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Today was mostly rather a good day, about the only bad thing being that at work I'd sort of committed to making some 'phone calls and was then faffing around doing nothing while I summoned up the courage to actually make them. And in many cases wimped out by sending faxes or emails instead.

Back home was a different story - just started to get into something approaching a routine as far as tidying up, washing up, and the various other daily tasks I set myself are conerned. I also cooked a proper meal this evening, cod in cheese & wholegrain mustard sauce. On the negative side this was kind of interrupted - I had the spare bedroom window open, and I realised that some bits of important paperwork had blown out of the window. Fortunately they'd landed on the dining room roof, but even so the only way I could think of to retrieve them involved dangling the hoover out of the window and getting hold of them that way (good job they didn't go all the way into the hoover, that would have been countrproductive).

Speaking of important paperwork - since it was from the doctor's - I 'phoned up the person at the surgery to confirm my appointments for counselling, so this Friday morning is a go. Hopefully - maybe I ought to check - the Citalopram prescription should be at the pharmacy.

As well as the tidying and washing (which included some clothes washing) I imported Now that's what I call music 7 side 3 into the computer. For that matter, I burned the first two sides to CD this morning and listened to them on the way to and from work, which was enjoyable. Although I still think it's slightly surreal, taking stuff that was released on vinyl 25 years ago, cleaning it up, putting it on CD, and then listening to it in a car - not to mention also on computer technology that didn't even exist 25 years ago...

Hey ho.
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Another fairly unproductive day, although I did spend a couple of hours this morning ripping Madonna's True Blue album from vinyl to mp3. I was quite happy with the results. Heck, I was quite happy that the album was in such good condition 25 years after I'd bought it (not sure why Now 7 is so particularly bad. There was one skip on the vinyl that I couldn't correct, but fortunately it was a very small part of music that - as far as I can tell - was just a duplicate of a bit a couple of bars before, so I was able to patch it in from the earlier section using Audacity. After a bit of tweaking to get the levels sounding good, it sounds good to my ears.

Apart from that, the only other thing of note today was Sarah and I going out. It was a shame it was raining - not, in all fairness, particularly heavily, but enough to make me wish I'd worn a coat, or at least a jumper. But anyway - we started off fuelling up the car, then popped into the town centre for, mainly, some browsing. At my insistence we went into Games Workshop, then Smith's and Waterstones. We stopped for a bit of lunch at Subway, before heading back to the car. En route we passed a branch of CeX, which I don't think I'd known existed in Hemel before, but recognised from the branch that's up in Sheffield. It's like a little treasure trove in there, loads of DVDs and video games and blu-rays. You're not necessarily guaranteed finding what you're after, but heck - I managed to get the two-disc sets of Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace, for £1:00 and £3:00 respectively. Okay, I'd've preferred the three-disc set of Casino Royale, but even so, £1:00 is not to be sneezed at.

After then, time for a grocery run to Tesco, before heading home where I again vegetated a bit. Enjoyed a bit of Lego Star Wars (although I managed to get through fairly long levels on Free Play, but had only collected nine of the ten minikit canisters in each; really not looking forward to doing them again just for the ones I'm missing...), and also finished watching Revenge of the Sith. Made a start on some of the extras, too.

All things considered, not a bad day.
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Like yesterday, today started out fairly slow - to the extent that Sarah was sitting in the lounge reading an Ann McCaffrey book and, well, not doing much else, for a good chunk of the morning.

However, as the day wore on, I started getting a bit more active, doing the washing up and tidying up and actually making a fair bit of progress in making the kitchen start to look a bit more impressive. Still a long way to go, though...

In the evening, Sarah and I had decided to go out for a meal, and so I drove us out to the Toby Carvery where we had a pleasant meal (predictably, I had turkey, potatoes and peas, with lashings of gravy). On the negative side, it was chucking down with rain. On the positive side, one of the other things I'd done, as wellas tidying and washing, was to get the work on the sound files for Now that's what I call music 6 sorted out and disc two burned to a CD-R, so I was able to listen to that in the car. I'm very happy with it. At some point, I hope to start work on Now! 7, but that's not a priority.

