Partying with pictures.

Friday was a rather woozly day after the two previous nights with not as much sleep as my body required.

I did manage, with the help of someone I met at the IT support staff conference the before, to get the new replacement iMac (which got delivered 30 minutes after the order was faxed!) fully on the network with full automounter and NIS authentication. Even home directories on NFS worked. Previously I’ve tried to do this in the past and failed with MacOS X 10..2.x. However, it seems that later updates of 10.2 have fixed a great deal of the problems with interoperability.

Friday evening was the department undergraduate finalists’ party. Seeing as I took some photos last year I got asked to do it again. The result can be viewed at if you’re interested.

Seeing as I was rather pooped I didn’t go on to Wolfson College Bop and went home instead. I was in bed well before 10pm.

Saturday morning I had to get up at the normal time, ie. 7:30am. It was off to Sainsbury’s first for the weekly shop before going off to my old school’s summer reunion thingy. I’d arranged to meet one of the other reprobates who had been in the computer club at lunchtime.

After leaving home at about 10am I finally got to Kimbolton at about 11:45am. Having finally managed to find a place which had some phone signal I got in touch with Will Mumford about meeting up. He said that he got off work at midday and would meet me in the New Sun Inn at about half twelve. So, I went and had some lunch in the Inn. Erm, it was rather expensive, £6.50 for scampi and chips!!!!

Anyway, I waited and waited and no Will could be seen. So, at 1pm I decided to pop over to the castle (the school is based in Kimbolton Castle and its grounds). Typically, just as I got about 100 yards up the drive I got both a text message and a phone call from Will (yes, I’d got a signal!) asking where I was. He was just coming in through the gatehouse.

Anyway, to cut a long story short, I did see a few of my contemporaries there, but no-where near as many as I expected. Still it was fun.

I left the school at about a quarter past four and decided to travel down my old usual route to Bedford, the B660, past where I used to live, Pertenhall. Following a slight nostalgic tripas far as Bedford I decided to see how my old stamping ground in Houghton Conquest was getting on. More building on infill land was basically what I found.

Seeing as it was only about 5pm-ish I thought I’d pop along the road towards Ampthill and drop by the old ruins of Houghton House. I was glad I’d decided to take my camera with me as it’s quite a photogenic place. I took about 60 pictures including about 20 ready to stitch together into a panarama of the Great Ouse valley from King’s Wood, past Cardington airship hangers, across Bedford and over to the chimnies and clay pits of Stewartby with the Midland Mainline railways sweeping through the scenery. All I have to do now is find some software to stitch them together.

I left there at about 6pm, stopped off quickly at Millbrook railway bridge, where I used to take railway pictures after cycling there in about 1980, took a couple of pictures and then travelled home.

I finally got home at about 7:45pm, slumped in my chair and soon went to bed.

Today, I’m just been getting the pictures formatted and the meadow in the back garden grazed by my electric mower.


Thankfully, my tummy upset stopped plaguing me by the time of the dinner at Le Petite Blanc last night.

I had a fun time with good food. (I was glad I chose items from the A La Carté menu though as the portions on the set menu were a bit on the small side.)

This morning I’m feeling really tired. I think I shall go and get a machine coffee now to wake myself up.


night, the night before the social dinner event I’m going to tonight at Le
Petite Blanc for which I’ve already paid over £30 I get a stomach bug.

I was awake ’til about 4:30am feeling as if I was blowing up like a balloon and feeling every peristaltic action. Wonderful!

So, today I’m feeling shattered, my abdomen still feels like a balloon, I’m
very slightly nausious and I keep getting hot flushes. Not exactly the best
way to be feeling before going to a restaurant with nightlife following it.

Sod’s law, isn’t it?

The last week.

Well, what’s happened in the last week?

Well, the Grand Prix was ok, I s’pose.

My bike didn’t get its chain guard even though it has arrived and does look as if it will fit. The next attempt will be Wednesday.

The appointment to see a bootleg verson of “The Core” on thrusday didn’t happen.

Friday afternoon was the department BBQ. Well, I say department but it was really only set up by the postgrads who run the Friday “Happy Hour.” It was based at St.Edmund (Teddy) Hall boathouse on the river. It was a lovely warm and sunny day with enough of a breeze to make it very pleasant. The food was iffy but the company was good. On the whole it was a good afternoon. When I got home I realised that I’d got a little toasted in the sunshine.

Today I finally managed to wash my car and then give it a good waxing. It’s now looking nice and shiny.. well, it was until it started raining.

Over the last couple of days my big PC has been attacking me. I’ve just installed a couple of new fans and a more beefy power supply. Unfortunately, during my experiments trying to determine what the best way of cooling the case would be I managed to get one fan to slice into my left little finger knuckle and the case side slid through my hand and sliced into the side of my right-middle finger. I dunno how it did that as that part of the case isn’t really even sharp.

This afternoon at about 4pm I got a phone call from work. A pipe had burst on the top floor of the building almost directly above our main computer rooms. Let’s say that it has proved that Macintoshes are not as waterproof as their namesake coats. There is a rather soggy iMac which I think is probably drowned. Thankfully, no water went into the machine room. Still, the A0 printer which students were using to prepare for tomorrow’s mini-conference within the department is our of action as the room its in has no power. I can see some panicing happening.

Week round-up.

So, what exciting things have I been up to since my last update?

