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Mmm, Zelda

♥Apr. 2nd, 2017 // 02:50 pm
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On Friday, the nice young men from the tree surgeon came to visit. They took out the last few leylandii (we are free! Free!), and the variegated conifer by the front gate, which was getting a bit too big and squashing the ornamental cherries (we now have a much better view of the road, as an added bonus).

They also took the top off the beech hedge along the side of the house, so now it's hopefully at a height we can keep better in check. (Unlike all the letlandii, the beech is actually useful, acting as a windbreak.) Unfortunately, doing that involved standing on the roof of the very dilapidated shed, at least until one of them put a foot wrong and did the comedy disappearing from sight thing.

We'll be looking for a new shed, then.

Yesterday, the Nintendo Switch arrived, so I was mostly playing Zelda when not moving the contents of the shed to a different outbuilding. First thoughts are that not only do the controllers indeed frequently drop their connection but that they do it in a bloody stupid manner: rather than just stopping moving, Link wanders off in a random direction, eg: off a cliff. It is quite fun so far, though.

Today, we went to see a horse. Either we've been lucky or we've got a lot more picky about which we actually bother to go and see (probably a bit of both), because we both liked Galahad enough that I'm trying to set a date to go back with our riding instructor to see what she thinks. (Unfortunately, she's in France without her diary. Back on Tuesday, though.)
Link4 kisses // Who loves you?

Bits and pieces

♥Mar. 23rd, 2017 // 01:46 pm
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My parents have been to visit, which was nice, and short (possibly the two are related!). They brought us new living room lights (we saw the ones that we wanted in John Lewis, but they were out of stock when we went to order them online. A short panic that they were being discontinued later and my mother had bought them in her local store, as she was going there anyway. They are, of course, now back in stock online), which was good, and then put them up for us, which was better. They're much less fussy than the old ones, and removing the centre light from the ceiling fan / changing the blades on it has also made that look much better.

Just the floor to go, now, and it is finally booked for next week. We went for the middle ground, in the end, and are having laminate from the guy who did the third quote after the other two had annoyed me too much. I honestly couldn't have told you which of the sample books was wood and which laminate, so hopefully it's going to look nice! And then we need to buy some rugs. And new shelves for DVDs. But other than that it's nearly done....

In the less successful home improvement department, we were supposed to be having a new garage door today but the chap phoned first thing to say that his minion had called in sick. Hopefully that will get rescheduled in the not too distant future.

(My parents broke their journey home at Ebbsfleet, in the end, on account of not wanting to get up very early. It all worked ok.)

Following my failed attempt to listen to a bloody mp3 on my bloody phone, I bought the album (digitally, for £7, as the CD was £40!) and then remembered that I no longer have an optical drive in my laptop, so couldn't burn a CD to listen to in the car. In theory, I can use the drive in the desktop as an external drive, so we fiddled around trying to do that but, although I could see the drive, I couldn't see the blank CD that I put into it. (The next day, Mike messaged me from the office to ask why an untitled CD had appeared on *his* laptop. Sigh.) In the end, Mike bought me an external drive, so I spent an afternoon ripping and burning copies of all the CDs that have come into the house since I ceased to have a means of doing so: actually not that many, but it does take a while.

Yesterday, presumably to be blamed on one or other of the parents (although they claim not), I had some sort of odd twelve-hour lurgy: I woke up with a sore throat, got increasingly shivery as the morning went on, spent the afternoon wrapped in a blanket while each of my joints individually got more and more achy, developed weepy eyes and a splitting headache, didn't finish my dinner and felt a bit sick afterwards, felt a bit better by (early) bed time, and woke up this morning with a slight headache but otherwise feeling fine.