Back home, I did more tidying and washing, as well as a bit of reading (making good progress with [livejournal.com profile] entorien's Crux, but once I've finished that I'm probably going to read a few other books before starting on the final one in the trilogy). Oh, and also got some clothes washed.

By about 9:00pm I started to wind down, but after Sarah had gone to bed, I did a bit of channel flicking, caught the end of The Judas Tree (last year's Jonathan Creek episode, guest starring Paul McGann; what a lovely voice that man's got), set the Sky+ box to record a couple of films (Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous, on the basis that I enjoyed the first one, and Groundhog Day on the basis that I've been wishing I had a copy of it for ages, so this is as good an opportunity as any), and then watched the first part of the documentary about Queen, Days of our lives, which was a good way to end the day.

For the time being, Sarah and I are sleeping separately, as her back's giving her problems and the main bed is a bit too small for the both of us. So I've got the spare bed, and am sleeping with the window open as the weather's so warm. It's very comfortable.
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Today was a bit nondescript, really. THe major bits I remember are having an argument with Sarah about rearranging the lounge, then Sarah rearranging the lounge anyway and setting up the Wii Balance Board. We both had a crack at Wii Fit after that, which was enjoyable, more so than Personal Trainer. Although we're both obese. Which isn't exactly news, but isn't terribly nice to know anyway.

Also Sarah fitted a button onto one of my shirts,as she's a better sewer than me, although she had a crack at teaching me how to do it for myself in future.

I was going to have roast chicken for lunch, but Sarah had put the chicken in the freezer, so I ended up having some more of the Young's "It's in the bag" haddock in wholegrain mustard butter. Which I like. A lot.

I can't remember anything else of the day's events, beyond that we had vague plans to make it out to a church service but (as is par for the course) didn't make it.

Oh, and I watched through quite a bit of the extras on the Back to the Future Blu-Ray discs. Which was enjoyable.
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Today, like so many other days, started out with the best of intentions, but didn't really live up to them. Although, in fairness, I left for work earlier than I have done on some other occasions, I still didn't get there until 10:15am. At least I didn't stock up for nibbles on route.

Work itself was fairly good - I got a lot of stuff out of the way, although I sort of lapsed a bit during the afternoon period, which is a pity - I could, with a bit more determination, have done some extreme chaser 'phone calls, but in the event the only 'phone calls I managed to get done were checking the status of some bounced faxes I'd sent.

Left after doing more or less an eight hour day, which was kind of fair enough, although I hadn't had a lunch break (despite taking packed lunch with me), and got home to be a bit naff again. I had decided to cook myself some mackerel potato salad, but when it came to it I decided I couldn't be bothered, and instead - after much deliberation, and at one point going to bed - I used some of what little I've got left in my account to order myself a pizza.

Sarah was watching an episode of the American Civil War documentary when I got up to order the pizza, but when she'd finished that I put on the evening's episode of The Now Show, which was okay but nothing special to write home about. I think I watched something else before bedding down for the evening, but can't for the life of me remember what.

Oh, well.
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For the first time in a very long time, I actually got up properly this morning - if not when my alarm went off, at least not long afterwards. Despite sleeping on the sofa I didn't feel too bad - indeed, I tend to feel okay with that anyway. And I headed downstairs and finished preparing my fish soup, and then had that for breakfast. That was nice. I don't think I'm going to have fish soup very often in future (maybe once a month, or just on special occasions), but even so, it was nice to have it this time.

Despite her late night (or more accurately, early morning), Sarah wanted a lift to the station for about 9:00am. I didn't particularly enjoy driving through the town centre, in particular that roundabout, at that time of day, but it could have been a lot worse. After I'd dropped her off, largely thanks to her chivying me along, I set straight off for work, having already washed, dressed, and got my lunch ready, even if I hadn't done much else.

