Records I bought included:
Mimi "Soak", High Llamas, Switched On
Number One hits in the UK: Various - Perfect Day, All Saints - Never Ever, Oasis - All Around the World, Usher - You Make Me Wanna, Aqua - Dr. Jones, Celine Dion - My Heart Will Go On, Cornershop - Brimful of Asha (remix), Madonna - Frozen, Run DMC vs Jason Nevins - It's Like That, Boyzone - All That I Need, All Saints - Under The Bridge/Lady Marmalade, Aqua - Turn Back Time, Tamperer feat Maya - Feel IT, B*witched - C'est La Vie, The New Lads feat. David Baddiel - Football's coming home, Billie - Because We Want To, Another Level - Freak Me, Jamiroquai - Deeper Underground, Spice Girls - Viva Forever, Boyzone - No Matter What, Manic Street Preachers - If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next, All Saints - Bootie Call, Robbie Williams - Millennium, Melanie B featuring Missy Elliott - I Want You Back, B*Witched - Rollercoaster, Billie - Girlfriend, Spacedust - Gym And Tonic, Cher - Believe, B*Witched - To You I Belong, Spice Girls - Goodbye, Chef - Chocolate salty balls
1/98: Liffey manual, Tetra Help, PsiWin gets worse.
It's a bit embarassing that my main project for the past year or so is something that I still won't risk installing on my home PC!
1/2/98: Mame's 40th fancy dress do - Burger King & Queen Titania
8/2/98: To A&L re mortgage, then to British Library. Skint! Fed up, depressed... is it only work?
14/2/98: To Southend!
19/2/98: Drinks with Joyce, Louise etc in M Hill.
23/2/98: Iraqi crisis over?
24-25/2/98: Off work with a cold.
1/3/98: Bought Carmageddon - the beginning of a new upgrade saga. Gigs with Chanter + Charlie Smith, serious job dissatisfaction, updating induction manual.
13/3/98: Renbourn & McShee at Kings Head
26/3/98: New increased salary
4/98: Driving lessons, Good Will Hunting, Ayckbourne play, day trip to Ely
22/4/98: Bought Cubase & sound card *1, then upgraded PC... BIG hassles re protection errors etc
1/5/98: Interview with What PC mag, Sam Hodson left Psion, 24:7, got £3000 from mum
Shopping in Tandy
Cor blummy, Tandy haven't improved over the years. Overpriced, over-formal (must wait for receipt) and staffed by complete ignorami. I wanted an adaptor: from a single standard jack in, to a stereo mini-jack out with the two live terminals shorted together. Could the kiddies in the shop grasp that? Could they hell - and when I said I'd get 1t my soldering iron and make one you could have heard the fucking jaws hit the floor.
11/5/98: Dinner with Barry & George
16/5/98: Frank Sinatra dead
17/5/98: Beethoven 2 & 9 at RFH
23/5/98: Dover Castle
4/6/98: Sibelius @ RAH. Keston Rd house?
10/6/98: Driving theory test.
13/6/98: Today we're in Cardiff - painless journey here last night followed by nice risotto and then grim trawl through crowded centre of town populated by skinny young things wearing virtually nothing to foul "Irish" pub - and it's overcast & drizzly. Going to walk to see some waterfalls, apparently, then to cousin Mike's for an indoor barbecue.
14/6/98: Last night went well, lots of lovely food and it was very nice to see Mike, Shan and Tomos. He's a bright lad - managed to get the hang of the IliumOojit smartphone thing very quickly and sent me an email! Before that we went for a walk by some swirling waters and waterfalls - very impressive but we got absolutely drenched form head to foot. Managed to dry out a bit before we went out again though. Today we're going to a science museum type place down by the docks, then catch the 7.25 back home. with luck the tube strike won't have started yet & we'll be able to get home OK from Paddington - ?
Part 10) Symbian
25/6/98: Psion Software become Symbian. World cup - Scotland out 1st round, England 2nd to Argies de to Beckham's foul & a shite penalty
26/6/98: Swapped EWS for AWE64
27/6/98: M&M's 50th wedding
30/6/98: England out of world cup.
