March 2016

Apr. 8th, 2016 01:40 pm
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
Ballroom Dancing with J all month (on Tuesday evening) practicing Foxtrot with some Tango revision. J's mum in hospital
Visited parents and sisters family, setup iPad for my Mum. Gave gad his belated birthday card. J's mum died.
Updated The Bujold Nexus a bit. Ordered some books from amazon, collected then from the Amazon locker in town
Yoga class every Wednesday after work, now paid for by the students at £6 per week
Bought short book for £1 for World Book Day. The SF Reading group met to discuss Anima by Brett Davidson a book that has not yet been officially published by our fearless leader!
Barnes and Noble are to stop supporting the Nook ereader in the UK, uk Nook users can automatically transfer their library to Sainsbury's Entertainment On demand. I tried and only one book was copied.
As it stands my Nook Wifi is not longer of any use so I will have to "root" it to turn it into an android 2.1 tablet and be able to use wifi again.
Decided to re-read all Diane Duane's Young Wizards as part of Mark Reads
Printed my 2015 Diary via Doxdirect, it appears to be slightly longer than the previous volumes.
Cut the front lawn for the first time this year, exhausted me, now I have to mow the back lawn!
Social dance was a week early due to Easter using that week end.
For the first time since I started at work I was on the very early shift 7:30-3:30 (I did say that I was available for this time slot) Unfortunately due to train time I actually gt to the station 7:28 so I have 2 minutes to get to the office and get setup (with a cup of tea), this work out OK. - no late trains.
Did some overtime - setting up new account to allow GPs to use WiFi. iPhone iOS updated to ver 9.3
Remembers to nominate in the Hugos this year!
Eastercon 2016 - Mancunicon
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
Renewed my season ticket for the month £212.80, Contract at work has been extended again!
Used up all the eVouchers I had accrued due to train Delay Repay to pay for my ticket to Marks Tey, for this year's Filkcon
Took half day off so that I could go to the Matinee of Private Lives at The Theatre Royal in Brighton
Next day off to Con2bil8 (The 28th UK Filk Convention), 5th – 7th February, 2016 at The Marks Tey Best Western Hotel
With UK Guest of Honour: Piers Cawley and Overseas Guests of Honour: Stone Dragons (Tom & Sue Jeffers)
Discovered the Bungalow Diner just a few minutes down the road. Ate most of my meals there, an English version of an American diner.
Went to Earth & Stars pup on second Monday for SF reading club where we discussed The Diamond Age.
Went to The Hawth to see The Last Tango with Vincent Simone & Flavia Cacace, no dancing this week.
Learning new steps in Foxtrot, an revised this every week, Social dance was a week early as the school was using the space for a play.
Forgot my yoga gear one week so missed that class. The funding by NHS stopped this month so we decided to continue funding the class personally at around £6 per week.
One of the irritations of the yoga class was that when we moved the tables in the conference room many off the legs fell off! I finally found an Allen key which allowed me to tighten the appropriate screws and now none of the legs detach!
Listened to audible books almost every day usually for over an hour, due to having the St Mary's Chronicles by Jodi Taylor, to listen to.
Updated The Bujold Nexus - (Bibliography). Need to update more regularly as it is coming up to the 20th Anniversary!
Saw Deadpool at the Dome cinema in Worthing. One of the best moves I seen in the last year. Rather more adult in nature than the usual super hero fare but funnier too.
Used paper Delay Repay vouchers to get ticket to London for Picocon 33 on 20th. Guests of Honour: Paul Cornell, Carrie Hope Fletcher & Michelle Paver. Had to leave early as the social dance was this evening.
Booked bed at YHA in Manchester for this years Eastercon. I've also got membership of Worldcon 75 in Helsinki, Finland.
Got two hardback books from amazon at enough discount that it was paper back price. Amazon locker in town is really handy.
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
After the New Year's Eve Dance, I stayed over with J, and finally started watching Game of Thrones! Actually finished watching series 1 and started series 2.
I ordered two print on demand books, one collecting all my LJ posts and comments, the other all the books I've read since March 2007 (when I started using LibraryThing to catalog books owned and read.
The LJ material actually generated something the size of a normal novel! I've also finished editing my 2015 diary but I am waiting for a discount code before sending it to print.
Finally bought my membership for Eastercon in Manchester this year.
Dance classes continue on Tuesday with J. Learned new steps in Tango. Started working on technique.
D finally fitted new shower, much improved over the previous unit. Bought new digital blood pressure monitor and scales - bluetooth enabled. Now I can measure both my Blood Pressure and my weight accurately
Yoga class restarted. Funding for this ends the first week in February, but we intend to continue classes self funded.
Discussed "The Androids Dream" by John Scalzi at the SF Reading Group. Once again I fail to finish the book before the meeting. Still enjoyable though.
Saw Stargazing Live (recorded ;-)) with first British space walk - Tim Peake born in Sussex!
Used my new scales and BP monitor to record weight and BP every hour on one Sunday, quite surprising the fluctuations and consistencies.
Temperature finally dropped below 0°C for the first time, we even got a light dusting of snow!
Decided I need to go to the theatre more often (especially as I currently can get there for free) so booked 3 performances at The Theatre Royal - Brighton. Saw the first one "The Mousetrap - 60th Anniversary Tour" on the last Saturday as a matinee.
Got a copy of Gentleman Jole & the Red Queen from Lois McMaster Bujold personally signed.
On the last Wednesday in the month went to London. Saw the Alice in Wonderland exhibit at the British Library. Then to the Science Museum to see the Ada Lovelace exhibit. Returned to the Science Museum for SMLates. Main reason wa to see the "Cosmonaut" exhibit which was excellent.
Ordered the Audio version of LMB's GJ&tRQ - I have all the others, though I haven't listened to all of them.
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
Suffered cold and had to take time off work. Ballroom dancing classes every Tuesday, but not for the last two weeks
Yoga classes also continued except for the last two weeks of the month.
Bought an amazon fire TV stick, not quite as useful as it seemed in reviews and TV adverts!
Christmas Dance in Steyning Alice & Bradley demo and End of Year Dance in Crawley, demo Sam & Shannon
Brighton SF Book Club had a Christmas party with is short discussion of Bill the Galactic Hero
Visited the Chiropractor, had an issue with my right shoulder.
Finally sent out Christmas cards, and got amazon voucher for xmas presents
Completed Fire Safety training online to complete all mandatory work training - still need face to face fire safety training
Got train and bus to my parents and sister's family home on xmas eve, took 2 hours 30 min (car takes 20 min)
