tigerfort: (Default)
2017-03-31 01:16 pm

Unresolved

I had intended, once more, to try and get back into the habit of posting at least once a week, as the closest to a meaningful new year's resolution I was likely to manage. Squeaking my first entry of the year in just before the end of March doesn't really meet that (not-so-)lofty target, does it?

Partly, I think I've been letting "write something worth reading" be the enemy of "write something, anything". Partly, [personal profile] stripey_cat and I do both seem to have been even more low energy than usual, the last couple of months. (Some of the latter can probably be blamed on politics - which subject I'm probably going to try and avoid round here, since I already get more than enough on Twitter.)

Speaking of Twitter, I'm now working on a proper post related to this poll. Hopefully I'll get it up later on today.
tigerfort: (Default)
2016-12-24 01:33 am
Entry tags:

Power corrupts, but we need electricity

On the whole, the last few weeks have been pretty good (by our standards) in terms of stuff actually getting done. There are more shelves in the living room than there were a week ago (although most of them are as-yet unfilled), and the piles of boxes are starting to show further shrinkage. We've also switched over to our new electricity supplier (British Gas, basically because we had to go to one of the big - is it six? - and our gas supply was already with them), who rang up to apologise for the fact they wouldn't be able to switch our prey-pay[1] meter to a proper one until mid-January. They contacted us, the day after they became our supplier, to confirm that the meter change would happen, and apologise for not getting it done sooner. Makes a nice change after a year of nPower's delay and denial tactics. (Sure, I'd rather not have the six-week wait, and in the longer run we'll probably want to switch to one of the co-ops or other more eco-friendly groups, but by comparison this is pretty d*mn amazing.)

[1] this was a typo, but is sufficiently accurate I'm going to let it stay!
tigerfort: (Default)
2016-11-28 11:42 pm

A year on

Well, a year and a month and a half, or thereabouts. Since we moved here, that is. Much of the stuff we had plannedhoped to get done in our first year remains entirely not done. Sorting out the garden? Nope. Redecorating some of the tattier rooms? Not even one. Visitors for weekends of gaming fun? We do have a (single) spare bed, and have had one visitor, but we need to invite more, and it still isn't really possible to have more than one at a time. There still isn't a useable table and the other (double) extra bed remains hidden away in K's parents' house, awaiting a point where we communally have the energy to move it. The piles of boxes are somewhat reduced, but still present in most rooms.

We do have quite a lot of books out on shelves, though, and hope to get more (shelves put up, and books put on them) by Christmas. And most of the boardgame collection is sitting on shelves eagerly awaiting the chance to be played, even if there's nowhere to play them yet.

Some of that's progress in the (oops) nearly two months since I last posted. In particular, we paid a visit to Ikea('s website) and got a bunch of Billys to go along one wall of the living room, which allowed quite a few boxes to be unpacked, making more room to do other stuff in. We also finally got a water meter fitted, and we're even in the process of escaping from [insert expletives] nPower. Hopefully, once we've switched, our new supplier will be more amenable to pressure to replace the *&!@# key-meter with a standard one. (Not least because they'll know that, unlike nPower, they can't lie and tell us it isn't possible to switch supplier while you're on one.)

So progress in the 1st year and a bit, while it feels pretty slim a lot of the time, was definitely made (and our expectations of ourselves were, as always, unrealistic, even without accounting for the inevitable post-move crash and the delays and problems caused by needing to get the place rewired).
tigerfort: (Default)
2016-08-07 02:09 am

Eye Upgrade

Update, sorry, I meant update. It is almost back to normal functioning now, but I don't (sadly) have any cyberpunky extras like a built in telephoto lens or infra-red vision. My pupil is round again and dilating normally, and the related pain seems to be gone as well. The steroid drops make my vision a bit dodgy - focussing just isn't quite right for the first couple of hours after each one - but I'm dropping to four doses per day from tomorrow, which should make it a bit easier to do things that require proper binocular vision.