1/7/98: L finishes Guild training. Windows 98! Keston Road house too expensive for us - we'll have to wait a while.
10/7/98: Used Partition Magic to create separate partition for music recording.
15/7/98: L's birthday; Carmen CD/AniHosp & Izzard vids, Anais Anais, bananas & banana tree
20/7/98: BBQ with Liz Baker & Ken
21/7/98: L flooded the kitchen and got an upsetting - and anxiety-provoking - phone call from her mother. Definitely going downhill...
23/7/98: The birds are flocking to the feeders in the garden.
26/7/98: Went to visit Phyllis in hospital, then to Julie and on to Whitstable. Fleas in the flat (unrelated) and L with a bad throat & chest.
30/7/98: Appraisal OK, now in "product design team" with Nick and Jezar. Meanwhile, I've been genericising EPOC Connect 2.2 Help. I also turned my life over to my Series 5 (was that a mistake?)...
3/8/98: To Sarah and Ade for the last time in Stockwell.
5/8/98: Failed my driving test but succeeded in fixing the PC soundcard problem - it was Road Rash after all!!!
8&9/8/98: Emil & Felix to stay, got my Website up and running! L meanwhile had a rotten day with her mum... Skate finally shipped yesterday. Omagh bomb.
17/8/98: Mal & Yolly for dinner. S5 triple-beep resets. Roger a bastard...
17/8/98: The Avengers film seems to have been universally totally panned by everybody - can it be as bad as they say? Of course it can, and did I really expect anything else? Diana Rigg was never going to be Emma Peel again, and frankly the world is too cynical to make a naive little gem of a series - or film - like that again. At least until we stop being so bloody nostalgic for seminal, but ultimately forgettable, 60s television? God, we've had the Flintstones, the Adams Family, the Brady Bunch, Lost in Space (though that might turn out to be the Faberge egg of them), little wonder it's difficult to get interested in "modern" culture when even rock music has been constantly looking over its shoulder for ideas since about the early 80s.
Punk, god bless it, was supposed to wipe away the dreary turgid shit that "progressive rock" had become by 1977 - and did, but now surely it's about time somebody wiped the slate clean of post-punk? Good grief, "boring old hippies" had only been around 10 years when they were deemed dispensible, punk (and its descendants) has been here twice that and we're still seeing attractive young girls fucking themselves up, trying to look "Goth" with purple hair, nose studs, black plastic and "bondage" gear. Siouxsie has got a lot to answer for...
20/8/98: Did I mention "Maisie Raine"? Extraordinarily awful TV cop show starring the equally extraordinarily untalented (at least on the evidence of that show) Pauline Quirke. Dire, predictable and unbelievable all in one.
21/8/98: L to visit Jean in Fife, me Cubase and Website. Bill Clinton attacked "terrorist bases" in the Middle East to distract from Monica Lewinsky, and Yeltsin sacked the entire Russian government because of colossal monetary problems.
22/8/98: PC monitor exploded. Converted to FAT32.
Sat 29 Aug 1998, 09:10:14: Gonna take the cats to the cattery this morning, then do some shoppinx, then get stuff ready for packing before Spain tomorrow. L thinks she may be pregnant... What do I think about that - will I start panicking? Well we'll know in a few minutes
Bingo. Bing fucking go.
30/8/98: Off to Spain. Seville, trip to Carmona, then to Cadiz, Granada, Seville again. Sore throat and general illness throughout Cadiz section :-( Giralda, Alhambra, Albaicin, Alcazar, long delay before flight home.
Sun 30 Aug 1998, 15:12:35: Just leaving Hounslew West, rather later than planned but OK. I felt really quite upset and anxious leaving the flat earlier on, not sure why - worried that I'll never see it again? And likewise Mag & Till? Oh blummy... we'll be in Spain in five hours or so. We have kind of agreed not to discuss the pregnancy until we get back, but it seems like it's for real and I'll be a father by my next birthday...
