[17:15] And we're back, from a bank holiday weekend. One in which I did very
little of anything other than eating and washing up. So much washing up.
I took the train to my parents' house in Manchester on Friday evening. Even
with a delayed train here and there I still got in on time, even if my dinner
was sadly lacking, being as it was a slightly stale baguette from Upper Crust
at Birmingham New Street grabbed at speed. I think I was in bed some time
after midnight in the end.
Saturday saw me heading over the Pennines with my father to pick up my brother
so we could drive to see my grandmother (my father going home by train). We
did so, met her, talked, had lunch, dropped her home, talked a bit more and
drove back to my parents all without any muss, fuss or bother. And the pub
lunch was rather tasty too.
Sunday was a bit of a blur, really. I know we went for dinner in the evening
as a family but the rest of the day... I don't really know other than I got to
talk to Kris on Skype and sleep in a little.
Monday was preparations for my father's 70th birthday party. I was let off
most of the work so made sure that in the evening I did all the washing up as
25 peoples worth of plates, bowls, small plates, cutlery, glasses and serving
dishes passed through the kitchen. I think I went to bed around 23:00 on
account of having to work the next day. It was a great evening and a great
weekend together as a family for the first time since the wedding last
Traveling home this morning went pretty much by the numbers despite having to
use three trains. They were all pretty much empty, on time and with power
sockets for my laptop. I even managed to make it to work on my bike in time
for an afternoon's work. Depending on how I feel when I get home I may go to
the boat house this evening but I may not. I am feeling a bit unfit and full
of rich food courtesy of the weekend and my delicious packed lunch from my
mother for the trains home, so maybe I should go down and put in 30 minutes or
so. Especially as I'm off to Peterborough Regatta this weekend coming (if we
have transport for the boat, again).
[15:30] After an evening of showing people things, the rain coming down
heavily and just feeling pooped I didn't have the energy to go to the beer
festival. So I didn't. I stayed home, curled up on the sofa and relaxed for
Up early this morning I did an abbreviated morning exercise set and then went
into work to do the last bit of Xen guest moving in this batch of changes. It
all went perfectly, including mounting one of the Xen guest's filesystem mount
points from space on the old and soon-to-be-decomissioned NetApp NAS. Which
was nice. Following that all that was required was to reboot the machine now
bereft of Xen guests into a non-Xen kernel, clean out all the Xen-related
stuff and give it back to the project/service we borrowed it from.
Since then I've cycled to the new server room and back to let someone in to
take photos of the fibres we just had terminated there (in the wrong kinds of
trays, hence the photos), read more RHEL6.1 documentation and gone to the boat
house and back to do a 30 minute erg. Other than that I think I'm done for
It's a bank holiday weekend so I won't be back until Tuesday now so enjoy
doing whatever it is you do when you're not reading this and I hope it doesn't
rain too much (right alongside raining a little bit here and there because we
need it to).
[17:15] Last night's outing wasn't brilliant. Neither was it terrible. I
have to say though that I really don't like being in the 3 seat. Very much
not somewhere I feel comfortable. Anyway, I rang for my Chinese delivery from
the boat house before I had my shower, showered, dressed, cycled home gently
and was just getting the plate and chopsticks out when my food arrived. Now
that's service. Ended up watching Green Zone (reasonable film, I have to say)
over dinner. Not quite as great as sharing my evening with Kris, but you take
what you can get.
Speaking of which, we received our first notification that something has
happened with all the forms we're sending everywhere. So, that's that then.
Today I did some preparation work for tomorrow before being send off to be on
hand to let some fibre termination people into our new server room. Once I'd
done that (had to wait 20 minutes for them to arrive) I could head off, do
some errands and get back to work in time for lunch. Since then I've been
doing more preparation stuff. Moved my first ever Xen guest to another server
(none of that swanky migration tool stuff here, we use SCP!) and installed a
few bits of monitoring software. I then discovered that we couldn't move the
other Xen guest tomorrow as there isn't enough room on the target server. Cue
an emergency bit of space on the old NetApp NAS we're decommissioning and all
is well. At least until they tell me the space can't be allocated elsewhere
later on when it turns out that the temporary space requirement has become
There's a beer festival on this evening, but I may not make it as I'm going to
be showing someone around for a bit first. Depending on how long that takes I
may just stay home and eat some food which needs eating before getting an
early night. I'm in early tomorrow and it's going to be a long day with
travel in the evening.
