WMC's diary pages, 2000.

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

September 2000

Sat 2nd

Up early with D (grump) but in fact once we're up its ok.

Run fallen over (space). Resub.

Swim: 28.79, (27.5), 30.3. Pool quiet - only 5 people at 10!

I have forgotten my keys *again* (or rather, I have my keys but have left lock behind. Buy another: abus 5.

Cb1: check on run (ok) & beat R by 6 pts.

Look at kids bikes in mikes b's (one) & ben h (none). Want one with quick-release.

UL for (Kondrat(y,')ev k ya - climate shocks 347:7.c.95.170 s front fl 4; scheider s - genesis: 200.c.97.1889 s wing fl 5) but then they shut on me.

W's to meet M+D: too full.

Second slate from fired earth: they helpfully provide sub-table duplo.

- "what shall we do this a'noon, D?"
- "i want an i'cream"
- "apart from an i'cream, what do you want?"
- "a chocolate stick in it"

Somehow 3h have passed. We are now trapped in the lakeland 'kids zone'. Half an hour later D says 'i've done a poo': I think he is shamed. Fortunately he has his thick cords on: its a big one. To the bus! D won't sit on the seat; in the car he insists on a plastic bag. Home. Bath. All ok.

Soir: tidy.

Sun 3rd

Grey morning. Some sun later but mostly cloud. Autumn. Nice sunset though.

Lunch: pancakes. Good.

Pm: grand tidy of passageway. And for a miracle I finish, & my workroom too. D to orchard with M.

Mon 4th

[I don't seem to have done anything today: too busy I guess]

Tues 5th

D (counting animals on his miffy puzzle): "there are X animals". "what about the rabbits?". "they are not animals, they are standing up".

Swim: 26.5, 27.5, 3x28. Good. Cb1. UL. Told off for camera. Apparently there is some distinction, meaningful to them but incomprehensible to me, between photocopying there & photoing later, & photoing there. Had a long talk with the chap in reader services, but I came out as I went in. In particular, I came out with the photos I had taken undeleted from the camera...

W/s. M+D arrive.

Bike shops: Drake & Action bikes.

Whenever I have mentioned cb1 recently, D has said 'no: cb2'. As a joke, I assume. But this time: why not? So we do. I am initially put off: it is a bistro, with menus, & the books are disordered. But in other respects it is fine. It has coffee cake. Also, apparently, 30mins free i'net. But no keyboard...

Wed 6th

Beautiful weather.

Take D swimming - first time for ages. Cb1.

Home. M back late. Me alone to pub

Thu 7th

Work: q troubles turn out to be manchesters fault. Argh. But a chance of a run now. JT shows of his palmV.

Lunch fr cafe with M. Weather odd: warm but no sun.

Drakes for bike: buy & collect later. Their w'shop will check it: ask them to look at bottom bracket: pedals seem to stick a little at one place. GM for masonry nails & handles. But no dowels: yes they are cr*p. Cb1: jv: lyonesse 2. Back: pick up bike & cycle back precariously with it taped to the child seat.

Soir: fake up GP web site. M to bed early. Waajt *has* started running: hurrah.

Fri 8th

Places-I've-been-watch: redgrave/pinsent won the world title at Aiguebelette.

Home with D. Read, play, advance his cupboards.

Soir: schneider/iceage.

See paper diary.

Sat 9th

Swim (4x10, pool crowded): 25.5, 27, 29, 28.5. The first (a record) was fueled by anger at the pool for fouling up the lanes.

Cb1, briefly, but not quite briefly enough (I am reading JV again (L II), and enjoying it) so after going to Arjuna, the local shop-and-save, then FitzBillies for a cake, I am back at 11:35+ and thus a little late. Set to some clearing up (hover upstairs, then the stairs, then more downstairs) and finally tidy up the patio, and just as I am brushing it down M+J+F arrive.

Amidst all the excitment of them arriving there is time to get the new bike out and leave it on the patio for D to find, which he does, with a big smile. Later (when I am off elsewhere) the secret of its source is apparently revealed to him: which seems careless to me. Hey ho.

Manfred leans back from the raw power of the mighty mangonel
So: weather being pleasant, we sit outside for lunch and so on unto tea. The mangonel is brought down and played with a lot,mostly by me I confess, and once you get used to it, it is quite true for line and length. Set up a "castle" to knock down and eventually hit it, whereupon it is utterly destroyed by D. Then it becomes hard to prevent him knocking them down first,, he having (understandably) decided that we are trying to knock them over...

Jo (and Ewan) arrive at 5-ish and stopn for tea, Ewan is 6 months and big and happy. Show Jo the pond and my prize exhibit, the baby newts. Must go and see Rick sometime.

