Fame at Last

I had a stunning view of the lunar eclipse on Saturday night and I reeled off around 150 pictures most of which I’ve yet to look at properly. I’ve posted a few here and a few videos I took. But my most pleasing achievement was to get some of my pictures published at SpaceWeather.com. I’ve sent pictures to them and the BBC before but this is the first time any of them have got onto the site. You can find my contribution at the bottom of http://www.spaceweather.com/eclipses/gallery_03mar07_page5.htm – note the deliberate mistake? It should read afocal projection as the photographic method and not prime focus!

Valentine’s Day

Rant mode. Why are Valentine’s Day cards so crap? If they haven’t got some mushy poem in them then they have bullshit on the front…

To my wife….

All the love I have I give to you” – none left over for the children then?

I love you more and more each day” – I hated you when we got married, but each day I’ve learnt to love you a little bit more. Now I can just about tolerate you.

YOU (in 2” high letters) are the one I love” – and not the girl from accounts I’ve been shagging for the last six months.

Next year I’ll make my own and say something I mean and the wife doesn’t automatically think is nonsense.

Flash Bang!

What a brilliant, brilliant day. I’m stiff as a board and I’ve rediscovered muscles long forgotten about but it was such good fun. I got to shoot a live pump action shotgun (killed one hostage), fire an 81mm mortar (best activity of the day), fire replica pistols (killed one photographer), enter a killing house, fight unarmed combat and throw training grenades (kaboom!).

I think I got around 20 punishment press ups which are the first I’ve done since school I think, met some nice people and got shouted at a lot. What more could you ask for!

We’re In The Army Now

Last Christmas I was bought a Special Forces Training Day, my brother-in-law got one too! So tomorrow we’re off to Sussex to shoot some guns! The activites are…

  • Close Quarter Battle School
  • Grenade Range
  • 81mm Mortar Range
  • Minefield Infiltration
  • Combat Shotgun (live firing range)
  • Close Protection Weapons Range

It’s going to be a blast, literally!

My Arm Hurts

Fist batch of jabs today – Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria and Typhoid. My Yellow Fever expired two months ago (doh!) but luckily I don’t need it, that’s the one that makes you feel ill. I’ve got to go back for the Meningococcal ACWY and Hepatitis B vaccines next week. The following week I’ll have the 2nd Hepatitis jab.

Sounds like a lot, but I don’t mind jabs at all, I always watch them stick the needle in!

I’ll also be taking 11 weeks worth of anti-malarial tablets. All this for a website!

Tickets and Taxi

My tickets arrived today and the taxis are booked. I have a list of vaccinations as long as my arm to have, hopefully most will still be up to date from my trip to Kenya a few years ago.

Only fly in the ointment is my daughter who is getting a little clingy and has already said she doesn’t want Daddy to go. I’m going to set up Skype and a couple of webcams so we can talk to each other though. Of course my son seems non-plussed at the moment!

I’m also hoping that the flight delays are out of the way before I go, it seems things are starting to get back to normal.

Flights Booked

I’m off to work in Mozambique for a few weeks in the autumn to design and develop a website for the documentation centre of the National Directorate of Geology. Flights were booked today, 7th Sep to 19th Oct. Getting excited now!

By the way you may have noticed that this is the first post for a while, not my fault honest! The host was having some difficulties which are now sorted hopefully.

The things children say

Sometimes they come out with gems. This evening my wife got the old electric typewriter out for my daughter to play with. First thing she said after it was set up was “where’s the mouse mummy?”. It’s a generation used to technology that’s for sure!

Music to my ears

I’m a very faddy (is that a word?) person. I move from one hobby/activity to the next on a rapid turnaround. At the moment I’m rediscovering a lot of the music I listened to years ago. I bought reissued live CDs of the Scorpions this week, Tokyo Tapes and World Wide Live. Still a couple of the best live albums I’ve ever listened to. Sure some of it is pretty naive now but tracks like Top of the Bill still get me stomping. I’m also listening to the Korn back catalogue and have also been listening to Mastodon’s epic album Leviathan this week.

We’re going to the Cornbury Festival on Sunday to see The Pretenders amongst others. Taking the children as well and this will be their first festival experience. Download next year for them?!

Phew, it’s a scorcher

Work: A fairly uneventful week at work. A trip to HQ on Friday for a Toad for Oracle tips and tricks day, which didn’t teach me a great deal I didn’t already know. As usual with these software demonstrations the most useful features are shown at the end of the day for a version of the software you don’t have a licence for. I will endeavour to get project funds to buy me the Xpert edition.

We learnt that the top two from each Petanque group progresses to the KO stage, I hope we get drawn against a team that finished 2nd in their group as we whupped all the other teams in our group. We are the defending champions after all. Our team is called ‘Up a Gum Tree’ to celebrate the fact that we managed to sink 4 bottles of this wine between the two of us at our recent IT getaway.

Rest: A very disappointing World Cup from England. They just didn’t show how good they really are. And now we have lost all South American flare, we have the dullest semi-final line up I can remember.

Play: I finished Gun to 100%. I picked this up cheap a couple of weeks ago, one of the weaker 360 launch titles apparently. I thoroughly enjoyed it, a nice fairly simple action adventure game. Nothing too innovative, although the Wild West theme was pretty cool. Sure it looks like a spruced up Xbox game and some of the textures are very dodgy. Lots of side missions to take part in, from herding calves, to delivering tools, to playing poker, to protecting young familes. Quite a short game, well worth picking up if you see it cheap.