[16:50] In some kind of karmic recompense for the last few weeks I spent the
whole of this morning between 09:00 and 12:50 working by dint of sitting in
the sun reading a book (fiction). I was responsible for opening up the new
server room we're still getting comissioned and making sure that the
electricians and other people doing things with wires and cables and stuff
were able to get in and out of the building. Around 13:00 I came back to the
office and had lunch. Since then all I've really been doing is looking up
prices for the kit we're going to be ordering soon to add a UAT and
Development stream to the new service we took on board a few months ago and
putting those prices into the proposal I wrote up last week. Oh, and having a
wonderful quick chat with Kris over lunch where we wished each other a happy
half-year anniversary of being married. I guarantee you we will be in the
same place (if only for a week or two) when our first year anniversary comes
Having been in early yesterday I left early and headed down to the boat house
to do an erg. It was only going to be 30 minutes until I realised that I
didn't have anything I needed to be home for, there was a nice view from the
window and I felt like I had the energy. Cue a 40 minute erg with the music
on, the doors and windows open and no-one else in the place until about five
minutes before I finished. And I felt all exercised and fit afterwards so
also did some weight work too.
I had been hoping to erg at lunch today but getting back from the other server
room so late on and rowing this evening meant that I gave it a miss. Maybe I
will go tomorrow lunch time instead given that I almost certainly won't have
time on Friday. Yes, that sounds like a plan.
As tonight is an anniversary Kris and I will be having respective take out
meals and thinking of the other person as we do so. I'll be having Chinese.
Kris will be having Indian. Sad (in any sense of the word)? Not really. But
I do miss her deeply.
[16:15] So rather than sneaking off early, doing a quick hard drive swap and
getting to the boat club in time to do a quick erg and be home to chat to Kris
at 18:30, I found myself still in a server room at 19:45 waiting for a resync
on a RAID1 volume to finish so I could swap the correct disk in to
replace the disk I should have removed in the first place has the cables been
the right way around inside the chassis. That was annoying. Also annoying
was having removed my waterproof from my pannier to make room for the hard
drive's box and it then starting to rain while I was waiting. In the end I
was there so long that the rain actually stopped before I left.
By the time I got home just after 20:00 all I wanted was pasta, pancetta and
peas, a drink of squash and some time to unwind. Luckily Kris was still
around so we were able to chat for a short time before I went to bed.
Today I was in early doing some more fun server role changes. Everything
seemed to come off without a hitch (other than some files not getting copied
across as I wasn't informed that they were my responsibility). This means we
can move on to the next and penultimate phase of work on Friday, which is
good. That means I can head off to my father's 70th birthday weekend in the
knowledge that I had a reasonable week (in contrast to last week).
I'm going to get out of here in a little while (possibly sooner), go do my
day's erg and head home for a relaxing evening.
[16:10] All in all a rather fun weekend on average. Saturday was a bit of a
beast as I had to be up at at the boat house for 05:30. Not sleeping well and
tossing and turning from about 03:30 didn't help there. The drive to
Nottingham was OK at that time in the morning and we got our single scull
competitors on the water in time. My 4+ wasn't racing until 15:25 so I had
plenty of time to sit around and get semi-sunburnt. By the time our race
happened the wind had come up to almost gale force and the water on the
(enclosed) 2K rowing lake was so choppy it reminded me of the sea.
Nevertheless we rowed our best and came 5th out of 6 in the worst conditions
any of us have ever rowed in. We had an excellent time. The drive home was
similarly uneventful and we left the boats on the trailer (which we nearly
hadn't had until another boat club had offered space), went home and collapse.
I broke and had my first delivery pizza since Kris went to Hanover. And it
was good. However, in trying to keep with the new, eating less huge meals Ben
I ordered a smaller than usual pizza and only ate half.
Sunday was planned to be the day I slept in past 07:00. Only I didn't because
I appear to be on daylight savings time now. By which I mean I appear to be
saving time during the day by getting up as soon as the sun rises. I thought
I could do the whole saving time thing by going to Tesco before heading to the
boat house to prepare for the race on our home river today... but when I
arrived at the store I discovered it was closed until 11:00. Annoying.
