WMC's diary pages, 2000.

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See-also: http://www.wmc.care4free.net/diary/.

April 2000

Sat 1st

Up late - J v. kindly takes D when he wakes. M & I go swim (4x10 in 27.1, 28.5, 30.5 & 31). Cb1 & various shops. Lazy day for the rest.

Sun 2nd

Digging in the garden: clear sods from around trees. D comes out into the garden with me.

Bees at 80 launches/min at noon.

Shed with beehive
and blossom.

Make bread. J leaves after a leisurely lunch. D tired & to bed but gets up after < hour. M has him for a while & I civ, then I cycle to H+A's new place (v. nice) & have tea - others by chance are also there. House is full of nooks & hence good. Garden also good - goes down to stream larger than ours.

Mon 3rd

D to playgroup for real for 1st time. Rain. M'a off sick so M will do early p. m. & me late.

a.m. work: machines snail-like. Vacs kick-off meeting.

Rain all day (would be good if I had the guttering back up). 3.30 home for D. D imagines a conversation between Lily (the little lego figurine) & a bee: hello bee how are you? I'm fine. Bye.

D can say most of Goosey g gander.

Tues 4th

p.m. to pool with D in car because weather continues manky - cold, v. windy & rain. A good day to sit upstairs on the bed reading Gill as I did for an hour this a.m. Now cb1 which is cramped. D tired. He can see steam - I try to tell him it is smoke.

I am trapped in the entrance to ex-octopus until D has finished playing in the ride-on helicopter... done... now I have my gutter sealant & gun but we are trapped again. Escape this only to hit the peak rush hour traffic - good grief how can people do this every day etc etc its just not natural.

Home. Cook sos + onion for D & while it cools a little he has elbowed me aside & is doing the washing up. No crashes so far.

Wed 5th

Rain stops & wind is now just blowy but still chill - perhaps because of the easterlies - but sunshine makes up for all. I lay in bed watching clouds clear last night at 11.

D & I visited the pond to see the tadpoles, & then the bees, & now he is fighting sleep outside playing with the watering can.

Thurs 6th

Sun. Somewhat discontented around town. Eventually realise I'd rather be at home. I had a paper to read but there was less in it than I expected (Pratt on interp of 2d spectra - good enough but not what I wanted) & I finished it off in cb1.

Back via allotment & a bit more digging & straightening out & defining raspberry ranks.

M reads her specs all evening & I win my civ. Aren't we dull? (please don't answer that).

Fri 7th

Sitting outside in the a'noon sun: it is balmy. D had a play in the paddling pool (he dragged it out & insisted) but it wasn't really that warm. The neighbour has just mown her lawn... should I?

No. Or at least not yet. Now I'm sitting in the sun at the orchard. We are sharing a bottle of apple juice. D is eating his crisps at the top of the slide. He wants a 'man cake' - that is to say, a gingerbread man.

Sat 8th

Clean out bike shed. Put up 2 new shelves & put potatoes & dahcias on them to sprout.

D has just developed (& it is from us, I fear) the habit of saying 'ready like a teddy' or 'here we go, wiggly woa' or 'toast like a voast'etc. Does this have a name?

Get to Ma's at 6.

Eve: xfer video to tape (start tape #6). Lie by fire.

Sun 9th

Up with D slowly - not really tired, more lazy. D woke twice in the night - the second time worried in some way about a blue t-shirt.

Ma: 'daniel has gone from washing up to playing up'. She has found him a little old metal teapot (grandads, she says) that is unbreakable. Meanwhile we are watching D's growth speeded up on video - tape 3 I think, going from pre-crawl to confident crawl. D laughed & shouted when young-d fell over.

With Ma take D to orchard near church when friends of hers have been clearing undergrowth overgrown trees & there is a pile of wood to collect - 2 car loads in fact, which take ages for M & I to take round to the back of the house & stack.

D sleeps p.m. & has to be woken sleepily for a'noon tea, my (early) b'day cake & presents: from Ma, a rose (bridge of sighs & some organic insecticide, so it may live) from M, 2 vols of Proust in fr but also in cartoon. Also, just when I had freed myself from the evils of civ, she has given me the evil empires version. As a kindness to her (um) I give it a go. D has made me 3(!) b'day cards which he helps me open. Rob, incidentally, is off in Chile.

Home via J+J where D is cute but distinctly boisterous. M works & I explore aoe.

Mon 10th

Work hard all day - seaice, general interrupts & even get some egs done.

Soir. Finish aoe training campaign. M yogas & packs till late. I sleep.

