Saturday, August 07, 2010

an update of sorts...

I really didn't realise that it was nearly two years since I last updated. So much has happened but I do find I miss this exercise. I miss the opportunity to construct proper writings that is now missing from my daily life. My written word is now limited to taking down phone messages and random facts about computers.

I hope to be able to do some more of this in the future.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

poor neglected blog...

So, again, my Blog has been left for a while with no updates... oops. Life has been too busy, too hectic, and there has been too much going on for me to remember to do this in a while.

Don't worry, I still know this blog is here... and hopefully when life is a little more quiet I will be able to catch up with all the things i've been meaning to do.

Including this Blog.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


After three years, 7264 photos and a lot of mistreatment, my beloved camera is finally beyond repair.

The LCD screen is completely beyond use. Which means that most of the features that set a digital camera apart from film cameras are gone. Now essentially I have a camera that can take a lot of photos but doesn't do much else. It really has done me well. It has taken a lot of photos and punishment but I've always considered it a sound investment

So here, for posterity's sake, the final photo my camera will ever take...

(A quaint little streeet in Devizes)

Thank you for all the memories you've captured.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Just for a laugh....

One of my settings had disappered from Google - and in trying to reset it I found something really quite cool. Google has language settings for people all over the world as you would expect. And it would appear languages for those who are not quite of this world...

This is Google in Klingon, 'Hacker', Swedish Chef - Bork Bork Bork, or even Elmer Fudd!

On the home page select preferences and just select your languge from the drop down box.

Google just became so much more cool in my book.

Monday, March 05, 2007

our place in the universe...

Photo of Earthrise courtesy of the astronauts of the Apollo Space Program and NASA

Two nights ago I had the fortune to see a total lunar eclipse. It was quite amazing. There is something about the moon, our silent neighbour on our journey round and round the sun. The moon has that magic quality to it. Since the early days it has captured the imagination of scientists and philosophers, writers and dreamers. Humans went there but have yet to go back but we are still innately curious about its origins and the adventure that its exploration presents. One of the most stunning views from the entire moon programme is the one I’ve included here. Not man walking on the moon, but man looking back at the Earth. The world is bigger than any one person, and yet from our nearest neighbour it looks so small and so far away.

But in all of creation this place is really quite special. The position of the Earth and its transit around the sun and the position of its moon are such that the Earth can on occasions block all the light that reflects off the moon. And on the converse (and more rare and less magical) the same is true when there is a total solar eclipse. That with all the distances and space involved it is possible for that to happen.

That eclipse was something special though. I was lucky enough to be up on Exmoor where the night sky is the blackest I’ve ever seen. It was a perfectly clear, completely silent and still. I’d almost forgotten what dark nights could look like – you see stars and constellations that are never visible in towns. The moon gradually waned until all that was left was a red silhouette against the blackness of the night sky floating amidst a sea of stars.

And a lone animal howled against the silence of the night.

It was quite marvellous to behold.

The dreamer in me didn’t know quite what to say.

Monday, February 12, 2007

if your life was a movie what would the soundtrack be?

1. Open your library (iTunes, Winamp, Media Player, iPod, etc)
2. Put it on shuffle
3. Press play
4. For every question, type the song that's playing
5. When you go to a new question, press the next button
6. Don't lie and try to pretend you're cool

Opening: I have a message/ Come to Minbar - Babylon 5 Sleeping in Light Soundtrack

Waking Up: Keep on Moving – 5ive

Falling in Love: Have You Ever – S Club

Fight Song: Bring the House down – S Club

Breaking Up: Ticket to Ride – The Beatles

Prom: The Bear Necessities - From the Jungle Book

Life is Good: Design for Life – Manic Street Preachers

Mental Breakdown: Shiny Happy People - REM

Driving: Could it be Magic – Take That

Flashback: Counting Down the Days – Natalie Imbruglia

Getting Back Together: From me to you – The Beatles

Wedding: It’s the way you make me feel – Steps

Paying the Dues: Three Lions – Baddiel & Skinner and the Lightning Seeds

The Night Before the War: Unbreak my Heart – Toni Braxton

Final Battle: Music to Watch Girls By – Andy Williams

Moment of Triumph: The Closest Thing to Crazy – Katie Melua

Death Scene: You are all I have – Snow Patrol

Funeral Song: You’ve got a friend – Andy Williams

End Credits: Sugar Sugar – The Archies

There is something about music. Its got something that I think speaks to us all in different ways. I go through phases of listening to lots of music then listening to none (although the iPod has made those phases occur more often). I quite often just listen to music on shuffle andI find it amazing the different things I think about and the things I remember as I listen. Some songs take me back to my childhood, some draw my thoughts to the future, and some help ground me firmly in the present. I think music is intrinsically linked to our memories, our hopes and our dreams.

After all what are we without hopes, dreams, and memories?

Thursday, February 01, 2007

what really matters...

Life is full of people. Some are just acquaintances, some are important. And some really, really matter.

Today, I want to talk about someone who really matters. My Dad.

Born in 1930 in Co. Cork, Eire. Dad lived there until the age of 6 when the family relocated to England and moved to the village of Box, near Bath. He grew up during the war years, and had completed his National Service and was married with 2 children before the swinging 60’s were out. From the stories I have heard, I have a feeling he used to be a bit of a scoundrel. After the breakdown of his first marriage, he married my mum in 1975 (on Valentines Day no less) and I was born nine years later.

A little about my Dads personality – he is most accurately defined as having a quirky sense of humour. It’s that odd that it’s even filtered down through all three of us ‘kids’ and his grandkids. But more than that – he is a sweet man, very loving, and he has always been there when he’s been needed. Very definite political views, a lifetime of experiences and skills – he is quite unique.

I have lots of memories of my Dad. Lots and lots. We’re still making memories, but the ones from when I was little seem more special somehow.

During school holidays we used to go on adventures. Lots of them when I was little, but we still continued right up until I left school – and maybe once or twice through Sixth Form. We used to explore the moors, the little villages, the rivers and streams, the castles and big houses. I also spent many happy days playing around the beach at Watermouth Cove. It was always fun and it was always different. I think in those trips I saw more of Devon and Somerset than I ever will again.

One of my abiding memories (from when I was very, very, young) is of Dad’s vegetable garden. He grew everything from Carrots and Cabbages to Gooseberries and Blackcurrants. I even I had my own vegetable patch with a few seeds thrown into the soil with a lot of hope they would grow. But Dad’s garden was really something. We used to test all the produce before it left he garden – especially ‘purple ice-creams’ (Purple Sprouting). Its all grown over now, it has been for many years. But the memories remain.

During my early school years we had to spend two hours waiting after school for my mum to finish working. We spent the time sat on the seafront in Combe Martin reading the delights of Roger Red Hat and Billy Blue Hat. And that was really how I learnt to read. Not just learning though – I love to read even now. We would then play on the beach, explore the rock pools, and in the summer have an ice cream.

Dad is older now. He’s not too well and not up to doing much at the moment. He’s still got that sense of humour though. He is still my Dad. And I love him.

Here’s to many more memories.