at the Sales & Marketing Suite. The actual place is further up London Road, about three miles away."

" ! ? ! But... This is where it was in the map on Rightmove, and I was never given any more information than that."

"Well, it's about three miles away, and Whats-her-name has another appointment to get to."

"Oh. Well, she might as well get going then, and we'll arrange another appointment. What about tomorrow?"
By then, I was concious of the fact that I was already going to be away from work longer than I had expected, and was thinking of the time myself.

"Well, I'll tell you what, I'll give her a ring and check."

Minutes pass.

"Yes, she's had to go on to her next appointment, and I'm afraid we're fully booked for tomorrow."

"Right. Well. I'll contact you if I want to make another appointment then."

So, as I said... That was a waste of an hour ;)

I checked the details I had available to me. Even now, I have no idea where this place is actually supposed to be, they simply haven't given me the information. I'm not convinved I'll bother looking at any more of the properties that they have advertised ;)

Time For a Quick One

Viewing today @ 4:15pm. Absolute top-end of my budget, but may be furnished to the degree you see on "property porn".

Thursday, November 16, 2006


Just found out that the place I was interested in already has a deposit on it.

The landlord is abroad at the moment so had been awkward to contact. When the estate agent did reach him, he found out another estate agent had already taken someone's deposit even by the time that I looked at it.
Apparently the landlord isn't entirely convinced that the other person will meet the credit check, and they'll get back to me if not.

Bit of a bugger, as it had a lot of good points. On top of that, it means I've 'wasted' most of today simply waiting to find that out (I began worrying at lunch time when I noticed the property had disappeared off the website). Had been waiting for the guy to call me anyway, e-mailed him this morning, called at lunchtime, then called again now at 3pm to finally find out - wish they'd have at least just told me asap. Ohhh well. Onwards and upwards!

Itsa Bitsa!

Does anyone remember that programme? I think it came along by the time Tony Hart had stopped doing stuff really. I think I was a little old for it by then, but my sister liked it.

Anyway, this is a bit of a "bitty" post :) But I can't remember why. I was GOING to start writing it a few hours ago, but one thing led to another, and that led to something else, and then that thing led me back to the first thing which had led me onto the other one, and frankly it all got a bit confusing after that.

Nuhmbar three tonight... It was ok. 1 bedroom, not a poor size (not great), location not bad. BUT, not available until around middle of December, AND, this is advertised at the same price as #1 I saw today.
Hmmm, that's a difficult comparison... #1 has double the bedrooms, and both the main bedroom and the living room are larger... Oh wait, not so difficult after all ;)

So, as it was only 5 mins away from #1, I swang back there on my way home. Just to "scope it out" at a different time. I got out the car and had a tiny wander. Nothing struck me as wrong. Can hear the main road all of the time, but I don't think it would be an issue. So, I think it shall be my intention to pursue it some more :)

As for how I'm feeling about the whole process at the moment in terms of the "relationship" aspects... I'm not feeling much. I think there's that element of concentrating on the "doings" so not being aware of it. I don't know though, hard to tell ;) As for Mrs Monkfish, we were talking about it earlier and she said she has started to realise that yes, it looks like I really might be going.
"Yes," I said, "I am."

The conversation started by her asking her what needed to change while I was away for me to arrive at whatever decision. I said I think it wasn't so much about change at the moment, so much as time. To work out where I want to be.
Wanting more solid things to work with than that, she asked about this and that, and I went over some examples I had given before and some new ones.
For example, I don't really mind what she eats, but she does eat excessively at the moment; it would be nice to see that solved (It is a shame - this time last year, she was en route to arriving at the lightest she has been since I've known her - she has now returned to the heaviest - she tried so so hard, and it's such a shame to see all that effort wasted, and, of course, it upsets her too).

Slightly smaller things included the TV. She had her therapy tonight. After she left, I turned the TV off. I don't really like it on when I'm not watching something specific, as I tend to watch whatever rubbish is on. The moment she got back in, she turned it on, without considering I may have wanted it off.
Now, the tricky part, is that overall, I'm not strongly opinionated on this in itself. After all, if she wants something on and I don't, then I simply wouldn't bother arguing because I don't care that much.
The problem comes from the fact that on a daily basis, I really don't mind all that much. But when you take a whoooole lot of days and stick them all next to each other, you do think, "Well, I wish she'd think of my viewpoint for a change".