Tues 11th

Town. Rain. M is in flight to amerikee & I have the morning off courtesy of M'a. Swim 40 in 31.25, cb1 (restart waaft skipping fd), arjuna, M+S where I astonish myself by finding & buying new shorts in a minute or so - though it took me 2 tries to find the right shop. Now d clulow getting glasses fixed. Then to watchmaker who has my (peters) watch back from repair (£ 55) then pick up D.

p.m. Make bread. D has short sleep the we play with duplo & brio.

Now D's bedtime & he refuses to come: trying the old 'he'll interrupt me if I start writing trick'.

Soir: rather uselessly aoe.

Wed 12th

My b'day! M phones at 11 which is 6 for her & says 'happy b'day'.

Pick up D from M'a - he is a bit contrary but v. smiley with it.

Put guttering back up sans sealant. Sos for tea (& Ma's b'day cake). D comes & lies with me by the fire for a bit.

Bedtime reading with D: 'guess how much I love you' with nut brown hare (major & minor). Effect a little spoiled when D insists that the hare's tail is poo coming out. Summon bigfoot for an anatomy lesson..

Thurs 13th

Work: sages day. M phones up a.m. but I'm not there to answer.

D: 'I eat flesh' but its ok: he means of an apple.

Take phone to bed: M phones at 11.30.

Fri 14th

M+J arrive rather late due to an unfortunate choice of an 'interesting' route. D is pleased to see them & is then put to bed. They have brought along a pot of veg by J.

Sat 15th

Rain all day. Get a very welcome lie-in as D wakes up m & j. B'fast at 9 then off to swim: a pathetic 4x10 in 28.5, 31, 30.5 & 31. Oh dear - my fitness has declined rather faster than I expected. Don't tell Howard. Cb1, Open air for new sandals, W'stones (cafe shut but they have the inestimable boon of the 4 Jack Vance 'dying earth' books in one volume. Cheese from the good but supercilious shop & home.

P.m. M+J cook some of our out-of-date rice & mushrooms into a risotto - we really need a fifo cupboard to stop stuff getting stuck at the back.

M back at 1/4 to 12 & I waited up playing aoe.

Sun 16th

A pleasant change: bright sun. a.m. we sit around, D plays & M slowly falls asleed. At 12.30 when M'd, J, D & I head off to the Blue Something in Hardwick she can just be roused enough to be told we're going. Sit outside for lunch & have ploughmans with, as so often, too much cheese & too little bread.

Back: M+J go; D put to sleep (but does not stay) & I do a little gardening: mow the lawn mostly, plant some peas & onions & put 5 squash seeds in a tray of my own compost (carefully seived) so sprout upstairs.

We both fix punctures.

Mon 16th

Work on Nice talk.

D manages to use 'shall' correctly: shall we find a clean puddle? When we get home he plays in the garden - he is fascinated by water from the hosepipe (I am emptying the waterbutt) & would play at watering things forever but his cruel father will not let him.

M is at someones b'day drinks so I am alone after D to bed. Eyes feel tired (not a good sign) so relax & listen to combat rock & lb. Later add some piccies to march's on-line wurblings.

Watch the (full) moon rise & sail across the darkening sky. Diary 2000/04 #2 (17-23)

Tues 17th

Up with D. Then he goes upstairs to wake M up despite my best efforts & I sleep by the fire until 9.30. Day has gone grey but I drag myself out, check on the bees (happy) & swim 40 in a surprisingly good 30. Its half term but the fast lane is, happily, populated by fast people. Astonished that I am swimming comparatively well when in general I've felt tired these past few days. Cb1.

Station: get tickets for Nice. Sadly the couchettes are full so I have to get a sleeper... fare is £100 plus only £40 for Paris - Nice, which is a bargain: actually cheaper than Gareths flight (if you forget the sleeper...). All takes only 1/2 hour which is probably a record too.

Home. D 'I don't want to be good'. Tidy upstairs & put down the single futon (with D's agreement) to replace his cot which he has outgrown.

D is being a kangaroo.

M a bit late - crisis at work - so D says good night over the phone. M cooks broccolli, scrambled eggs & (my) leeks.

Charities: dispose of some small fragment of our (our? M's) recent gains.

Reading neil smith on chomsky: the linguistics, so far. Is it really true that the set of all (english) sentences is infinite? Surely a sentence has a finite length even if that is a billion words.

Wed 19th

p.m. fine: D drags out his paddling pool for the second time this year. Then we cycle off to Hardwick to see rick & jo & x (still x) which is good. Go out via footpath over the fields which is just about dry enough but bumpy. Back via downhill path opposite am cemetery.

Soir pub. D falls asleep about 10.

Thurs 20th

D v. tired: comes into our bed & sleeps until past 8.

Lunch: basils seems to be shut, either for refurbishment or permanently :-(

Try to buy clik drive from rs: fail: they can't find the box contents. Ho hum. Now try to buy francs at no notice. Rates:

Tc 11.67 10.45  2%
nw 11.53 10.63 2%
Gnatwest sell me some. Then back to work.

