30 December 2013 (Monday) - Rain, Beer...

Am I paranoid or is the universe really against me? Following what could have been the best night's sleep in months I was woken by a text message from work. Could I work the late shift? No, I couldn't. I dozed off again and another text came in. Not today's late shift; could I do one later in the week? Then the phone rang with yet another mis-dialled call for the vets. And when the chaps that next door had hired to fix the fence started bellowing at each other I gave up and got up to find heavy rain outside.

"Furry Face TM" was getting fractious, so despite the weather I took him for a walk. Torrentially heavy rain had kept most of the other dog-walkers away, but I did meet one "plum". His dog looked rather like Fudge; different in colour but otherwise alike. I commented on the fact, and this twit launched a bitter diatribe about how his dog was a pure-bred Jack Russell, and how my mutt was some kind of mongrel abomination. He then went on to point out all the physical defects in my little dog that don't appear in the master race of pure Jack Russells, and he only just stopped short of accusing me of having committed atrocities against the entire canine race by not owning a pure-bred dog.
Were the weather better I might have debated the matter with him, but being soaked to he skin I just smiled politely and left him ranting to a disnterested empty park.

Once home we dried off. I looked out of the window. The blokes fixing the fence next door were still at it. Under supervision. The bloke next door gets people in to do every little job, but never lets them actually get on with the job; he stands over them finding fault with their every action. Today was the same; He was standing in his raincoat giving a continual stream of sage advice and suggestions. I left them to it; I wasn't going to get involved. Instead I checked out what was going on on-line.

Other geocachers amazed me. There are plans to go for a geo-walk on New Year's Day. A new load of caches will go live that morning. Several people were complaining that the caches wouldn't go live early enough for them to get their sat-nav units programmed in time. I have my phone raring to go to a cache within seconds of a cache going live. A sat-nav unit has to be taken home and plugged into a PC first.
Some of those who were whinging about not having enough time were those who will (almost aggressively) sing the praises of sat-nav units over phones despite their endless disadvantages. I am now utterly convinced that the sat-nav community are deliberately hiding something from me. These things have so many disadvantages, but are *so* popular that I really must be missing something vital.

I had hoped to go out today. Having done some serious puzzle-solving I had intended to rummage for tupperware near Peasmarsh. But the rain wasn't going to let up, so instead we went dull shopping. First of all to Currys where er indoors TM" ordered a dishwasher. I'm not sure we can afford one, let alone need one, but I just went with the flow. And whilst out we did food shopping in Tesco. That was dull in the extreme.

WIth nothing else to do I had a look-see at the telly. And I discovered something wonderful. "One Man and his Campervan" follows some bloke driving round the UK in a campervan. It is a gentle little show featuring some average bloke going to average places and doing average things; but I loved it. It's a shame that it is little more than just another cookery program, but that's UK television these days. Better than the alternative which is yet another police show.

With the rain showing no sign of abating we spent the aftenoon on a sparked-up Wii. And with rabbids spanked we set off to Folkestone for a crafty half. Last Friday when I wasn't at astro club the idea of a little drinkie was suggested, and so we went down to the Firkin Alehouse in Folkestone; only to find it was closed. So we wandered round to Kipps instead and had a cheeky three there. Then on to the Guildhall, and Chambers, and a kebab... it was all rather vague towards the end...

29 December 2013 (Sunday) - Tenterden

Despite it hurting to move I had a reasonable night's kip. I was still wide awake and up and about hours before the rest of humanity though. I spent a little while solving on-line puzzles in which random sequences of words, pictures and letters somehow lead you to the location of plastic boxes concealed in tree roots. I solved several over brekkie, but one had me foxed. If any of my loyal readers have any idea about cipher breaking maybe they might like to give it a go... I finally came up with the actual solution.