Today at work - as with yesterday - was largely concerned with removing all the Christmas and New Year opening hours from the pharmacies. Takes ages to type in, and then it's removed within a couple of days. Huh.

Sarah booked us in for Redemption, which I'm looking forward to (Misha and Zoe are getting married there, and Becky's been trying to talk me into going since as long as I've known her). We're booked into the hotel from Thursday to Monday, which is kind of less than ideal, as it means taking probably three days of work (although I could do two and a half days instead). Still, it'll be nice (and practice for EasterCon, too), as if previous Redemptions are anything to go by there'll be a Dead Dog Party on the Sunday night.

Interestingly, Sarah's talking about dusting down her Beachcomber costume, refining it a bit, and, well, taking it down there and wearing it. Should be interesting. As long as I don't have to share the car with that wopping great wardrobe box. I suggested to Sarah that it could maybe fit into a couple of the medium storage boxes. If we've got any of them left. *ahem*

Sarah left work early, on the reasonable basis that she was tired and even coke wasn't keeping her awake. Rather unusually, she was home before I'd even left work. I left at 6:00pm though, and arrived home to discover that the Queen - The Platinum Collection set that I'd ordered had arrived. Yay!

After a couple more bowls of fish soup for dinner, sadly I didn't do very much this evening (although I managed a diary entry, and I'd done a couple more in the break at work), and ended up grabbing a very early night (well, I was in bed by about 9:00pm).
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So, first day back at work for the new year.

Today wasn't a bad day, albeit nowhere near as productive as yesterday. But I was able to get a bit more video converting done this morning; no actual importing, though, but I finished watching the first episode of Three Men Go To Scotland, which has freed that up for importing into the computer.

I gave Sarah a lift to the station at about 7:00am, then went to the post office to pick up my package - which surprised me by not being the Queen Platinum Collection, but actually being the DWM Season 5 Volume 2 special. Which is big. Seriously big. When you consider that it only actually covers six episodes (or is it seven?), but it feels substantially weightier than the other season specials, they've obviously packed a lot of information into it.

(And kudos to the folks at The Who Shop for getting it delivered so fast - bearing in mind that had it not been too big to be posted through the letterbox, I'd have received it the day after I ordered it. Which is pretty impressive, IMO.)

Spent (= wasted) a fair bit of time faffing around this morning before finally leaving for work, as a result of which I (pretty obviously) arrived late at work. Which I wasn't terribly happy about, given that I'd really like to get into good habits as far as time keeping is concerned.

However, I managed to leave not too late - well, about 6:00pm. I'd been thinking of working a bit later, but in the event I came back from a loo break and CAS had logged me out, and frankly I decided I couldn't be bothered with the faff of logging back in.

I had a few little nibbles from the food machine at work today, but I didn't do a bulk buy at the filling station on the way in, and I actually had a proper lunch (of cheese, tomatoes and bread), which felt kind of good.

Also, whilst at work I booked myself a ticket to see the Canaletto and his Rivals exhibition at the National Gallery, which I'm looking forward to - I'm going on Saturday afternoon (well, I'll probably make a day of it in London). Sarah's not interested in going, so I'll be going by myself. Which makes me feel kind of like an adult...

I rang dad today - he'd actually tried to 'phone me yesterday evening, but by that time I was asleep, more or less. Anyway, he's finally received our Christmas presents, and we talked about meeting up at some point - at the moment we've got Saturday 29th January down as a possibility.

On the drive home I put on my new acquisition of Abba Gold, which was enjoyable!

Back home tonight, I relocated the laptop briefly into the kitchen, and whilst cooking up my fish soup I set about blogging my WhoWatch - an intro post, and the first couple of episodes of serial A. So, I've got off to that a bit later than I'd hoped, but at least I've started.

I had to pop down the road to pick up some fresh milk at about 10:00pm, but after that I gave up on the fish soup - most of the ingredients are now cooked, but I'll make the cheese sauce and put everything together tomorrow morning. It didn't help that I had a bit of depression sink over me when I popped out to Tesco. I managed to push that to one side, a bit, by watching David Walliams' Awfully Good TV, which was addictive, if slightly disturbing...

