Repaired at last

Got the damaged speaker up to Sevenoaks today, and they fitted the new driver whilst I waited – the repair only took ten minutes, and I could probably have done it myself. The drive unit was only held in by three screws, and the internal connections were all terminated with simple push clips – very neat. It looks good as new, although whether it’s battle scars had actually had any impact on the sound is debatable.

Megan had her sports day at the nursery yesterday, and everyone had a good time. Comedy moment of the event occurred in the second race where the kids had to run to a hoop, put on a hat and scarf, run round a cone back to the hoop, remove the hat and scarf and then back to the start as quick as possible. There were hats and scarves everywhere whilst most of the kids tried to get there and back at top speed, when it came to Megan’s turn of course it wasn’t that simple. The scarf was picked up, then the dirt carefully brushed off whilst it was turned the right way round and carefully examined for co-ordination with her outfit – I swear she’d still be there trying to decide which one to wear if one of the nursery teachers hadn’t grabbed her hand and ran with her! 🙂

In other news, after a long wait Google have finally released Google Earth for Linux – the latest beta (version 4) now runs on Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. It was possible to run the earlier Windows versions using WINE, but they never worked very well. The proper Linux version is built using Qt and OpenGL and works flawlessly – although the coverage of Seamill is quite low res (US Military obviously not that bothered about what we get up to here – or maybe they are and that’s why you cant see?)

A Smashing Weekend

Well it didn’t quite go according to the plan, but we still managed a smashing weekend!

Angela managed to fall over at Audrey’s on Friday, around lunchtime, and by the time she hobbled home after 5pm her foot was very painful. A quick trip to Crosshouse Hospital showed there’s no obvious break, but obviously planned activities for the weekend all bit the dust. So Saturday was just spent in the garden drinking beer and watching the footy – Jim and I managed to stay awake, but the less than inspiring performance sent Dave to sleep before half time.

Megan still spent Saturday night at Nana’s so there was a late night in for the rest of us, playing Angela’s new board game (Scottish Quest) and then a bit of poker.

Sunday was spent in Largs, Angela hobbling around as best she could, with dinner at Fluid (after I’d rescued Megan from Nana’s). There were a few games of air hockey, and some dubious Sega Rally driving in the arcades before Megan was off to bed and the Really Nasty Horse Racing game was brought out. Dave managed to clean us all out, by the sneaky tactics of not winning when we bet on him – someone remind me next time not to bet on him!

Monday we went to Kelburn Castle Country Park and had a bit of fun round the Secret Forest – and even hop-a-long managed to get about – then back to the airport for the flights to Stansted. Megan was said to see everyone go, and even daddy was getting a bit emotional at the airport – it was loads of fun and can’t wait to see everyone again soon 🙂

Back to work with a bang though, the migration staggered through the weekend but the rails have really come off the last couple of days – loads of connection problems (dodgy firewall at our end apperently, won’t be replaced until tomorrow) and a badly timed backup that killed an upgrade. What should have been done and dusted last night is still dragging on at the moment – we’re trying to find an alternative way of connecting so we can finish it off…

That was the week

Well the week (and the course) has finally come to an end, and the World Cup is about to start (hurrah!). The course was good, but I was up until 1am last night working on getting a migration going for a Housing Association down south – weekend hasn’t arrived a moment too soon.

Jim, Clare & Dave are all coming up tonight, and I’ve got a selection of beers in for the occasion – there’ll be much drinking and footy watching tomorrow, although I think Clare & Angela may have shopping plans. Megan’s staying with Nana on Saturday so we can have a night out, and as the flights back aren’t till Monday afternoon we’ll still have plenty of time to get up to all sorts of things.

The DVD player in the study has packed in (I think it was the heat!) but since it was only £15 don’t suppose we can expect too much – probably would have cost that much in petrol to take it back and get it fixed! We splashed out on Toshiba SD-150 to replace it instead (all of £30+VAT from CostCo) which warrants five stars from What HiFi and seems all together far more sturdy, and provides a much better picture – Megan has already applied the ‘Totally Spies’ test and given it the thumbs up.

Managed to squeeze in a game of doubles (snooker) on Wednesday night too, but we were all rubbish so only finished four frames the whole evening (compared to six last time) – for the record Gary & Darren won 3-1, but 0-0 would probably have been a fair result…

Sudan – Urgent Action

Another UA has come through from Amnesty

Scores of people including dozens of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) have been detained over the past few weeks in several towns in Darfur. They were protesting against the Darfur Peace Agreement (DPA) and many of them are still being held incommunicado where they are at risk of torture or other ill-treatment.

On 29 May, security officers and central reserve police officers fired live ammunition into a crowd of protestors in Otash IDP Camp near Nyala in South Darfur.

Emails and faxes are on their way…

Training at Eclectic

I’m on a course this week – Red Hat Linux Networking & Security Administration – at Eclectic in Glasgow.

This is the course I nearly went on early in the year but that got postponed at the last minute – turns out this time I’m the only person on the course! It’s slightly odd just me and the trainer in room full of PCs, but does mean we can go at our own pace and cover stuff that wouldn’t normally be in the course.

Angela and Megan spent the afternoon cleaning Angela’s car (which definitely needed a good wash) and then putting a fresh coat of stain on the garden furniture – they did a good job too, although I’m sure Megan wasn’t as brown as she is now when I left this morning…

We won!

The afternoon didn’t get off to a promising start – when we got to Nether Pollok playing fields we found that the football goal posts were still standing (although the crossbars had been taken down). It was too dangerous to play cricket so it looked like the match would have to be called off, but fortunately we were able to relocate to the Auldehouse ground (belonging to Hutcheson Grammar School) which wasn’t being used.

We won the toss and put Rouken Glen in to bat, and depsite some dodgy fielding (including one dropped catch from yours truly that surely qualifies me for the England team) we managed to bowl them out for 138 – certainly a gettable target.

I was batting number four, and when the second wicket went down with 49 on the board we were looking good – plenty of overs left, and the runs were coming steadily. Unfortunately there was a flurry of quick wickets and I found myself batting with the skipper, five wickets down and still some way short of half their total. We mounted a bit of a rear guard action though, and had managed to put 117 on the board before I edged one to first slip – I’d scored a respectable 24 which turned out to be the second highest score of the game, only bettered by one of our openers with 29.

Another quick wicket followed though, and soon after the skipper skied one to midwicket, and we were suddenly 120-8 and looking like we would fall short of the total. The tail wagged however, and although the ninth wicket fell with 131 on the board, the last two batsmen saw us through to the total to win by one wicket!

Excellent Service

Well it was only 1pm yesterday when I ordered the new grips for my bat, but I got an email confirming that they had been dispatched (by regular first class post) at 4pm.

Now they were coming from Knutsford so wasn’t really expecting them to get here until Monday, but there was a knock on the door from the postie at 8:30am this morning with a big blue package containing two new grips and an applicator. You’ve got to say that’s excellent service from Barringtons, and not to shabby from Royal Mail either.

I can now play this afternoon safe in the knowledge that at least the grip on my bat isn’t older than the kid that just bowled me out (although the bat probably is).
Have to say it was much easier getting the grip on using the applicator too – should have bought one years ago. 🙂