Spent Christmas with my family, came home to discover my shower had failed, had to buy replacement.
Last Tuesday in the month went to the Rocky Horror Show with J, at the Theatre Royal in Brighton.
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
Continued Ballroom dance classes on Tuesdays, with normal social dance at the end of the month. Mid month we got an additional social - a charity event at the same venue.
Strictly Come Dancing is regular week end fare on TV with Dr Who to follow. Also the Librarians return to TV
Also continued with after work yoga, also found some yoga apps to try to continue efforts away from class.
Took Saturday morning adult education class over 3 weeks on Family History in the 21st Century! (Who Are You?) from 10:00 - 1:00. When I last did any research all records were on paper and indexes were on microfiche. They are now all online.
Brighton SF Reading Group discussed Cloud Atlas - I only read the first chapter.
Took out a free two week introdutory membership to ancestery.co.uk very usefull for the saturday class. Cancelled it after the last morning!
Saw Dave Gormen at the Hawth where he gave his "Dave Gorman Gets Straight to the Point*
*The Powerpoint comedic presentation. (trains delayed both arriving and leaving
Watching Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries, Thunderbirds are Go and Supergirl
Spent a number of days at the Doctors office (after getting a flu jab last month) with blood tests, checking for high blood pressure and and ECG. Mostly OK but could loose a little weight.
Updated The Bujold Nexus and ordered a print of all the ebook covers as a poster
Started listening to audible books again. Especially The Chronicles of St Mary's, byJodi Taylor. Also currently on track to read 200 books this year. Not anywhere near my highest numbers but respectable.
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
As J had just returned from 6 weeks travelling across Canada, we had to have a catch up private dance lesson. Managed to cover all the new material, and revised those bits she had forgotten!
Went to see The Martian at The Dome Worthing in 3D. It was very impressive, almost everything in the film occurred in the book (except for the coda at the end). and they managed to show the highlights without it feeling incomplete (see Dune for a counter example)
Nominee contender for next year's Hugo Awards? I still think the audiobook was the best version though.
Dance classes every Tuesday, revised Viennese waltz, learned new steps in rumba.
Saw Dr Who, and the new Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries series.
Worked on Scratch programming via Coursera, it's a lot more involved but simple.
Yoga class continues for an hour every Wednesday after work
The Brighton SF Reading group discussed King David's Spaceship, which I actually managed to finish! Not the liveliest discussion.
Went in to surgery on a Saturday for my yearly flu jab, despite arriving at 8:30 there was already a long queue, it went down quickly.
This was followed by a visit to my chiropractor, who indicated that my posture had improved since I started yoga.
Bought a load of clothes at ASDA, and had to hem one pair of trousers due to being too long. but only pair in my waist size ;-(
Got a first day cover of star wars stamps - very pretty
Saw Back to the Future (part 1 & 2) on the 21st. Booked the following day off, as there was a drop in session at the library I was interested in.
However Gentleman Joel & the Red Queen eARC by Lois McMaster Bujold was published the previous day so instead I spent the day reading my favourite author!
On Thursday 28th my dance teacher organised a night out at a theatre in London, however due to miscommunications I didn't discover I was invited until Tuesday (two days before!),
I had to get emergency time off of a couple of hours on Thu which was allowed and met up with J and other early.
Saw Pig Farm at St James Theatre, 12 Palace Street SW1E 5JA seat C20 about 2m from the stage! Performance from 7:30-9:30 with intermission, interesting choice - only 4 on stage roles.
Not something I would have paid to see but for free!... Got home 11:20!
Went social dancing on the last two Saturdays of the month. First with Strictly Dance Magic at Burgess Hill School for Girls, then with Crawley Dance Academy at St Wilfrid's School Crawley.
Clocks went back an hour on 25th at 2am/1am
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
Biggest news was that as of 1st September I am now employed directly by NHS rather than via an agency - as had been the case for the last 2 years! But it's only for 6 months.
However I didn't get paid on the last Friday of the month as expected but had to chase up to get my money on the following Monday!
All month went dance class without a partner (J in Canada) as we started (as a class) to learn the Viennese Waltz - which I have wanted to revise since we learned it in a private lesson.
So most Tuesday's I partnered dance teacher B, though the last week I danced with L (whose partner was unavailable).
J was back from her travels for the last Saturday Social Dance, though as she hadn't danced for over 6 weeks her memory of the steps was a bit dodgy! But I still danced more than the previous month!
I finished listening to The Martian by Andy Weir - I wish I'd read it earlier so I could have nominated it for a Hugo! Have to remember to nominate the Movie instead.
On the 2nd Monday of the month went to the Earth & Stars in Brighton for Discussion of the Left Hand of Darkness - didn't finish this book, We were given inadvertent ARCs of Anima by Brett Davidson, as a Read for next year
I have now used the Amazon Locker (Dimple), at the martlets in town, a number of time and mostly find it very convenient - however, the 4-5 day collection window can sometime be inconvenient! Fortunately it appears to be open 24 hours a day!
I've just ordered a new USB Memory stick to which I have copied Calibre and as many ebooks as I could find, on my desktop and old laptop. I also need to hunt up any other ebook floating around!
I have been watching Dave Gorman: Modern Life is Goodish on TV so when his Live show was advertised at the Hawth I got a ticket, for next month (November)
The weekly, free, yoga class, after work has been extended for a further 8 weeks - my back thanks the powers that be!
Christmas is coming earlier and earlier. Lidl started selling Mince pies and Stollen, with a best before date in November!
Mowed the front lawn at the end of the month, we should soon get to the point where the grass stops growing, but we are not there yet ;-(
Both Doctor Who and Strictly Come Dancing started this month - so thats what my license fee pays for!
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
OK so this was a very busy and important month. The first thing being the wedding of my niece L to her fiance S
This was at least 2 years in the planning and went off without a hitch, to the very great happiness of my sister.
The wedding was in an old barn! and the reception was in another building on the same site.
The sun was shining all afternoon and we had perfect weather, I was even social with friends and relatives.
After eating pizza later in the afternoon - J (dance partner) arrived for the evening and we danced and conversed until she took me home.

