Day 251 – Downpour

I considered not going in this morning. I woke up with a seized-up left shoulder; I’m pretty sure I did that in the last hour of my sleep because I remember being okay the last time I rolled over before waking up. Agony!

Today however our new(ish) CIO was supposed to come to the office for another visit, and there was a celebration for a major project that was completed exceptionally successfully. I felt an obligation to be in. And for the most part it wasn’t actually too bad. By about noon my shoulder was mostly easing up.

The mid-morning celebration for the project had involved copious quantities of pastries and snacks, so I was not feeling too hungry. However, when my fellow-manager was heading out for lunch I thought it might be wise to get some opportunistic food as well. I hadn’t intended to head out, but with the downpour outside I couldn’t make him walk through the rain, so we drove.

As bad as the rain was on the way out, it was worse on the way back in.

I don’t mind rain. There is nothing better than getting drenched on the way home to a nice hot shower.

There is nothing worse than spending an afternoon in drenched demin. While it was wet, it was freezing my legs to the bones. When it started to dry, it felt like sandpaper against my legs. There is really no winning with wet demin. Luckily I had my superfluous gym-bag with me, because switching t-shirts felt really good. Last thing I’d want with my sprained back is the start of a cough.

I think tomorrow I’ll bring a home-made lunch to protect my back.

Day 242 – Requirements

Not much thinking today either.

My gym routine this morning was a bit shorter than it usually is. My first class in the morning made it abundantly clear that I shouldn’t attempt the second class, and the instructor insisted on the same fairly forcefully. Somewhere along the way on my trip to Melbourne I have done something that knotted some muscles in my left hip.

So I just walked out 30 minutes on the treadmills to cool down a bit before my gym-shower.

As a result of cutting one class I got to my massage appointment a good 40 minutes too early so I reclined the car seat and listened to an episode of Nerdist while I waited for time to pass.

The massage was very helpful. Apparently it was not just my hip, but also my left leg, my lower back and my neck that were in equally bad shape. The work on the leg was too intense to relax through, but even the painful pressure felt good in its own way. The back and neck however were sufficiently soothing that I threatened to fall asleep (again? I think I actually may have snored briefly once).

The rest of the day was spent not achieving much around the house.

And I’m glad I wasn’t tempted to go to Wet’n’Wild, because the storm that rolled through around 4pm would have been a serious spoiler to any fun I might have hoped to have had.

Instead I watched some TV and pondered bulk data storage, personal data privacy, backups and life journalling. I may draw some sketches over a movie tonight; I have some ideas I’d like to develop out to see where the tricky parts are. I more and more just want to own my own information, thankyouverymuch. So first, requirements.

Day 234 – Siren Song

Last day of the week arrived just in time.
Although a day that consists of meetings from 10am – 4pm is not exactly the ideal way to end the week. I choose to focus on the ending rather than the means-by-which.

I had hoped to spend some time at Wet’n’Wild to disconnect the working week from the non-working weekend, but the weather had other plans. As I was driving to the park I got stuck in traffic, spotted lightning on the horizon, and had a downpour start on me.

When I got to the park, the gates were closed and people were leaving in droves. I waited a while with my friends to see if the situation would improve, but the lightning kept the park shut for 45 minutes after I arrived at which point I gave up. By that stage there were already only 23 cars left in the parking lot. I’d never seen it that deserted before.

Had the park re-opened, it’d have been an awesome way to end the week, even having to brave the rain. Having the park all to ourselves would have meant unlimited rides without queues. I would heartily recommend that experience, even at the price of a bit of rain or wind.

Instead I headed home.

And I moved the last vestiges of my Ativ 700 onto the XPS 15. One machine down, one more to consolidate. 15″ already doesn’t look as large as it did when I first got it. Maybe I’ll have a chance over the weekend to bring the contents of my PC across as well. Then it’ll be eBay time for both.

I need to make sure I don’t let myself be tempted by this PCs siren-song though. I really need to get a good night’s sleep so that I’m fresh for the gym. Too often before have I experienced “lost time” at the hand of my latest gadgets.

Day 129 – I Don’t Feela-like-Walkin’

I can see my step count steadily sliding down the chart.

Unless I take up pacing up-and-down the hallway for a hobby, I can’t see me getting much walking in when the weather is what it is.

There are exactly two circumstances in which I don’t mind walking in the rain:

  1. When it is on my way home where a hot shower is waiting
  2. When someone is specifically in the rain braving it with me

So, unless anyone volunteers?


Thought so!

I’ve found a few rainy songs for the occasion.