Well, there’s been a little bit of moral support for 3rd years who were awaiting their results. I’ve done the annual department photograph. I’ve been to the pub on Friday night.

Other than this, I stuffed parts into my work machine (euclid) yesterday so that it now has ha;f a gig of memory and a DVD-ROM/CD-RW drive. Both the memory and the DVD-ROM/CD-RW drive were left-over parts from one of the research groups.

In the afternoon, after doing my normal shopping and getting an optical output cap for the DVD player, I popped off to the UCI High Wycombe cinema to see X-Men 2 (or as it should be titled, X2). It wasn’t such a bad film, better than the first. OK, it wasn’t a classic but it was fun.

I did want to cut the grass and wash the car today, but it’s a bit too hot for that. So, I’ve been reading and trying to get further in Unreal II.

I’m now about to watch the grand prix. I wonder if it’ll be interesting.

Lindsey’s birthday weekend

I think I should start this entry by saying what I did at the tail end of
last week. Namely, a bit of shopping on Thursday evening (including buying
The Animatrix DVD) followed by Buffy and angel. Friday evening was spent
partly at happy hour and partly packing for Saturday’s journey to Liverpool…

Which brings us to Saturday morning. It was a 6:30am start. This is, of course,
far too early to start a Saturday. Half way through showering I hear a knock
on my front door. it was Tom (xencat) who had turned up rather earlier than
I’d expected, so I settled him down in front of the TV with the HiFi set
to full surround sound and stuff the Animatrix on the DVD while I went back
upstairs and finished getting ready.

We left the house at about 7:30, trundled up to Tescos to get goodies for
the barbecue later in the day and discussed bicycles. From there is was a
quick garage stop to give my car a breakfast of Super Unleaded before heading
off to Liverpool.

The journey up wasn’t too bad. Not that much traffic and no hold-ups to really
meantion. We stopped off north of Birmingham for a comfort break and to grab
some not very fast food in the Burger King before toddling off again. We
finally made Lindsey’s house at about 11:30.

Most of the afternoon was spent either trying desparately to get their barbecues
to make any heat and  cooking. Still, the company was nice. After returning
from a little amble around a local park I made some chocolate stuffed bananas
on the BBQ and all seemed to enjoy them even though they weren’t very hot.

The evening was spent in a local pub with some mor eof Lindsey’s friends.
Unfortunately, Lindsey got a headache and most of us were far too tired to
stay late or stay up and talk, so it was a pretty early night in the end,
and i didn’t need the pajamas either. Unfortunately, I had drunk rather too
much cola, so most of the night was spent running to the loo, so I didn’t
get a great deal of sleep.

Sunday dawned.. or rather it squidged, as it was a bit wet. By midday, Steph
and Mel had left (after replacing a flat tyre) so Lindsey, Tom and myself
went off into Liverpool to shop. Typically, as we came out of the car park,
the heavens opened. Thankfully, I had my big Saab umbrella, so only Lindsey’s
shoulder and the bottoms of my trouser legs actually got wet.

After some lunch and Tom having a massive spending spree in HMV (hey, that
rhymes!) we drove back to Lindsey’s place, we dropped her off and then I
drove home.

Having got home at about 5:30pm I collapsed in an arm chair and failed to move all night, well other than to go to bed.

Today, I have no IQ whatsoever. i think I should have stayed in bed.

*Treep* Errrgh, What’s the time?

This morning I woke up bright and early to the wailful treep of one of my smoke alarms. It was 5:30am and there was a power cut. Oh loverly!

Once I’d removed the failing battery and called Southern Electric I wandered back to bed but couldn’t really get back to sleep. Not only could I not dose properly but at 6:40 the power came on briefly waking me from the little sleep I was getting.

It wasn’t until an hour later that the power finally came back on and I could go around powering up all the computers and reseting the clocks again.

Getting ready for the weekend.

Well, this lunchtime I attempted to get all the things necessary for the weekend. Namely, pajamas (as wacky boxers, silk or not, aren’t generally available :-)) and a present for Lindsey.

Well, on the pajamas front I managed to get some in Debenhams. But, I failed to find something nice for Lindsey although I spent about an hour scouring Oxford and even getting a bit whiffy from testing perfumes. So, I settled on a £20 HMV voucher.

When I got home I tried on the new pajamas… I think Debenham’s idea of small is strange. OK, the bottoms are about the right size around the waist but are about 3 or four inches too long. The top is almost big enough to envelope two of me. Oh, and I think I may have to find a safety pin to make sure the opening at the front of the trousers stays closed.

Mumble, mumble.

I went to the dentist this afternoon. It took about 40 minutes to prepare the broken tooth for a new crown (to be fitted in a fortnight) and involved needles (yuck!) and copious amounts of drilling. At least that’s over, and the jabs are wearing off. I can feel all my face again but not all the muscles are working yet.

Anyway, other happenings included consolidating 4 PCs in the machine room so that they use only one set of keyboard, mouse and monitor, saving a lot of space and allowing more machines to be put in there. Those Belkin 4 port KVM switches seem to work well.

I’m looking forward to next weekend. Saturday morning I’m off up to Liverpool with Tom (xencat) to celebrate Lindsey’s birthday. Apparently, the plan for the day is going to be BBQ with kids followed by pub and then a slumber party in Lindsey’s bedroom.

The last bit sounds a little unusual, especially as Lindesy’s informed me that I should get some outrageous pajamas or boxer shorts. Hey-ho!