Sunday, October 31, 2010

Well it was technically a lie in

Well the clocks went back last night/early this morning which meant I got an extra hour in bed, so I techncially had a lie in. Or rather I would have if I hadn't still woken up at 7am! Gah!

I'm on a odd series of shifts next week, as one of the guys who works in his team has a wife who is expecting, so he need to work as many early shifts as he can so he can park down at the office so if he does get a call he can leg it as fast as possible. So to help him out I've swapped some of my days this week, so I have one day of early shift, then the rest of the week will be mids. Which although confusing is all in a good cause after all :-)

Of course work will probably be quite boring tomorrow ( we hope) after Fridays excitment which has turned out to be perfectly justified as it was really a bomb! Knowing you were that close to a bomb no matter how small is more then enough to give you a little shiver.

I don't know if it's the weather but we have only had one set of Trick or Treaters this year which means we have been left with a massive pile of chocolate. I think I might try and persude Grumpy to let me take into work to give out to the team as it won't be good if we keep it all here for ourselves.


Later folks

Saturday, October 30, 2010

What do you get?

If you take one Halloween party full of YSA.
Physics and a Elder who should have said no
who were willing to represent their teams in a apple bobbing contest

Which got a bit messy

with apples and water flying around everywhere?

Well you get a whole lot of fun and opportunities for good pictures of course

Friday, October 29, 2010

Not your average Friday

I was a little surprised when I arrived at the car park this morning to notice that one of my team mates who had a car park pass for our main site was in the queue for the car park in front of me. I pondered for a moment, then dismissed it concluding that maybe she hadn't been able to find a car parking space.

I then noticed that the car park was unusually full. Again I pondered then dismissed it, not yet making a connection. I grabbed my bag and got out of the car and wondered over to where the bus arrives each morning. I was waiting there a few minutes before I noticed another guy get out of his car and start walking back to the main building before he paused and started to speak to me
" Are you waiting for the bus?"
" Yes" I replied
" Well it ain't coming" he told me leaving me somewhat baffled and confused, where was the bus?
" Why?" I asked
" Because of the bomb" he told me
" Bomb?" I replied mystified
" Yeah you know the threat?"
I didn't know and he quickly realised this, thus explaining to me what was going on. Half of the airport had been closed meaning that nobody could get to the main building and were thus gathering at the other facility we have at the airport.

So I went into join the other staff and find out my fellow team members to find out what was going on. As you can imagine it was a mega case of chinese whispers and everyone was certain they knew something, but what they knew wasn't the same as what someone else knew.

We were just settling in for a long wait when we were told that the all clear had been given, after the device had been dealt with so off we all trotted down to the main building either by mini bus or catching a lift in a car of one of those fortunate enough to have a car parking pass.

So we were all in the office, signed in, logged in and the phone lines open ( a mere two hours later then usual) and the day began...

and lasted less then five minutes before managers started moving through the offices yelling for us to evacuate the building immediatly, quite literally telling us to drop everything and move. People weren't even allowed to stop and get their cars, I freely admit I felt a trickle of alarm at this point as something was certainly wrong! As it turned out apparently a second suspect package had been found and we were only 400 yards from it apparently.

So following instructions from the ploice we left the industrial estate by foot and gathered at a nearby hotel where a convoy had been worked out to get us all back up to our facility at the far end of the airport. As you can imagine during the walk ( where everybody was trying to stay calm but probably walking a little quicker then usual) there was lots of conversations and obivous attempts to try and lighten the mood as people were starting to become tense and nervous.

The convoy desposited back at the other facility, Where we all had to stay for the next five hours. Whilst the authorities did .... well whatever it was they were doing, we started rolling contingency plans into action. Those who could help did and those who couldn't, well we found whatever secure place we could to stay out of the way.

By the time the 2nd all clear was given and we got back to the office again it was past 3pm! Which was fine for the people on the 8 to 4pm shift! Fortunatly when the phone lines reopened most people were very understanding. However I must emphasis most as not everybody was and many peoples patience was being pushed to the absolute limit.