Day 122 – Flying

Time has flown; I cannot believe I’m a third of the way through the year already. It’s remarkable how much writing every day has become second nature. Except for one case where I nearly forgot, the day just feels incomplete until I get my post in.

Maybe this qualifies as an addiction?

It has been tricky at times working around the self-imposed limits on the challenge. It’s amazing how much having a life gets in the way of a serious commitment like this! Especially Wednesdays have been tough at times; when visiting Ken for Wednesday I either need to rush out between returning home from work and heading to his place, or rush out a post after getting home, but before the clock strikes midnight. (Mental note: get a clock that can actually strike midnight to increase impact of that last statement).

As I indicated earlier, I’ll ease up a bit on the allowable subject material for my posts. I’m not quite ready to give up on a daily routine yet, but at some point I’m sure I’ll cave and allow myself to write a few posts ahead of time.

My biggest fear right now is getting felled by a disease. If at any point the posts prove barely coherent it is safe to assume that I’ve crawled to the study with a fever and am resting my head on the wrist-rest of my keyboard while my hands try to touch-type overhead.

Yes. I am *that* stubborn.
No. I’m not kidding.


What I had intended to write a brief post about instead was my flight home from Melbourne tonight. It always amazes me when flights are relatively smooth with these kinds of storms overhead.

When the plane start shaking I keep waiting for that roller-coaster moment where my stomach is between my ears.

On a side-note; if you ever are in a very bumpy flight (or on a roller-coaster), the way to reduce that feeling is to breathe in deeply and hold it in. This actually packs in your internal organs, because that sensation apparently comes from your organs literally floating around freely. I’ve had occasion to try this once or twice, and it actually works.

Although this afternoon the flight attendant that was sitting next to me made noises that sounded like a roller-coaster moment and I was fine, so maybe regular Pilates helps as well as an alternative. YMMV.

To get back to my point again, the flight was smooth. It got very shaky close to the ground due to some cross-winds I suspect. I was ready for a very tough bump back into the earth, but the pilot landed the plane expertly. It’s an odd mix of relief and disappointment when that happens; on the one hand I want to congratulate the pilot on a job well done, however it is inherently disappointing when you think it’s going to be a wild one and nothing happens.

Bread and circuses.
I guess it’s wired into our brains against our own best interests.

Day 98 – Bushfire Season and Rain

I’m not anywhere near where the fires are burning at this time. I want to lead with that if any family might be wondering/worrying.

Even more so, my slice of western Sydney looks so at odds with the photos in the news that I’m having a hard time reconciling the two images. Today was a cool day here. It was a very damp day.

I believe we had about the same amount of rain as the mountains got, but it is easy to lose perspective when there isn’t a 400 square kilometer fire rapidly approaching where you live. I don’t think the amount of water that fell here will make a dent in the mountains. It’ll have evaporated before it even hit the fires.

Some Trapped Drizzle
Some Trapped Drizzle

From what I understand, the rain that fell may even be counter-productive, in that it hampers the controlled burning of fire breaks more than it does the actual fire itself.

I read on the news sites that some people were tweeting about “good falls” in the mountains, but I do have to wonder how much of it is some level of wishful thinking. When fire threatens the place you live in, science is less relevant than any source of hope you can cling to.

I sympathise deeply, but I’m not sure I entirely relate. There is little I couldn’t either take with me if I had to evacuate, or replace afterwards if necessary. I think I could grab all the essentials in under 5 minutes.

Aside: a small plug here for my trusty QNAP storage device… a single cube barely larger than a shoebox stores all my irreplaceable data.

Wet and Hazy under the Street Lights
Wet and Hazy under the Street Lights

Still, I don’t know what to tell those directly affected. There were some already affected by the fires at the party over the weekend; and the most I could do was try to keep their thoughts off mother nature, and say something funny to keep them smiling for a bit.

I know that at least one friend is journeying into the mountains tomorrow to defend an ancestral home. I could never do it. It seems like insanity to me to take any risk like that. But it’s easy for me to say when I don’t have a determined parent staying behind to defend their house. I cannot say what I’d decide if my parents wanted to stay through the fires.

Rain on Cars, Slick Shiny Streets
Rain on Cars, Slick Shiny Streets

It all seems so remote and inconceivable from here. The maps of the affected areas seem so strangely small. I have no sense of scale, and all the while my street out front is still shimmering with the damp that fell earlier today.

Instinctively it feels like something that should be solve-able. We have landed on the moon, we have split the atom, we created the Internet.

This is fire for crying out loud… Man’s first invention. And the most common substance on this planet, water, foils it. Somehow it just doesn’t fit inside my brain that this could even be a problem at all.