When that was over, I went to bed - although actually, for the second night running I'm sleeping on the sofa to give Sarah an easier night. Also, Sarah was working ultra late at work - something to do with the end of year reports and needing to run off two sets of them, meaning she was at work until nearly 1:00am and then got a cab home (which she can claim back the cost from work - good job too, it was £84:00, apparently). She woke me briefly when she got home - which I didn't mind as I'd asked her to - just to let me know she was back and safe.
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Sarah had to go into work today - I drove her to the station fairly early in the morning. After that, however, I settled down to a fairly productive day, doing a fair bit of video work, tidying up, washing up, and reading, before picking Sarah back up from the station at about 5:00pm, after which we got ready to go next door and see Terry and Mim for a very pleasant meal (roast chicken, followed by home made apple crumble), and then a chat in the lounge. It's nice getting to know them a bit better.

Back home, though, my get up and go had deserted me, but in fairness I'd done quite a lot during the day. I listened to that evening's I'm Sorry, I Haven't A Clue, and then started my WhoWatch 2011 agenda, watching An Unearthly Child and The Cave of Skulls.

Sad news this morning - the actor Pete Postlethwaite has died. I think he was in Our Own Kind at the Bush, so I'd've met him, however briefly, there.

I had honey on toast for breakfast (I'm trying to get into a routine), but the honey had crystallised. So I decided to heat it up in the microwave. Big mistake. I ended up with honey the consistency of water, but very very sticky. Erm.

Because Sarah's feeling unwell at the moment, I slept downstairs on the sofa tonight, using my slanket. Which was nice, if a wee bit un-all-encompassing, so I used another blanket as well the following night..!
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Today got off to a good start, as Sarah and I made it down to Hemel Hempstead Methodist Church. I was glad to go anyway, as I really want to be there more often than not, but also it was a communion service, and I always enjoy communion services (rendered particularly pleasing as Sarah received communion). Also, I'd forgotten that the first Sunday in the new year is Covenant Sunday, in Methodist circles anyway, so being able to make that commitment made it particularly special. We had a chat with the minister after the service and mentioned the possibly of actually becoming members, which is where my mind is going.

Also, next Saturday evening there's a New Year party taking place at the church, which will be a nice opportunity to get to know some of the folks there a bit better. So we're going, and we've put our names down for taking some food.

After that, we briefly went back home, before heading down to Chelmsford to meet up with mum and Malcolm for lunch at Loch Fyne, which was pleasant (although the starter I ordered...well, let's just say it wasn't quite what I'd expected). It was nice to catch up with mum and Malcolm, too. Malcolm's off to Thailand on Thursday, so we've sort of committed to seeing mum at least a few times during his holiday.

We picked up some stuff at Tesco, followed by popping back to Swiss Avenue, as mum had bought me some clothes - some rather nice clothes (a decent pair of trousers, some good shirts, and one which was a bit of a colour disaster, and most crucially fourteen pairs of identical socks, which can go towards my "identical sock stockpile).

We then headed back for home, where amongst other things, I watched Jack and Sarah, one of my Christmas presents this year. I'd forgotten how wonderful that film is.
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Mm. There really is no justice in the world. Last night, I went to bed at about 10:30, and, as I'm a teetotaller, hadn't touched a drop, whilst Sarah had half a bottle of champagne and saw in the new year. So how come I'm the one who wakes up today with a headache?

Fortunately, it eased up as the day progressed. Despite that, I've no really vivid recollection of actually doing anything for most of the day. Oh, I lie - one of my new year's resolutions was to finally finish Ben Aaronovitch's Benny Summerfield book Genius Loci (which I think I've been reading since the start of December) and make a start on a new one - specifically David Aaronovitch (relation)'s Voodoo Histories. I achieved that goal. Which is good.

