Posted in Updates on Sunday 4th July 2004 at 8:49pm


...as we know, there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns -- the ones we don't know we don't know.

D H Rumsfeld (1932-)
Still a bit surprised at the strength of my reaction to Paignton yesterday. Dug back through old versions of this site on The Internet Archive to find I described my last visit as "the strangest weekend of my life". Particularly remember a muggy, thunderous Easter Monday. Sitting on a bench in Victoria Park looking at a ship at anchor in Torbay, wishing I hadn't eaten a breakfast which was now fighting my attempts to digest it. I also remember walking feverishly around the bus station, and alongside the tracks toward the level crossing and Goodrington Sidings in order to find a usable mobile phone signal to try to fix the mess I'd made of things. Then, a speedy dash back home on the train because I'd realised what a bad idea it was to go to Paignton in the first place! All the way back I worried about who would help me get a decent shirt for my Election photograph. Strange days indeed, and who'd have thought they would stay so vividly with me four years later.

I suppose I'm more sensitive to 'place' than I ever thought, which is perhaps manifested in the attraction I have to Peter Ackroyd's ideas of 'privileged space'. All sorts of strange questions and wonderings rattling around my head this past couple of days as a result of that trip, and the strange coincidences that follow. Fact is, I thought I knew what I wanted - or at least what I thought I didn't want. Perhaps its all much simpler than I thought, and I in fact don't have any self-awareness at all? At times like this, Mr Rumsfeld worryingly begins to make sense.

Achieved quite a bit today. Major tidying exercise in anticipation of flat inspection. Also added the missing bits of the Inkblot puzzle. I ought to give it some sort of useful home on this site, rather than expecting prospective users to wade through my dirty laundry to find a link! I also, rather excitingly, invented a way to stuff a duvet into its cover which didn't take me 20 minutes and result in near-tearful bouts of frustration.

Combined with the relative success of the last couple of weeks at work, I feel sort of 'on course' for something - not entirely sure what, but its more comfortable than any of the alternatives I'm sure. Looking ahead now to my upcoming London trip.

Loyal readers will remember when all the daylog entries were as self-obsessed, painfully trite, and pointlessly oblique as this one. Call it an Independence Day special!

 


Posted in Updates on Sunday 27th June 2004 at 11:41pm


I set out to install a printer, and ended up destroying my imap set up!

Don't ask me how. It involved installing a few updates, fiddling around with some configuration files, and amazingly I was on a day-long mission to get mail working again. Finally got things going again about an hour ago - no idea how much has bounced around the net in the meantime, probably nothing important.

Consequently, didn't get much done today. Had planned to read and write a bit, and to get some paper for the printer to test it properly. Also planned to visit my father in hospital. Finally set out on the 1630 bus to Weston General, after a long wait for missing buses and getting drenched on the way to the stop. He is much brighter and feeling better today, which was a relief. Bumped into my mum, also visiting. Left a little earlier than planned due to further bus uncertainty.

Now to try to get webmail working again...

 


Posted in Updates on Thursday 24th June 2004 at 9:28pm


Rarely is such a lot of different stuff crammed into one week of my life!

First off, the beginning of Secondary Bulk Appeals for the year. Much dreaded, in fact, by me for hard to explain reasons. I was actually able to relax into them and somewhat recaptured some of the spirit and attitude from last year. Monday was a long and rather intense day. Results were very positive too. There are far fewer appeals this year, for me in effect just next week - which might seen a long one, but traditionally signals the wind down to my (now annual) conference weekend and London trip. This year of course include the Belle & Sebastian show at Somerset House.

Finally got various parts of new mobile phone working correctly, after a long email conversation with O2 during which they seemed to get as confused as I did! So, now I have GPRS access sorted, and have been playing with the Live Departure Boards provided by National Rail. Still getting used to the features of the handset, but I've vowed to learn to use this one properly, rather than accidentally discovering features as I go along. Also managed to get Bluetooth talking to the phone via gnome-phone-manager which is working pretty well.

Visited friends for pizza and TV/VCR/DVD installation assistance yesterday, during which a wonky SCART lead caused a great deal of frustration. All was eventually well, and I'm looking forward to borrowing the "Rising Damp" DVDs!

Today, lots of meetings and confusing running around - found out surprising and frustrating result of a mover appeal earlier in the week which put me off my stride a bit - more concerned that people seem to be deeming these things 'performance' indicators, when this one was a complete surprise. You can't legislate for a panel which decides not entirely unjustly, but perhaps impracticably, to 'give someone a break'.

Heard that my Dad's surgery had gone well this morning, and that he was recovering and comfortable. Much relieved. Reminds me that some people have had a far more difficult few days than I!

 


Posted in Updates on Friday 11th June 2004 at 9:21pm


Once again, work confounds and unsettles me. I had another bout of the 'you don't do much' or 'you're not as stressed as your colleagues' commentary today. As I later mentioned to a colleague - I'd be less bothered if these people had an inkling of the things I'm involved with alongside the day-to-day workings of the department. It doesn't usually get to me, but in the context of today, it took on a new significance.

We had a meeting of Senior staff, at which plans most secret and only previously hinted at were given a (premature?) public airing. With my own discussions and piecing together bits gleaned and inferred I'd got to much the same conclusions, but this adds a difficult and challenging dynamic to the team right now. The timing of this remains somewhat questionable.

So, the future is exposed rather prematurely, the team are already taking their corners and I'm left wondering if this is worthwhile. People tell me it most definitely is. Time will tell.

 


Lost::MikeGTN

I've had a home on the web for more years than I care to remember, and a few kind souls persuade me it's worth persisting with keeping it updated. This current incarnation of the site is centred around the blog posts which began back in 1999 as 'the daylog' and continued through my travels and tribulations during the following years.

I don't get out and about nearly as much these days, but I do try to record significant events and trips for posterity. You may also have arrived here by following the trail to my former music blog Songs Heard On Fast Trains. That content is preserved here too.

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