Anyway, the race was open only to 8s so we'd pulled together a rather good
crew and headed down the river at around 11:20 to get into position. Even
with Saturday's rowing in a gale it was surprising to see how rough the river
was in the high winds. We rowed our own race, had a good surge at the right
points and went home pleased with our performance given the scratch nature of
I say home, I then spent the next hour or so with four other people walking
across town (not more than a mile really) to re-rig our 4+ and row it back to
our boat house. Then I had a shower, went to Tesco and then went home. Cue
some serious sofa time for the afternoon. I was about to have an evening meal
when I realised I was bored out of my mind so found out if anyone else was
doing anything (Cormac and Steph were) and ended up at the cinema watching
Attack the Block. I'm not sure it was worth the £8.20 but it was a fun
way to spend a few hours. Back home again I had a small dinner and went to
bed. But not before emailing Kris to tell her just how much I love and miss
her and how this time apart really, really sucks.
Today has been OK though. A server started having issues with its HDD on
Sunday. The issues were so bad (apparently) that they confused the RAID card
and made it turn the filesystem read only. Obviously this was non-optimal. A
reboot seemed to fix it but it went wrong again this morning. I opened a call
with Oracle who dispatched a new HDD. I'll be fitting that on my way home
from work in half an hour or so. I also did my first attempt at a 30 minute
erg during my lunch hour. Amazingly I timed it perfectly (arriving back at my
desk an hour to the minute after I left). I'll be doing that again on
Wednesdays and Fridays until I either a) get bored or, b) can start running
again. Which ever comes sooner.
Right, I should head off and do this HDD and then pop along to the boat house
for a slightly more relaxed erg. Early morning tomorrow with some more
service and Xen switching. Also Kris and I are Skyping this evening so I
should make sure I'm all set up for that.
[16:40] I'd call today a good day. I got in on time after doing my morning
exercises (heel drops included). Had a morning of work and stuff writing a
support proposal and infrastructure document which I've sent to the two people
who I need to be most impressing at the moment... and have only had one minor
correction so far. At 12:00, on time, Kris and I sorted out the major first
step to us being together long term despite her having come down with a major
cold. This afternoon I have mostly been eyebrow-deep in RHEL6.1 documentation
as I strive to make sure I'm completely up to date on all the new stuff that
has come in with RHEL6, never mind 6.1.
I'm about to head out into town to plug in a cable and do some relabeling
before having a fairly early dinner with Teresa at Wagamamma's (her treat, but
I'll make sure I pay for something). At present I may or may not be going to
Nottingham very early tomorrow to row at the regatta. The people whose
trailer we were hoping to get our boat on appear not to be going any more
(maybe) so no ride for our boat. More on that on Monday. Otherwise I'm
racing locally on Sunday. If the weather stays nice and because I can't run I
think I'll go for a long cycle somewhere.
[16:40] Last night's outing left me with a few new blisters on my hands due to
changing sides in preparation for this weekend's race at Nottingham Regatta.
As a result I'm going to have to take care of my right hand tonight so that it
is in some kind of reasonable shape to hold a blade this weekend. We'll be in
a IV+ as opposed to the VIII+ of last night, which wasn't too bad, all things
Today I've mainly been... underused. I sent out a few emails to scare up some
work (request for information on the migration from Debian Xen guests to RHEL
Xen guests for a service we took on recently), license costs for our new UPS'
client software, stuff like that. I also updated the two RHEL6 test instances
I have to RHEL6.1 as well. However I'm just feeling totally without purpose
at the moment at work. I'm being handed nothing to do, really beginning to
struggle when it comes to finding anything left that needs doing (other than
patching, and I need to submit requests to do that) and generally feeling as
though my team leader and line manager don't think there's much point to me
being here. I know more work'll come down the pipe soon (next Tuesday morning
for a start) but right now next year can't come soon enough. Time to start
looking at more things to learn about! There's always more to learn. I just
wish I was doing more to support this place and putting into action what I
Oh, also my achilles tendons are worrying me to the point where I've decided
not to run again until at least 3 June and the week to date hasn't really been
all that brilliant.
[16:20] A somewhat better day today, to judge by the fact that I didn't break
anything or do anything I wasn't supposed to without asking. What I did do
was wake up horribly early for some reason and then have to toss and turn for
about two hours before I resigned myself to getting up. Still, that did mean
I could do the exercise-shower-make-lunch-breakfast-leave-the-house thing a
little more slowly than usual, which is always good.