Same thing with takeout food. I don't mind it occasionally. She knows I don't really like it though (I'm not especially keen on the food, nor am I especially keen in spending the money on it), but I really can't be bothered to argue that anymore. I can't be bothered to put up with the guilt & unhappiness (she tends to almost feel punished by this) at saying I don't want it.

Sorry wasn't really intending to rant specifically, but I think I did so ;) And I was planning to rant on a different subject!

Ordered a new GPS box recently to connect to my PDA (had one before, lost it - don't ask). Ordered the bit that gets the signal and a car mount for my PDA, both off of eBay.
The GPS thingy itself arrived today. The car mount people sent me an e-mail to tell me it wasn't in stock.

THEN WHY DID YOU PUT IT ON EBAY? Huh? :) Honestly. :) AND I know it said "In Stock" on the auction item at the time. What a fun waste of time ;)

Oh dear, been rambling far longer than I intended, best stop, time for bed :)

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

The Hunt is On

Viewed two more places this morning, and I have another scheduled for this evening.

Nuhmberr Wohne (Sorry, had an urge to 'say' that in an American accent. Think it's a random recollection of a tiny part of a TV programme many moons ago)

Fairly happy with this. Location is decent, relative to work and town. Close enough to work that I could theoretically walk to work, but I realistically would not do so (steep hill to climb, tight corners, no path in places I think, people drive too fast). Nice enough journey by car though ;)

3rd/top floor. Surprisingly spacious. Not specifically well presented, but well furnished. Two bedrooms - theoretically both double, but would be a squeeze in the second. Approaching the upper end of my budget, but location is good, it's furnished, and it's got two bedrooms, so it does a good job of justifying the price to me.

Standard term would be six months. Will find out about three, as people may just be keen to have someone in over Christmas. I'm more open to six now, though. Seems like something I need to consider, and I can at least come up with a use for it - if we decide to get back together, may make a useful temporary jumping ground to somewhere bigger to help break the "property chain" up a bit.

It was "bought to let" by the owner, but is managed the agency. Contact would be via them.

Nuhmbar Twoh (Still in silly accent ;)

Within very easy walking distance of work, which puts it into a very desirable postcode. The price reflects that. Absolute top end of my budget. Smaller than number one, but still two bedrooms. Unfurnished (The description hadn't specified). Again, contact would be via the agency. Heard it was unfurnished before I got there, but thought it would be worth a look anyway.
Would not say I was especially interested in it - I feel it's almost "too close" to work (Mrs M couldn't see how you could be "too close" ;), and I'm not sure I'd want to live in such a "desirable" postcode, regardless of price ;)
Even if it was the same price as number one, it's still both smaller and unfurnished, and I don't think I could reasonably justify the price to myself.

I expect this evening's to be more similar to number one than two, but will have to wait to find out. So, I'll find out what that looks like. Initial impressions are that I quite liked number one and will give it serious consideration on either three months or six.

Will update later, following number three :)

Friday, November 10, 2006

How was it for you?

Well, it was... "ok".

By no means great, nor was it quite as good as I was hoping for. But I could be at this game forever if I go looking for exactly what I want. I do need to be a little more spontaneous with this sort of thing.

In terms of "essential" furnishings, I think the only thing it didn't have was a bed. Had wardrobes and kitchen appliances. I don't mind needing to get one or two important things, though.

The minimimum let period is usually six months, and this is true with the majority of lets that this estate agents deals with. Said I was more thinking three at the moment. (I've no idea what's going to happen, ... )

Estate agent will speak to landlord this afternoon to see about that. I added that I was keen to get things moving as fast as possible if it was a goer.

Not sure how I felt about it overall. Not enamoured by it, and I don't think I'd want to live there "long term". Might "do" for a few months though.

There were two doors and two staircases into the building, and presumably two doors to apartments located on the other side of each of those staircases/doors.
The door to the apartment next to "mine" (as the estate agent would say) appeared to have lost its glass, but its owner had thoughtfully put some newspaper in its place for a little light reading.