Also I think I did some video work - which may have included importing some of Sarah's Journey to the Planets into the computer. Also, having deleted it from the Sky+ Box, I ordered a DVD of Sliding Doors; I know I've (somewhere) got an offair VHS from a TV screening of it back in...whatever Christmas the Jonathan Creek special that introduced Julia Sawalha aired in, and I think I've got a copy I torrented somewhere, but I figured I'd like a proper copy.

Sarah and I had been vaguely talking about possibilities for a holiday in April/May - after EasterCon, which will be over the Easter weekend, we can then possibly take three days off work and have the next weekend (bracketed by a couple of bank holidays, one for the royal wedding) free too. We'd been talking about going up to Scotland, which from Birmingham won't be too far. Then this evening I started watching Three Men Go To Scotland, and it occurred to me that maybe going to the western isles might be an interesting thing to do? Sarah agreed, but she suggested not doing it by boat!

Also, later tonight Channel 4 was doing a Father Ted night, which I'd forgotten about but just caught before it started. Wasn't too bothered about the actual episodes, seeing as I've already got them, but recorded a couple of the documentaries.
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Took Sarah to the railway station again. After that, I wasn't quite as late getting ready for work as I have been on previous days - largely because I wanted to be back as early as possible this evening. I did, however, find a download of Monday evening's ISIHAC (the start of a new series) and burned it to disc, along with the last episode of the previous series, to listen to in the car. By the time I arrived at work I was, therefore, in a hysterical mess. But in a good way.

The day was spent, basically, adding the remainder of the New Year's Day pharmacies to the Health Directory. That included creating a few records, which dragged the work out, but I was eventually finished by about 5:30pm, so I didn't leave too late.

The journey home, though, was a bit of a nightmare. Nothing major, in all fairness, just traffic going really slowly for no obvious reason. It was good to get home to Sarah, who suggested that we have the berries she bought for Christmas, with ice cream. That was very pleasant. Also, she had some champagne to celebrate the new year. I...didn't.

There was some post for me - the Abba Gold CD I'd ordered earlier in the week arrived, as well as a "we tried to deliver but you were out" card from the post office - presumably that relates to my Queen - The Platinum Collection CD.

Sarah was watching some of the stuff that was on the Sky+ Box for her - mainly the Journey to the Planets stuff. She was obviously enjoying it, which is good! I like it when she's happy.

I had a semi-early night - I headed for bed around 10:30pm, leaving Sarah watching a documentary about the bones of a suspected vampire that had been found in Venice.

Hang on - a vampire in Venice? The fannish part of my brain may have wibbled a bit about that!

Sarah did eventually join me, but not - apparently - before 2011.
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Again I took Sarah to the railway station, and again went back to sleep afterwards, and again after Sarah woke me up with a 'phone call I then procrastinated and ended up not getting into the office until about midday. Again, spent the day getting the pharmacy rotas for the next few days into the Health Directory.

I can't remember, but I might have deliberately worked late today just to make sure I didn't have too much to do tomorrow.

The new Doctor Who Magazine special (the second volume of the season 5 companion, by Andrew Pixley) was released today, so I looked around a few specialist sites and eventually found that the Who Shop were selling copies, so I ordered a copy from them. Looking forward to that!

Apart from that, can't remember anything specific about today, except that I was probably doing some more watching of Knight and Day when I got home tonight. Heck, probably finished it.
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I took Sarah to the railway station in the wee small hours of this morning (well, at about 6:30am), and then retired to bed. Sarah rang me to make sure I was awake at about 8:00am, but after then I must confess I procrastinated a bit and ended up not making it into work until about midday, for a solid day's entering the pharmacy rotas for the new year period. Rather annoyingly, I'd forgotten my swipe card, so I ended up having to leave at 6:00pm, when Phil left.

I listened to the Sisters of Mercy albums I'd bought the other day. The extra tracks are particularly interesting (but heck, it's just nice to finally have CD copies of them). I was quite intrigued by Colours, one of the bonus tracks on Floodland, which I'm not sure if I've ever heard properly before, and I thought it didn't half sound like Visage's Fade to Grey. Whether that's intentional or not, I've no idea.