We then set off on a day's lame-o-caching as "Daddies Little Angel TM" would say. First of all we found one in Bethersden which I had been looking at for months; if for no other reason than it was the closest cache to home that I hadn't yet found. With that one under my belt there are now only three more to find within a seven mile radius.
And as it was on the way we also stopped in High Halden for a couple of multi-caches. I'd found these over a year ago when out and about with my Ham Street Lover, but it's always fun watching others when you know where the thing is hidden.

We then drove down to Tenterden for the main part of out day's walking. There are fourteen geocaches round and about between St Michaels and Tenterden, so we parked up in St Michaels and prepared to get going. It was at this point that one of the usual suspects send word that she wouldn't be along because she'd only just got up (!)
But we carried on with our walk. Today's route wasn't a logical series; it took some planning to keep on track. We started with a random one-off cache and moved on to the bonus cache of a small series (which we found through blagging the clues from the internet). We then followed the small series into Tenterden, did a different series of caches in Tenterden, then followed the second half of the original series back to the car; fitting in another random one-off cache on the way.

Because we were picking up an assortment of geocaches hidden by an assortment of people, the standard of hindes was very variable. Those caches in the countryside part of our Tenterden trip were (for the most part) in need of a little T.L.C. Most were damp, some were rather wet, a few were absolutely sodden. Several had maintenance requests logged; one of which had had the request for maintenance logged over a year ago. It's a shame when people put these plastic pots out and then just leave them to fester.
On the other hand the ones in more urban areas seemed to be well-maintained. Even if one was just outside a school...

The fields were muddy as we walked; the two digs got filthy. there was a dodgy little episode when little Suzy-pup tried to run past everyone whilst we were crossing a bridge. Rather than getting in front she slipped in mud, crashed into "Furry Face TM", bounced off, and plummetted off of the bridge into the river six feet below. She didn't like that very much.

Once home I washed teh mud off of "Furry Face TM"; there was quite a bit to wash off. I then washed all the camping tea towels I'd accidentally left in the garden since I moved that fridge a week ago. Woops! And with that lot washed I set about washing and ironing shirts before solving more puzzles whilst watching telly until er indoors TM" came back from bowling.

28 December 2013 (Saturday) - Mum's Birthday

Ongoing back pain made for a rather restless night; I was up and brekkie-ing by 7am. This morning I was rather worried as I checked out the world of social media. I didn't get to astro club last night; my back was against the idea. But there's no denying that it wasn't a meeting I was especialy looking forward to: just a meet-up in a pub (which I couldn't really afford).
Usually on the day after astro club Facebook is awash with comments and praise for the previous evening's meeting. This morning there wasn't a single comment about yesterday's meeting. Not one.

I took a walk into town to post a parcel. As I went I weaved in and out of the recycling bins strewn all over the pavements. Would it cause the recycling binmen physical pain to leave the bins in such a place that the pavements aren't *completely* obstructed when they have done the few bins that they can be bothered to empty.
I'm all for recycling in theory. In practice it seems to be leaving a lot to be desired.

Once home I took "Furry Face TM" for a walk round the block. He seemed to like that. And then we got in the car and set off to Hastings to see my mum on her birthday. The intention was to get her a pressie on the way, but all the florists on the way were closed. Eventually we found somewhere near Tenterden
Mum was well, and liked her pressie. We then came home via a rather scenic route along the coast where we sat on the beach and had chips. Our route also took in half a dozen geocaches as we went. Including one which was right next to a playpark. Regular readers of this drivel may recall that my piss boiled last year when I had a cache turned down by the authorities because it was (apparently) too close to a playpark. I have compiled a list of a dozen caches which are far closer to playparks and have been accepted. Today's one was about ten yards from where the kiddies would play. It turns out that today's discovery was quite acceptable because the rule about hiding caches near where people might get arrrested doesn't apply to caches hidden before that ruling was made.
I can't see the distinction myself; either a geocache is fine near a playpark or it is not?