There are some perks to working for the NHS and one of them occurred this month. A 8 week class for beginners in yoga was to be held after work - for free!
I signed up, as yoga is something I have been wanting to try for a while, as it has a beneficial effect on back issues, and it might allow me to be able to touch my toes!
We are now halfway through and it is much more exhausting than expected, given you don't move from your mat during the hour class.
I was asked if I might be interested in a permanent position if one came up. I then got a number of forms to fill out, but no one actually told me about the job in question, so I been waiting to find out what next!

I had my eyes checked a couple of months back - as this was a work related requirement I got a voucher from the agency for free test and free standard lenses
(I normally have varifocals) I decided to get a pair of glasses with a focal length at arms length - free VDU glasses.
I've been wearing them 2 months now and it's much easier to view the screens, but long distance is fuzzy (still clearer than no glasses)
I'm still using varifocals for normal use though.

Been dancing on my own as J is on a 6 week trip across Canada. Meant I only got a few dances at the social, and dancing with the teacher in class
I have also started reading the LMB mailing list again (after a hiatus of a number of years) on my iPhone during my train commute

I got Terry Pratchett's, last books and it was a perfect swan song, not his best book ever but perfect for a last remembrance.
I've also started back listening to audible books, not least because of the low priced Deal of the Day! Got and listed to The Martian" sad wasn't nominated for the Hugo, looking forward to the movie.
Have now listened to all of Pat Wrede's Frontier Magic series, well worth the time needed to listen (even though I have read them all)

I also went to Earth & Stars on first Monday expecting the SF Reading Group meeting only realise that the meets had moved to the 2nd Monday of the month! (My diary had the correct date!)
However three of us turned up to chat generally about SF and had a pleasant evening.
The following Monday I returned after finishing "We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves: A Novel", a number of new readers turned up and a lively discussion occurred.

Discovered that it is now impossible to download the epub files for the Nook, the Windows readers are no longer supported (in the UK) so there is no way of downloading the files.
Now only readable on my hardware Nook or phone apps. Will be buying from kobo, google or amazon in future (as all allow download to PC).
Also on the Amazon front discovered that amazon has installed a locker in The Martlets in town, near the library, next to Lidl - which is more convenient than trying to get deliveries to my house while I'm working.
The first book I collected from "Dimple" was a Modesty Blaise Graphic novel.