So, overall, not sure, but need to find out whether three months is a possibility anyway.

Update, 16:10
Have requested details on a bunch more places. I liked the location relative to work of this one, and price-wise it seemed pretty reasonable, but having seen it I'm not so sure.

Thursday, November 09, 2006


(Well, I was thinking of "House!" ;) )

A Well Presented 1 Bedroom Apartment Situated To The East Side Of Town.

Entrance Hall, Kitchen, Bedroom, Bathroom, Sitting Room Communal Garden And Allocated Parking.

Part Furnished. Available Immediately.

I have booked an appointment to see that at 1pm tomorrow.

There was another I liked the look of in the same area - I'm thinking ideally on the other side of town to here so it's convenient to both work & town, but also don't want to be right on a main road (What? IDEALLY I mean, don't HAVE to get all this ;) - but found out it had already been nabbed :)
Tomorrow at 1pm didn't sound bad when I said it, but all of a sudden it feels like an awwwwwwfully long time to wait ;)
AND I realised it means I'll be missing out on the pub! Tsk! ;)

I'm thinking furnished or part-furnished, subject to how much of a "part" "part-furnished" actually is ;)

I noticed this on one, which made me chuckle, "Flexible Furnishings".

I just have visions of a large coffee table ;) "Well, you can lay on it! Or sit on it! Or even use it as a table!"
Failing that, I guess it means "Bean bag" or "Poorly made furniture which cannot remain upright" :)

Flotsam and Jetsam

Had a few thoughts wash up along the shore of my mind:

  • Pondered what Dianne said about it also being about not being heard. Yes, that's definitely true. Yes, sometimes I wish she would hear things without my saying them, but it hurts more when I do say them but she does not hear them. I cannot tell you how many times I told her I was unhappy, how many times I told her that I did not have infinite patience, and how many times I told her that things HAD to change, because I could not go on like this forever.
    I can understand her not knowing what do do with that. I can understand not having any idea how to change things. But you know what really hit me recently? When she said, "This is all kind of out of the blue to me. I mean, I thought everything was ok really, I had no idea things were this bad."
    I was somewhat stunned by that.
    "Well... Well what did you think I meant when I told you how unhappy I was? What did you think I meant when I said I couldn't go on like this? When you saw me be unhappy all weekend, and you KNEW why it was."
    "Well... ... I don't know... ... I didn't think you meant you might leave me though."
    "So... What did you think I meant?"
    "...I don't know."
  • There's a lot of stuff that hurts. Some in general, some around specific events (e.g. what I wrote above, here, here, and other random things that still clearly bother me that I haven't got around to writing). Some of this is (IMO) justified, some of it (IMO) is not. Some of these things I have forgiven, some required forgiveness every day, some old wounds have re-opened (if someone stabs you once, you may forgive them. If someone stabs you 100 times, the 100th time is more difficult and makes you wonder about the previous 99 times), and some perhaps I have simply not forgiven. Some things used to seem so easy to forgive, it didn't even occur to me that they required forgiveness (e.g. if someone steps accidentally on your toes, I wouldn't think specifically to "forgive" them, because it was only an accident and it doesn't matter - but that is forgiving them), and the same things now are a strain to forgive. This is something I'll have to work on.
  • She bought a car yesterday.
  • I guess we're just waiting for me now, then. I've been looking at places online and requested some details, not got around to actually ringing yet, but I'll get there. This is all new ground for me.
  • Her parents have been booked to come over this weekend for some time. We're not ready to tell them yet, so happy faces all round, please...

Just a mix of information and thoughts there. This post serves the purpose of allowing me to get my thoughts in order, and for you all to see what runs through my head :)
Hmm, I notice as I go to push the Publish button that it's 12:51. I'm going to have Strokes songs running through my head now ;)

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Crispy Ramble

I was recently in a conversation with some Americans about crisps and favourite flavours. I remembered that conversation as I was doing my shopping yesterday, whilst staring blankly along the crisp isle.