A double whisky and a double Propranolol... I hate flying! Anyway, we'll be there (or dead!) in about 3 hours from now. I'm sweating already (in the Heathrow loo).
Mon 31 Aug 1998, 10:17:12: Well, we made it alright - despite a taxi driver doing 140 in a 50 zone and then charging damn nearly £20 for the pleasure.
Went up the Giralda and visited the cathedral, both v impressive. Had a siesta and then across the river for dead cheap tapas of cuttlefish etc.
Tue 01 Sep 1998, 10:03:01: About to have a shower. Very pleasantly hot, only occasionally too much so.
Brilliant hotel with balcony in Carmona - just visiting but with luck the Cadiz hotel will be v similar.
The guy in their reception said he phoned but they were full, then I phoned later and booked us 5 nights overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. 'Ckin A.
So what does the future hold? Sprog, apparently! Ok, so be it. I jumped into this, so here we go. I really can't think of much to say at the moment!!!
Seville is lovely, if a bit too much like a city for my holiday taste. Tomorrow we leave and go to a very posh hotel in Cadiz with swimming pool and Atlantic view - that's more to my taste, if not to my pocket.
Wed 02 Sep 1998, 09:11:07: Getting ready to leave this Hotel (Hostal Zahira, Calle San Eloy) and go for breakfast in Santa Cruz before heading off by bus, to Cadiz. Looking forward to that!
Thu 03 Sep 1998, 11:30:20: About 4,600 ptas left from the original £200 - that's about £20. Not too bad, I guess. This hotel is rather fab & posh, although there was a worrying moment when we arrived and I realised they were charging us 15,000 ptas per night when I'd been told (over the phone) it was 11,500. I think they were a bit put out at first, but we changed OK and now we're in a "smaller" room which seems exactly the same but cheaper.
I'm very gradually warming to the idea of niños. Sadly I also have a sore throat and a bit of a sniffle - but I won't let that spoil my holiday!!!
Gor blummy, hot it is. Burning I am almost. But nice it is as well I am thinking. By the pool reading "Nostradamus Ate My Hamster" which, while not brilliant, is whiling away a few short hours and giving me an idea for a story...
Actually this is well fab. 11,500 ptas per night, which is about £45 a night - well fab, as I say. The only bugger is that I seem to have a sore throat and occasional sneeze which threaten to disturb my equilibrium - I worry about them, even if I don't go under. Likewise the not-inconsiderable suntan on my upper legs which could go well ballistic if I'm not careful, causing days of agony and discomfort. But then, perhaps I exaggerate a little...
Fri 04 Sep 1998, 10:54:51: Today I feel grim. I have a sore throat and chest which kept me up much of the night along with big redness on legs and chest from trop de soleil.
And now, at 16:22:00, I am in the room while L is down by the pool reading. I don't feel great, at all. We went into town a bit earlier and bought bread, ham, cheese, melon etc for lunch, then after that I lay down on the bed and lost a couple of hours. My chest is a bit raw and my legs hurt, apart from that I just feel generally under the weather. I had a sore throat before we came away and it seems to be lingering along with sneezes, coughs and now the sore legs and chest from the sun. Very red though!
There are parrots in the trees outside the hotel and in the lovely little park nearby; first time I've ever seen them in the wild. Bloody noisy beasts!
God I'm burning up... did I mention I bought a knife? In Seville? Nothing posh, just a nice, simple, sharp knife. 8000 ptas it was, about £8. Smart.
Sat 05 Sep 1998, 10:54:09: A very sweaty night but today I hope I'm on the improve. Nose a wee bit blocked and hot generally, feverish (a little).
Sun 06 Sep 1998, 10:54:41: Oh fuck, this is the worst I've felt so far. Nose dripping, head throbbing, sneezing, coughing and feeling like shit. Bloody hell. We had the world's worst paella last night in a restaurant recommended by the Rough Guide, previous to that we nearly booked into the Granada Parador at £130 per night! Sod that, the surly git on reception here didn't bother to ask them, or tell us, how much it was, he just booked three nights. Jesus.