Whilst we were out my phone lost its connection to the Internet. It loses signal from time to time. But the signal didn't come back this time. After four re-boots over ten miles I came to the conclusion that either my phone had gone west or the network had gone squafty. So I phoned my phone provider. Eventually I got through to someone who wanted to check every setting on my phone. I told him I was a busy chap; I would fart with the phone later. In the meantime would he tell me if there was there a problem with the network. Yes or no?
Eventually the chap conceded that there was nothing wrong with the network. Getting that admission took some doing. Why do so many people have such difficulty giving a straight answer to a straight question? I told him I'd continue the call when I got home and I had time to fiddle about.
Five minutes later my phone beeped. A text message; my network provider had spent the afternoon upgrading the network. If I would just reboot my phonne I could take advantage of all the new functionality. So I rebooted my phone and took advantage of all the new functionality. Not taht I can see much difference.
I would have thought that the people spoke with should have known what was going on when I phoned and asked? Yet another thing about my mobile provider which leaves me not wanting to renew the contract when it expires over the summer.

Once home, with no film night planned for tonight, we slobbed about in front of the telly for the rest of the evening. And scoffed Christmas pudding...

27 December 2013 (Friday) - Backache

I lay awake for much of the night llistening for a storm which never really came. We had some heavy rain, but at no point did we have "hurricane Holy Sh*t" which had been both forecast and promised.
I eventually staggered out of my pit shortly after 7am, and over brekkie had a look-see what was going on in the world via Facebook. There wasn't much happening really. I then spent a few minutes trying to get up from the sofa. Overnight my back had got really painful.
Probably as a result of pushing a car out of a ditch three days ago when it was still bad from carrying a fridge about five days ago.

I took "Furry Face TM" out for a walk. This morning seemed really quiet. Usually 8.30am on a Friday morning has people busying about all over the placce. Today we hardly saw anyone. Mind you"Furry Face TM" had a woof at all of those that we did see. There was a dodgy episode when he lunged at another dog, slipped on wet fallen leaves, skidded and turned a full somersault in mid air. He crashed down very heavily on his side. I was rather worried; for a few minutes after that he seemed very subdued and his tail was down. But no serious harm seems to have been done.
We walked into Stanhope to collect my car; we'd left it with Lisa and Earle overnight. I had planned to blag some more brekkie from them, but seeing no lights on I wrongly assumed they were asleep and so didn't knock. It turned out that they were up; I should have knocked.

Once home er indoors TM" set off shopping. I put the (hopefully) fininshing touches to a year's homework and then spent two hours struggling with Feigenbaum's constants. If any of my loyal readers are feeling particularly clever maybe they could have a look at this puzzle.
After two hours I gave up and played Candy Crush until er indoors TM" came home with cakes. With cakes scoffed we went shopping for a bit. We didn't get as much done as I would have liked; my back hurt too much. Getting in and out of the car took serious effort, and walking with any speed just wasn't going to happen.

I then made a phone call or two to send my apologies to the astro club's meeting plaanned for this evening. My back had become so painful I actually felt physically sick. I would have been no company at astro club, so instead we had a quiet night in. Pickles and baked leeks and ham went down very nicely as we watched the Christmas "Downton Abbey" and Wallace and Gromit and all sorts of stuff recorded onto the SkyPlus box. It would have been a really good evening if only I had been able to move about...

26 December 2013 (Boxing Day) - Another Good Day

I was bored over brekkie; having been awake most of the night. An email notification came through. A new geocache had gone live just under twn miles away. So I had a choice - chase a First to Find or get even more stressed waiting for er indoors TM" to emerge from her pit. So I scraped the ice off of he car, chased the FTF and found it twenty nine minutes after the email had arrived.
I came home to find er indoors TM" was moving about, and it wasn't long before we were on our way. We took my Super Luxurious Omnidirectional Whatsamajigger (as Lacey calls the Grand-Dave-mobile) and collected "My Boy TM" and his entourage, and we set off to Hastings for the third time in three days.