That's why I decided to take this picture:

So, it's not like I randomly or often take photographs while I'm at the supermarket or something *cough*

But the thing is... How unfair is that? I mean of all the flavours, why can you get a packet of 26 Cheese & Onion but not any other single flavour? Like, especially, Salt & Vingear!
And, just to rub salt (& vinegar) in the wound, both types of variety 26 pack come with *4* Salt & Vinegars, but *5* Cheese & Onions!

It's so unfair. :-P

Also, keen observers may notice that you can get 14 bags for £1.99 (working out at just over 14p/packet), or 52 bags for £4.00 (working out at less than 8p/packet).

Now, I have to say, maybe it's just me, but even if I only wanted 14 bags, I don't think I could convince myself that it wasn't worth buying 52 ;)

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Love Is Not Enough

Oh, how little did I realise that those words would haunt me when first I spoke them. This phrase has been echoing around my head for several weeks now. So I'm not intentionally disagreeing with Dianne ;)

I guess it actually occurred to me months ago. It was the first thing I said to Iona. She was talking about her arranged marriage and had said something like, "Love will see us through". I hadn't really been paying attention to the chat, and was just heading off when I saw her say that, and I dropped in "Love is not enough."

lol, the poor girl, she asked me what I meant by it, but I had to be off. I had a very apologetic e-mail from her the next day, most sincerely apologising for her blunt question.

Thinking about it even more, I guess I've known that for ages. It was, after all, effectively the point of my first post.

So, what did I mean? After all, how can any relationship built around two people who love each other have any serious problem?

Well, love is a stonkingly great big important part of a loving relationship. Probably the most important part. But that doesn't mean it's enough on its own. Bricks may be the most important part of a house, but that doesn't mean they're any good without mortar to hold them together, wood for the frame, or glass for the windows.

To name but a few other aspects in no particular sequence: Shared interests and activities. Honesty. Trust. Respect. Appreciation. Physical closeness. Understanding. Consideration.

Love should not be given conditionally. But there comes a point where after seven years, I cannot carry on trying. Too many other ingredients have been missing for too long, to hope that they may all of a sudden materialise now, even if now is starting to be the most likely time for them to materialise.

And I have tried to acknowledge that things are likely to get better now - she is on medication for her depression, and has started seeing someone about it. That's great, really, but that hope and the love we have has been all that has kept me going for so, so long.

I know she loves me, loves me more than I love her, and believes that I am wonderful. That too has kept me going for a long time.
I know she has been more positive recently, I know she has started to have more "up" moods. Her anti-depressants dosage was increased by 50% last week, and as she moves forwards in her own therapy, things can only be bound to keep looking up overall.

But right now, even if she were brimming with energy, loving, doting, and lottery-winning nymphomaniac, even if she got everything right, I think I would still look upon her with the negatives in my mind.

That is why I have to look at my own feelings now.

For as long as I can remember, I have always felt that I would know when everything was right. I would know when I was with a woman whom I loved and wanted to marry and spend the rest of my life with.

I have never had that feeling.

It's time to work out why.

On Saturday, we came up with a list of "practicalities" of things we would need to do if I were to move out. I had hoped that this exercise may have caused me to really think about it and realise what I was thinking. It didn't.

Yesterday at Relate, we did not book another session.

What now?

Well, for starters, we need a second car and to find somewhere for me to go.

Not doing anything now, or dragging our heels, doesn't make it feel like this decision has not been made, only that it it has not been carried out. After all, since this first seriously occurred to me, I have effectively made that decision every day not to go. But, she said, it still "felt like limbo".

What next?

Well, when I've found somewhere, I need to go there.

Is it all over?

No. I need to work out what I want. That doesn't mean that I will decide I don't want to come back (although it is a worrying possibility). The theoretical idea is to get some space for a time.

How long?

Well, it's hard to say, but a figure of one to three months has been bandied around.

And then?

We start seeing each other again. Work out what we want. Well. What I want.

She has... accepted the state of things as they are now, as much as she can. She cannot even consider, and will not talk about the possibility, that I may not wish to return.

Please do not think that this will be easy for me.

I do not have to do this. I do not want to do this.

But I believe that I do need to do this.