In between all that, I've mostly been playing The Last Guardian, which is exactly like the reviews say. It's very pretty, very Japanese, and very random. You are a small boy who is accompanied by a giant cat-bird, over which you have very limited control, while you wander around a mysterious and largely abandoned complex of towers and dungeons. The controls are utterly terrible, and this is a sadly common conversation in the house these days:
Flick: [repeats $keystrokes over and over for five minutes in an attempt to make the cat-bird do a $thing]
Flick: Can you see what I'm doing wrong here? I think that I need to get cat-bird to do $thing but he's not doing it.
Mike: It does look like that's what you need to do. Do you want me to look it up?
Flick: Please.
Flick: [continues to repeat $keystrokes, throughout the conversation]
Mike: It says you need to do get cat-bird to do $thing.
Flick: That's what I'm trying to do.
Mike: You need to hit $keystrokes.
Flick: That's what I'm doing. That's what I've been doing for ten minutes. This game has the worst controls ever.
Cat-bird: [for no obvious reason suddenly does $thing]

I have no objection to tricky puzzles, but these aren't, they're just capricious. Or, possibly, the cat-bird is capricious. Either way, it's a bit tedious. Very pretty game, though.
Link3 kisses // Who loves you?

Mid-winter things

♥Dec. 19th, 2016 // 09:46 am
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We have both been poorly. Mike is still poorly, I ache horribly but think it's more horse- than virus-related.

In contrast to the last couple of years, when riding schedules have been messed up by rain, this year it's been mist that's the problem (as well as being ill. And sore). I had a go on GB last week but had to stop because a) it was painful and b) GB kept stopping and going 'I don't like this' because he could tell I wasn't right, and Mike hopped on GB yesterday while I lunged Bugs braced myself and clung onto the end of the rope while Bugs charged around the school in circles making occasional contact with the ground, but that's been the extent of it lately.

Ponies in the mist: like gorillas, but less endangered.

Our field is is comparatively fabulous condition, because it's been fairly dry: we're not only still using the steep gate, but we're also still letting the horses run down the hill on their own rather than leading them the long way around. Long may it last!

Still, we have managed to get the Christmas tree up:

I did initially think that this year's brown Amazon wrapping materials were a bit dull, but they go quite well with the decorations I've put on the tree this year, so that's nice.

In bad news for upcoming visitors, Mario Run keeps suggesting that I move to a location with a better mobile signal. On the other hand, thanks to a saga involving the new neighbours finding a water pipe in the way while widening their drive that would have been moderately entertaining had I posted about it while it was happening, our water pressure is now better than it's ever been, so that's a win for people trying to shower while we're filling the horses' water buckets.
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Busy busy

♥Sep. 27th, 2015 // 03:14 pm
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We've had a lovely weekend of visitors, but I'm knackered now and have sneaking suspicions about Plague acquisition (this is what happens when you go to That There London, I'm convinced).

On Friday, we went out for lunch and then I headed into town: had a couple of hours of nice chat with my dentist, and then a couple of hours of deeply tedious charity meeting. After a little while, the Chair and I started playing 'we had this exact same conversation and action point at the previous meeting' bingo.... Too many very busy chiefs, no one actually doing the work. Managed to resist the urges to offer to do it myself so that it would be done and done properly.

I was late back home, but found the house full of people and a glass of wine waiting for me, so all was well.

Yesterday, we went to the Canterbury Food and Drink Festival, which was absolutely packed (and, in consequence, the car parks were all full -- I think we got the last spot in the biggest one -- and the traffic was snarled all around the ring road and beyond so that it took over twice as long as it should have done to get there/home). I can only assume that we went on the Friday last year, and possibly also that it's a lot more popular this year. They're going to have to do something differently next year, although I'm not sure what.

There were lots of interesting stalls but by the time it was lunch time they all also had enormous queues so that we decided to just give up and go into town for food where we could sit down. It wasn't a total loss, though: pork scratching, pork pies, ice cream and blue cheese were variously bought, and we got a free bag of incredibly cute little peppers from our veg box people (because I did a sad face about never getting them in our box -- they don't get enough, and I suspect they're expensive).

Lunch was at Salt, which we'd been meaning to try for a while, which is a tapas-style place. There were five of us, so we just ordered one of everything, and it was almost entirely really really good, with one of the dishes being a little dry. Mike and I came home to Release The Hound while the others stayed for puddings. (The festival website said service dogs only. In fact, there were lots of dogs there but it would have been much too crowded for Jo so it's probably a good thing we didn't take her.)

In the evening, we played Concept after dinner, which I'd got Mike for his birthday for just this sort of occasion. Very fun as long as you don't try to follow the rules too much.