Watched the Hugo Awards (after the fact - I didn't want to stay up past 3am) and bought membership to Worldcon75 in Helsinki. I've been to all the European worldcons since 1979 and don't want to miss this milestone.

I reinstalled the current version of Ubuntu LTS to my multi boot USB drive (boot loader corrupted) which meant the creation of a bootable ubuntu USB drive. This doesn't work on my Windows 8 laptop!

Bought a small portable drive to backup my videos and ebooks, needed 2 usb sockets so will try a pen drive for my ebooks and install Calibre portable to manage them.

Visited the dentist for a checkup and x-ray, haven't heard anything so all should be well. Also visited chiropractor, who agreed that yoga was a very good thing (TM) for back issues!

Marvel's Agent Carter did finally get broadcast on Sky (in UK) hurrah!

July 2015

Aug. 5th, 2015 03:23 pm
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
Spent most of the month with blisters on my right foot - in various states of healing (or otherwise).
Collected my Nook from TB station! Must stop leaving stuff behind.
Mowed both back and front lawns. Amazing how fast the stuff grows during the summer.
First Monday in the month discussed The Death of Grass, again didn't finish the book before the Reading Group meeting!
Dancing every Tuesday evening, mostly revising - prior to all going off on holidays!
Had a short play on pottermore.com to catch up to date, used my new laptop for the first time for this purpose.
Finally got around to making some updates to The Bujold Nexus, it's been three years since my last update!
After over a year and a half I got an official NHS ID Card - doesn't do anything but looks official!
I have installed Adobe ePub Reader on my new laptop and for the first time in year I have manage to get it to work. Even borrowing a book from the library and copying it to my Nook!
I have been listening the Pat Wrede's Frontier Magic trilogy. I have read the books a number of times, but the audio reading brings an extra dimension to the work.
Got a new Netgear router (which when it worked was 30% faster) however stopped working correctly (DNS issues) after a few days. Must contact support to fix.
This has been the busiest month at work since I started! between 200% & 150% previous months calls answered!
Renewed house insurance. Agent Carter being shown on Fox!
Saw Ant-Man at cinema in Worthing £3 showing saw Inside Out at local Cinema £6.50!
Middle of the month went to visit family - last chance before The Wedding - was provided with accessories (socks, tie and pocket hankie!)
Finally took a walk around bedelands for an hour, I really must start walking around this green area again!
Submitted reading for Gas and Electricity - first time since January - should be quarterly!
Dance practice was a week late so I was dancing two days running (Social dance last Saturday of the month) and got the blisters to prove it.
Didn't go to dance class the Tuesday after the social dance - due to blisters - J also had cold so please to get evening off.
Did some overtime as under staffed and getting backlog of emails!

June 2015

Jul. 8th, 2015 08:55 am
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
The Brighton SF reading group discussed Synners by Pat Cadigan (on the 1st), once again I didn't finish the book ;-(
Had my annual asthma review, under control :-)
Ballroom Dancing classes revised Tango, new steps in Foxtrot, Ragtime Swing - sequence dance. End of the month social dance, on the last Saturday.
Saw Chiropractor and got my hair cut - clipper cut No 2.
Worked on the Coursera Python course, but finally gave up before the end, will re-take it's next iteration.
Finished watching iZombie series 1.
Discovered that both Brighton & Hove and West Sussex libraries can lend ebooks using the Bluefire Reader for iOS and Android. Was also able to use this reader to access DRM locked Nook ebooks (in particular the Hallowed Hunt by Lois mcMaster Bujold)
Got 2 books from Amazon and one from The Book Depository. A significant reduction from when I was working in London (5 years ago) and bought 3+ books a week!
Internet connectivity failed at home and was unavailable for nearly 3 days! Fortunately Internet was available at work ;-)
Trains delayed, and managed to claim some monies back, via Delay Repay.
My contract has been extended (at the 11th hour) to September!!!
My watch strap broke, fortunately at home so it didn't get lost! and replaced at vast expense.
The last weekend was not only the social dance but the Folk & Beer Festival at The Hawth.
Went to See the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain on the Sunday evening. Also bought ticket for the Circus Festival before realising my Niece is getting married on that Saturday!
Collected two tickets to see the Last Tango - with Vincent Simone & Flavia Cacace in Feb 2016 -to go with dance partner J (and a lot of Crawley Dance Academy).
Forgot my Nook eReader on Platform 5 at Three Bridges station! Contacted station master and got a call the following day that it had been found and could be collected!

