October 05, 2006

Looking back

Not been up to much recently, not helped by the fact that I bent over yesterday – and imediately had a feeling of trapped air in my back (ie it hurt) and now 24hrs later its fading but still there, which buggers any idea of going for a run.

So trapped at home I decided to entertain myself, and rather than scan the myspace for songs and similar, I actually searched for old friends (the emphasis on old, I’ve lost contact with them because I’ve been a crap friend over the last few years). This has got me reminiscing terribly, I didn’t really reckon myself the greatest company until I hit 6th form so my greatest friends are from that era of school – but it also meant a fair few were the year below and easy to lose touch with, which I have.

Found a few of them on myspace, lots of memories, they’ve had varying degrees of success with some getting some harsh knocks on the way. Their friends get them through though which is nice, same ones they had at school (so why didn’t I put in the effort to stay in touch with my friends?).

Anyway, I guess there’re one or two friends who I can contact and renew friendship with, as for the others I don’t really know, maybe start a myspace page and get in touch that way, or maybe just turn the page. Thing is I’m really somewhat under pressure timewise, its not easy to renew frienshps when you’re fairly local, its bloody hard when you’re off somewhere else in the country.

Two of my old friends both have Iris by the Goo Goo Dolls on their pages, a wonderful song that resonates with me atm for obvious reasons atm, one of whom says she’s going through some heartbreak atm so I guess I should realise in the non-Dave-centric world that life goes on and happens to everyone else too.

I think perhaps I’m romanticising those times as they were when I was safe, surrounded by so many friends it was weird and under no threat from the real world. Anyway, on with life, maybe it’ll contain elements of my past (either recent or deeper in the past) maybe not, but things don’t happen if you just sit staring at myspace all evening.

October 04, 2006

An excuse to try out media tags

Well theres not a lot to say since my last entry, so I thought I’d just comment on my music lesson, it was ok.

Alright, a bit more detail. Went through some basic stuff, knew most of it barr one chord, largely from the time I’ve spent learning from the internet. The end of the lesson is supposed to culminate in playing songs we’ve learnt. Being more than aware of my limitations and also the effect of stage fright I learnt the simplest song I know, although its a bit of a downer I must say I love the song – ‘Hurt’ by Johnny Cash, a cover of the NIN song.

However, maybe as I looked a little unconfident, I wasn’t chosen to perform. Which I suppose gives me a chance to learn something a little more ‘up’ and perhaps a little more technical. I’m toying with ‘Sunny Afternoon’ by the Kinks, a bit more adventurous, but still within limits I’d consider playing in public (I’d give Incubus’ ‘Drive’ a go in private, but you’ve gotta be kidding for an audience).

Hmm, also stumbled upon Less than jakes ‘Gainsville Rockcity’ on google vids whilst I found the guy doing the above, I do like that song, makes me smile.

Oh yes and on the off chance you haven’t seen it, heres Ok Go going nuts on treadmills…

October 02, 2006

'Welsh Holiday' or 'Going Solo'

I have returned! A nice holiday when all’s said and done. Went up to Pembrokeshire on Thursday camping at Penally, just down the road from where I’d been a few months ago doing other things. First night in a new tent is always a bit of an experiment but it was a good night, unfortunately that morning it started to rain hard overhead and I discovered a slight leak on the side door to the tent (a pain but not a massive problem). Then on Friday I left to go walking the coast from about 11 o’clock onwards (left so late as had to wait for the office to open as needed to pay for the previous night), which wasn’t so bad as the worst of the weather passed by 12:30ish. Followed the coast up to Freshwater East passing some stunning views (really wish I had a camera, all I had was my phone) and even watching the Army launch a drone from a cliftop which provided a distraction whilst eating my lunch (pot noodle, think they’ve got better since the several years its been since I last had one). After that I turned inland and got across to Pembroke Dock round about 6:15pm before catching the train back to where I started. A wonderful walk really especially along the coast, not too disheartened about the camera as I feel I may well visit the area again, though perhaps with at least someone for company (not that I really minded being on my own much tbh)

As I’d walked so far and my feet were a bit wrecked (added to because I did it in trainers so my feet got wet as I failed to find boots I liked on my way up as was my intention) I took Saturday off. So once the tent dried out I packed up and went driving.