The morning was mostly taken up cycling into town from work to one of the
server rooms we're shortly going to be vacating (next five months or so) to
help a UPS engineer ascertain which battery was misbehaving in the unit. That
done I was back at work in time to go for my lunchtime run. I'm still way way
down on the distances (2.36K at the moment) but this hasn't stopped my
achilles tendons from still being tight more often than not. I really have to
wonder what started them aching in the first place. It's really not something
I suffered from before the beginning of April. Hopefully the new shoes, a new
way of running and building up slowly will help. Although the more I read
about people who've beaten it the more it seems to say "stop running, don't
run barefoot and do calve-strengthening exercises". Maybe these new shoes are
making it worse. Not better. I think I'll try one more run on Friday in my
old shoes and then not run for a month or so, see how that affects things. I
will do calf exercises and will try to make sure I get on the erg as a
replacement for running three times a week at lunchtimes. Calf exercises can
be done in front of the TV in the evenings or at the boat house.
Anyway, enough of that. Kris is off to North Carolina today to visit her
parents, renew her driver's license (apparently she's not allowed to do it by
post) and file some very important forms. We'll be talking over the next few
days and getting things In Motion. I will be going home soon, and thence to
the boat house for the first row in an 8+ in a very long time. As usual I
expect to be at bow as I'm always either there or stroking the boat.
[17:10] Not the best way to start the day. I got in early having had
permission from the head of the web team to do some minor httpd package
updates. They all went perfectly. However, when I told my ops manager he
reminded me that that kind of thing is supposed to go through change control.
He was right, of course. Him sending an email to my team (of three) including
my team leader meant that I was shown to be just a little more incompetant
than usual to my team leader, which wasn't great. Doing some allowed patching
straight after that and getting a kernel panic and core dump before all the
patches were installed just put the icing on the cake. My low opinion of my
technical merits is almost certainly shared by those around me right now. I'm
pretty sure it has been for some time.
I fought back against my feelings of ineptitude by buckling down to read 200+
pages of Engman/Germlish transliterated technical documentation for the new
UPS and UPS client software we've recently bought. I'd like to think I know
my way around it pretty well now, including the "hidden cost" of needing a
unique client license for every single listener we install on a server under
power from that UPS (unless we don't and we can get an "Enterprise license"
which might be horrendously expensive).
I went for a run at lunch time. 2.36km today. Same again tomorrow and Friday
on which day I will be wearing my normal shoes again. I'd had no problems
with my tendons for days until I got into my FiveFingers and was walking down
the corridor to the outside to start my stretching. Somehow I managed to
tweak my right achilles tendon within 5 paces. Some hefty stretching before
the run and more afterwards seems to have done the trick though. I'll make
sure I'm extra careful tomorrow. Speaking of exercise though I was down at
the boathouse working off some of the sweets and biscuits I've had in front of
me for the past few days (team leader likes to go to Tesco and come back with
masses of stuff). A nice 40 minute (10.375km) erg left me feeling a little
better and with some weights work on top of that I felt I could spend a little
time giving some coaching to some of the new rowers we have before heading
home to chat to Kris on Skype.
I'm aiming to make tomorrow a better day. I should hopefully be getting a
call from the people who sold us the UPS to tell me how much client licenses
are, cycling into town to find out what Estates Management are going to do
about our unhappy (other) UPS and going for another run. And all of that
before I eat my lunch (in a perfect world). Let's see what can go wrong.
[17:25] The weekend was two days of highs and lows. We rowed so badly on
Saturday (after I got there for 07:00 and everyone else except the cox arrived
at 07:15 to rerig the boat to bow side) and were so late on the water because
some of the rerigging took longer than expected, that our cox refused to ever
get in a boat with that particular group of people ever again. In her defence
the crew does tend to arrive late and we didn't tell her that we were
rerigging the boat. In our defence if the backstays had fitted we would have
been ready well before push-off time and doing an outing with "feet out" the
whole time wasn't going to help us do all of the things the cox was asking of
us because we're just not that good. We also got the boat we'd rerigged onto
the water before the cox decided that the broken steerer wasn't going to cut
it for moving the rudder so we had to get another boat out instead. That
didn't help our eventual start time either. Suffice it to say I was very
close to deciding that I'd be stopping rowing at the end of the month.