As I was getting towards the end of my shift I suddenly realised something. It was precisely one year ago today that I had gone into work for my "farewell" in Bugmans bar. A year, it's been a full year! If somebody had asked me then where I thought I would be doing in a years time, being evacuated from a building due to a bomb threat would not have been near the top of possiblities I would have thought of!

When it came time to leave for the day I was amused to notice the number of camera crews who had turned up, they were all set up in front of our building as it was the best place to site their cameras so they could get the reporters in shot with the building where the devices were found across the road behind them.

So as you can imagine today was certainly a lot more interesting then the average Friday.

Obivously today had a happy ending, but as you can imagine there was lots of talks about "what ifs". I'm sure there's not one person who was working in that area of the airport which was evacuated who won't spend at least a little time pondering the what if's this evening.

anyway later folks

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Putting the world to rights

Sometimes at work we have really in depth conversations about the latest news, tv show, relationships etc that go on and on, are really in depth and really intelligent.

Today wasn't one of those times.

Among the various topics discussed today we theorised why if wiley coyote can purchase all sorts of things over the phone to help him catch the roadrunner why doesn't he just order a pizza if he's that hungry? How does he pay for everything? And has he been ever able to get a refund?

If you can be damned by association why can't you be saved by association? ( K was especially disappointed by this, he thought that what he would get by being friends with me. he was joking. I hope :-)

Are fox's biscuits really getting smaller or is it just the packaging?

and Is there any team members name that Dee can't fit into a song?


Later folks

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

I'm doing nothing then at least I'm doing nothing wrong

I found myself pondering today why all news had to be bad. Why is it that the worst stories are always the biggest news when nice stories tend to be regulated to the smalelst amount of space possible?

Is it just how the media has evolved? Is it Human nature? or is it one of those things that no one can ever really explain?

Or maybe the bigger question is why was I spending time pondering that?

On facebook today it was only a matter of time, but someone has finally invented a app to tend you when you are removed from somebodies friends list. So before you just had to guess who it was that no one wants to talk/be friends with you, you can now be 100% accuratly informed who no longer likes you.

I think I'll just stick with guessing thank you very much.


Later folks

Monday, October 25, 2010

Bad timings

I was a little nervous today when the boss suddenly asked me to sign off my phone and follow him. I assumed we were going to his desk whilst I frantically wracked my brains to think what I could have possibly done wrong. However he then veered away from his desk towards one of the meeting rooms leaving me to start wracking my brains even harder as I was sure I hadn't screwed up that badly.

He then went passed the meeting room into reception leaving me to be perfectly honest more then a little scared as my mind flashed back to just over a year ago to what happened last time a manager asked me to follow them.

However it was then my rational brain kicked in as I realised we weren't heading towards any meeting rooms so it couldn't possibly be anything untoward. I then realised we were in fact heading towards the office of the UK national manager. Which left me really, really confused as I had no idea at that point what was going on.

Well as it turned out what was going on was something very very good. The company I work for has seven corporate values which everyone is supposed to work for and it helps us offer the best service possible. Now there are awards for anyone who has been seen to strongly uphold one or more of these values above and beyond what is expected in the day to day work. Now a major difference to these awards is that any member of staff can nominate any other member of staff to receive one of these awards.

As you may have already guessed by now I had been nominated for one of these awards and after investigation the management had agreed with the nomination, so I was in the office to get a congratulations from the Uk national manager, my framed certificate, a new lanyard for my security pass to show I had one of these awards, plus a number of "points" to spend on a rewards website ( which I haven't had a chance to look at just yet so I have no idea what I can get).

I was quite touched to be nominated for a award like that and as you can imagine it put a undeniable spring in my step for the rest of the day.

Here's hoping the rest of the week turns out to be just as good.

LAter folks

Sunday, October 24, 2010

There's even a day for that

It seems that these days there is a "day" for everything. Alongside the traditional Fathers Day and Mothers day, you now have days Grandparents Day and Talk like a pirate day. Well a new one has joined this list ( according to facebook and if it's on facebook it must be true! or is that wilkipedia?). Yes apparently Friday 19th November is National Hug a mormon day!