Once more, we say hurrah for modern medicine and the NHS!
tigerfort: (Default)
2016-07-24 05:52 pm

The difference a day makes

The difference a day and a huge quantity of prescription medicines make, to be more specific. (Where "huge quantity" amounts to probably less than 1/10 gram of actual drugs, but that's in quite a lot of doses of several different things.)

Relatedly, I seem to still be sucking at the more-frequent-posting thing, don't I?

medical stuff, in case you'd not guessed )
Other than that, I have mostly spent the last week or so listening to audiobooks, for some reason. If anyone would like to recommend cheerful soothing podcasts that I can download as MP3s without having to f*ck around with iThings, I'd be very grateful.
tigerfort: (Default)
2016-05-28 02:41 pm
Entry tags:

After a while, nothing continued to happen

Naturally, practically the first thing that happened once the workmen had finished was that [personal profile] stripey_cat slipped on the stairs and sprained her ankle. Nothing worse than a sprain, but plenty bad enough to put paid to her plan to get started straight away on redecorating a couple of rooms. The bruising is beginning to fade, and she's starting to walk more normally again, which is good, but we're both a little frustrated by the loss of forward momentum.

However, the wiring is now done (except for the garage, which will be sorted out in a couple of weeks' time). The chandeliers have been replaced with fittings that are both more to our taste and easier not to bang your head on. The wall sockets have not increased that much in number, but they're all properly earthed, and none of them are dangling of their wires or connected to lighting circuits. And the light inside the downstairs shower[1] is now a watertight unit designed for use in a bathroom, rather than a random GU10 halogen fitting with no environmental sealing.

[1] yes, literally inside the shower cubicle. Yes, I did shower in there with the lights off, the couple of times I used it. Why do you ask?

Now I suppose I should go back to trying not to be an nPower customer. Bunch of R-soles.
tigerfort: (Default)
2016-05-15 10:44 am

Stop, wait, what's that sound?

It seems to be a month or so since I last posted, making a mockery once more of the once-a-week target. Currently (not literally currently, it's Sunday morning! But much of last week and also of next week), the fort is full of people drilling holes in walls, pulling up floorboards, and replacing the previous owners' unique artisan wiring with stuff that complies with safety regs and doesn't give me nightmares. [personal profile] stripey_cat's social anxiety handles this sort of thing about as well as you might expect. (I may be the teensiest bit strung-out myself, one way and another.)

In the meantime, I've now had my second appointment with the audiologist. Second and last, in fact; I've been officially discharged from the clinic, to (I think) mutual satisfaction. The tinnitus hasn't changed at all over the intervening period, but I'm now able to cope with it much better than I was. Little things (some of which I'd meant to try anyway), but a big cumulative difference.
tigerfort: (Default)
2016-04-02 05:11 pm

What was I saying?

It seems to be about two months since I last posted - I knew I'd been thoroughly failing the one-per-week goal, but I hadn't realised it was that bad.

Mostly, things have been carrying on steadily, either level or slowly improving, since February:

  • Our cooker was finally fitted, and is very nice to have. I may have spent more of the day it arrived than was strictly necessary bouncing joyfully up and down and saying "cooker" excitedly.

  • The builders do appear to have successfully stopped the rain coming in.

  • The DWP managed to sort themselves out and start paying again, even coughing up the back payment in time for us to hand most of it over to the builders.

  • nPower continue to be both our electricity supplier and completely useless. Partly this is because they're so determined to make life difficult, and partly it's because dealing with them requires quite a lot of spoons that I often have more urgent uses for.

  • Our assorted medical conditions seem to continue largely the same.



Because of these things and, er, one or two others, I've not been online much, but will hopefully be able to pay some more attention to life now.
tigerfort: (Default)
2016-02-02 10:35 am

A (second) false start

So now that we've (finally) had various things done to the kitchen, the nice men from John Lewis came to the house this morning with our cooker (again).

Immediately, the fitter spotted a problem that he'd missed last time (because it was hidden by other, more obvious problems) that meant he still can't fit the cooker, because it wouldn't be safe. So now I need to call up the electrician again, and find out how much more of the money we don't have it's going to cost to sort this out.