Pausing only briefly to deliver a bottle of home brewed stout to my father-in-law we were soon wth my brother. Yeserday we were there, and I had a serious drinking session and a packed eventful day. Today being the driver I didn't drink a drop, but I spent most of the time fast asleep in a chair. I *really* hate that. Mind you Lacey and Fudge fell asleep too.

Little Lacey had plans for the evening, so we came home before dark, and leaving "My Boy TM" to his planned X-box-a-thon we went round to see Lisa and Earle. Once I'd been the Grim Reaper to a poorly gerbil we had a beer (or two) and watched Mrs Brown. How come I've missed this? We also watched "Life of Brian", and terrorised the pugs next door,
It would have been good to have stayed all night, but "Furry Face TM" is like a toddler; he doesn't let up until he sees his own bed. So we took a short walk home and once we were home, a dog which had been manically charging about for six hours was fast asleep within two minutes. As was I...

25 December 2013 (Christmas Day) - Good Day

It was good to spend yestterday evening visiting the fruits on my loin in their own homes. And I do like the fact that they have (mostly) flown the nest. But the house was strangely empty this morning as I got up. Intending to foster a bit of Christmas spirit I put the festive collar onto "Furry Face TM". This didn't foster any Christmas spirit at all. For all that he looks really good in his Christmmas collar, he hates it, and he went into a serious sulk. I could have cut the atmosphere with a knife.
Two hours later er indoors TM" got up. I wish I could sleep as long as everyone else does. We did pressies; I got a decent haul, So did "Furry Face TM"; and made short work of his new toys.

We set off to my brother's for Christmas. Far too much was scoffed and drunk; I dozed for much of the afternoon. It was all rather vague, but I came to on the way home. As we came home "My Boy TM" messaged - as the taxi firm were reckoning on a two hour wait could he get a lift home from his mummy.

Once er indoors TM" had done taxi-ing we settled down for a scampi supper and watched the Christmas Doctor Who before everyone else told us all about it. And having seen it I shall tell the world that...
... I won't give the plot away for the simple reason that I have no idea what was going on. In the old days there was baddies and Doctor Who defeated them. A simple plot worked. The convuloted stories that the scriptwriters trot out nowadays are needlessly complicated.
But Matt Smith has now gone and the new bloke has taken over. Let's see what he's like before I rubbish him too...

24 December 2013 (Christmas Eve) - Floods

I had a realy late night; not going to bed until 1pm. Did "Furry Face TM" really have to announce a Red Alert at 3am? I don't think it was really necessary. Perhaps the wiind bothered him. I missed it, but apparently the winds were ratther bad last night. I woke to find the asphalt on the shed roof had gone, along with two fence panels.
They can all stay gone until after Christmas.

After a swift bite of brekkie I took "Furry Face TM" round the park for a walk. Having read the updates on social media it seemed tha the overnight storm had wiped out civilisation, and I was keen to assess what was left so I could make a start in this brave new world. It has to be said that I was disappointed.
There were some serious floods; but Ashford is a flat town. Floods happen all the time. I found a few roof tiles on the pavement, but other than that civilisation seemed to have survived. Mostly. I got talking with OrangeHead in the park; she's sprung a leak, but her chunky little friend seemed dry. Another passing dog waalker told us of a massive tree that had collapsed in Jemmett Road, so we ran off to gloat, but we couldn't find any fallen trees at all.
It was at this point that the rain became torrential. We sheltered under a (still standing) tree for a few minutes, and when home put shoes and trousers on to the radiator to dry out.
Whiilst we were out I did take a few photos of the floods. They weren't that bad really.