And no I am not making that up ( unlike the organiser it seem :-)

We're getting some help from inspector Gadget tomorrow to take the last items of rubbish down the tip as the two doors are just a little too big to fit in Grumpys car. Physics suggestion of sawing the doors in half would have worked if we actually had a saw big enough!

I also had to try and take down a shelf in the garage today as Grumpy needed it mvoed so the electrician can come back and fit a nice new light in there. Unfortunatly it al lwent horribly wrong as when I finally managed to get the first set of screws loose ( they were rather rusted) the other screws popped out of the wall and the shelf started to come down on my head and it wasn't a light shelf. Even if I had let go there would have been no way for me to get out of the way without getting significantelly clobbed! The shelf was made from a heafty bit of wood. I had to try and hold it in place with bth hands whilst trying to kick the kitchen door to get Grumpys attention. Which didn't work for sometime despite Owen going nuts. Grumpy finally realised andcame to the door and came out to help, only after pausing to put some shoes on! The downside of this little adventure is that I've agravated my shoulder again!

Time to find the heatpack me thinks

I'm on the mid shift this week which means that although I don't get a really long lie in I stil lget more then the one I got last week. The downside is it means I'm not going to be getting hom til 6pm! C'est la vie I guess :-)


Later folks.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

At least we know the answer to one question

We can never find staples aroudn the house when Grumpy needs them to use in the stapler. Every other time we usually have tons of the things but when it comes time to use them, POOF! They've all upped and vanished. From time to time we've had explanation suggestions from Aliens to Owen is eating them when we're not looking.

Well I seemed to find where a lot fo them have been going. Down the Back of Grumpys desk as we had to move it for the first time in several years today to give the electricians space to work. We also found a lot of other rather randoms bits of pieces down the back of there as well!

Still the work is now finished. apart from one slight problem where they noticed a smell of gas coming from the meter! Which meant we had to call the gasman out to come and look at it. Which meant we were treated to the rather funny sight of three workmen all trying to work in the hall at the same time.

We now have a new light in the lounge, a light switch in the loft so no more scrabbling about with the extension cable and most importantly the shower is now fitted and once again working. Although due to a small oversight in the refit of the bathroom and us forgetting to check before the builder left, the fitting to hold the shower head was not refitted to the wall. Which means we can use it as long as we hold it. No standing under the shower without having to hold it over your head for the time being.

Although we had problems this evening when we realised that after the work on the gas, the pilot light in the boiler had gone and neither Grumpy or I had the slightest clue how to relight the thing! We eventually found the instructions but they didn't seem to be working. Grumpy said we should give it one more go and it did light. Whata you know he was right!

Wait don't tell him I said that.

We were glad to get the boiler going as it's getting very cold tonight. It will probably be icy in the morning and I'm sure that will mean only one thing. No heating in the chapel! Well it's not like the heating will be on when we actually need it would it? :-)

Later folks

Friday, October 22, 2010

The evolution of the Geek

Click on the image to see the full size version

Thursday, October 21, 2010


Despite use of a heat pack my back ( the bit across my shoulders) is still as sore as anything. This in turn meant my shoulder started hurting so I probably ended up looking more then a little crazy at work as I kept shifting around trying to loosen my shoulder up. Becuase irony being what it is, it's my left shoulder and of course I'm left handed.

Still only one more day until the weekend. Of course no lie in on Saturday mind you as the electrician is coming to do the final bits of work to make the house fully compliant with what ever piece of legislative mumbo jumbo it has to comply with. In fact I think I'll actually have to get up earlier then I have been this week for work!

Weirdly enough.

Still it does mean that the shower should be fully functional and usable once again, a fact of which I'll be very grateful for.


Later folks.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Just keep on rolling

I don't know what's it's been about to day but I've been most certainly suffering from a "mid week slump" feeling.

But to be honest the day didn't get off to the best of starts when I got outside to get into the car this morning to go to work to discover it was completely iced over. Cue frantic search in the garage as I tried to remember what the heck I had done with the de-icer!