Back home this evening, I finished watching Salt and the extras before moving on to the (disappointingly vanilla) Knight and Day. Oh well - at least it's an extended edit of the film itself...
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Sarah and I headed into Hemel town centre today. She went into the Games Workshop shop, to play several sessions of Warhammer 40,000 with her Space Wolves army, which she's been digging out and touching up lately.

Meanwhile, I strolled along the high street, not really planning on buying anything (although in the event I picked up the official Doctor Who calendar, DVDs of Knight and Day and Family Guy (the Return of the Jedi one), and the CD reissues of the Sisters of Mercy studio albums, as part of my whole "replacing my tapes with CDs" kick.

When I got back to GW, Sarah and I popped to KFC, where we had lunch. Sarah took me back home and then returned to GW, leaving me to enjoy my well-gotten gains - watched through the Family Guy episode and at least some of the extras (I liked the Star Wars Trivial Pursuit session, and it made me think that perhaps that's something I could get hold of. Don't know if Sarah's much of a SW geek), then dug out Salt, that I'd bought last week, and found that really rather fascinating.

Can't, I'm afraid, think of anything else that I did today. But I'm sure it was a pretty good day.
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I sort of made a decision when I woke up this morning that today was going to be the start of the rest of my life, and I was going to start actually getting a bit properly organised.

I didn't quite succeed, but I guess I made a bit of a start. Still a way to go, but anyway. Just a case of drawing up a list of things to do, including writing three diary entries (well, I managed two), doing some reading (I did some, but nowhere near all of it), getting some Sky+ work done (sorted, but I had a bit of a head start, having done most of it overnight or yesterday).

This evening, after Sarah came home from work, we went shopping at the main Tesco, but after that we were too late getting home for me to really want to cook anything. So my plans went a bit down the dumper.

Anyway, this evening I watched University Challenge followed by Only Connect (a Children in Need special edition which I'll probably keep), and then Sarah started watching one of her programmes that was on tonight, part of the Glory of Greece season. Unfortunately, as she was watching something started playing up with the Sky+ box - the picture froze, and the red record light and the blue play light stayed on but didn't do anything. When I woke up at about 3:00am it was still like that, so I tried a hard boot, after which the two programmes we'd been recording that evening hadn't worked and also the lights at the front of the box that tell you whether it's on and what it's doing weren't lighting up. Which is slightly annoying, but at least it does actually seem to be working now.
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Well, I'm determined to be more organised, so here we go.

Today was actually a good start on the "being more organised" thing, as Sarah and I got the spare bedroom cleared of boxes, emptied many of them, put others up in the loft or the library/study, and then got the spare bedroom organised - set the bed in position with mattress on top (no pillows, alas, as I'm using them upstairs), got the wardrobe into position, and then also did the sideboard, fixing its legs in place. It feels good that we've finally got the spare room properly set up, and it prompted me to do an LJ post with a general invitation to anyone who fancies visiting and/or stopping over.

Sarah cooked me a sort of late breakfast/early lunch of a pizza. She objected at first, but I pointed out that really, tomatoes on toast is a perfectly valid breakfast, and pizza is just that with grilled cheese on top, so what's to object to? Although in the event, it was a bit overdone. (I like my pizzas brown, not black!!!)

I also got a bit of tidying up done whilst Sarah was out visiting her mum, who's house/cat-sitting over at Claire's and is having some problems with her teeth.

Had kind of hoped to get in a church visit this evening (there was no way I was going this morning, for obvious reasons), but in the event that fell by the wayside.