Sunday morning we all turned up and with a new cox pushed out onto the water
to see just how bad things were going to be. Amazingly, even with me still in
the Stroke seat we seemed to do moderately well, all things considered. On
one of the runs I almost reached that peculiar Zen Rowing state. I haven't
been there in a long time. Now it turns out that we're going to the
Nottingham Regatta next weekend where I will be almost certainly stroking my
very first race. I guess we'll see how that goes.
The remainder of the weekend was taken up with grocery shopping, chatting to
Kris and going to bed very very early on Sunday night. I'm not quite sure why
I was so tired, but there you go.
Today I have mostly been looking at the new UPS we have, the software that is
supposed to communicate with it and printing out manuals. I think we're going
to be OK, but it's going to be an interesting time getting things installed
and working. The first order of business (after going over to see where the
UPS has been installed) is getting access to the network card on it and then
running a network cable the whole bloody length of the server room to
a network cabinet. Why no-one thinks of these things in advance I don't know.
In other news, Kris has probably found somewhere to rent in St. Louis. Which
is good. I think I may go and erg this evening.
[16/05/2011 - 12:00] Hmm, looks like I forgot to do a journal entry for today.
I have no idea why. Maybe I was just too busy... Actually, I was! Yes, that
was it. I was doing all kinds of things with Xen installations and stuff and
as a result didn't get to flip back to the desktop upon which I have things
like my journal editor until at was well past time to go home. So, Friday was
all about work. Which was nice. I think I went home late (gone 17:00 is late
on a Friday). Other than that, not much happened other than being assigned
the research and setup of the new UPS controlling hardware and software for
the new server room we're getting shortly.
[17:25] Mostly today has been spent out of the office. Which is always nice
when the sun is shining. After getting into work I made sure nothing was
going to explode and then cycled out to see someone with a bunch of documents.
That done I came back to work, made sure nothing was going to melt down and
then explode, had lunch and then walked into town so I could get a taxi back
with the other half of the old eSales cluster ("sykes", to go with the already
dead "fagin"). Once that was done all that remained was to apply a few
patches and see what was happening this evening (curry).
Kris is somewhere between Boston and St. Louis right about now, and almost
certainly asleep. She's been on the go since 04:00 her time today and I can't
think she's anything other than shattered by now. She's got a lot to do over
the next few days and I don't envy her at all, except that she's going to see
somewhere new and do some important things. I'll hear more from her tomorrow
I'm off home now as I should have gone a good 25 minutes ago. I need to do a
bit of house tidying and then I'm off to have a curry with people. Something
that hasn't happened for quite a long time.
[17:00] Today I have mostly been lamenting the fact that RHN has been up and
down like a whores drawers. This does not make for a happy patching sysadmin.
Still, it has meant I've been able to concentrate on making lists of things in
the house. That and learning a few things about Xen that I didn't know before
most notably the ability to attach new block devices to running guests without
needing to reboot them. What's that you say? Old tech, been around for
years? Perhaps, but out requirements are simple and static so we haven't had
need of it before now. That and a few server renames and shifts (with more to
come) has been my day.
Oh, and I went for a 2K run at lunchtime in the shoes (copious stretching
before and afterwards seems to be the order of the day now) and I'm out in the
calf-bloodying IV+ this evening so I must remember my socks with the toes cut
out or suffer disfiguring.
I had a really weird dream this morning (some time between 04:00 and 05:00)
which I didn't enjoy at all. However it did get me up and out of bed well
before 07:00 which meant I was in work nice and early. Not that I appear to
be going home early, but maybe I will on Friday.
[16:35] This morning's patching and rebooting went perfectly this morning.
The noisy reboots and initrd rebuilds were exactly as noisy as I was expecting
and calmed down to nothing at all once all was done. I've patched a few other
boxes happily too which means I'm only down to about four outstanding errata
for RHEL servers now. Which is good.
Having eaten a few too many sweets (damn my team leader for going to Tesco and
getting about 6kg of biscuits and sugary sweets fairly regularly) yesterday I
determined that I would go to the boat house and erg. And I did. 6 x 4
minute pieces at my 2K pace (plus 5 seconds). I'm pretty sure I did it well,
too. Although I think my form was a bit lacking in the last few ones. I then
went home and had bacon and eggs for dinner. Kris reminded me later on that I
should have put in some onion and pepper. She's too smart for me (and I wish
I'd thought of that at the time). I'm not eating quite as many vegetables as
I perhaps should, but I've tried to do a little better today sweets-wise and
only had a handful of the stupid things. It would really help if they weren't
within arm's reach the whole day through. I wonder if there's anything I can
do to mitigate their effect. Every time I try to move them to elsewhere in
the office they get moved back again. Which is annoying.