First was a visit to Tenby and a walk down memory lane. One thing about going on holiday on your own, you definately get more than a few ‘wish you were here’ thoughts along the way. Anyway after that I looked at the map and thought what the hell, and indulged in a rather sad pasttime – I went to an amusement park on my own.

Oakwood Theme Park, £15 entry and so far into Wales even the tourists are Welsh (ok it was a bit out of season). I must confess when entering I did behave like someone looking for their friends (sad I know) but after a few minutes I realised I just had to get on with it and queue up on my own and always be the odd person out(which admitedly does allow you to jump quite a lot of queue sometimes when theres just ‘one seat left’ or similar). I must say that some of the rides were fantastic with no dud ones really, and really the only bad thing was being on my own so that I did everything if anything too quickly.

Finally I drove off to Marloes on a kind of peninsula on Northern Pembrokeshire. That night was incredibly windy, by and large I’m unfussed when in a tent because I know they make strange enough noises in the elements, but when the wind blows so hard your tent gets squashed down to one side its a little odd, although the wind did ensure that no rain settled on the side door to let water in which I guess was a bonus.

So Sunday was an earlier start, I packed up my tent (still wet, will air it here when I know the weather will hold) reasoning when I got back I wouldn’t be in the mood (and that it’d prob still be wet given the showers) and off by 9:30. The walk was anticlockwise around the coastal path to Dale before setting off inland to complete the loop. Atlantic born winds in your face all day is a bit much to take, but it was fun and I kept in good spirits along the way (it must be said though that this holiday did my habit of talking to myself absolutely no favours whatsoever). As I wandered about I did get to thinking in my way that being a nice peninsular with a reasonable port open which couldn’t really mount much resistance that it’d be a good place to invade the country from (don’t ask me why I thought this I just occasionally consider things like that), and then maybe an hour later I pass a memorial which signified another great military genius who happened to agree with me, Henry Tudor landed there before working his way to Bosworth Field (oh my that just rang up another memory, anyway…) depriving Richard III of his horse and becoming Henry VII.

Having finished the walk, again with wet feet and dirty clothes I changed into what I had clean to drive back home in – t-shirt, shorts, flip-flops (although I drove barefoot, have no idea how anyone can drive in flip flops even tho I’ve seen it done, barefoot is nice anyhow, you really feel what the car is up to). Suffice to say I got some odd looks at service stations dressed for Summer in cold miserable weather flip-flopping my way across the forecourt. Was very tired on way back as drove staright off the back of walking, so lots of stops (at one asking for a large latte, which turned out to be approx a pint of coffee, whichhad me bouncing in the car for the next 2.5 hours (nb, bounce up and down whilst driving, side to side starts to sffect the old direction you’re heading in), finally got home at about 10:30 last night absolutely knackered.

Good time overall.

Besides that I’ve been swimming again today, have upped it to 30 lengths since my post suggesting the idea. First time after increasing it I was alost dead, rang up memories of various friends through the years and how they’ve been when comming back from the pool after 40-100 lengths – the comparison does me no favours, but got better this time.

Oh yes and on the work front all bar one of my future workmates have emailed each other to introduce themselves and it appears I am indeed the youngest there, all having done something else before (including one who served on the British Antarctic Survey! Lucky guy). The one who hasn’t replied? Wel I googled their name and there’s already someone of that name in the organization, so I reckon they’re the internal applicant who got the job, thus also older than me. Hehe, not too bothered really, but I guess it’ll be interesting.

September 27, 2006

Somewhere to live

Blogging again. Why? Because I’m bored. Suppose I’m a little anxious to be going off in the next two or three days on the first proper trip on my own, all other things in my life have always been done with some sort of group arranged, even if I didn’t really know the group. Anyway I’m sure it’ll be fun going for a bit of a hike on the Welsh coast, maybe a little hard going at times but I’m sure I’ve gone through enough to survive that.

Also recieved an email from my future employers, apparantly I don’t have to sort out my own accomodation, good news as the nature of the work has me shifting location quite a lot so organizing individual rents was going to be a pain. Also apparantly it seems to be essentially free, so basically corporate accomodation is sorted and theres even the possibillity (yet to be confirmed) of claiming back expences for food from the canteen. So I’m rather happy, was aware the first month or two was going to be very tight on cash after rent and similar expences (especially December as November pay packet wouldn’t be for a full month), so it seems that actually I’ll have a rather gentler introduction to real life.