Another job I did today, on realising that we've got more pre-recorded VHS tapes than I'd thought (discovered a couple of boxes whilst clearing out the spare room), was to box some of them for the attic, but first of all to check for their availability on DVD; those that are available on DVD I've put on a special Amazon wish list ("VHS Replacement Project"; it's a private list), so that over time they can be replaced, and in the meantime, they're being stored up in the attic; whilst those that aren't avaiable on DVD I've kept on the shelf in the lounge, with a view to eventually digitising them at some time (not a priority, as I want to get on top of the stuff that's on the Sky+ box first, and also start doing some 7" and 12" record transfers too).

I spent a fair chunk of the day doing Sky+ imports, actually, with the result that by the end of the day I was quite pleasantly on top of most of it.
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Today started with the discovery that the gas boiler was playing up. I say discovery - I think I'd noticed a couple of days ago that the heating wasn't coming on properly despite being set to do so, but whereas I just shrug that sort thing off for a while, Sarah is rather over-sensitive to the cold, and so 'phone British Gas, who arranged to call round some time this afternoon. After that, I did actually find the reset switch which made it come on properly, but the British Gas man was able to get it properly sorted so it stopped making the horrible clunky rattly sort of noise it usually makes - apparently there was a problem with the inlet vent which meant it was trying to take in more air from outside than it should have done. Or something like that. Anyway, after he'd fixed it, it was running much smoother, so that was good. Our only gripe was that the gasman should call on Monday morning, it says so in the Flanders and Swann song. Although in seriousness, we were quite impressed at the speedy call out and efficient service - I'd genuinely expected that he wouldn't come until some time in the week.

Breakfast this morning was what I had been intending to have for dinner last night - grilled turkey, boiled potatoes and peas, and lashings of salad cream. Yummy.

Apart from that, a large chunk of the day was spent tidying up and cleaning in the kitchen, including - for the first time in absolutely ages, getting the washing and drying up out of the way. Which gave me quite a pleasant sense of achievement.

Meanwhile, Sarah watched some of her documentaries from the week - Ancient Worlds, the Greece one, and the second - and final- episode of David Attenborough's First Life. I also started watching some of Doctor Who - Inferno apropros of nothing in particular...well, I say that, Ian Levine mentioned a while back on Gallifrey Base that it's the story that could most benefit from a remastered edition; I had my doubts, but to be honest on re-watching it, yes, it's a bit ropey; of course that's partly an inevitability of the source materials, but even so, if they could improve on it, that'd be cool. Then this evening, I started watching the Tony Robinson documentary The Real Da Vinci Code. Not sure why, I think I just fancied a bit of a laugh.

Sarah made herself a chicken curry, and then popped on some jacket potatoes - we had a couple each, I had mine with grated cheese (although I did think that baked beans could have been nice, but we didn't seem to have any in).

Can't remember anything else about today, specifically. But on the whole, it was a good day.
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I got off to a start that by my standards nowadays probably counts as early, but not by most other people's - set off down to Henry Wells at about 10:00am; when I got there I picked up some nibbles, then got the bus to the railway station, from where I got the train down to Euston and then the tube to Oxford Circus.

I reached HMV at about 12:15pm. Compared to Monday's fun and games, it was really rather quiet - there was a queue for the signing, but it consisted of about 20 people. I thought I saw Nick Kirby there, but I must have been mistaken.

Anyhow, I bought the Goodies DVD, and also picked up the new Pet Shop Boys CD/DVD combination (I'd love to be able to go to their show at the Hammersmith Odeon in December, but realistically I don't think I can afford it).

After a wait - during which the episode featuring Athelhampton Hall was shown on the big screen, which was kind of cool and brought a sense of deja vu - Bill, Tim and Graeme took to the stage and started signing. Sadly, it was a bit subdued, not helped by the HMV security doing similar things to Monday - take the DVD cover from you, pass it on the star, and they've got it already in their hands by the time you meet them. Trouble is, it got a bit confused between me and the person behind me, and also...well, Bill didn't seem terribly enthusiastic, and I wasn't able to ask him for a personal dedication, after which I didn't have the gut to ask either of the others for a personal dedication either...still, it was good fun, and Tim in particular was friendly (noticing that I was wearing a t-shirt I'd bought from the tour back in 2007). Also, although I hadn't managed to get any decent pics from the queue, after the signing I joined the few fans who were taking photos from the front of the aisle next to the queue, and after they'd finished signing, they came to the front of the stage and posed for pics, so I got some decent ones.