Cormac is mooting a cycle this evening. The weather is rather nice so if he
gets his act together in the next half an hour or so I might just take him up
on the offer, should he make it. It's that or erg... or just go home and
relax for the evening. Maybe make a list of things in the house that I don't
want to keep.
[16:55] The outing on Saturday morning was a bit of a bad-tempered affair. I
don't think at least two people were on the game, one person was over-tired
and I'm pretty sure someone else was hung over. None of those people were me.
As it is two of the people also need to get their organisational hats on
straight and ensure we actually have a cox for the outings we want to do (as
evidenced by the fact that we didn't have one for Sunday morning). Instead
two of us (should have been three but he was hung over, again) spent rather
longer than we wanted rigging up the boat we're supposed to be using. Of
course it's "the best boat in our fleet" but I hate it utterly as it gives me
nasty slider bites on the backs of my calves. I'm going to have to start
wearing socks with the toes cut out of them around my lower legs so as not to
end up with scars (and potentially a blood infection). Still, if we master
the boat it may make our season in terms of speed.
So yes, outing on Saturday morning, rigging a boat (and carrying lots around
on Sunday morning). I then went home and came back in time to do two Head
races back to back with the Novices (who weren't that bad, to be honest) in a
IV+. After that I felt I'd earned my chance to relax on the sofa for the rest
of Saturday. Sunday after the rigging I did an erg and then likewise retired
to the house to do washing and reading and generally relaxing in the nice
weather. Also on Sunday was a good long Skype chat with Kris about which visa
route we were going to take (K-3 or CR-1, the latter won). We may be apart
for a good long time between now and early 2012, but we know it'll be worth it
in the end.
Today I've been preparing for tomorrow's very early morning patching session
and Wednesday's server (physical and virtual) shuffling. Also a bit of sneaky
patching of some other machines here and there (mainly workstations) and the
first of two hard drive shreddings which will leave me with only one RHEL3
server running, hurrah! I also went for another FiveFinger run. This, I
think, went better than the previous ones in terms of my potential achillies
tendenitis and aching calves afterwards but I'm still getting a rub on the
outside of my right foot at one particular point and I have a bone-type ache
in my right mid-foot this time, too. Still, all in all I think I'm improving
my gait, my technique and my speed in these new shoes.
So yeah, that's that for today other than probably going to the boat house
this evening for an erg. If I can be bothered. I should, really, maybe once
I've done the washing up. I'd love to go for another run, but I need to keep
to the plan of working back up to my usual distances and number of sessions.
[16:55] Some work, some cycling into town for a psychology experiment and some
printing out of forms. That's about it for today. Except for listening to my
coworkers get upset with a new coworker who doesn't seem to understand VLANs.
Rowing this weekend. Probably an outing on Saturday morning, then a double
Head race at lunch. This gets in the way of the afternoon cycle, but I don't
think I mind as it means I can go to Tesco (or go on Sunday) and chat to Kris
Next week should be interesting with another experiment, forms to hand in, an
early morning to patch two servers and... I dunno, some other stuff I can't
think of right now.
[17:00] Brilliant news from last night. If all goes well I should have some
useful big things sorted out, lined up (ducks-wise) and generally off my mind
weight-wise for the end of the year (or before, if bureaucracy pulls its
finger out). More on that when I know more myself. Anyway, it was great to
catch up with Teresa (she who made the big curtain for the bottom of the
stairs), show her the wedding and honeymoon photos and discover that sometimes
waiting can save you a lot of hassle and over two grand in fees.
Otherwise work has been quiet. A few patchings here and there. I didn't have
to be in early for those though, which was nice. Hopefully there'll be a
little more to do tomorrow. At the moment the only major thing seems to be
moving SCC, Hobbitd, snmptrapd, rancid and syslog-ng from one old and busted
server to another. However my team leader seems to think he's the only one
who can do it, so I don't get to. I have other things to be getting on with,
but not much. It's the same across the team though, there's not a lot going
on at the moment.