May 2015

Jun. 8th, 2015 02:24 pm
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
Continued watching iZombie (only a few days after US broadcast), also new Thunderbirds are go, saw Last episode of The Mentalist and 200th episode of Bones (gave up on both series a while back)
For Free Comic Book Day I visited Dave's Comics in Brighton and got goodie bag of comics
Decided to continue the series started by one - so visiting Uncanny Comics near work. Also ordered some from Forbidden planet (cheaper than amazon even with postage)
Bought a new Acer Aspire ES1512 from Tesco for only £179, comes with Windows 8.1 ;-( (and free one year license for Windows 10!)
After collecting from local store (ordered online) had to configure and removed unwanted buyware, downloaded Windows 8 updates and then installed then (total time over 6 hours!)
A number of trains delayed, so was able to claim a tiny delay refund!
Saw Avengers: Age of Ultron at local cinema (Sunday matinee in 2D)
Dance classes on Tuesday with J revised foxtrot, waltz, tango
General and local elections didn't effect me as I voted postally before canvassing started in earnest!
Finally got around to adding £10 to my iPhone account, got £20 free credit in addition - was unable to use it all up, within 1 month!
Listened to The Master Magician (via audible) last in trilogy and finished in one day!
Got my eyes tested at Specsavers (with work voucher test and glasses were free) but could only get single VDU lenses for free. Eyes hadn't changed enough to justify replacing varifocals
Started watching new dramatisation of Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell on BBC1, I may finally get the the end of the story having failed to finish both the original book and the audio edition.
Binged on Castle series 6, repeated prior to series 7, missed due to sky box crash last year.
Re-watching Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries series 2
Reserved Uprooted by Naomi Novik from library and read in one day
Started new Coursera class - An Introduction to Interactive Programming in Python (Part 1)
Last Saturday in the month si social dance nigh BUT this month was the annual Loraine Barry lecture and tea dance.
Loraine is a World, European, British Open, International, US & Irish Champion, and friend of my Dance Teacher! Gave a workshop on posture and footwork in foxtrot, waltz and tango
Last Sunday in the month saw Tomorrowland, which was better than it might have been if a bit parasitic at the end.
So a pretty busy month, not least - first full month back at work.

April 2015

May. 19th, 2015 01:35 pm
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
First day unemployed, bought tickets to London for Eastercon, Went to book club (first time in over a year)
D gave me a iPhone 5 as an early birthday present!
Spent a while learning to use it and configure it. (and to upgrade all the apps)

On Thu left for London, visited the Science Museum before going to Heathrow and checking in to the Holiday In.
Good Friday
Breakfast at McD (and for rest of W/E as on way from Holiday Inn to Park Inn (were the convention was held)
Checked in to Eastercon 2015 / Dysprosium got free mug and discworld calendar, got wifi working! on both ipod and iphone
Went to back to back panels, my favourite being the difference engine imaged and imagined by the author of "The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage "
bought food at petrol station / co-op over the road. Spent an hour at filking
Saturday
After McD porridge for breakfast, more panels including GoHs Caroline Mullan & Jim Butcher (in separate program items)
Met a chatted to Listie Katrina & fiancé
Concerts with Playing Rapunzel followed by Talis+2 (Seannan McGuire unable to join in due to lurgy)
Easter Sunday
After McD porridge for breakfast, went to Easter worship then checked out art show for last time
GoH - Herr Döktor interview and GoH - Seanan McGuire (an hour with). In evening was Not the masquerade! an hour of filking
Easter Monday
Last day of con. couple of panels then closing ceremony. Chatted with ED. Read in hotel room (should have left but...)

Tuesday
Left in morning spent hour and a half at the science museum
Got a call from Agency asking if I wanted to renew contract! I said yes. Restarting work in 2 days.
Dancing with J - started learning new quickstep. Later in the month expanded the foxtrot repertoire
Spent day after return from Eastercon replacing upstairs toilet with D! Discovered seat had broken at the hinges so had to order replacement
Bought weekly season tickets until the end of the month, than a monthly one! And back to work!
I celebrated my birthday during April and got cards from family & my dance partner, went for a nice lunch with the latter, followed with hours talking in the sun. Saw ISS pass overhead that night!
The following day celebrated my sister's (and my) birthday with another lunch out, with niece, her intended, my sister and brother-in-law and a nice surprise my aunt and uncle (who I hadn't seen for months - even though they only live a few miles away)
Also celebrated 8 years since I started writing on LiveJournal in 2007
the Brighton SF Reading group met on the second Monday of the month as the previous week was Easter Monday
We discussed Ancillary Justice for most of the 2 hours, usually we only spend the first hour on the book itself, then wander ot ofther genre topics. But this time almost all discussion was on topic. That I had actually finished the book was probably a plus!
Went to World Book Night Quiz at Martlets Cafe - cam 2nd of 7 teams! Go free book.
Finally got a SIM for my iPhone, bit odd to actually have a working Smart Phone!
Last Saturday of the month was social dance, with practice night 8 days prior to this. Spotted a Circus in Goffs Park, decided to go.
Up early sunday morning so I could get train to Crawly for the 11:00 performance by Zyair circus
Had sunday lunch while waiting to go to the cinema then discovered it had sold out! Sky box performed an update which now allows it to remember recored programs and to automatically start recording the new series!
Now separates recorded programs from scheduled programs (different menu entried)
Started watching iZombie via internet as not available via Sky.

