Friday, June 30, 2006

Home Brew

There is a micro-brewery pub in Tivoli (actually a restaurant) that makes beer that I think my brother and I would have been just a little disappointed with had we made it when we were teenagers. However, the beer is a gastronomic delight when judged alongside their entertainment. The guy playing the piano and singing seemed to have a unique combination of attributes: he was drunk and tone deaf and obviously didn't understand the words to the (rubbish) songs as the emphasis was consistently in the wrong place for all of the words.
We're off to the summer house at the beach for what is expected to be a great weekend. I am cycling over there after work and looking forward to greeting the mosquitoes!

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Brucey Bonus


Hurray, I have got a lovely bonus from my employer! We have decided to waste it all on lavish lifestyle accessories such as a new front door and double glazing the bathroom window. If I manage to sell my race wheels, we may even have a new terrace door.
The other interesting news was that my PhD proposal seems to be meeting with a reasonable amount of interest at the Business School and the guy who has been helping me to write the proposal now seems so interested that he may also wish to get involved in the research! Hopefully this bodes well for the future of my project. We'll have to wait and see.
J is now sitting very well, but still not crawling really so we are still safe for now...

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

We're off to see the wizard

The wonderful wizard of Copenhagen Business School. I have yet to meet the head of CVL (a department of CBS) but I shall this afternoon to discuss my proposal for a PhD project. I am looking forward to it with a little trepidation. It is strange, having spent the last few years working as a consultant (a pseudo academic spouting unsubstantiated drivel) then having to change ones behavior and refrain from making vague generalisations about the state of the world and the way that people are likely to react in any given situation. I will now have to be sure that my throw away comments about the state of the world are based on acknowledged facts, documented by others rather than dragged from my fertile, random statistic generating mind.
And now a picture of my son to keep my reader happy ;-)

Monday, June 26, 2006

Apparently that was enough introspection, I am sunburned!

I rode quite a long way yesterday into the summer house territory in the north of out little island. There was a strong tail wind on the way up there which can only mean one thing. A strong headwind for the 80km trip back, by the time I got home I was tired, dehydrated and it now seems rather sunburned. There are not many days in the year that you want to wear a sleeveless jersey up here in the trundra, but yesterday was one and I forgot sunscreen. I have had a rather uncomfortable, hot night with red shoulders.
Bent and Jorgen had a successful ride from Trondheim to Oslo (545km) in 23 hours. I don't ever want to do that, never ever! Well done to them.

Friday, June 23, 2006

First Impressions

I started to read an online book yesterday about creating a good self image/impression. The first part of the book was a small test to measure how good you are at such things. Well, it seems that I don't need to read the rest of the book based on my score, but does that mean that I am shallow? I don't know and often don't care so perhaps that means that I am. I seem to get by in life reasonably well on a firm(ish) handshake and good manners without having to stretch myself to back anything up with performances. (I hope that none of my clients read this!)
On another note, this is my new watch that I am very pleased with, maybe it adds to the image...

Thursday, June 22, 2006

If you change nothing, nothing changes

This has been my thought for the week. In many aspects of live I am good at making things happen, but others I tend to leave as they are.
I am sitting in Warsaw in an IT workshop looking forward to getting home again tonight, but I am hoping that by applying my new mantra at meal times and when I am sitting on the sofa instead of exercising or doing something useful (not really that common) then I will get fitter and achieve more, thus becoming a happier, better person.
Simple really, now we are into phrase 2 for the day
"Easier said than done"

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Warsaw

I am stuck in a very hot meeting in Warsaw, I'll be back in action either tomorrow or Friday...

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Looking better again... not the weathr

I don't know what happened yesterday, but I wasn't much fun to be with and I had a serious downer. I think I really needed to get out on my bike so that is what I did. I rode 65km in just over 2 hours, it was great to be able to go out after J had gone to bed and still be out in the light at 9:00. Official lighting up time was 21:54!!!
I also managed to get some work done on the phd proposal so i hope to be able to get that sorted out before the end of the week and off to Carsten. Fingers crossed.
We are really looking forward to our visit to Boulder in August, I certainly feel ready for a break.
Off to Warsaw tomorrow morning for an overnight visit, this could be an experience!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Monday blues


Having the feeling that I have totally wasted my weekend, it was no fun at all to come back to work this morning. Yesterday was spent sweltering indoors at a 90th birthday party and Saturday was somehow frittered away with a couple of odd jobs. I haven't ridden my bike since last Wednesday and I think that is the problem, I had plans to ride this weekend and the weather was pretty good, but I am a lazy good for nothing waste of space so I sat on my fat worthless arse instead.
Tonight I plan to go out as soon as I get home and ride until it is dark to celebrate the longest day on Wednesday (when I will be in Warsaw anyway)
Baby swimming tomorrow so that's out of the question too.

At least we did have the best strawberries of the year so far on Saturday evening.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Weekend jobs

There is a lot to do around the house this weekend.
  • Finish stripping and painting the handrail by the front door
  • Cut the grass
  • Re-point the chimney
  • Fix the breakfast bar
  • Other things I can't remember

Worst of all I have to go to a 90th birthday party for MK's grandfather - another Danish extravaganza.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Sleep at last

Despite a rather early awakening this morning (5:00) and then raucous "playing" in our bed, young Jeremy seems to have turned a corner in his sleeping abilities. The last couple of nights her has slept longer and better without needing to be picked up every couple of hours. JOY!