Recieved a few emails from people who’re doing the course with me too, theres one teacher (for last 4 years), someone from the environment agency and one who failed one of the qualifications last year. No word from the others yet, although as the few to reply so far seem hideously active even to me I think I’ll wait until a few more reply until I introduce myself so I know where I stand.

Oh yes, I also had my first music lesson yesterday for the guitar, my dad paid for the first few basically I reckon to spend some time with me, even though I have to leave halfway through the course to go to work. Was ok, bit out-classed by those there (youngest too, they’re all occasional players who never learned much (bar one who used to be in a band a long time ago)) but I reckon it’ll be good to get some basics into my head. Now have to learn a tune to play next week, which’ll be a pain as I intend to spend most of my time in Wales, not in my room trying to nail a song (guess could try one I already basically know, though I’m not too great even then).

Might post again before I leave, might not. Depends upon the weather really as to when I leave.

September 24, 2006

Running out of ideas for titles to this stuff

Well here I am at the end of another fun packed week, and what have I done since my last entry? Well, not a lot. Decided that Copenhagen would be too expensive for what I’d get out of it and replaced that with the idea of seeing the Pembrokshire coast sometime over the next two weeks with Anglesey et al being sorted in halftermish time. Also, as I’ve been trying to convince my brother to take up some sort of active hobby recently, I’ve been looking into windsurfing (an idea he didn’t mind too much) and am now attracted by the idea of giving it a go myself (most likely during the fortnight I’m house/cat sitting whilst my mum goes off on holiday to scotland (with her sister, sometimes wonder if they’ll both come back alive, or more probably if they’ll ever talk to each other again)), which kinda cancels any saving from cancelling the whole Copenhagen idea.

My bedroom has descended into mess, I know this as I can no longer find my cheque book despite the fact I have two atm. It always creeps up on me slowly, though I have no doubt my mum could’ve pointed it out a while ago, but at least theres a path from door to desk to bed (not too hard in a room this small).

Anything else? Wandered into the real world to go searching for walking boots – which involved getting absolutely soaked by the rain the other day. Not that I mind as I’m always at a loss with what to do with my hair so when absolutely everyone has their hair plastered to their scalps it evens out the playing field a bit. Also am starting to notice being noticed again, doesn’t change anything really, but its nice to have the old ego stroked by a few glances here and there. Theres also another source of people wanting me, registered on a flatmate finder thing and already have a few people interested (must be somthing about having a steady graduate job and a dashingly handsome photo (ok prob more the job thing then)). Basically looking for a decent place near work, but also near enough to the rowing club there and maybe swimming pool too, though I know I should be careful I don’t end up with housemates from hell whilst I’m at it.

Anyway thats about it for now, so I guess I should get to sorting this room a little.

September 21, 2006

Bad time to run

I know from the point of view of fitting things into the day it made sense, but going running at 2pm was a bit of an error considering how I felt upon getting back (time was nothing to brag about either, although that can be ascribed to the somewhat large gap since last I ran). My God it was rather hot.

Besides that today has been uneventful, visited my dad, lent the ‘Long way round’ dvds from him to watch later, and generally passed the time.

September 20, 2006

Things to be grateful about, minus the headache

Been trying to list the things in life I’m grateful for each week recently, heard its supposed to help make you overal happier (seems to work a bit too). Although it isn’t the end of the week I thought I’d carry on with this now, basically because I have a crap memory beyond a few days and wouldn’t be able to remember half this by Sunday (rather than a massive amount of things happening in my life, just naff memory).

Well having got back from the reunion thingy I was already in a good mood, so as I see myself as getting better (re Sarah) I thought I’d phone some more friends in the area (who I’d basically been avoiding as wasn’t feeling overly sociable – bad idea I know) including one of my best mates who’s had a bit of a rough life in the past (had lymphatic cancer and left school after ASs (I think, memory again) to get a job as a joiner which he didn’t exactly enjoy). I knew he’d been working on things but having not spoken to him for a year (yes I’m a crap friend, but he still likes me God knows why) I was a bit surprised yet delighted (and strangely proud too) when I rang him up to find that he was about to embark on Freshers week at Newcastle Uni. Does mean that I’ve missed seeing him due to my own self imposed exile over the summer, but he is comming back at some point in October so can catch up then.