Spent all afternoon down by the pool (me reading "Human Croquet" and L starting "Nostradamus Ate My Hamster" which I read a couple of days ago. I must say the Kate Atkinson is by far the better book!
Mon 07 Sep 1998, 10:09:15: At last, it's going. Although I woke in a pool - no, a vat or a well (something deep, rather than wide) - of sweat, I actually feel more able to cope with things than I have for about five days. Not big things, anything. Still coughing and sneezing but generally definitely on the mend.
So today we must book a hotel in Granada and a bus to get there, then enjoy our last day in Cadiz. It's really lovely, I just wish I'd felt better while we were here...
End of moan. What else? Well, we had tapas last night again, I had boquerones (anchovies) in vinegar and L had a sort of ratatouille (although she was looking for meatballs). The previous two evenings have had processions round the town, led by drummers and brass players, with "Spanish women" and a huge pretend fish. I say "Spanish women" because they were probably members of the huge gay community here - anyway they were great fun and threw sweets into the streets.
And now, down by the pool for what may be the last - or next-to-last - time. I find I am irritable now, for some reason, I have no idea why. Arse.
Gone (nearly). Feeling fine, had a good day. Bought bus tickets for tomorrow, then spent a few bloody nice hours at the pool finishing the Kate Atkinson book and swimming.
Tue 08 Sep 1998, 10:05:50: On the loo, our last morning in Cadiz. Still a little bit snuffly and sneezy but generally so pleased to be back to near-normal. Had a nice evening last night; table tennis, then dinner in the bar followed by a sit in each of the various areas (in the enclosed courtyard, by the rotten piano player) and a few games of pool. Off to Granada on the 1.30 bus, a 5-hour journey... Oh shut up! Louise is singing "if I had a hammer" and I just kidded her about everything being so earnest - ringing out justice and freedom instead of ringing out ding dong bell and fun stuff. Give me that bell, you can't have it back until you've learned to ring out meaningful, important, anti-social injustice tunes.
Oh, I don't want to go now! Want more days by the pool!
So: Granada. first impressions v v good, Alhambra looks fab by night and general vibe in Plaza Nueve v convivial. Hotel OK, room fair, view from window... ventilation shaft. "The Pit" mk 2? L was rather doomcast when she saw that; she said it would be OK and she'd cheer up. Hope so! So we went up to the Alhambra - a bus ride up and a walk down - but didn't go in (too late. Tomorrow, tomorrow...) then had nice pork and chicken with little cats bothering us. Back to the hotel, I came out again for water and ended up in quite a nice bar opposite the hotel (where I am now) drinking whisky and writing this. Not too bad at all - apart from the view from the bedroom window...
A bit of a drag that I can't speak Spanish though!!! Oh - huge whisky measures here - they seem to fill it up until you tell them to stop! And charge the same price!
Wed 09 Sep 1998, 09:54:45: I slept quite well although L says her legs were freezing from the air conditioning - we'll try swapping beds tonight. I woke at about 6.30 and stayed awake, more or less, dreaming of importing illegal goods, playing a version of Billiards with huge heavy balls and long cues, and, more importantly, babies.
Thu 10 Sep 1998, 10:32:36: About to get up and tackle the other significant monument; the Albaicin. Had a nice evening last night in the bar over the road eating tapas and drinking Alhambra and Alhambra Sin (ie no alcohol) beers, draught sangria and J&B whisky. Also had Sobrasada for the first time ever, a kind of (raw?) pork pate with paprika. Yum.
Oh, and a touch of sciatica now for good measure as well.
Went up to the Albayzin this morning, the Arab quarter with great views of the Alhambra, and then later to a lovely big swimming pool attached to the University campus. L tired so I left her sleeping at about 8.0 while I looked for an Alhambra video and now I'm having "whisky solo, sin hielo" in the square.
Generally it's been a lovely holiday, I just wish I'd been in better health. We go back to Sevilla tomorrow morning on the 9.50 train and should be there at about 1-ish. Hopefully to stay the last two nights in a nice hotel in Santa Cruz. This hotel isn't bad, there's nothing wrong with it apart from the lack of view - of any kind - from the window. It's very convenient for the Alhambra, the buses leave from just over the road outside the nice bar (Gran Taverna) where we've been having breakfast and night drinks.