By the time the car had de-iced I didn't have enough time to go the long way round to work so I had to go over the back roads, which made me more then a little nervous as I had no idea if the roads had been gritted. So I just took it nice and slow and tried to relax the death grip my hands seemed to have on the wheel!

The downside of all this tension is that my shoulders have felt like a solid iron bar all day and my shoulder has started hurting me again :-(

Time to find the heat pack out me thinks.

The mid week slump might also have been down to the weather as it has pretty much sucked today.

Of course tomorrow it is supposed to get worse as it's supposed to snow and snow isn't good. I mean while your at work, if it wants to snow while your on holiday or at the weekend so much the better :-)


Later folks

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Comings and Goings

In the new bathroom Tap Dance asked for a dimmer switch pullcord to be installed for the new lights. Cue much confusion from the electrician who stated he had heard of a dimmer switch but not a dimmer pullcord.

However in this instance Tap Dance was proven correct and we now have a dimmer pullcord installed. Which is a wonderful thing especially first thing in the morning. No more stumbling into the bathroom and being blinded by a full power light as you try to wake up. Which is quite frankly awesome.

The weather has sucked quite frankly today which shouldn't be much of a surprise in hindsight as they have forecast snow for later this week.

Well it could happen or we could just take solace in the weathermens amazing ability to be wrong most of the time.

Work was good if busy. My ability to touch type continues to be incredibly useful as I'm sure I wouldn't be able to get half as much done as I do if I couldn't!

One good thing although from today was that I was suddenly struck with a burst of inspiration which should help me finally start a project I've had bubbling away for quite some time.

Be sure to stay tuned.

Later Folks!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Monday mania

You never know what you're going to get with Mondays at work. Sometimes they can be quiet, othertimes not so, and othetimes things go completely and utterly bonkers. Well today was several levels beyond the last option. I don't know what it was, or what caused it but it just seemed to be call, after call, after call.

Still we kept it together and weathered it well. Our current team works really well together and everyone gets on but I suppose it's kind of the enivonment where you have to as anyone who didn't get on couldn't and wouldn't last long.

We're going to be getting a visit from our new Home teachers tomorrow, as they've just reorganised the home teaching lists. ( I'm now partnered with Physics and Inspector Gadget) however somehow during the reorganisation I've actually been assigned as the home teacher to one of my home teachers.

Not sure how that happened.


Later folks.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Interesting. Very Interesting

Well the national YSA conference is on the move, as they've just announced that next years conference will be in Nottingham. Assuming that theres not about to be a radical rechanging of the rules or a whirlwind romance ( chance would be a fine thing :-) next years conference will be my last one.

I'm on the 9 to 5 shift this week, which I haven't been on for oh quite sometime. Mainly as when newbies come into the department they are given that shift so they are around when the maximum number of people will be in the department to give them a hand. It will be followed by a 9.30 to 5.30 week before I go back onto earlys again. I have found that I prefer the early shifts to the others, although lates are my next favourite as at least they give you a lie in :-)

I've been spendng a large amount of time this weekend doing yet another clear out. It's amazing how much junk you collect especially down the back of wardrobes and chest of drawers, as I had to do some serious moving of bits around to allow the electrican easy access to all of the plugs in my room, and every other room as well, but for the purposes of this rambling paragraph the focus is directly on my room.

Anyway I found all sorts, from a old letter from uni, to a old key, to a book to the piece of paper that Nemesis first wrote her blog address on, so I could locate find and read it.

I'm sure a whole lot of others bit and pieces remain to be found as I will be shortly going on a remodelling spluge once the bathroom is finished, and we get Grumpys office back in order.


Later folks

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Putting some light on the subject

Thanks to the services of one rather good electrician we have one major change in GeekTowers this evening. Yes we have a light in bathroom!! And not just any light one with a pull cord dimmer switch! Which the electrician admited he had never seen or even heard of before.