We then set off to Hastings. Collecting a couple of geocaches on the way we braved the floods and were soon in Westfield where we spent a few hours with father-in-law over an all-day breakfast. It wouls have been good to have sppent longer, but time was at a premium, so at 3pm we made our way into Hastings where we spent an hour with mother-in-law.
We popped round to brother-in-law, and then with time seriously having run out we set off to Folkestone to meet up with "Daddies Little Angel TM". On the way we passed a geocache I couldn't find a couple of weeks ago. Not only could we not find it again; this time we flattened the car's battery whilst searching for the thing. It was nothing that a bump-start couldn't sort out, but pushing the car out of a ditch before being able to do the bump-start didn't do much for an already-aching back.

Once in Folkestone we delivered all that we had blagged from grandma's tat shop, and then finding ourselves running about two hours late we went round to see "My Boy TM" and deliver various christmas requisites.
We sang along to Christmas songs, scoffed too much, and poured lager down our necks. An excellent end to a rather busy Christmas eve...

23 December 2013 (Monday) - Bored Again

Shaving was hard work this morning. What with one thing and another I never had a shave yesterday. That never happens; I *always* have a daily scrape. Consequently this morning I had a double helping to shift, and I carved my face more than I would usually do.
My dog ate most of my toast whilst I watched episodes of "Family Guy"; the show is entertaining. However I am convinced that if I knew more about American television it would be so much better.

Off to work. It was so dark this morning; but it won't get any darker. The shortest day has now gone, and the mornings will get lighter; even though it will take a while. As I drove I listened to the radio.
Apparently Nigella Lawson and her ex-husband are squabbling in the divorce courts about who gets custody of a stuffed toy dog. Does such trivia really warrant any air time whatsoever on Radio Four?
It must have been a very quiet day for news; apparently boffins are now serioulsy talking about retro-genetically engineering dinosaurs from DNA taken from living birds.
One can't help but wonder why they would want to do this. Mind you I wouldn't mind seeing a real-live dinosaur.
Talking of which I received an email from the people running the on-line dinosaur course that I did recently asking if I would be prepared to be interviewed about my experiences on doing that course. they want to do it by web-cam and it would take about an hour. I suppose it might help them; I'd be up for it.

Morrisons was busy this morning. Rather than the usual half a dozen people waitng outside for them to open at 7am there must have been fifty or sixty people. I bet that things were fraught there during the day.
My working day was surprisingly busy; and as I was about to leave for home I checked my emails. Two new geocaches to go for. I set off for them, but half way home I got another email. I pulled up to see what it was. Someone had already found both of those caches.
Bearing in mind the awful weather I decided to go straight home where I fell asleep in front of the telly. Again... Another dull day..

22 December 2013 (Sunday) - Holidays are Coming

I woke this morning at 4am, fully clothed, sitting on the sofa with a dog on my lap. For some inexplicable reason I had a terrible headache. I wonder why.
I went to bed and after a couple of hours woke again. If not raring to go, I was certainly more lively than earlier.

I dressed, and did one of those things which is easier to write than to do; I moved the spare fridge from the shed to my car. "Daddies Little Angel TM" wanted it. It only took an hour to haul the thing into the back of my car. Not so much heavy as awkward I put my back out moving it. And with it in the car I drove it to Folkestone where it is now in its fnal resting pllace.

I came home via Sainsury's car park (for geocachical purposes) and as I drove home I saw a ghost.
There is a hump-backed bridge in South Willesborough, very steep and very narrow. As I approached the bridge there was a car coming the other way so I slowed down. As I approached the bridge, the hump of the bridge hid the car from my view for about two seconds. As I drove over the bridge I realised that the other car had disappeared. There was nowhere for it to have turned off; nowhere it could have gone.
Very mysterious.