OK this was a few weeks ago, but you get the general idea.
There isn't much happening at the moment, unfortunately there should be as I need to complete my PhD proposal for the umpteenth time and do a load of things around the house, fortunately tonight I can at least get some shirts ironed whilst watching England play against Trinidad and Tobago!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Life Hacking

I read something about this in the Economist yesterday, apparently the challenge for the 21st century will be to do for the knowledge worker what was done for manual workers in the 20th century. That is to increase productivity very significantly. (I do find myself wondering why we are so keen to be turned into a borg like symbiotic techno thing, but maybe that's just me.) Anyway there were a coupled of good tips, some of which I have already tried and am enjoying the fruits of already
  • Set email to update every 15 minutes or more to reduce interruptions to your work or more importantly your thinking.
  • When working on something specific (such as writing a document) then use full screen to remove the tamping distractions.
  • Use a sort of dashboard to monitor progress on key tasks (ok I call it a to-do list)
  • If something is big or awkward to tackle, spend 5 minutes on it then leave it a few times, each time you come back, it seems a little easier.
  • When leaving something unfinished, make a note of what you plan to do next.

I like the full screen one the best, you can concentrate on the writing and worry more about the format later.

There is one big issue here though, I am often looking for a distraction (such as writing a blog) to either give me something to do or to escape from the mindless "knowledge work" that I am employed to do.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Funny Day

We have had a lovely weekend, the weather has been great and we have had a relaxing time with our visitors (we even went to the beach yesterday!)
I had planned to work from home today but have been thwarted byu a computer virus so I am stick in the office waiting for things to be fixed.
Long may the sunshine last, tonight my serious(ish) training for the bike race(s) in July begins and then an early night with no booze!
Tomorrow i may begin trying "life-hacking" to get myself running better, perhaps I'll explain then...

Friday, June 09, 2006

Summer's here at last

It looks like being a lovely weekend at last. A couple of friends from Manchester are visiting as well so it should be lovely!
I have also decided to make a serious bid for doing well in a bike race in the middle of July, either in N├Žstved or Hvidovre (12 or 13th July). The training plan was writtenn on the train this morning and I am ready to get going... as soon as the drinking and eating of this weekend are over. I am looking forward to it, I know I can be near the front at the end if I get my sh*t together for a few weeks.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Feeding time (at the zoo)

It doesn't seem to be getting any easier to get Jnr to eat without a lot of complaining so last night I decided to let him have a go at feeding himself the broccoli and meatball surprise. I have rarely seen such a mess, but he did seem to enjoy it and there was less complaining so perhaps that is the way forward.
I also finally managed to make myself leave the house again on my bike for a swift 45km around the countryside to take advantage of these lovely light evenings. Part of me wants to do that more often, but there is another part of me that knows I should be home supporting the other half who spends most of her days with only a 7 month old for company... The cyclists dilemma - I have decided to call it. How can I get faster without sacrifice the parent/husband job??

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Red tyres... right or wrong?

After Jeremyhad gone to bed I finally got around to cleaning my bike after saturday's mamoth rainy ride. During the final stages of the cleaning process i notices that not only does the front tyre have a decent cut in it from saturdays puncutre, but the side wall was also cut. So time for a change. I dug out some of my old "sponsors" michelin tyres and fitted them (these things are about £28 each) they are red and black, i suspect that they look awful on the blue/yellow/aluminium bike, but they will have to do for now. I'll post a picture at some point.
We had a nive card from Shustoke yesterday, it's a shame that we don't get to spend more time together, it was nice to be able to relax there and for J and his Grandma to get to know each other a bit.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Pointing and laughing behind hands

The last long weekend of the spring is over so summer must be here and right on cue it is a lovely day. This weekend saw my first ever attempt at brick work, a truly manly pass-time. Before my assault on the north face of the chimney for repointing I decided to have a go at the decidedly ground level steps up to the front door to repair the frost damage and "get me hand in".


To be honest, I am actually quite happy with the result although as my dad pointed out, it may have been worthwhile considering beforehand that I should have tried somewhere out of site before hitting the front door as it doesn't matter how the chimney looks; nobody can see it.

Next on the agenda for the "First Impressions" project is repainting the handrail, guess what? It needs stripping first - what a pain... I've started it, but there are more fun things to do this evening, namely baby swimming and bike cleaning.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Summer? Where? Not here that's for sure

I cycled about 100 miles yesterday with a couple of others, the weather was awful, there was a strong, cold wind blowing off the north sea, it was raining and freezing. During theses occasional long rides (it was 6 hours yesterday) I find myself wondering what on earth I am doing, I hurts and take up a load of time, I suppose I enjoy it really, it was just the last half hour or so that was really uncomfortable. The other two are riding 450km from Trondheim to Oslo in Norway in a couple of weeks, for a second or two I did consider joining them, but then I realised that after the first 150km or so it will just be discomfort and hunger - no thanks, but good luck to them both.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Spelling complaint

I have a feeling that these sunglasses look a bit silly...

In some act of supreme irony my informs me that she has added a comment to one of my posts on this lovely blog. Unfortunately only she can see it. Her complaint seems to be related to her not getting a mention and my spelling being below par.
Firstly sorry for not mentioning you or "lovely rural Warwickshire" but I write what I fell like writing and nobody reads it anyway and secondly I know I can't spell, sometimes I remember to spell check and others I don't. I could never spell well, but I seem to be getting along reasonably well with my limited abilities. (I can even make comments on other peoples blogs!)
Anyway, perhaps you will be happy to see youself publsihed along with young Tim.