Pub tonight, then it's Friday. I may run again tomorrow after today's 4K
second acclimatisation run in the FiveFingers. The achillies tendonitis I may
have in my right leg seems to vanish after about forty paces when I run and by
the time I was half way around today's loop it was my left calf which ached
more than my right. Bodies are weird. Still, I think I'm getting the hang of
mid-foot striking (but still letting the heel make contact with the ground).
It's amazing how much padding/cushioning/spring there is in modern running
shoes and how you notice when it isn't there any more.
[17:05] Updating a few recalcitrant boxes today. Tomcat can be such an
annoyance sometimes. Still, the weather has been nice so I took the
opportunity to cycle into town to post a cheque Kris got for an article to her
in the States. Once I'd done it (and paid for the AirSure thing) Kris asked
what the fees would have been for simply depositing a US Dollar cheque in her
bank account here in the UK. I called her bank and discovered that finding
out the fees involved for the amount she'd been paid was pretty much
impossible and that it would take between four and seven weeks to get credited
to her account. As she's going to be spending more time in the US than the UK
in the future, and because AirSure should get there reasonably sharpish I
think we did the better thing in me posting it to her. So long as it arrives.
The wedding cheques sent to us from the US never arrived.
I was out in the tub (think more traditionally style rowing boat) last night
with the cox and one of my fellow rowers getting back to basics on stroke
style. I think I learned a lot. I just have to hope I can remind my body to
make the movements required enough times in the future that it sinks in and
Otherwise, I think that's it for now. I need to head home and be ready to
show someone the house, and then think about whether or not I want to go and
erg this evening. Frankly, I think not. I've lots to watch on the telly,
I'll be running tomorrow and Friday and rowing on the weekend both days so I
think I deserve to ease myself back into things a little more slowly. Plus it
could be a while before the person I'm showing the house leaves as she wants
to see the wedding photos (and probably the honeymoon photos) too.
[17:00] Wotcha. I'm back from the US and visiting Kris. Hanover, NH is
really, really nice. Even when the weather goes from sleet and snow one day
to T-shirt and shorts weather the next. It's tiny, but quite pretty, has
three outdoor shops and pretty much everyone (which for the most part is
students, I have to admit) seems fit, runs or generally looks like they could
break into one at any moment. If Kris got a job there I think I'd be OK with
that (so long as I got one in town or close by). We spent as much time as we
could together given she had to teach most days and always with the course
writing and preparation. When we couldn't be in the same place I explored, or
went for runs (real hills!) or went to a demo afternoon on Vibram FiveFinger
Speaking of which I now have a pair of these having tried them for an
afternoon (the Komodo Sport model) and been convinced that they were pretty
much the most comfortable thing I've ever had my feet in other than a the mud
on the bottom of the Dead Sea. Unfortunately now I'm back in the UK which is
not where Kris is. This is upsetting. Also upsetting is the fact that I have
to really cut down my distances while getting used to the new way of running
these new shoes promote. Much shorter strides at a higher cadence and making
sure to strike with the mid-foot is taking a little getting used to.
Especially in the calves.
So yes, the journey to and from Hanover, NH consisted of a 3.5 hour coach
ride, 7 hour plane and a 3 hour coach ride. Then the same in reverse.
Happily, on the US side I had free wifi everwhere so that and the episodes of
stuff I had downloaded to the 'new' (Kris' old MacBook) laptop meant many of
the hours just flew by. The flight over was pretty good, I even managed to
sleep. The flight back - despite being shorter - was filled with crying
babies (one of which threw up in the row behind me before we even left the
gate). I still managed to get a little sleep and was only mildly out of it
when I got home on Sunday. Unfortunately the person who was supposed to come
and look at the house called me from a telephone box in the Lake District to
tell me they'd forgotten about it. Hopefully they'll pop round soon.
Since getting back I've ascertained that I miss Kris a lot, the battery in my
UPS has died, it has been very sunny here the whole time I was away, my
neighbour watered my garden, Thor isn't a great film and barbeques (while
brilliant for catching up with people) aren't as fun when it's as windy as it
was yesterday. Also that work hadn't burnt down and I still don't have
terribly much to do.
I think that's it, otherwise. I was going to get photos of Hanover and stuff
but we didn't ever really get around to it. I'm off home now, then to rowing
for the first time in a few weeks. I've had my hair cut and I've written a
script which will now bug my team when the Nessus Professional Feed approaches
subscription expiration. Not a bad first day back all things considered.