After it was all over, I headed out for food. I'd intended to go to Nando's in Greek Street, but as I was walking down the road, I saw a (new?) branch of Nando's just round the corner from the Plaza, so I ate there. That was pleasant. I'm biased, I like Nando's.

By the time I'd finished there it was about 3:00pm, so I decided against one idea I'd had (I was thinking about going to CLC to try to pick up a fish sticker for the car), and simply set off back for home. Sadly, although this morning the weather had been really pleasant (I'd been thinking that a walk down the local park might be nice at the weekend, that kind of pleasant), by the time I left HMV it was raining. And as I waited at the bus stop, my iPhone ran out of charge, so I had to ask someone else at the bus stop what the time was. And it was a bus that went right round the houses, sort of doubling back on itself to the bus station before going back through the town centre.

At Tesco I picked up some food for dinner - I'd decided turkey would be nice - and then went back home, although in the event I didn't have the turkey. I think I watched some stuff on the Sky+, and Sarah came home at a fairly reasonable time, after which she started watching some of her stuff off the Sky+.
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Today, as the annual day off work avoiding people day, was fairly productive - I got a fair bit of tidying up done, mainly focussing on the lounge. I also did a bit of importing video stuff into the computer from the Sky+ box, and I think some exporting and converting done as well. At 11:00am I was watching the Pet Shop Boys recent appearance on the Graham Norton Show, so avoided marking any kind of silence. It occurred to me that although the new album is celebrating 25 years of the Pet Shop Boys, they actually met 29 years ago (19th August 1981, if memory serves me well), so next year we coule justifiably celebrate 30 years of them. Even if that could be confusing.

IIRC it was tonight that Sarah was running late from work and I drove down to pick her up from work. We then went round to Tesco where Sarah paid for us to fuel up the car. Which was useful.

Oh, also I watched through The Seeds of Doom on DVD, with the production notes on. That was quite good fun.
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Despite not having the advantage of Sarah getting me out of bed - and despite the further disadvantages of a late night last night and a bit of a lie-in this morning, I managed to get into work not too late today, although that was chiefly by dint of not having a proper breakfast, and then stopping at the Texaco garage in Milton Keynes to pick up some nibbles.

The day at work wasn't bad, although I did have a bit of an end-of-the-week impatience to just get out and get home. The worst bit about the day, really, was towards the end of it - I was just getting on a bit of a roll, sending out loads of HD letters, when the flippin' printer decided to start getting all funny - the same problem we'd had on Wednesday. I emailed IT, but was pretty much resigned to not getting any more letters printed out. On the bright side, it was about 5:30pm by that point, so I could justifiably leave the office.

The journey home was fairly smooth (indeed, the journey in had been too), up until the point where we got to the M25 and it was just solid, cars stopping and starting for no evidently good reason, and it was really getting to me to the point where I almost broke down in tears. I mean, it's not a desperately long stretch of motorway until the Chorleywood turn-off, but when it gets like that it takes ages. I was really glad to just get home.

Rita cooked a pizza for me tonight. Unfortunately she burned it slightly as a result of talking to Sarah (well, it was mostly black on top) but I didn't mind that, despite her protestations.

I think I'd sort of meant to do some work on the 7" singles this evening, but didn't get round to it in the end. On the bright side, I did start drawing up a list of 1990s number one singles and where they could be found on Now albums...which was rather disappointing, as probably only about half, maybe two-thirds max, of them actually appear on Now, albums, so there will still be a fair few that I'll only have as 128kbps rips. For the time being, at least.

Work on ripping Life on Mars is still going okay, but for some reason episode 4 of series one just wants to take ages. Even if I leave it overnight, it's not done by the morning...

That's all I can think about for today.

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January 2015

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