Day 236 – The Sitting Half-Dead

I debated.

I felt a little silly taking it in, but I decided it’s what I wanted to read most right now, so why not? Still, I found a corner in the back to make sure I didn’t offend anyone.

Compendium One of the The Walking Dead comic is a hefty tome.

I got my mug of cappuccino at the front and retreated to the back. I tucked up cross-legged on the faux-leather seat and waited for the coffee to arrive.

It didn’t take long for me to isolate from the world around me. When I’m reading I hardly notice anything as my mum will confirm; there’s a dent in a car somewhere in the time-space continuum as evidence of this fact.

Only when my coffee arrived did I realise that I might want to angle the comic so the pages were half-facing to the wall. Not so much because I worried about being seen to read a comic, but it occurred to me that there are some rather graphic images in this comic, and they would otherwise be just at curious-toddler-height. Not something I was ready to deal with on a quiet Sunday morning.

Two hours whooshed by.

I’ve read the first three chapters. And they aren’t much like the TV show at all; which is great. The broad brush-strokes of the show are all there, but a lot of the detail and flavour wanders around in a completely different way.

The rest of the day has been a mix of podcasts, cleaning, laptop-consolidation and TV.

I think I have all my crucial files sorted now. The PC should now be free of important files, but I’m going to wait through finishing setting up the laptop to confirm this is in fact true. I like the idea that on my Melbourne trip this week I will be able to take all my files with me. Maybe I should bring a mouse along too.

And now… either a game on the laptop… or another chapter?
I can’t decide.

Day 194 – Today and Tomorrow

Today didn’t start in a very timely fashion; it was well past 11am before I even picked up my mobile from the bedside to check what the world had been up to in my absence. Alas, between the hours of 3am and 11am, apparently everywhere has been boring, so I didn’t miss much whilst unconscious.

My normal Sunday routine involves Yoga and then an extended period at Michel’s with my Kindle. Not today. Today I slept through Yoga. But that’s no reason to give up altogether.

By noon I was sitting in the not-sun outside Michel’s. Apparently a cool overcast Australia Day deters everybody else from doing the same, so I didn’t have much company outside. As usual, I sat at a table along the window with the opposing chair pushed in enough to rest my feet upon. Setting this up caused me to bump the chair into the window and Steve did look over, but I don’t think he realised it was me. No harm done though, so it doesn’t really matter.

There is something very relaxing about sitting in that specific spot near the entrance to the shops. I’ve always been good at tuning out background noise, and helps me focus on my reading somehow. And as a bonus, between chapters I can watch the people as they come by on their shopping errands.

I sat through two mugs of cappuccino, about 5 chapters, and a good 2 hours. This involves a lot of leg-exercise as well; if I do not keep re-adjusting which leg is resting on the opposing chair, I end up with wicker-shaped indentations on my legs that take forever to settle down again. Which probably isn’t healthy. I think?

The only reason I didn’t end up staying longer is that Dana started clearing the outside chairs and tables around me; I should have realised Australia Day means closing early. And I feel that good patron-etiquette at that stage calls for finishing my chapter and making room for the staff to do their jobs.

After returning home I spent some time on the PC. That always flies by. I cannot readily say what I actually did, but I can conclusively say that I achieved nothing. This strongly suggests I spent time on Facebook, Wikipedia or Steam.

The most productive part of my day consisted of watching Sherlock with Abbey. Not so much because of the show itself, but because I did the laundry and hanging while watching. I enjoyed the latter two episodes better than the first. It also means I’ve now fallen back in that pit of despair called waiting-for-the-next-season-to-come-around-in-another-48-weeks.

It is both bliss and absolute cruelty that they make only 3 episodes which they then air in 3 consecutive weeks. I wonder if this is on purpose.

The rest of my evening has been consumed with tomorrow. Or rather the planning of tomorrow; causality was in no way harmed by my actions.

I recently sold some hardware that had gathered dust, and now I must make good on the shipping that eBay requires of me. So, I have a list of all the addresses I need tomorrow morning first thing. Hopefully I can get through that very quickly.

Because after that I hope to get to Wet’n’Wild early enough to secure a parking spot near the entrance. They do not let you bring your own food in, but they cannot stop me from having an Esky in my car and ducking out for lunch and snacks as needed. So I have my bag packed for a visit there… and I still have a gym class booked that I may or may not go to at 5pm, so on the chance that I do, I’ll have to pack my gym gear as well.