Once home I pootled for a bit, then we went to Canterbury. We had thought about taking the train, but in the end drove to the park and ride and got the bus. Whilst waiting for the park and ride bus we messed about in the Cheapo Bargains shop.
And so to Canterbury. The Coca-Cola big red lorry was in Canterbury today; we thoought we'd go and see it. I don't really know what I was expecting form the day, but I was disappointed. There was the big red Coca-Cola lorry and nothing else at all. I would have thought there would have been side shows and events and activities. There wasn't. Those who like queueing up had the opportunity to queue up for hours to have their photos taken by the lorry (at a not inconsiderable expense). Those with sense went round the back and took photos almost immediately and for free.

Whilst in the area we found some geocaches and some munzees, and as it was a special occassion we had some McLunch. I have a McFestive Meal. Very tasty.
As we ate we listened to a very fat woman's mother who was broadcasting her medical ailments to a disinterested world. Other people's medical ailment amaze me. When I am ill I have colds, backaches, all run of the mill maladies that doctors see all the time. Fat woman's mother apparently had illnesses which made the so-called experts re-write the medical textbooks. The doctors had never seen anything like her before. I could beleive that.

As we came home our phones beeped. An email. A new geocache had gone live on the Romney Marsh. We could be First to Find. So we took a little detour on the way home, and were lucky. First to Find. We came home feeling very smug.

Once home er indoors TM went bowling, and "My Boy TM" and Lacey came to visit. Lacey had news. She is going to have a new uncle or auntie; her other Grandad's ladyfriend is expecting.
Am I alone in thinking it rather odd that someone would be eight years older than their uncle or auntie?

I then spent the rest of the evening attacking the contents of the laundry basket. Or attacking it as best I could with a bad back. I think I strained something when moving that fridge earlier...

21 December 2013 (Saturday) - Brown Ale

I didn't hear er indoors TM" come home last night. However "Furry Face TM" did, and the sound startled him. So he declared "Red Alert" as only a Patagonian Tripe-Hound can at 3am. I didn't get back off to sleep after that awakening. Fortunately I'd recorded a couple of hours of "Family Guy" onto the Sky-Plus box , and I watched them instead of sleeping.
"Furry Face TM" came and ate my toast, and then jumped on my lap. he was still excited from his earlier red alert, and spent over an hour trying to get me to fight with him. The over-excitement wasn't good for him though; he was farting fit to peel the paint off of the walls.

The weather today was bad; my poor pup only had a short walk. And with pup walked I mucked about on my computer for an hour or so. A bt of homework, a bit of Candy Crush. I had a vague plan to tidy the shed but the rain was against that idea. So I wasted several hours until the party started.

We didn't get *too* wet making our way to Queen Street; because of the rain we were cheeky and got a taxi. Once there we chatted and bandied insults. And sampled my attempt at Christmas brown ale which I had brewed especially for the occassion. Very nice.
As the ale went down things became very vague. There was a chicken being brandised, and I think there might have beenn mention of port...?

20 December 2013 (Friday) - Dull

Yesterday evening I was trying to watch a film with some of my best friends. I was soon fast asleep. This morning at 3am when I wanted to be asleep I was wide awake...
I got up shortly after 5am and watched the latest episode of South Park over a spot of brekkie. "Furry Face TM" helped me eat my toast, and then I started off to work. Once I'd scraped the ice off of the car I set off. I listened to the radio as I drove. For once there was absolutely nothing of note on the news.

I stopped off at the petrol station on my way to work. It was incredibly busy at 7am. And then on to work. There was still lots to be scoffed even though it is now two days after the Christmas buffet. I did my bit, and came home. I came home three hours early; having arranged to leave early for astro club. I had been under the impression that we were having astro club tonight. By the time I realised we weren't the time off had been booked.
So I thought I'd take the time off anyway.

With er indoors TM" out on the razzle I took "Furry Face TM" for a walk, and then I treated myself to KFC for tea. I then slept through the second part of the docu-drama about the Great Train Robbery.
Some days in my life are rather good. Others are rather dull. Today was one of the dull ones...