Today, we've been to the Devil's Kneeding Trough and the King's Head, where we had their Sunday menu for the first time (although, pleasingly, they still offer most of their regular menu as well: I hate it when it's obligatory to have an enormous roast if you're not in the mood). V excited to learn that the new menu starts tomorrow, and the new scotch egg is pork and chorizo: I dare say we'll be back soon so that I can try it!

I am possessed of a laundry mountain and a small stack of washing up, but I think I'm just going to leave it until tomorrow and have an early night instead.
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♥Aug. 18th, 2015 // 09:55 pm
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1) Unforecast rain for much of the day put a bit of a dent in our plans to go out for healthy country walks, although we did manage one rather soggy one.

2) Instead, we mostly stayed at home and played board games with Mike's niece and nephew, who are staying the night while their parents go off to visit friends.

3) I blew nephew's mind by handing him a box containing a Game Boy, Game Boy Colour and Game Boy Micro, none of which he had ever actually seen before. "It's so big..." he said, as he settled down to play Zelda.
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Out and about

♥Aug. 15th, 2012 // 04:04 pm
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I seem to have been doing a lot of driving to strange places for side saddle reasons, lately.

The other week, I went up to Addington, in darkest Buckinghamshire, for the national side saddle show. We were just watching, not taking part, and it was very interesting. I now actually know what the jumping position is. Not sure I'm actually going to use it any time soon, but I know what it is. Gorgeous venue: I'm incredibly jealous. Two huge indoor schools, overlooked by the cafe and the bar, three (four?) outdoor dressage arenas and two (three?) outdoor jumping arenas, oh and it's in a country park for hacking. God knows what the livery fees are like!

Today, I went to Headcorn, in darkest Kent, for a side saddle lesson with my instructor's instructor, on her schoolmistress. As predicted by my instructor, I got on the horse and she immediately started going in tiny circles until I Got It Right, which I think I was starting to do by the end. Very useful, I just need to actually do more side saddle (been a bit slack lately, at least partly because of GB's impressive collection of bites. Which thankfully has not increased in number lately).

Today I also went into Boots to talk to the pharmacist: something bit me yesterday (I really need to stop thinking 'ah, sod it' and hacking out in leggings after my Pilates class because I can't be bothered to get changed and it's hot), and I have an enormous lump on the outside of my left (fortunately, else I doubt I could have done today's lesson) knee. I took an antihistamine last night, else I'd probably be unable to walk or something. She said "I could give you some hydrocortisone cream" and I said "oh, shall I put some HC45 on it?" which made her look utterly bewildered (she actually said "no, hydrocortisone is a steroid": how can a pharmacist not know what HC45 is?) but eventually she agreed and told me to try it. We shall see. At least it hurts less now than it did this morning.

I have a new phone, which was remarkably painless other than the half hour wait for my appointment at the Apple Store. ("The battery tester says that there's nothing wrong with it. On the other hand, it also says you'd get ten hours of standby and two hours of use, so there obviously is something wrong. Just a minute and I'll get you a new phone.")

I also have a hair cut, which looks remarkably the same as it usually does, and I went to the Unicon last weekend, where I played what I can only describe as the board game version of the first part of Spore. It works better when the computer does the adding up for you, I fear, but it was quite fun.

This weekend, we are actually at home. And not doing anything! I suspect we'll be bored by Saturday afternoon.

(Phil the Greek's been taken to hospital in an ambulance. Radio 4 is stressing that it's just a precautionary measure, but as it's doing so between programmes, rather than waiting for the news....)
Link3 kisses // Who loves you?

Ponder, ponder.

♥Jan. 23rd, 2012 // 04:37 pm
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Thinking aloud )

Conclusion is probably that I don't mind if it's Tuesday or Wednesday (except possibly in the whole not having to go two days in a row sense), that Girl will have to change her day, and that I will have to ditch Yogilates in favour of something I can get to after riding with less of a variable travel time. Hmm.

Oh, in other news, I finished Tiny Tower. Those of you who've been playing may wish to know that there are currently 19 of each business type, meaning you can do it in 153 floors. Now I need a new casual game on my iPhone: any suggestions? Good things include quick loading, not requiring a data connection all the time, not being too money grabbing and not being too obsession-making. We Rule bad, Tiny Tower good. Pocket Frogs was good, too, and I'm almost considering wiping the file and reinstalling it to start it from scratch, unless anyone has a good suggestion?
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