So, odds are that tomorrow my post will go somewhat as follows: woke up at 8, went shopping, filled Esky, posted stuff, drove to Wet’n’Wild, spent day in sun and on slides, went to gym, aching after Nikki’s class, collapsed in front of TV, rushing this post sorry.

If I weren’t too stubborn to break my remaining 365-rules, I should really write the post now and set it on a timer. How would you ever know the difference?

Day 117 – Stretching

Yoga

I allowed my phone to distract me for longer than I should have let it this morning in bed. By the time my brain started doing the sums on the time required to get out of bed, through a shower, out to the gym, it was 9:45am.

My class starts at 10:30am.

Oh, and I decided to grab a small coffee along the way to wake up.

Luckily, by 10:33am I was in place on my thin mat at the front of an unusually full class that hadn’t quite started yet. Not my favourite spot, but it was of my own doing.

Today was an exceptionally good class. I find I always come out wonderfully stretched out. I credit the instructor, because she always knows when there is a little more reach left in me, and she adjusts us like we’re unruly furniture. Today my warrior got a little extra attention and I found a whole batch of muscles in my side, hip and hamstring that could use some more attention.

It’s an amazing feeling when I think I’m at the limit and she finds another inch or two of give that I wouldn’t have believed was there.

After a class like that, sitting is my favourite activity.

Reading

Which is what I did on the way back home. At a little table with a cappuccino and a sausage roll, with my trusty Kindle in tow.

I do most of my reading on Sunday afternoon after Yoga and to/from/during trips to Melbourne. Everything else just seems to consume my days any other time. Which should make this coming week a good one for The Game of Thrones.

My reading time today stretched on a little longer than it should have though. I was too engrossed in my chapters to take much note of the weather turning. I was under cover so the drizzle and rain just didn’t directly impact me.

After a couple of hours though it started getting a bit chilly, the swirling breeze getting cooled by the falling water, and brushing past the side of the building I was sitting next to.

When I decided I should head home I had just started another chapter though… and I have a really hard time abandoning a book in the middle of a chapter. So I zipped up the front of my hoodie, and stubbornly read my way through, admittedly shivering a little by the end.

I got another coffee as I left to warm me up. This is also when I learned there is such a thing as a cheaper refill. I’m not sure it’s healthy for me to know this.

And then I rushed home to have a nice hot shower.

Programming

Stretching my brain with my little personal project consumed the rest of the afternoon. I had already worked out the concept on paper, so it was long overdue to actually get started with some work (especially with the coming week in Melbourne it’ll be tricky to make progress during the week).

I had assumed I was going to have to find a library for RSS/Atom for C# to make it work. But I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Microsoft has a handy SyndicationFeed built right into the system, which seems to be just the ticket so far.

I don’t want to try to load my feeds on page accesses, so I need a background process to load the raw data for my application. I was familiar with approaches from PHP applications based on having a URL that a timed job somewhere else hits in lieu of a timer loop, but that seemed too hacky.

So far it looks like the recommended approach is to use a Timer object started from application start-up. I’m not sure why it feels wrong; it’s probably the idea of putting something stateful into a web application that just intrinsically sends my hackles up. But recommended it is, so the solution it also is for now. I can always separate this logic into a service running somewhere separately, which is probably the Right-Way-tm to do this.

Footnote

Now, please, have some sweet German baked goods lest I eat them all myself…

Stollen; usually in form of a big loaf, but Aldi also does bite-size.
Stollen; usually in form of a big loaf, but Aldi also does bite-size.

And let me dedicate this song to the day… that’s how it works, right?

spotify:track:6RDMoA86XmfIyFGWmm9TkJ

Also worth looking up on YouTube for a clip involving Fraggles.

Day 110 – Gale-Force Coffee

I like my lazy Sundays.

I slept in till 9am. Well, almost… I woke at 8:30am, confused at why my alarm had not gone off yet. I don’t often feel as rested in the mornings as I did this morning.

I took my time getting ready for Yoga. Class starts at 10:30, so plenty of time. A quick check on Facebook, Twitter and my blog. And a quick shower, which feels odd when I’m only going to get sweaty again, but I just don’t feel right if I don’t have one before I start.

