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September's Journal
November's Journal

[13:00] Well, we're well into October now, so I have a few things to tell you. We'll start with work, which has been extremely busy over the last few weeks. If it hasn't been early morning patching, fixing VMs, getting to grips with the installation of our new IaaS/VxRails/VMware VCF setup, there's just been the usual day to day slog. Working from home I reckon I'm putting in at least as long hours as I used to, if not a few hours more per day/week. There was a semi-problematic upgrade to Red Hat Satellite (6.9.5, and then 6.9.6 a day or two later) which still has outstanding cases open with Red Hat Support, a whole new set of virtual workstations for our DBAs (which necessitated a whole new subnet/VLAN and associated firewall rules, etc.), a stupid issue caused by us trying to be more secure, caused by our security team rolling out vulnerability scanning, and just 1,001 other things which just contrived to raise my stress level somewhat.

Outside of work Rachel moved house, ran the London Marathon for fun (rather than at full speed), travelled between four houses, let someone move into her Croydon house to live free of charge (someone without "right to remain", and therefore unable to get a job), and also ran the Yorkshire Marathon (more on that in a moment). For my own part I've just tried to help her where I could, finished my training for the Yorkshire Marathon myself, and then completely failed to run it in a satisfactory (for me) time. Both of my quads just seemed to go dead/give up at just past the half way mark, which lead to my pace dropping significantly so that I could at least finish, which I did. Rachel got a brilliant time. I'm left feeling like I'm past it, over the hill, or just not strong enough any more. I do feel like my training wasn't exactly right, but I shouldn't have had such a muscular failure. I really need to find a coach for my marathon in April next year. I'm hopeful I can use the same one as I did for my PB a few years ago, but I'm not sure he's doing it any more. I will email him in a few weeks. In the meantime, as lovely as it was to have my parents cheering me (and Rachel) on in York, I do wish I'd had a nicer time. For now though, today it's one year to the day since Rachel's father died, and she's coming here this evening. I hope I can look after her enough, and continue to help to make her life just a little better as she finishes getting her new home ready.

Still to come this month is a trip to Manchester to see my parents (mostly to take Rachel's nephew indoor downhill skiing (it'll be my first time too!)), a night in a lovely hotel for Rachel and I to just decompress, and then early next month a quick trip to Paris to watch some masters tennis. Immediately after that Rachel runs a 50 mile race (one I've done before, but don't feel the urge to do again) and then... who knows? November currently looks a bit empty in the calendar, and I'm OK with that.

See you some time then!