OK, what’s been happening since the last update?

Well, mostly recovery from the week before’s antics, really.

The only things of note are the aquisition of bits to rebuild my “big” (read games) PC, its rebuilding and some well needed sleeping.

Friday was the day the bits arrived.. and it was also in the evening that I rebuilt the PC. Out went the Gigabyte KT400 based motherboard, Athlon XP 3000+, power supply with noisey fan and the old, cheap, blown speakers and in came the Gigabyte K8T800 Pro motherboard, Athlon 64 3200+, 2GB of fast memory, quiet power supply and Creative I-Trigue 2200 speakers. Dispite the small change in notional processor speed increase, the whole system now hums along and runs games (and iTunes) much more smoothly… and it no-longer sounds like a jet waiting for take-off while doing it! Obviously, it was the memory bottle-neck which was the main performance problem on the old system. (It also had a very strange effect in iTunes in that the music would constantly change tempo, faster then slower etc. without any real pattern or reason as far as I could tell.)

Saturday afternoon, after returning from Sainsbury’s, I intended to sit down and watch “The Sky at Night” but my body had other ideas. Almost as soon as I sat down to watch, I started missing great chunks as I drifted in and out of sleep. I think I managed to watch about 5 minutes of the 20 minute programme in the end. Obviously, the lack of sleep I’d had in the week and a half before had caught up with me. I turned the telly off and slept/dozed the rest of the afternoon until 6pm, when I finally felt awake enough to get up.

Yesterday I’d planned a whole host of houseworky things to do. However, other things got in the way, mostly work things. An outbreak of the new e-mail worm in the department meant that I had to at first spend about half an hour or so working out which machine had been infected and then i had to drive into the dept. to unplug it. The driving in bit was a problem as I didn’t realise that the Cowley Road Carnival was on, so ended up getting caught in diversions. Of course, when I did get to the dept. the job of disconnection took moments.

Seeing as I was in town I decided that I might as well take the opportunity to pop into Argos and get some filters for my cooker hood and on the way home pop into Sainsbury’s to pick up the stuff I’d forgotten on Saturday. The upshot of all this was that buy the time I got home it was nearly 4pm and very little of my plans got done.

This coming week is busy-ish on the social front, there being two barbeques (Oxford Polar Society tomorrow and Geolsoc one on Thursday) and a viva celebration on Friday. I hope I can get some of the houseworky things don in the two evenings I have free.

Passing weeks.

Last weekend my parents came down for the bank holiday. Nothing really exciting happened other than my Dad and myself managed to persuade my Mum to do a 3mile walk along the Ridgeway. She moaned all the time as she walked but she managed it without difficulty. Her mental health is really starting to decline now and it’s a great deal of pressure on my Dad.

After the bank holiday it was back to work but with the addition of two late nights out. Tuesday I helped Paul, a friend from Physics who I know via John, celebrate handing in his thesis and got to sleep about 1:30am. On Wednesday I went to see Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith with Grim, Holly and three of Grim’s visiting global colleagues. This time it wasn’t ’til 2am that I got to bed.

I didn’t really catch up on the sleep deprivation when the weekend arrived. It’s Lindsey’s birthday today, so this weekend she had her birthday party. So, I was up early on Saturday morning and drove up to Liverpool. Thankfully, the traffic wasn’t bad.

After arriving at about midday, and feeling shattered already, there was general talking, mayhem with kids etc. More people arrived, I tried to be intelligent and talkative, but I wasn’t in a fit state to think so this didn’t work out as well as it might have done. I did, however, use some of the time to pop into Woolworths in Waterloo with the stub from seeing Revenge of the Sith and bought the 3 original Star Wars films on DVD with £7.50 off. (This means that with the Orange Wednesday promotion as well, the effective cost of Holly and myself seeing the film was £-1! :-))

Anyway, the evening went on, the BBQ finished, the weather deteriated slightly and a bunch of us went to the pub before returning to Lindsey’s house with pizza, where the party continued in her room. And it continued for a long time… it wasn’t ’til 3:30am that people started getting into beds. Then they continued to talk and music played. I dozed as well as I could. 5:30am came and went. At this point I finally managed to sleep for a few hours.

Much of yesterday is a bit of a blur. However, after getting up, we all trekked over to Formby Point where red squirrels were seen and photographed and ice creams were eaten. I left Waterloo at about 3pm and arrived home at 6:45pm.. having had a large, strong latte at Knutsford services, the main effects of which lasted ’til Banbury, I managed to make it home safely.. it’s a pity that the secondary effects lasted ’til about half 10 as I could have done with getting to sleep earlier.

Pictures of this weekend’s trip can be found on my photo gallery under the cameras sections. There are some under the nikon section and the canon section under the dates 2005_06_04 and 2005_06_05. These include cute squirrel pictures.