Regular readers might have noticed that the site has been quiet since the weekend. It’s been quiet because I’ve been somewhat busy moving house: one of the most stressful things you can do in life, or so everyone always says. The previous post was written whilst I was surrounded by removal men trying to pack everything up into well-padded boxes. A strange experience, sitting in a corner of your front room trying to keep yourself occupied as all around you all your stuff is picked up and handled and wrapped and boxed away.
So now, the move is complete, the furniture is rearranged and at least some of the stuff is unpacked again. Everything is still a little bit topsy-turvy, though. Unpacking, I found books I thought I’d got rid of years ago; it turns out they were lurking in the cupboard under the stairs all along.
The full story of the move will have to wait until another day, partly because I have little energy at the moment for writing it down. Today, though, I did have enough energy to go for a wander in the new neighbourhood. It was pouring with rain, and after taking a few photos my phone screen became so wet it didn’t really respond to touches any more; but here are a few.
My second memory of the year is the more important. It’s not so much a memory of a specific event, as of a feeling. The feeling I had when we had moved in to our new flat together, the friend who had helped us move had left, and we were alone in our own place for the first time. A feeling of immense love and unbounded opportunity.
Well, I’ve never missed an entire month before. A couple of months, really.
I received a very nice email this morning from someone asking how I am. It was a pleasant surprise, and it made me think: I really should do what I keep meaning to do, and start posting here again.
It’s been quiet, because I’ve been busy. And quite a lot has changed. I’ve moved house, well away from the family, to the other side of the country. I’m living with someone, someone who I actually want to live with. But on the other hand, I’m living without internet for the first time in five years ago. You don’t realise what you’ve got until it’s gone; you don’t realise how much The Internets are now part of the infrastructure, like heat and light. “Oh, I’ll just look that up on… ah.” “Oh, I’ll just email… ah.” “Oh, I’ll just check the times on their we… ah.”
This is all because we’re living in a flat, which used to be a house. For some years* it’s been two flats, one up, one down. All legal and above board (we’ve read through the planning permits to double-check this), but nobody ever bothered to tell the Post Office this. As a result, getting services involves persuading people that our flat does really exist, first. British Gas: no problem. Phone suppliers: more tricky. Particularly, the Post Office, who are (understandably) wedded to their database of genuine addreses, but (not so understandably) took three weeks to realise we weren’t on it. Bah. Ah well. No need to bother ringing them when we want to change our insurance, at least.
* I could look up the exact number on the city council’s planning department website, but … ah.
Big Dave is busy at the moment. Not with work, but with finding somewhere to live. As he’s moving down to London at the end of the year, he’s spending nearly all his office time scouring the internet for affordable flats; mouse in one hand, A-Z in the other.
I’ve become his guide to London, it seems. “What’s Bermondsey like?” “What about Beckton?” “Silvertown? Where the hell’s Silvertown?” Work, so far as he’s concerned, has gone out of the window. Which, in a way, is a good thing. In a few weeks time, I’ll have to do all the work myself anyway. So, I may as well start doing nearly all of it now, whilst Dave is still around to bug if I get stuck.
The other main job for the moment: thinking up jokes about Windows Vista ready for its years-late release tomorrow.* There’s no chance at all we’ll be buying the thing at work, because none of the company’s PCs will actually run the behemoth at all well. PCs we bought a fortnight ago fail the Microsoft upgrade check. Hmm, maybe there was a reason they were so cheap.
* To get some idea why it’s so delayed, and why it’s such a behemoth, read about the byzantine management arrangements responsible for the shutdown options on the Start menu.