19 December 2013 (Thursday) - Ronnie Biggs, Minions

After a relatively good night’s sleep I got up a little before everyone else this morning. Yesterday I mentioned that the Great Train Robber Ronnie Biggs had died. Last night I recorded a docu-drama about the Great Train Robbery, and I watched it this morning over brekkie. I’ve watched quite a bit about that robbery lately; it’s odd how the public’s perception of that event bears little relation with actuality. When the Great Train Robbery is mentioned, everyone immediately thinks of Ronnie Biggs. However he would seem to have been only a minor player in the whole scheme; and hardly anyone could name the masterminds behind the heist.

I took “Furry Face TM “ out for his morning constitutional; we went through South Ashford to Singleton Lake and back home through Viccie Park. We had a minor attempted fracas with a bus, and there was a dodgy few seconds when my dog was nearly eaten by a passing Husky, but bearing in mind previous experiences, for once our walk was relatively uneventful.

Once home I settled my dog down and went to the van hire shop. A chap at work is moving to Southampton. I’ve offered to drive the removal van; if nothing else it will be a day out. I then went round to Staples for various stationery requisites. Whilst in the area I had a look in Ashford’s Cheapo-Bargains store. They didn’t have Christmas cake either.

Home, and once I’d done washing up and Hoovering I used the various stationery requisites I’d bought this morning. It’s amazing it takes to print out a year’s worth of homework. Whilst I printed I listened to Total Ashford’s Pod-Cast. Being of local interest it wasn’t at all bad. There was all sorts of interesting stuff about the Marsh Millions, the local rugby club, the decorations on the cows roundabout, and even an interview with an ex-cub who is now the leading light in the local pantomime. Mind you my piss did boil just the teensiest bit when they interviewed the “blood-runners”. The “Blood-runners” mean well; they act as unpaid couriers driving all sorts of thiongs to all sorts of places. But I did see red when the chap being interviewed said that what they did was "just like a real job". I can’t help but wonder what happened to the people who used to do that real job to earn their livelihood until well-meaning people put them out of work. Or how these people would react if their employers sacked them from their paid employment and replaced them with unpaid volunteers…

My email alert beeped. A new geocache had gone live only a mile away. I flew out of the house and was on a First to Find mission. I got to the cache twenty four minutes after it had been activated, but I wasn’t fast enough. Someone else had got there first. Next time…

The Rear Admiral came round for a cuppa, and then we set off to Folkestone. A bit of Chinese, and then Despicable Me 2. A rather good film; a shame I fell asleep; I wanted to watch it…

18 December 2013 (Wednesday) - Xmas Tree

Overnight the Christmas tree appeared in our living room. We've not had the tree out for the last couple of years; I'd forgotten that is is a rather yukky purple colour; I've never liked the thing. Mind you I never wanted a dog either, so what do I know...
For brekkie I had toast; er indoors TM" has bought a weightwatcher's loaf. I can guarantee that I will lose weight eating this bread; each slice is half the size of the average slice of bread.

Being on a late shift I got to leave for work in daylight this morning; which made for a pleasant change. As I drove the news was about the death of the great train robber Ronnie Biggs. I heard so much about the chap. Was he evil? Did he just fall in with a bad lot? I can't help but think that if I were offered financial security for life for one day's work I might be very inclined to do what he did.
I also listened to the weather forecast which was talking about a wet and miserable morning. Rather unlike the bright morning it actually was. Funnily enough the BBC's weather website had got the weather forecast right. I often wonder where BBC radio 4 gets it's weather forecasts from; they are usually completely different from what their own web site predicts.

And so to the Cheapo Bargains shop. I thought they might have Christmas cake going cheap. The didn't. In fact they had never even heard of Christmas cake. I explained the entire concept to several of their staff who clearly had no idea what I was talking about. In the end I settled for a small fruit cake. I like fruit cake.