March 2015

Apr. 14th, 2015 10:02 am
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
First Monday of the month at Brighton SF Reading group discussed The Disappeared, I had actually completed this one!
Danced every Tuesday of the month with J - learnt/revised new steps to quickset, waltz and foxtrot - also new sally anne cha cha
Finished listening to The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer
Saw Saturday Night Fever at the Theatre Royal in Brighton - took day off and went to matinee
Terry Pratchett died 12 march! I couldn't remember if I'd ever actually spoken to him or not, then I discovered a personally signed copy of Strata from 1987. So I must have told him my name at least.
Made black cape for relay pig (at work) RH then created bat mask from paper
Went to visit my family - continued on pottermore.com and got early birthday present from my sister.
Helped sister make sunday dinner!
Got confirmation that work contract ending on March 31
Sasquan (Worldcon 2015) PR3 arrived. Sent in request for partial refund of train ticket due to delays
Social dancing on last Saturday in Crawley, tried to create a Jive sequence out of steps learnt, as not given an official sequence of any length since J&I started dancing together nearly 2 years ago.
Trains delayed on last day of work, got to office 8:10 for 8:00 start!
At dance class got small easter eggs from teacher and larger one from J.
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
The Brighton SF Reading Group discussed Stamping Butterflies (which I didn't read) train home cancelled and had to wait half an hour for next train.
Dancing every Tuesday, and for this month only also danced on three Saturdays.
Light switch in bathroom broke, leaving it permanently on. D repaired it, but I had to find a new string.
Started listening to audible books again. Listened to Amanda Palmer's "The Art of Asking"
Upgraded firmware of my Toshiba TV but now it won't remember it's settings!
Got my filling replaced in top left tooth.
Started learning new steps in ballroom. Jive is still very limited!
Appeared to have malware installed on P, took forever to dislodge it.
Went to Picocon 32 at Imperial College in London (only on Saturday)
Then straight to 1st of the 3 Saturday dances, at new venue.
Got last years diary printed by doxdirect.
J made me pancakes for after dancing on Shrove Tuesday
D & I finally installed new shower blind, and was able to take first proper shower at home in months.
Renewed my season ticket, possible finally for last time?
Last dance of the month at a new venue in BH
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
Spent New Year's Day with J, went for walk in Bucham Park before lunch (kangaroo steaks!)
Saw The Adventures of Tintin: Secret of the Unicorn on TV (I have not been watching many films of TV of late
Bought Texet Power Bank (to recharge iPod) £6 at Wilco (reduced from £8), this will extend the time before I will be forced to buy a replacement.
Listened to Good Omens on iPlayer - BBC Radio production
Prior to going to to book group heard a bus knock down a pedestrian! (in the argus later) traffic stopped for hours.
To Earth & Stars pub for SF Book meeting "Good Omens" new people turned up
Sky box crashed and deleted ALL content I'd saved over the years!
Dancing wit J on Tuesdays, started to learn a new series of waltz steps.
Decided to re-read daughter of the empire (and its sequels) by wurst & feist and couldn't find my copies.
Discovered library copies at Worthing so got 1st book from there and the other 2 from Brighton (which didn't have the 1st book!)
Saw "Into the Woods" at the cinema in BH. New series of The Librarians is great fun, hope it continues, (but very Warehouse 13).
Saw dentist and got a temp filling in top left, needs proper filling next month.
Booked two tickets to see "Return to the Forbidden Planet" at the Theatre Royal in Brighton (stalls). J & I went to the matinee performance.
J had not seen it before while I'd seen at least 10 prior version. 'twas excellent as usual!
Ordered 3 throwing knives, which arrived very quickly - but were smaller than expected. I will have to source a board to throw at.
Backup of my LJ account to DW
Got my hair cut. Saw the Royal Institute Christmas Lectures (3 programs). Got first 3 episodes of Agent Carter from JA at work, very period - pity not being shown in the UK. Trying to play digital media on TV fails.
Last day of the month was the Social Dance in Crawley
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
So my final LJ entry of the year. I've just started editing my diary notes so I can get a printed diary, using print on demand. Doing so last year got me a book of over twenty five thousand words, and I want to do so again.
First on the agenda is the Brighton SF Reading group, the book was "The Clockwork Rocket" by Greg Egan and once again i didn't finish it!
I did have a half of stout after initially arriving at The Earth & Stars
D finally finished fitting the downstairs toilet, a thing of beauty. And the roller blind style shower curtain finally arrived. Also new toilet to replace old one in bathroom arrived.
Final two ballroom dance classes before the Christmas break, were revision of dances especially the new jive (now if I could only remember the jive we learnt 2 years ago..). The final class was more of a party with food, drinks and dancing, with all the classes mixed.
Had to prune my mailbox as ISP told me it was getting too large.
Got a new ear ring, slightly smaller than the one I'd been wearing for the last few years.
Strictly Come Dancing Final, one of the closest ever. Also the Christmas Special was nice too.
Went dancing with J on the second Sunday evening, raining and dark but still arrived on time. Danced all evening, had unexpected competitor demo and snacks.
Saw "Paddington" at the Cinema and saw a doctor regarding pain in my left foot.
Determined it was cheaper to buy fish and chips at the local Wetherspoon pub (on Friday) than from the chip shop.
Lost filling or chipped tooth in upper left of my mouth, booked an appointment in the new year.
Took exam for "LFS101x Introduction to Linux" (online learning - didn't finish all the coursework) got 30/30! though a few questions did require 2 attempts (as allowed in the rules)
J learned that Salsa Julia was offering a Salsa Taster at Wivelsfield Hall, so J & I went and it was fun, stayed to see the freestyling for 20 min then went home. If it didn't clash with Book Club I'd go back!
Discovered how to install personal screensavers on the Nook ereader and added some quotes and XKCD ones.
Xmas eve got train to Horsham via Barnham the the bus to see my parent and the rest of the family.
Christmas was particularly festive with a Christmas service, an open fire, dinner and Doctor Who & Frozen
Home for the weekend, and caught up with recorded TV. back to work on Monday but a half day off for New Years eve, so I could get reading and to Crawley early in time for:-
The New Years Eve Dinner / Dance which was awesome - buffet dinner, professional demonstration (Latin & Ballroom) and danced a lot (restricted to 50% or less) by table numbers due to lots of people being there.