The addition of a light means that we can now close the door in the evenings which I'm sure we'll disappoint the ever so inquisitive Owen. We're still going to have to wait for another week for the shower to be refitted as their going to have to do some fairly major rewiring meaning half the office is going to have to be ripped up. I don't mind having to wait for another week as the bath should be usable shortly as their putting the last sealent in tomorrow. Six weeks without a bath in the house is quite frankly long enough! The trips back and forth to Tap Dances house were starting to grate as the relaxing effects of the bath tended to disappear by the time you had driven back.

Still the lack of bath and shower was nothing compared to the problems they've been having with the toilet! They had to strip it down again as some of the parts in the cistern weren't working, it got Grumpy and I worried we might have to do without a toilet again! as during the build they had to remove the old toilet to lay down the new floor tiles, and although we should have only been without the toilet overnight as the tiles dried (no one could walk on them whilst it dried), the stuff holding them to the floor promptly failed to dry for four days which meant by the time they could come back and install it we had been without a toilet for five days. Fortunatly with Tap Dance living in another house we were able to go across and use her facilities last thing at night and then first thing in the morning.

So this renovation has turned into just a little tiny bit of a slog. Still the main thing is it's almost finished and we can start to put the house straight again as the various tools and supplies start disappearing.

One thing it did make me realise that between the early starts to let the builders and electricians in, having to go across to Tap Dances, the training course for work, the YSA convention day and being on the early shift at work anyway I really can't remember the last time I had a lie in where I could wake up in my own time as it were rather then be woken by an alarm.

Still looking at it in a postive way it does mean the next lie in I get will be extra, extra good :-)


Later folks.

Friday, October 15, 2010

If theres something strange in your neighbourhood

There have been weird goings on our street this week. Mainly from the neighbours which started in the very early hours of Tuesday morning when we were woken by a loud series of banging and drilling from next door.

Grumpys first thought was something was going wrong with the pipes due to the recent building work we've had done. I assured him that this wasn't the case, when he asked how I knew this I pointed out that when pipes start making knocking sounds they don't usually do so in a well known rhythm of tapping.

Just when we thought it had stopped and we went back to bed it started again. We were debating whether to go round there when it stopped again. We then turned the lights off when somebody came out of the front of the house and shined a strobe light at the house ( not a especially powerful one but still annoying).

They quickly legged it inside before we could get downstairs, leaving us unsure of what to do next. We waited for a little while in the dark before going back to bed, but we stayed dressed just in case anything else happened. Suffice to say I was not with it at work that morning.

now the parents didn't seem to be there when this all kicked off but have come back since, which has left us in a bit of a quandrey. Do they know what happened? Do we say something, but by saying something would we make things worse? Or by not saying anything would it let them think they can do what they want?

It's all terribly perplexing. Grumpy pointed out that maybe they'll move out and we'll get new neighbours. Which wouldn't help our sense of paranoria as we've had four different sets of neighbours since we've lived at geek towers. I wondered to Grumpy if we were just cursed or maybe there was someway we were upsetting the neighbours that we didn't know we were doing.

Grumpy suggested maybe it was all the wild drunken and debauched parties I throw that annoys them :-)

We have the builders and electricians in tomorrow for what we really, really hope is the last day of building work because after four weeks and five weekends I am starting to get fed up of it. I just want the shower and bath back! This is one of the occasions I am glad Tap Dance lives in another house so at least I can pop over there.

I pointed out that things would have been a lot easier if we had done this whilst Elder Engineseer still lived in geektown and he was even closer. Grumpy suggested ( in jest of course two weeks ago) that maybe we could ask if he could come home early and move back to geektown and all our problems would be solved. I simply advised him not to get his hopes up.


Later folks.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

If it's not one thing it's another

Well the plan of once again consistantly blog posting hit a bit of a snag yesterday when our internet connection packed up. There was a few moments of concern that during a massive cleaning binge Tap Dance might have accidentally pulled out the cable which for various complicated reasons is now hanging in the hallway.

She hadn't as a long search tracing the cable through the house, complete with a bit of cursing as I tried to balance the two doors currently in the office so I could see the wall (don't ask) revealed everything was still connected. So I concluded it was a temporary service outage.