The class was very full this morning. I’m not sure what happened, other than my suspicion that a few of the regulars brought friends. A class that normally consists of 15-ish people was crammed with over 30. Not a big problem, except for a few of the stretches where there wasn’t quite enough room.

I have felt nicely stretched all day.

And then on the way home I always stop for a coffee outside with my Kindle.

I got through 3 chapters, as I built up a nice healthy glow from the hot seemingly gale-force winds sweeping through the outside seating. To be honest it felt kinda nice; as hot as the breeze was it felt cooling as it ruffled through my hair.

As Sansa was learning the finer points of manipulation from Petyr, my coffee nearly took off from its saucer. I spent some time carefully arranging my possessions so that the heaviest were on top of the lightest. Miraculously the dusted chocolate on top of my cappuccino didn’t end up all over my blue shirt.

As Ahsa was manoeuvring to get support for her claim, various parts of the outside seating started flying. One divider toppled, and a few more threatened to follow suit. The ash trays were starting to gain lift, and the containers of sugar packets were rolling around on the floor. A couple of employees ended up dashing around to tidy away anything that might move.

And finally, as Cersei attended a wedding and set a bonfire, Carolyn walked past me and mused aloud whether I’d need tethering to my chair so as not to fly off myself. I don’t think I’m quite that light, but I told her I appreciated the implicit compliment.

The breeze was starting to get uncomfortably warm by this time, so I decided to head home. But not without another cappuccino. I was briefly tempted to sit down again when my order initially got written down as another mug… but the house needed me to clean it. *sigh*

Day 75 – Yoga, Coffee, Dot Icecream

I am glad I’ve returned to Yoga. I think I stopped going at first because I was busy, then because it made me feel like half the day was gone before I got home again, but those are all stupid reasons not to do Yoga.

The class officially starts at 10:30 and finishes at 11:30… but in reality our excellent instructor never quite gets there till 11:45. I just relish the 15 minutes of extra stretching. Last week my legs were complaining bitterly after the experience, this week less so. I’m sure I’ll be on the road to flexibility again in no time.

A Healthy Breakfast... (?)
A Healthy Breakfast… (?)

I have taken to bringing my Kindle along so that on the way back I can sit down with my coffee and read a few chapters. After Yoga my limbs always feel very heavy, and I usually don’t do much with the time anyway so I might as well visit Tyrion, Arya and Jon as I recover. It’s amazing how time flies when I’m sitting there.

As you can see, I took the opportunity to add some pretend-breakfast to my break. I don’t usually eat before going to the gym. Food before Yoga isn’t the most pleasant of experiences.

By about 1:30pm I started to feel like I should really go do something with the day. Including an errand or two that arrived via the wonder of Wunderlist. Quick stop through the shops, and I decided I wanted some ice cream.

I had seen the Dippin’ Dots wagon outside the shops a few times, and I had assumed this was just one of those soft-serve-dipped-in-a-variety-of-things stands.

It was far more confusing than that…

We're Living in the Future!
We’re Living in the Future!

We’re living in a future where ice cream no longer comes in cones, nor as it happens, in the form of a continuous whole. Apparently in 2013, ice cream gets served in the form of pellets, scooped and levelled into a small container.

My dots were of the vanilla with crushed-Oreos-mixed-in variety. They tasted fine, but there is something a little clumsy about a container full of little pellets eaten with a spoon. For one thing I had to finish before driving; it just lacks that one-handed-eatability that a cone brings to the wheel.

Still, an interesting experience.

Day 38 – Long Weekend

Today is the first day of the rest of my long weekend. I’d been meaning to take a few days off, but my work calendar just kept filling up. So when I saw a relatively clear Friday and Monday appear, I decided to book a 4 day weekend without any planning for what I was going to do.

So, I’m making it up as I go along.

I started today with a massage at 11. My back keeps knotting up apparently, unbeknownst to my brain. It may have something to do with not getting to the gym often enough. Which may have something to do with all the initiatives I’m trying to juggle at work, so maybe I need to take it a little easier with that as well when I get back on Tuesday.

Anyway, 45 minutes later, I am standing tall and loose and strolling to Michel’s for a coffee. It’s strange how gravity feels lighter after letting go of the weight. It’s obviously largely psychological, but no less effective for it.

You can see my next challenge in the header image.

Next, I shall be focusing considerable time and attention on my strawberry-jam scone, my coffee, and a few episodes of Breaking Bad.