Helped tidy up after and left 12:40. Stayed at J's over night and listened to dance music and watched Galaxy Quest on tv before I went home! (New Years Day!)
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
Saw last of series of Doctor Who, mowed lawns for the last time this year. Also managed to move 4 bags of earth from where it had been dumped.
Able to use bath for the first time (even though showering is a bit iffy as no curtain as yet installed - though ordered).
The Brighton SF Reading group met in the Earth & Stars pub and discussed a P K Dick collection
Went dancing every Tuesday evening with social dancing on the last Saturday and Practice eight days prior to this.
Backed C E Murphy's new kickstarter (which has been successfully funded)
Got "new" monitors at work, a pair with a longer stand, providing a higher screen, which gives a better sight line.
Had my first one to one / supervision! I was on track and hitting all targets!
Went to see doctor re pain in my left foot instep, got pain meds over a 2 week course.
Ordered a new shower curtain, which works like a roller blind! very cool and should keep the floor dry too.
Use Calibre to transfer some ebooks to my new Nook
Finally defrosted my freezer (over a year since last done).
Strictly Come Dancing continued on Saturday and Sunday getting too close to call the result. Anyone's game.
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
The organisation I am still working for (a year after I started) is now South East CSU (Sussex IT Services).
One of the advantages of working in Worthing as I am travelling in the opposite direction to everyone going to London. As a result I have got a seat every day (apart from a couple of exceptional times).
Got the new Mercy Thompson anthology "Shifting Shadows by Pat Briggs" from Audible
For the first time I got on the wrong train (in the morning) and was travelling east (rather than west). Got off at Berwick and got in to the office an hour later than intended!
D got a second apple tree and vine, and i dug the holes to plant them into. Told him to stop buying any more trees!
Brighton Reading Group discussed Pattern Recognition by William Gibson (I didn't finish reading it) at Earth and Stars pub
Bathroom tiled so all walls and floor of bathroom covered (no longer any bare floorboards).
Went to the dentist, got filling in bottom right incisor.
Went Ballroom Dancing every Tuesday with Social Dance on the last Saturday of the month with a practice night the Friday 8 days prior to this.
Visited my family for the weekend (with a laptop issue to solve).
New Nook Simple Touch with Glowlight arrived unexpectedly. Works perfectly. However discoved that most of my books are on the US site with the Nook accesses the UK one.
Contacted support to get this resolved to no avail (Nook iOS app connects to US site)
New steel bath is finally installed (apart from the overflow)
Completed pottermore.com to date (end off Goblet of Fire)
Saw "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in 3D"
Contract extended to end of March! This can of course be cancelled at any time by either party but still.. Nice to have some income while it's disappearing on bathroom refurbishment.
mbernardi: (WeeMee)
Unfortunately my bathroom has been out of action all month (or at least the bath part). Fortunately I have been able to use a shower after work. I haven't been able to trim my beard and it has grown very bushy! I'm not sure how much I will trim it down one the bath is installe (it arrived at the end of the month).
My printed A5 diary also arrived and I was most impress at how cool it looked.
My new Nook Simple Touch arrived, unfortunately after the fist day I was unable to use it and I have been trying to return it for replacement / refund.
New cleaning crew have cleaned the house so that it tidier than it's been since I moved in!
First week end was the mini maker faire at the Brighton Dome. Large number of children and more crafty making including (knitting and felting)
Finally got to watch Dr Who live at home, and the Extra broadcast on iplayer.
Strictly Come Dancing started with a new crop of 15 celebrities and 3 new professional dancers.
Discussed "The Dispossessed" at the monthly Brighton SF Discussion group on the first Monday of the month.
Dancing every Tue for class, with the normal end of the month social dance on the last Saturday. However J & I also went to the "Strictly dance magic" evening at the Martlets in Burgess Hill the week before. (they are usually held on the same night but this month the BH event had to move)
On Thursday 11th J & I went to the WB Studio to enjoy the Harry Potter Experience! J drove up up arriving at eleven
We checked out the shop which was awesome, the variety of stuff - and the prices!
We then had lunch (sausages and mash) before starting the tour at one o'clock (a bit earlier than scheduled, but as not very busy it was OK)
I took dozens of photos, until the battery died and have to say that it was one of the most interesting and fun day I've had in quite a while. It was a sort of cross between a museum and a theme park - but in a good way.
If anyone has a chance to go, do take it it's well worth it (and now with a new Death Eater section arriving after our visit). Everyone I have talked to, who have been have enjoyed it, if a HP or not.
Also I have been playing on pottermore.com, I was sorted into Ravenclaw (not surprisingly) and have progressed to the end of the chamber of secrets.
D has made som major improvements to the garden, including a lean to for his bike and additional paving slab to provide space to walk around it.
I planted and additional pear tree, to add to the apple tree and grape vine.
D also painted his room walls, so had to finally say goodby to purple paint, it did make the room more cheerful!
Brighton & Hove libraries have started improving their ebook collections and I have borrowed my fist ebook using OverDrive.
Went to visit family to celebrate my nieces birthday on Sun 20th (birthday was Sat) her fiance took me nearly to work on Monday morning (but the wait for a train for over half an hour was not fun in my shirt sleeves!)
At the end of the month I finally got to the dentist to discover I had a loose filling (which he removed with little effort) ball bearing sized. Got a temporary filling to last until the whole thing can be replaced.
Purchased my season ticket for October, which will be the start of my second year at NHS Sussex.
On the last sunday of the month a select group of 20 people from Crawley Dance Academy were invited to " West End Heroes" at the Dominion Theatre in London.
Train's to Three Bridges were replaced by busses so took longer to get there. Group train tickets meant the price was half the normal cost and we shared taxis and dined at Garfunkel's
The tickets had a nominal price of £175 each! But the total cost for the night out was only £31.45 to me.
Got back to Three Bridges at 00:00 and replacement busses not running to reliably so J gave me a lift home.
Also paid the remaining amount for the New Years Eve dance, and collected the ticket.
mbernardi: (WeeMee)