After M+J+F leave at 6.30 ish we bumble; M bathes D; I put him to bed (reading Brown Bears visit *again*) then sit outside with HMS Surprise until too dark to read. Very still. Odd little rustles: some of them frogs.,

Sun 10th

Wake to pleasant sun but, unlike y'day, it rapidly becomes too hot.

A stay-at-home day.

Late a'noon: do bees! Put in 2 apistan strips, take out 2 frames of honey leaving only 3 in super, but brood full.

It has taken me until 6.30 this evening to realise why M looks elegant today: she is wearing a skirt.

Have taken D for a few goes on his bike. He can do the brake but tends to 'panic' (ie run into kerbs etc) unless reminded to brake. Pedalling not mastered. I raised the saddele about 1". Otoh, Percy the Pig causes great merriment.

Just out of shower after run: 19.33. Somewhat down from my best but acceptable after a rather long break. Pleasant to run towards the setting sun over open ground.

Soir: put faked-up gp site up & mail simon. Process honey. One frame v old (from J+J) & seems to have dark/pollen. Needs extra sieve: appropriate one of D's muslin cloths.

Still warm: write this outside. Moon bright & 7/8. Too hot inside: but m did have fire on.

Mon 11th

Another hot day. By chance yoga is in 187 which is cooler.

D has had a good day & apparently fun in playgroup, though he says 'don't know' when I ask.

M'a complains Colin had to queue 1h for petrol.

Soir: finish off honey: another 4 1/2 pounds. Straining through muslin works. Give residue back to bees. Take it down at 9.30: they are visible in the entrance: perhaps they are hot too.

Tues 12th

Wake tired & slowly. D had no nappy again last night (second time) successfully.

Swim: 28, 29.75, (29.5). Cb1.

Consider buying s/h laptop as photo frame. About 200 ish. But could I detatch the screen and/or bend it back far enough?

Buy 'chomsky reader' in oxfam.

W/s: nearly finish ltw: m+d arrive.

Down to the river with D. I'c'm: strawb'y for him + 'stick' & b'currant for me. D says 'da' to pigeons & indeed any ducks that venture onto land.

To playground past the pool (shut, the pool not the pg) its a good one. So good we are still here at 4:45. There is a train. Quite quiet initially but filled up after school.

Cafe Uno since D insists on eating here. Inside - breeze. There is a kids menu & secret squirrel & morocco mole fun pack. Kids pizza far too big for D.

Can't sleep so go down garden to see how bees are getting on reclaiming the scraps under the moon. Will I never learn? Get stung. I always get stung giving honey back.

Wed 13th

Morning: sort out the mess I made of giving scrap honey back. Do what I should have done at start (will I never learn?) & put it inside the hive.

In bus shelter with D, which smells of wee. D thinks someone should clear up with a special brush.

Home all pm. D cycles all the way around the green without help! D: "the cat says 'i like your bike'".

Get out the mangonel & play knock-down-castle.

My hand swells a bit more: take off ring to be safe.

All our careful attempts to bring D up in a nuturing non-violent environment are of course wasted: he picks up the letter 'f' & declares it a gun & shoots me with it.

Soir: A+S/C+A over for pancakes. At 10, gather round the radio (so to speak) in a WWII sort of spirit to listen to TB but conclude he's not much cop.

Thurs 14th

D wakes up late... after I have my shower. Take him to playgroup: he immeadiately is happily playing and after a while I leave.

Work: after lunch go to talk by Judge person on modelling costs of CC. Interesting. He defended himself well. But I still feel uncomfortable: too much using of uncertain values.

Lunch with M. Fr cafe is rebuilding its upstairs so to ex-Dillons, which is not so good. Finish IMB LTW: ends much as expected and rather disappoints. Thence to s/h comp shop on Mill road and read portable adverts: must look up the Dell 486. Then cb1, for JV again. Fun. Home around 6. Fail to find any excuse for not going for run: and feel full of (physical) energy: this doesn't translate into a good time, however: 20:04.

Soir: fix the memory leak in dimg1.pl. My finger is still somewhat puffy but going down. Itchy.

More fuel nonsense on radio: r4 interviewer fails to penetrate the oil company mans (BP) nonsense.

Fri 15th

Evening: D sits on potty and M reads "Brown bears visist", currently D's favourite story, he cannot now correct M when she makes "mistakes".

My little finger throbs: yes my astonishing capacity for stupidity and carelessness has struck again: while picking up a cloth near the bee hive I got stung by a wasp on it, but just for variety its on the right hand. Just as the other sting was going away! Argh! [this one hurts more but doesnt swell]

Wet day: water butt full, rain as I came home. D and I stayed in most of pm and only ventured out for a quick cycle and a look at the pond.

Sat 16th

Swim 26.5, 27, 27.5, 30. Good, bar the last. But no fast lane, again. I may have to reconsider my routine.

Drive to Ma: 10-20 cars at each station is the dying residue of the fuel crisis.