Continually surprised at the price of everything, it's wonderfully cheap!
Fri 11 Sep 1998, 08:05:35: Leaving Granada in about an hour and three quarters for the final stage of the hol; a day and a half back in Seville. Train this time instead of coach - price and duration roughly similar but train might be more fun and will be a slightly different route back.
Sat 12 Sep 1998, 10:15:29: In Seville, in the Alcazar hotel. Had a slightly worrying couple of hours after we arrived when it seemed everywhere was full, but eventually booked in here rather than take a dingy stone cell which purported to be a pensione room.
The train journey yesterday was very pleasant and we arrived at about 1.00, and were in the room at about 3.30. Slept for a couple of hours and then wandered around Santa Cruz looking for a bar with a decent selection of tapas; eventually ending up at the small & lively one we started off at 12 days ago.
Today it's breakfast in the hotel followed by - what, Giralda again? Probably Alcazar and then big gardens L saw before.
Sun 13 Sep 1998, 08:41:14: Oh bum, end of a holiday. Had an Italian meal last night; L's tomato/mozzarella salad and salmon steak were nice, my chicory salad and fettucine were pretty grim & bland. Whisky in a weird icon bar and the main road cafe next to the hotel and then that was it. Flying home this afternoon on flight 4144 W from Seville to Heathrow at 2.40, we'll probably be home by 6.
Christ, 10 past 6... we should be home by now! I hope everything's OK with the plane; what can they be "testing" for 3½ hours??? Oh this does my nerves a world of good, this does. The Propranolol that I took, pre-flight, must have worn off hours ago and now the whisky has done the same. It'll be 10.00 before we're home now - and I've got to go back to work tomorrow! Fuck fuck fuck.
Gor blummy, what a bugger. On the tube now, just left Heathrow, 9.05pm but 10.05pm Spanish time. It'll have been nearly 14 hours since we left the hotel in Seville by the time we get home - but at least we'll be home. The flight was as OK as these things can be, wiled away an hour and a half watching an appalling Spanish film very badly dubbed.
I stink, apparently.
19/9/98: Replacement monitor replaced by broken monitor. Oh great. L seeing Norman, I cut my bangle off.
20/9/98: Passed my driving test despite feeling depressed, anxious and unhappy.
21/9/98: Will Murray to stay 2 nights.
Mon 21 Sep 1998, 08:36:06: Weird, disturbing dreams last night. Can't remember very much about what was disturbing, maybe just their oddness in itself? I'm not entirely sure how I'm feeling at the moment, but what with the baby, being back at my rotten job, and (today) my driving test, it's hardly surprising I might feel anxious.
I PASSED THE BASTARD THING!
Yep, sure did. So we went to Crouch End and bought stuff, now I'm having a Laphroig in the garden while L sees her 6.00 patient at Open Door. Today saw the videotapes of Clinton's testimony released, not sure yet what effect they've had.
Tue 22 Sep 1998, 08:28:23: A bit of an odd blurry night last night; phone calls to mum and from Mame with fizzy pop (Veuve de Veurnay, not real pop). Spaghetti (very nice indeed) courtesy of L, a bit of telly, this and that. So today I'm a bit bleary but not too bad and obviously anxiety faded a bit now that the test is passed and the news is out.
26/9/98: Mame to stay, bowling & Thai meal. Finally did a mini multitrack with Cubase!
Sun 27 Sep 1998, 10:13:12: We went bowling last night and I won all three games, getting eight (8!) strikes in the process. I must say I was quite pleased with myself - I only wish I knew how I did it and could reproduce it at will, but no. My other goes were as crap as ever, veering off course or falling into the gutter. Still, a creditable performance, even if only a one-off. Afterwards we went for a very nice meal in the Thai Garden (where I had my 40th) courtesy of mum and Mame (thanks, gals) and then home. Came to bed about 12.30 so I suppose it's OK to be a bit tired. But I must get up now and look willing.