Very busy month, with Worldcon (see earlier posts).
Also got hair cut to shortest it has been in over forty years. Took part in MORI poll relating to radio listening (even though I don't actually listen to radio live much)
I've also been playing on pottermore.com in preparation for going to the Harry Potter Experience on 11th Sep
Updated the SD cards for my old eeePC and got triple booting linux usb hard drive working. Started LFS101x Introduction to Linux online course.
New fencing installed on one side of back garden, planted both a new apple tree and a grape vine
Brighton SF Reading Group discussed Lightbourn, which again I didn't finish (I really need to finish all these books I start).
Finished editing my 2013 Diary and sent it off to be printed (A5 size)
Used up all my eVouchers (from train delay) to buy ticket to London for Worldcon
Saw Guardians of the Galaxy at Connaught Cinema in Worthing (£3 Wed)
Checked my Oyster Card (London Travel Card) in preparation for Worldcon visit. Need to add £20 to it for journeys in London.
Picked a fair number of black berries at different times during the month (even in my garden)
Second weekend in the month was Crawley Juggling Festival - on the Saturday I did some balloon modelling, read, Kettle of Fish Cabaret in the evening was excellent as always.
On the Sunday I joined the Knife and Axe throwing workshop, actually turned out to be pretty good (should have taken a photo of my excellently matched axe throws).
Worldcon - Loncon3
Tuesday after Worldcon I was still in London and went to the British Library to see "Comics Unmasked: Art and Anarchy in the UK" last day, bought book of exhibit.
Saw the first episode of the new Dr Who at the cinema (with only 25 others - not well advertised)
My dancing partner C decided that she was unable to continue ballroom dancing (not a major issue as I normally dance with J), we'd been dancing a year and a quarter.
Bath started to leak, (dripping through the light fitting - blew the circuit breaker!) so had to get a replacement organised. (2 weeks so far without bath / shower). Washbasin has been replaced.
Managed to mung my Windows 7 PC at home (over wrote MBR with Grub2) though I also managed to recover from the problem ;-)
At work after nearly a year I got a new Windows 7 PC and found it a generally good experience.
With my Kobo Mini damaged and no longer available I have ordered a Nook ereader (so I can access my Fictionwise.com archive).
Renewed my monthly season ticket.
Dancing with J every Tue evening, but no dancing first two weeks as school closed. First Tuesday back after Worldcon. Social dance at the end of the month, we danced all the dances.





















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