Monday, September 23, 2002

Well, hey, since 0555 this morning it has been officially autumn. And naturally it is raining. Not that I can use that as an excuse for not putting anything up here over the weekend, but I guess it was worth a try. So, where was I?

Thursday night. That was it. We had nice haircuts mainly. And I also spoke to my old boss Colin on the phone for the first time since they moved back up north. And some things never change - when he was here you could guarantee that as soon as he left his desk his phone would ring, and wouldn't you know it - when I called him he was out. He did call back though, and thinks I should appeal against the senior/non-senior thing. Trouble is, who do I appeal too? The higher management and personnel made the decisions that we needed this structure and Gary should get the job, and the union argued against it in the consultation period and were overruled. So who is there left to turn to? Not that I'm a member of the union anyway but the point remains that they were no help.

Still, they are settling in pretty well and he sounds a lot more cheerful than he did down here. I expect we will go up to see them in the new year. It is just a pity that they are no longer a good stopping off point on the way to Newcastle for us.

Friday was the big day of getting rid of Geof stuff. Or rather, taking him out to lunch and then having his official leaving presentation. In the morning I was meant to be going to a car parks meeting but found a whole load of other stuff that needed sorting out and, err, I forgot all about it. Only remembered it yesterday! Oh well, probably wasn't vital that I attended.

Lunch happened at the Lord Nelson pub just down the road from here. We went there for our Christmas Dinner last year and I have been again since, so at least there were no food-related worries. And what I had was very tasty indeed. Geof was looking much better than when we saw him last. Amazing what removal of stress and a heart-bypass operation can do for you. His presentation was a bit odd though. Considering he has been here 24 years there was a very small turn-out. I know that he irritated a lot of people over the years, particularly with his timekeeping, but you'd think a few more might have made the effort. The assistant directors trotted out the usual platitudes and "humourous extracts" from his file. Can't recall any of them now so they can't have been that good. One of the councillors also said a bit and then that was that. The Director kept his trap shut, which again was a bit of an insult really but a relief in other ways for the rest of us. So now we really are embarking upon new, uncharted waters and other such cliched claptrap.

And then it was the weekend. On Saturday Joan was feeling almost human again so we went out for the day. Woodbridge was the first call where we did a bit of shopping and had a nice lunch. Not at the Bull for a change, but a cafe type place on the high street. Good food and good prices so we may well go there again some time. That was followed by a trip to Sainsburys to stock the house up. And then a relaxed evening.

I was a bit frustrated at not being in Oxford for the Retrovision Yakfest event, and am looking forward to reading reports of it on the Llamasoft forums later on today. Not sure I would have lasted the course for an all-night event anyway but it would have been nice to try. One day I will get to a meet-up.

Yesterday was also pretty busy. After scything the lawn it was round to Ma & Pa's for their "open morning" of the extension now it is nearly finished. Not that many people turned up but that wasn't our problem. And now they have the carpet down in one of the rooms and started putting stuff back in there it has made a real difference to the rest of the house. I bet they are pleased to be able to move a bit again now but I still think they would have been better encouraging Richard to move out. Not that he will I'm sure.

The afternon was filled with ironing and a cracking proggy on National Geographic tv about Koko the talking Gorilla. I've been reading about her for years so it was good to see a bit more. It even prompted us to sign up for her regular email newsletters too.

So back to today. The rain has stopped and I've been to a thrilling team meeting so far. Just waiting for timetables to come through then I will be leaving fairly early to sort out P&R liveries and stuff on the way home.

Music for pleasure: As well as reaching the Blaze Bayley years with Iron Maiden (The X Factor, Virtual XI) which means I will be on to the last album and return of Bruce Dickinson (Brave New World) on my way home tonight and then have to think about what to listen to tomorrow, I have been doing more pc - md type stuff. Another disc of Diffusion and also the latest find - AnalogX. More good electronic stuff. Might have to look for some more later.

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