At ma's for lunch. Rnl too: rn off to wedding & l will stay with Ma. I have convinced lara that she is a weasel - like D - & she seems delighted by the idea.

To m+j. Ernie just in from states - flying on tomorrow. A present for D: a playdoh fun factory which D likes.

Sun 17th

Up late - past 10 - but D up at 6.30.

Inside - retired hurt during football - while others are outside. I managed to rip off my entire left big toe - curiously unpainful. To complete the injured limbs set I will have to crush the right foot.

M'd drives E to airport at 3ish & we leave soonish a'wards. Grey.

Home. D bouncy. D wants fountain turned on & we do. M bathes him, I bed him (so to speak).

M cooks: eggs/m'rooms. She has a cold.

Get through l8 of graviton.

Mon 18th

Work: hard but good: clouds, density.


Tues 19th

More rain! Up early with D then sleep by fire. Then cb1 (no swim due to toe). JV & go. More rain.

Home: M+D off at orchard.

Pm: M stays at home sick. D & I go & visit Rick + Ewan. More rain: the year has turned.

Soir: make d-hols-2000 piccy for pre-school. I hate windows. Piccy good enough but not what I wanted, quite. Not exactly the pics I wanted (can't find the view to lescun, for example) & I get the res wrong so the smaller inserts end up pixellated. Realise that the holiday pics are not as well sorted as I thought.

M does logic puzzles.

Wed 20th

pm: bright sun alternates with clouds. To orchard, D cycles all the way, with some pushing. We eat inside at his request, then out (via fountains) to slide etc. Just warm enough for me to sit quietly & drink my coffee.

On the log-course (which D can now do). Also, he has learnt to keep going through imbalance & recover on the next step, rather than fall off.

D has a way of squeaking merrily when happy & excited. Perhaps we all once did...

Going home. D experiments with using just one pedal with the expected result.

M home from work late again. Soir: she qoes out to pre-school agm & comes back a c'tte member.

Download lenny (windows shareware vi clone) and vim too (which turns out to be completely free; I end up using that). Also a shareware OCR program that I haven't tried yet.

Thurs 21st

Phone up palm to get details of return, get invoice from Kath. Only 4 days left of warranty!

Lunch fr. Read grauniad. Unutterable tripe by Frank Dobson about fuel prices: how on earth he expects anyone to believe him is beyond me. But my faith is shaken: M sees little wrong with it. Hey ho.

German toyshop: Buy D some more marbles. Arjuna, cb1. Beat R - another long game.

Home. Unpack bag. D (holding up pack of tortilla chips) "did you buy these?", me: yes, D "oh well done".

M reads "little monster" to D: it is his bedtime. They look very sweet together, and M leans on my knee. D asks a perceptive question: "where is his dadday?".

This is the last I shall write on this current palm (though in truth this is being typed on the portable) since it goes back to be swapped for a reconditioned unit tomorrow.

Fri 22nd.

Yesterday was the solstice, as M says. D notices that its getting dark earlier.

D talks to Dots cat as though it understood. He sits on his bike and says "watch me cat", and turns round to make sure it does. He doesn't seem to understand the idea that cats don't talk or understand. But he must have noticed that animals don't talk... I guess he has also noticed that I talk to the cat, but hasn't realised i don't expect a reply.

Lovely afternoon. Quiet. Autumnal. Nice sky. Pick some grapes. A bowlful, then I stopped. I think the starlings will get more than I do. There are more red than white, but the white are bigger and have less seed.

Do some gardening. Tidy the vines a little. Cut down the "middle tree" - the one that was getting rather weedy and thin. But what to do about the big one? Top it? Leave it? Bite the bullet and cut it?

I have realised that I have gone on no bike rides this summer at all... barring H's triathalon, which is different. I think maybe I've settled down to much into a rhythm for tues and thurs half-days: last year I was still settling in, and ended up doing some interesting things.

Bring my scibe page home and start upgrading it. A long task I fear.

Trivia: Eric the Eel, who won his heat in the olympics in 1:52 for 100m, swims slower than me...

Sat 23rd

Nb: because my palm is off being fixed, this won't appear in the palm diary, should I ever search for it there.

Off later than usual: toe still means no swim, so just cb1 in prospect. And indeed I sit there and read JV - the flight across tanjecterly becomes just a little farcical at times, but still fun. Force myself to stop and read JG's heat into the ocean paper. Good, but hard to concentrate in cb1. Oddly I can concentrate on JV easily enough...

Thence: essentially back home, but rather slowly, as I go via Heffers to get vol V at last. Then to craft market, where I buy another Sarah McCormack ceramic, probably for D's room for his b'day. It has tractors on it. Back from CM, stop to listen to a novelty: a woman, oldish, long-white hair, velvetish dress with gold lace, singing (well) in something foreign, playing (by striking) some stringed instrument of the size but not shape of a guitar, and sometimes playing a flute. Well well: a new thing in the world (to me). How welcome. Its a lovely day to sit and listen.