Fri 21st

Up with D. He is appallingly bad at looking for things - just as rob & I were. In fact if he says 'wheres the spoon, daddy look for spoon' he won't look himself - just pretend to.

To work :-(

Back at 2: M & D still out. Windy but sun: bees at 80/min. M back: D & I garden (I dig up dandelions & D pays with the hosepipe). M tries to sleep outside but sun goes in; she spends rest of a'noon asleep by the fire. Poor M. Work is winding her up - too many distractions & no chance to concentrate on 'real' stuff. D & I plant my b'day rose (bridge of sighs, from ma) at front of house on drive side.

D sleeps 4-6.30 & I garden: clean under leylandii in middle by holly on Dots side, mulch under chestnut near pond with my compost. Paint (first coat) bend-piece for gutters.

A+S come round to borrow nikon.

xfer files (mostly piccies) to M's tosh as backup but the counter has gone mad: after deciding that it was down to 31 mins (yes ir xfer is slow) it now says 6230 mins... 4239... 1995... Odd.

Sat 22nd

Up early with D. Sleep by fire.

Swim: 2x20 in 29.5 & 30.75. Cb1. Finish 'to live forever'.

Buy laser transparencies from staples as bas has run out. Print off talk at bas. Meanwhile M has taken D swimming then on to photo-op with Sarah who is standing for labour. When I get back D is asleep, & M&I are both tired. In fact D won't wake up at 6.45 & sleeps on.

Seal joins on guttering.

Sun 23rd

Have arranged to go to Ma today - rnl are there. Must remember to ask rob how augusto is doing.

Had a cough - irritating tickle in throat - overnight so got to see moon opposite window at about 3am. And 4. D wakes at 6 & comes into bed. Wants water so I get him some several times. Eventually realise he is a bit unwell - finaliy get up past 8 when he voms. Urg. Nothing like a vom to convert lethargy into action.

Now: M upstairs washing hair. I'm sitting in the sun & D, having played with coins & sat in my lap, has now wandered upstairs to wipe his nose.

Sit outside & read paper.

Bees: 100/min. But I think its impossible to count. I shall stop trying. Garden is getting rampant. But it will get nothing till after Nice.

Mother is now definitely 'long-haired grandma' to D.

Drive to Ma for lunch: rnl are there. L is asleep when we arrive & through lunch. D eats mostly small easter eggs. D & she play a little together. To playground where it starts to rain & rapidly gets heavy: drag D away. Provides excuse for fire when we get back. Simnal cake for tea.

Mon 24th

Sleep v. well o'night.

M is now off for a swim & possible visit to work & I will be off to Nice this a'noon. Minor panic when packing - lost my tickets - but turned out I had 'tidied' them away.

D is like one of those rats with his pleasure center wired up, which will forgo sleep, sex & food in exchange for pressing the button. Except for D, its forgo toast & playdough in favour of 'washing up'.

Now onboard & awaiting departure of the 16:23 es to Paris. Only onboard the c->kc train did I check my London xfer time & realise it was rather short: about 30 mins if you believe the official check-in time [interruption: announcer: this *is* the train to Paris *not* Lille. But he said it in Fr]. But here I am ok. Train quite full but I have an empty seat next to me. M & D drove me to c station to see me off which was unexpectedly sweet. Only thing I know I've forgotten so far is me spare glasses.

Sunny day: towering bright cumulus on way into London. A fine day to relax on a train.

19:20 fr time so we must be fairly close to Paris (no, this is wrong: about an hour to go). Once I woke up I spent 1/2 hour making the mobile modem work (which rather blows the cool of casually laying out the kit & having it work). Sent M a mail, since I could. Then, since the machine was on I browsed the photo archive removing crud, & copied some into the diary pages. All surprisingly time consuming. Blew away the chap next to me - not only was his portable a brick, it ran out of battery before ashford. Haven't even opened a book yet: what happened to long train journeys with time to read?

I grouse too much: evening light floods the plain (which is indeed literally flooded in a few places) & I begin Chomsky: new horizons in the study of language & mind.

Have 2 sugar wrappers so far - neither inspiring.

Saw martin juckes getting off es - chap who worked at Reading as I was starting. Didn't say hello - I'm like that. [gap] But then saw him again in station & we chatted briefly. He is going to Nice too, of course.

Time in hand so walk to Seine: view west to notre dame: photo intending to send to M. At station (salle mediterrané, how evocative) cafe train bleu have coffee & sandwich (brown baguette, how odd) & entertain self trying to connect to libertysurf. After a few tries get verified but connection doesn't actually work. Ah well. Stop when first battery folds up.