Thats prob the best thing so far this week. Went swimming as per usual on Monday, did my 20 lengths rather fast and mum commented when I got back relatively soon after having left, methinks I may have to up it to 30 lengths (would do 25, but due to losing count I sometimes approach that anyway). Plus my general technique is getting better, leg action on breast stroke seems to actually achieve something now and breathing during front crawl doesn’t actually drown me if I keep my head down through most of the stroke.

What else? Bought a comp game (Dawn of War & winter assault FYI) preowned for a tenner, when its a fair sight more on Amazon, and three times that from Game. Good game I must say. One prob, excessive playing has gifted me with a headache (helped also by staying in bed too long this morning).

Put up my tent to see if it’s complete, bit of a bugger getting one of the poles in which got me a bit hot and bothered (thus making said headache worse) to the point where I consumed two Panadol Extras (my mums a hardened pill taker, we don’t keep normal panadol) which as anyone familiar with my general aversion to painkillers will attest, thats rather an extreme reaction on my part. (Also headache prob a sign I should get my hair cut again, something I haven’t done since latish July).

Also went to movies yesterday (was down town looking for assault boot in my size, instead got game, watched movies and got a map of Anglesey as its one of the places I envisage visiting) to watch ‘Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby’ which was a good laugh. Caught the mid afternoon showing, I think there were maybe 3-4 other people in there, but I was happy laughing out loud (not as much as I’d hoped, but it was pretty funny in places, glad I went). The trailers were all basically kids stuff which I almost definately was the only person laughing at, I’m a big kid this is well known. I guess I like that, being a bit childish but with a touch of adult for when its required (reading that I guess thats what I like in others too I guess), always need people who are ok with acting like kids, makes life a bit lighter.

I suppose thats about it for now, headache is slowly going thanks to pills/shower/lunch, prob just rest for a bit now (or maybe read this weeks Economist, picked it up due to the cover – quite a cool piece on the importance, costs and benefits of globalisation and the advance of the developing economies.)

Oh yeah one other thing, listening to Sol Seppy, something I found whilst browsing myspace – very relaxing. Good find I think.


September 16, 2006

Disappearing in my rear view mirror

Well just returned from a semi reunion at the university which was good fun. Met a few friends and caught up, not the best turnout which was a shame. Oh well as long as they learn that it takes effort to stay in touch with people, were some weak excuses (some decent though).

Anyway was good, lots of memories of various years came back to me (helped by the fact I stayed in Earlsdon so a few memories from yr 2&3 even though I was a Sydenham boy). Some did get a bit too much and I admit to feeling utterly depressed at one point but by and large it was good I went. Did feel a lil odd I have to say, as I know I’m not a student anymore and it always felt a bit wrong being there (did wander outside of campus though and it felt more normal there).

Also did a bit of karting which was great, if a bit naff as there were only 3 of us and we were each in a class of our own (me being the middling person, only able to match the fast guy when he was behind me – which was great until I span out). Not the best circuit but fun nonetheless.

Drove through a few places as I left relishing a few memories – heck theres not a single place near the uni which doesn’t have some memory attached to it. Loved my time at uni, but I guess leaving it makes you grow up, makes you appreciate that effort must be made to keep friendships going. I have no doubt I’ll visit warwick every now and then in the next few years and the friends I met there too for however long they’ll tolerate me. I finally knew I’d left the area of uni behind when just past Banbury on the M40 Kerrang radio lost transmission. Just must remember to stay in touch.

Besides that not a lot to report, been a tad slack on the running this last week and don’t think I’ve done much of note besides.

Oh yeah, did visit ‘Go Outdoors’ and picked up a sleeping bag and tent so that if I chose to I can rough it when I go off to the countryside – will prob stick to hostels for most of my envisaged Wales trip though I think, depends if the weather sets in by then. As for Copenhagen I still don’t really know if its a serious thought, guess I’ll look over the tourist sites again and see if I can motivate myself to buy tickets.