Conference tomorrow and Tuesday; "User Interface for Mobile Terminals". Wow, rivetting. It's at the Waldorf hotel so I can go into town and buy CDs and musical equipment (with my £100 credit note) afterwards.
28/9/98: Sybil's funeral. Mobile UI conference, 2 days, L flooded the kitchen floor again.
Mon 28 Sep 1998, 07:15:45: Finally managed to get a multi-tracked piece going in Cubase - just half a dozen riffs but it has got 4 guitars, 2 MIDI tracks and a MIDI drum part.
Off to le conference aujour d'hui, might be OK. Running late, though, left home before 8 and now gone 8.30 and only just arriving at 7 sis - bloody buses! Got here on time though.
Mum is at Sybil's funeral today. I guess I should have mentioned this before; she died last week. Dear me, I scarcely remember her after all these years, and she was so important to me as a child... It's also sad that there'll be hardly anyone at her funeral. Such an important person and nobody left to remember her at her funeral except mum and Peter. Trevor died a few years ago, of course, in a poor way, not even knowing who she was from what I heard. It makes me feel sad, I wish I'd been in touch with her while she was still alive. Ah well... Conference about to begin again so here I go.
30/9/98: Moved into Harcourt Street.
Apparently Sybil's funeral was quite a nice affair despit the relative lack of family. Mum, Peter and a dozen or so obscure relatives - possibly all come to pick at the legacy but at least they were there and it wasn't empty. Mum says I've been left about £200; if so I'll try to spend it on something in memoriam.
Can't find my Harcourt Street key, maybe it's in my cabinet - in Harcourt Street??? Nope, must be elsewhere. The move seemed to go fine, I'm here in my new office working away (really!).
Actually, today has been quite nice on the whole. Got a fair bit of work done, saw Matt Millar, had some champagne (which Terry won at the do yesterday), worked from 9.15 to 6.30 without a break. Mug or not? Difficult to say but if I can make things carry on like this it might even be a good job!!!
3/10/98: Greg & Reid's 40th. Looking at houses this month.
9/10/98: Gig with Chanter.
10/10/98: To visit Phyllis in hospital, then dinner with Andy & Sylvie.
12/10/98: Nigel and Mat started, Blue Peter 40th anniversary but marred by scandal (drugged presenter). A bit of panic at work, L broke her radio.
17/10/98: Bye Bye Simon at Mark & Carolyn's - he's off to Turkey.
21/10/98: L's training patient work accepted by Guild.
26/10/98: A bit extra in my pay? Don Norman lecture "the invisible computer".
31/10/98: Put the flat on the market. Bloody pouring, floods in the Severn valley.
5/11/98: Dating scan - saw & heard baby! Questions & worries re amniocentesis
8/11/98: Saw Ranelagh Road. IrOBEX, EPOC in colour, Contacts manager, etc
16/11/98: Double blood test very good result...
21/11/98: The first prospective buyers to look at the flat.
22/11/98: To see Phyllis in Hospital.
24/11/98: Jenny Morrison stabbed to death at Thurleigh Road
28/11/98:Went to see Kitchener Road again, liked it very much 'cos it's huge. Monitor delivered again, this time on/off switch broken.
2/12/98: Jan Garbarek @ RFH with Andy & Sylvie. Didn't go to Germany re Kara.
4/12/98: "Monodia" in Crouch End. Big hassles with colour & new graphics for ER5.
11/12/98: To Cardiff to help Mame buy a PC.
15/12/98: Symbian party in Science museum, I have a new PII 400 at work which starts to go wrong...
20/12/98: To see Norman in Kent, L stayed overnight & saw Phyliss next day.
23/12/98: 2nd scan, all looks well.
28/12/98: Off to Tower bridge after a gentle Xmas at home.
29/12/98: Monitor finally delivered OK. 3-day week making CD-ROMs of my Zip disk files.
31/12/98: To John Lewis for clothes, then to Arocaria Greek restaurant