Home. This and that. D and I go for a play down in the stream (recent rain has raised its level only a little, but seems to have swept away the insects) and a walk on the far side. Its a sweet evening - nothing could be better than walking under the tunnel of trees with him. He is happy to be walking along here and looking around - we haven't come here recently. On the way back, he gets his stuck in the mud of the stream and has to be rescued.

Probably today (maybe fri) that I put in third slate for pond cascade.

Tidy up, then Kirsty comes, who is looking after D tonight while M and I galivant off to Ian R and Lorrie's delayed wedding celebration in the UK. A good evening.

On way home, stop on the cycle path to look up at the stars. As we gaze upwards, I slowly tilt over backwards and fall over my bike onto the verge.

Sun 24th.

At home. Feel rather off most of the am, which I attribute to drinking last night. Bury some more of the pond cable - see photos showing the line. Fine am, rain pm, clears sunset. M puts in some of the bulbs she bought a week or two ago.

Finish off - err, for the time being at least - the cupboards in D's room. This shoulld allow us to clear more out of the living room.

Bathe with Proust.

Mon 25th

ERA: realise I don't understand the averaging in the LWD/SWD fields. Does this mean the clouds are wrong too? Hmm...

Tues 26th Swim 27.5,28,28.5,29. Only x4 in deference to my toe, though it survives well enough. Cb1: finish L II. Read more of JG's paper. Envy.

PM with D. Totally misled by M's repeat of the forecast of rain (though indeed, it did look like rain) so we drive in to B+Q, to get more dowels. Also get a rather useful "dowel kit" that I wish I'd had before: a drill bit with a little point for centering, and 4 "centerpoints" for marking where the holes are - exactly what I needed. D wants to look at all the toilets, and is fascinated by the showers etc hanging up on the walls.

Thence to Salvation Army where I had bought a bookcase in the morning. By now (4-ish) the cambridge traffic is appalling, so I hurry in and pick it up and just about get it into the boot. Off we go, very slowly, to Lammas land, where it looks like rain (but doesn't). D has fun, and I get a rest, mostly. Then a walk along the river, me carrying D because we forgot to bring his shoes. Look in on the Paradise nature reserve. By 6 the traffic has gone down and we go home, where I disassemble the bookcase (I only bought it for the wood, which I thought then was oak but is probably mahogany).

Wed 27th. Pick up D at 2: was a lovely morning but pm is gray: still rain holds off. So, after a bit, we go in to town to pool, where D has fun with the elephants and we go down the slides twice. Then CB1 where D has apple juice (of which he spills half of one due to carelessness: Russell is however very understanding), maltesers, crisps and a cake. Hmm. They don't really have any good-for-you type food, sometimes.

Home at 20-to-7. M arrives back on time!

Soir: M out to pre-school meeting: hopefully I get to go to pub later.

Thurs 28th.

Rush around at work and get unreasonably tired: feel shagged for the rest of the day. Lunch with M in french cafe; service indifferent today. Weather lovely: cycle home slowly and sit in the garden quietly reading.

Dig a little in the garden. Bath.

Soir: write Simons GG letter. Need to remember to post it on saturday.

M has bought some poster-writing software and plays with it a little.

Fri 29th

Stop off at shop to buy met smoko bisuits for the last time. Also buy their last bottle of pims and 2x wine, for Sunday.

pm: play around at home quite happily. Late on, D decides he wants to go to the "mint cafe" so indeed we do. He gets a bit silly, though, blowing bubbles in his apple juice (hardly a crime, true...) and eventually knocking him glass of the table where it breaks. I then feel guilty, but see tomorrow. Get back home just early enough not to need lights (though I did take them) but we won't get away with that next week.

Sat 30th

Swim 27, 28, 29, 29 - only x4 again, due to shorttage of time and pool being irritatingly full. Cb1, briefly, though having finished JV is has lost its mystical attraction for the meanwhile - OSC is just not up to it. They have the deep there, too: but tits not a book for reading in such a place. Perhaps I could adopt the habit of reading papers there. I haven't really finished JG's, yet. Witness splendid example of bad parenting: couple try to feed a child of approx D's age with medecine it doesn't want: shout at it: then insist on it drinking something else to take the taste away: whereupon it vomits all over the floor in misery.

Sweep through Arjuna to pick up stuff for tomorrow. Buy D a swing in the German toy shop. Home, just a little late, just after 12. Oh - stop off at shop on way back home, to pick up a few last things and say goodbye. End of an era, etc etc, but nonetheless its going and no-one in the village seems to be trying to do anything about it... what would you do, I wonder? we are all so disempowered.

Off to Ma's, arrive 4:30 odd.

Soir: sit by fire and talk and relax.

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