September 11, 2006

Another day, another dollar (going out of my account)

Well after being slightly disheartened about not being able to tax my car I read the governments website about the varied penalties for not paying (not nice at all) but also happend to turn up a form which in its end notes included an alternative for the form I hadn’t got which the kind lady old bint forgot to mention was an alternative. Thus after my Monday swim (twere deserted, and bar the young mums waiting for a swim class for toddlers in the side pool I was the youngest customer there by about 40 years – although of course still out classed by most) I headed off to the Post Office and paid HM Goverment 110 of her English pounds.

So naturally now legally mobile and raring to go…

...I got the train into Portsmouth. Well it encourages you to walk more and after fuel and the possibillity of having to go for paid parking the price is the same if not cheaper. Once in Portsmouth I did what I said I would in my last blog, clothes shopping shudder. Did get most sorted, couple of shirts and trousers a jumper and a long sleeve t-shirt; I reckon I’ll buy some normal t-shirts later from that emporium of good taste (and cheap prices) asda-walmart.

Thus concludes a long and knackering day with aching legs, reading some damn weird short stories by Neil Gaiman and a frighteningly large chunk of cash missing from my bank account. Looking forward to getting a paycheck again, a few months yet though.

September 09, 2006

Keeping the days full

Hmm, well trying to keep on the generally ‘up’ beat again, I look back at the past week and find I’ve done hideously little. I was at least fairly good by going running last Sunday, although I admit ashamedly that thats been all up to now, as well as the weekly Monday swim that I basically drag myself to (I do wonder what the lifeguards make of this twentysomething young man dragging his ass up and down the lanes once a week, laughing off any and all who overtake, be they young kids or the rather old).

Oh yes and Monday was also collecting photos from Boots and an eye test for my job app (yay my vision seems to have gone from slight myopia to slight hyperopia in my left eye, with the right remaining stubbornly with slight hyperopia).

The photos were nice, a few of snowboarding in Austria, a couple of views of my room at uni and the view outside both in spring and winter (several ducks included) and a photo of Sarah – alas it looks a good photo except for the fact that I didn’t put the flash on (so it was silent and I wouldn’t be caught) but still good memories from all photos.

The rest of this week has consisted largely of spending vasts amounts of money, I have a car and thus have been raped by the insurance company and repairs to pass the MOT weren’t kind either (although as its my mums old car she’s volunteered to pay the repairs for I guess semi logical reasons (I swear she’d of payed the insurance if I let her, and I know there isn’t the money for that in her purse especially as then she’d feel bound to pay the same to my brother)), so I am now almost mobile. Almost because I’m waiting on car tax and until I get certain forms out of the dvla after registering change of ownership I’m stuck.

Having two cars outside (inc mums new(ish) one) and nowhere to go it did give mum the opportunity to suggest going out and cleaning the two cars, think I’ve ecaped that for now (prob will do it later anyhow) but the suggestion did make me lurch – reminded of last time I cleaned two cars [Ach, up! Dave, UP beat!].

Which leads me to today, after finally losing track of my dreams with mum saying I had post I dragged myself from bed (post was Wales tourist board stuff, I’m playing with the idea of hiking in Wales at some point before work starts), my mum suggested (with tongue firmly in cheek) that I go to Bognor Regis for the day as people were lobbing themselves off the peir. So in the spirit of ‘Yes’ and frankly as I had nothing better to do off I went. Was quite a nice day, saw a few gliders go (didn’t appear to be idiots with bog roll on their arms as I’d hoped, although it continues tomorrow so maybe its silly season on the Sunday) and I had a nice wander (saw some awesome entertainers, jumping, acrobatics, inverse human pyramid, the works). Also attempted to go clothes shopping never my favourite activity and without fail on the rare moment when something catches my eye it isn’t in my size, didn’t help that Bognors not exactly a shopping nirvana but hey, did get a few things from millets but thats hardly proper shopping is it? Will prob do a concerted effort on Portsmouth over next few days.

I think that about covers it, toying with idea of booking a brief trip to Copenhagen now (just an idea that appeals, especially as a possible trip to Ireland has been blown out of the water until who know when, grr), so I might go spending some more money (or maybe the dent in the savings will hurt me too much, who knows, we’ll see)

Hmm, I must say I forgot I had done quite so much this week thought it was going to be a short boring entry, instead it was a long boring entry haha!

Anywho thats that and I hope I can tell of lots of good happy times next time I come to this blog.


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