Which still hadn't fixed itself by this afternoon so with no other option I decided to revert to the classic Engineseer approach. Disconnect everything, reconnect it, then turn it off and on.

And whatta you know it fixed it!

Despite my optomisim on Monday the light in the bathroom still hasn't been fitted which means at night we're having to leave the door open so we can see what we're doing. Fortunatly Owen doesn't come into the bathroom whilst your "occupied" but it can be a bit off putting as he likes to put his head road the door and watch what your doing.

Still it's minor inconvienance for having a working toilet again.

Work was extremely busy today and a little frustrating as there were a lot of issues that were just out of my hands to be able to fix ( and a couple which were just plain bizare but I digress).

Institute was also interesting as we have a new American Student who will be studying in Loughborough for a year who turned out to by a friend of Nemesis!

It really is a small world isn't it? Especially when it comes to church related things.


Later folks.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Almost there

Hi Folks,

Yes finally regular posting can get back on line as we are finally nearing the end of what has turned out to be quite a large building project.

The new light is going into the bathroom as I speak, the tiling is almost done and the bath is just about ready for use. But more importantly we have a working toilet and a sink ( which seems to be almost big enough to double for a bath) which means the days of having to use the kitchen sink are behind is.

Although one downside we have discovered to the new tiles on the floor is that at 6am in the morning they are pretty darn cold. Me thinks Grumpy and I will be searching for new pairs of slippers come the weekend.

Yes I'm on earlys this week and we've reached that depressing time of year when it is still pitch black when I have to get up for work.

I will be doing a few more posts then usual this week to bring you all up to speed on a few interesting comings and going that have happened during the enforced break.

One of these was the two day training course I went on with work, which I passed with a 100% mark meaning I am now a certified International specialist or CIS. When I mentioned this to grumpy his response was to ask if this meant I worked for the co-op insurance or was I just somebody who investigated crime scenes who couldn't spell :-)

Later folks

Saturday, October 02, 2010

Not seeing clearly now

Hi everybody,

Well posting might become a bit ad hoc this week as it will depend on if I have chance to write a post while it's still light. As right now we don't have any lights in the study and trying to type by monitor Light always give me a headache. Still it could be worse, I could not have the lights in my bedroom like Grumpy who will have to get ready for bed using the light from the landing.

In case you were wondering we haven't had a major breakdown in the electrics here in Geek Towers. It's to do with the building work we are having done on the bathroom. Basically the seperate toilet and bathroom are being combined into one, and as part of this somewhat belately the ceiling has been replaced. This means the light has had to be moved, and in order to do this the power to a "circuit" has had to be cut off and this circuit as well as being the source of power for the lights in the bathroom also powers the office and Grumpys bedroom.

The new ceiling has to be plasted and painted before the new light can be fitted which will be done by next weekend, so we're just going to have to work about the non lighting for the next week as unsurprisingly the builders have more important things to do first. Like putting the new toilet and sink in :-)

later folks

Friday, October 01, 2010

Tick Tock

In my current department I am finding that Fridays can be extremely variable. Sometimes you get good Fridays, other times not so good Fridays and then others times..... well I'm sure you can guess where I'm heading with that train of thought.

Still todays rather violitle morning was more then made up with the team "Fuddle" we had ( for long non long term readers of those of you have simply forgot a fuddle is essentially a big buffet where everyone taking parts bring something. Kind of a BYOB style of vibe, although in the case the bottle could be anything from cakes to cornish pasties :-) We had decided to throw one as our current senior is being rotated to another team in the building. This isn't a uncommon occurance, the seniors are usually rotated every three months or so as it allows them to build up a valuable bank of experience with different teams and different roles.

Okay it wasn't much of a excuse to throw one as lets face it, he's not leaving and in all likelyhood we will see him again in a few months anyway but it was still fun to have a fuddle.

I'm on lates next week, which are good because I get a nice lie in, but only for three days and I'm off on the training course next Thursday and Friday. It's at a hotel in Northampton which we got to see for the first time today. It's very, very nice. We also don't have to go in uniforms which is a bonus. Although looking at the training schedule it's going to be very, very packed.


Later folks