Now in my 'sleeper' compartment alone as we speed south. Only got a sleeper 'cos couchettes were full but perhaps should upgrade for way back: is it worth extra £25? Probably.

Phoned M: no reply. Odd. Now sleep.

[have just realised: above mirror is a shaver socket: could I recharge? Not going to try]

Tues 25th

Sleep well. Awake & pull blind onto blue riviera morning: apartement blocks, palm trees, pines, glimpses of sea & masts, rocks & balustrades, red tiles & a half moon.

Cannes. Juan les Pins (which I had in my mind as st-jlp). Antibes. The coast is almost continuously built on.

Forgotten thing #2: razor. Though I do remember picking it up in house..

Arrive. Walk to hotel but 1/2 way decide to go direct to acropolis. Pleased to remember the town layout & even the old church reflected. And here I am in the queue to register. For some reason there are far more a-e than other names. And there are people at the bottom of the stairs stopping the unregistered. But the on-site queue is even longer.

Tee shirt: linuxcare. What?

Sit in cafe & try to sift timetable. Cheap bastards haven't provided a cloth bag this time. But they have a vacuous message from the pres.

W.E.Johns has a paper! Biggles & the red sea ocean mystery.

Find email room. Only 8 terminals for 4500 delegates. Maybe I'll have to make the portable work.

First coffee break. Meet Peter Cox, briefly, & the ubiquitous Richard Harding. Why do I keep running across him? I must ask him what he does.

Lunch: take sac to hotel. Room not ready so leave in their baggage room. Unusual experience: hotel chap starts in fr, starts a sentence in en, recollects himself & returns to fr. He knew I was en: he'd just photocopied my passport.

O'heard: group of US academics saying linux pc's are as fast & less trouble than work stations.

Soir: meal with aj & kn at l'equator (by the tower in the little square): food good, wine so-so, service v. slow - they were too busy. And so to bed.

Wed 26th

B'fast brought to my room. To chill to sit on balcony & to noisy too :-( Room & hotel situation v. good (view anong beach) but the road is busy.

Meet jb: he climbed y'day but it is hardish to get to & not so great. And we're both busy so cancel plans.

Lunch: wander down, around & back marina. Buy from patisserie & get a pression outside a cafe. Read hkr's strat paper & some Proust.

Soir: posters more interesting that y'day. Dinner: colombian. hkr has arrived. Talk about growing veg with laurie padman who is in oregon & so has a somewhat diff perspective. Hkr mocks my green fingers. [Must tell him I saw a shop selling chardons]

Thurs 27th

Go for a run at 7.30 as far as ?lanval? & back just in time to intercept b'fast. Phone M & have long (& fairly coherent) talk with D - he doesn't want to stop: "can I talk to mummy now, D?" "in a minute".

lunch: lie on beach & watch waves. Windy, o'cast but warm. Browse a few shops for pressies but nothing inspires.

Email Q again at 3. Running at about 1 pers/min so I have 10 min to go. Can't play incoming as battery is getting low - palm was on a lot tues/wed.

Go to listen to howards talk & again to anna's. For some reason (status I suppose) we OA people have vast rooms whilst the ozone folk are crowded into a cubicle.

Odd manifestation on way to food soir: people painted blue with drums, some on stilts. Maybe about to unfurl banner but I was dragged off to dine. Pizza for dinner - now gareth is here I am not the lone veg.

Fri 28th

Grey day. Run before b'fast but only 2/3 distance. Starts to rain as I get back [& has continued since, to mid-pm at least]. B'fast doesn't turn up :-( anyway so get croissant on way in - get in early to hear Lindzen. Bring in tlc's poster (which has my name on it) & hack it around until it fits it space (thanks tom!). Lunch with gm at hotel geneve (arrive too early: chef is still eating) which is definitely where the locals eat.

Few talks & anyway somewhat tired pm (brain o'load): sit with marcel for a while then read posters: the best set yet. Photo a few, for fun.

Sat 29th

B'fast. Window open: look along beach. A lone swimmer comes out. Bods put out chairs on castel plage. Cars. Runners along the front. A couple: he runs pushinq one of those 3 wheel prams, she roller-blades. I ran earlier, to florida. +2 pts.

Given talk. Good. Whew.

Thought for a good t-shirt: get one printed with your poster!

Walk back to hotel via citadel as it closes. Good views. Walk slowly - tired. Pick up sac from hotel - now even slower. Along beach. Stop to sit & watch & put feet in water & watch waves come in & out. Take photo above, which I've used as a screen backdrop. Try it.

Sun 30th

Train back ok - sleepy. Get to fuzzy about 1.30 - D runs downstairs to see me & is v. happy. He sleeps 2-5 & so do I (on M's lap). Then to "happy wok" (good, & manage to eat most of it) then time to go home, laden as ever.

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