Once at work I did my bit until mid day. We then had our Xmas buffet. It was really good. Far too much to eat, and I got a really good "Secret Santa" pressie; a six-in-one solar-powered toy construction set. I shall get up to mischief with that in the days to come.
I also scoffed more buffet at my afternoon break; by going home time I had rather a serious guts ache.

As I drove home I listened to more news. There was nothing really of note, but the rain was torrential. I can home to a seriously tidied house. Perhaps more Christmas decorations are about to go up...?

17 December 2013 (Tuesday) - Airports, Tablets...

I looked at the clock at 1.45am this morning, but dozed off again. I then woke shortly after 5am which was rather good really. Over brekkie I watched "Family Guy" again - this time their take on the third (sixth) Star Wars film. If you were really knowledgeable about Star Wars and American television it would probably have been quite entertaining. I thought it was the worst of the three Star Wars/Family Guy crossovers; and the first two were rather dire. Consequently this was a rather rubbish hour spent in front of the telly.

And so to work through very heavy rain. As I drove the talk was all about the planned expansion of airports in the South East. Apparently some years ago the Prime Minister made some comment about his being opposed to any expansion of Heathrow Airport, and now he was being held to account on this comment. I can't claim to be his biggest fan, but the poor chap has a hopeless job. Like any politician, anything he says is immediately cast in stone. A politician is never allowed to change his or her mind in the eyes of the pundits.
What a silly line to take.
I change my mind all the time.

The radio also had news about vitamin supplements. Apparently a third of the UK population are taking them event though the latest research confirms what I have said all along; they are utterly unnecessary in the vast majority of cases. Any percieved benefits are entirely due to the placebo effect. But if people have money to burn, other people will take it.

I popped into Morrison's on my way to work. Fortunately for me (and humanity at large) they had cheap deodorant. My armpits have now been squirted. I bought a tin of sweeties to take in to work, and looked at the Christmas cakes. I say "looked" - that's what I did. Looked. They were very small, and worked out at about a quid a slice. I like Christmas cake, but not that much.
I shall see what the Cheapo-Bargains shop has on offer tomorrow.

Once at work I did my bit. And scoffed some sweeties. And then came back again. As I drove this evening there was a program on the radio about Islamic fundamentalists in Africa. I've mentioned before that the BBC seems to have a very obvious anti-Muslim bias.

I made my way to Queen Street where the Tuesday gathering was in full flow. Insults bandied, tea scoffed, and I stayed awake through an episode of Merlin.... must do that more often.

16 December 2013 (Monday) - Compliance

I had a good night's sleep, and consequently forgot to chase the quack about being referred to a sleep clinic. I'll phone them tomorrow.
After brekkie I put the lead on to "Furry Face TM" and took him out for a walk. I couldn't face going round the park today; we've had one or two episodes there recently. Instead we went out through Newtown and home via Frog's Island. We didn't meet any other dogs on the way, but my dog did try to pick fights with dustbin lorries, milk floats and buses.

Once home I set about solving more geo-puzzles and designing geo-souvenirs, and then Lisa messaged that her hair was washed and she was up for an outing. We had planned a serious walk around Burmarsh for today, but the weather wasn't really that good. Instead we went for a little drive out too New Romney and back via a dozen geocaches. It was a good day for drive-by caching, but we were both glad we'd decided against going for a long distance walk. It was rather cold and wet and windy.

Once home I popped round to Halfords for a tax disc holder that actually stuck to the car windscreen, and then once home I hoovered (dull), scrubbed the kitchen (duller) and ironed shirts (hyper dull). I then slept through a docu-drama about the late Frankie Howerd until er indoors TM" came home.

A quick bit of tea, then er indoors TM" went bowling. I sorted my undercrackers and watched a film. "Compliance" was a rather worrying film based on a true life story in which so many people did frankly terrible things because someone in authority told them to do so. It was a subject we touched on in the Psychology course that I did. A large proportion of people will do absolutely anything if they are told (firmly enough) to do so... You can read about it by clicking here.
It's rather worrying really...