And then I might cry, or go and live in a yurt.
tigerfort: (Default)
2016-01-31 12:12 am

And another thing

And now it looks as though water from the leaky garage roof has probably got into the electrics in the garage, to add to the fun. (If not, something else nasty has gone wrong with them, given the state of what's left of the fuse.) So I can add "get an electrician in" to the list of expensive things we need to do fairly urgently. Yaay!
tigerfort: (Default)
2016-01-27 10:41 pm

One Thing After Another

Once more, the plan to try and write at least one post per week seems to have got off to a poor start.

A number of things have happened over the last week or so. )

But the car passed its MOT test with no problems, so at least I can stop worrying about that. I hope. And the new is due to go in next week, and we'll be able to have real food!
tigerfort: (Default)
2015-12-10 08:02 pm
Entry tags:

Have you seen the key-master?

Progress towards getting the new fort properly sorted out has been slow, the last month, partly due to taking a week to go to Cambridge for the weekend (Photos to be sorted and uploaded hopefully fairly soon), and partly due to the fine sequence of colds that we exchanged on our return.

So we still don't have a proper cooker (or even a date when the kitchen will be ready for it), and we still haven't managed to get rid of the foul evil monstrosity lurking in one of the kitchen cupboards. By which I mean the key-meter for our electricity supply. (What's worse than going out in the rain to top up the wretched key? Realising just as you reach the shop that you've left the stupid thing in the house, and that you're now soaking wet and knackered to no actual purpose.) We're not sure whether the previous owners were actually forced to have the thing as a punitive measure, or just had no idea how badly they were being ripped off. But we're impressed by how difficult the electricity company (npower in our case, but I don't imagine the others are any better) make it to get rid of the thing. Normally, when you move into a house, they're delighted to start billing you, but with a key-meter, they seem to need a remarkable array of evidence that you really do own the place. It's almost as though they don't want to give up the absurd profit that they make from the thing.
tigerfort: (Default)
2015-11-14 07:35 am

An early start, but not a good one

So [personal profile] stripey_cat and I both got up early this morning to be ready for the arrival of our cooker from John Lewis, accompanied by fitting team. The fitters duly arrived pretty much on the dot of 7am, took one look at the cooker's spot in the kitchen and said "we can't fit it there, it isn't safe". If we hadn't been fooled by the previous owners having had a gas cooker in the same spot (presumably installed before the regulations were tightened), we might have reached that conclusion ourselves. The presence of a plug socket intruding into the space above the cooker, the unprotected plastic wiring run down the wall, the bare chipboard immediately behind, the fact that the gas point isn't secured properly, and went sproing when the fitter poked it...

So they've taken our lovely new cooker away again, and we're stuck with microwave and kettle for the indefinite future while we find someone to refit half the kitchen for us. Which is definitely a "first-world problems" sort of problem, but it's a problem we'd rather thought would be ending today, not continuing towards (and perhaps beyond) Christmas.

[ETA: and a quick look at the weather forecast suggests today will be grey, miserable, and very wet, with a side-order of low cloud and ongoing heavy rain.]

[ETA2: then I moved on to the news, and the events in Paris really put our very minor problems in perspective.]
tigerfort: (Default)
2015-11-03 10:07 pm

From another place and time

OK, so that was a little more than ten days. But the fort has been successfully relocated down to Dol Amroth, even if some of the details went a little wrong, and I've now had time to turn a pile of components into a new computer.

All that's left to do is finish relocating things into the rooms we wanted the movers to put them in, redecorate a couple of rooms, unpack the remaining 90% of our stuff from boxes, and tell everyone we've moved! Oh, and check whether the other half of the things on my list of things to be done before we moved retain any relevance, having rather missed their moment.

I'll try and get a post with some pictures in it up fairly soon, but I need to re-relocate the server, first. And take some pictures of the house, come to that.

Meanwhile, if anyone really fancies spending a few days painting and moving boxes around, we have an actual spare bed. And a room it could be put in that (a) isn't the living room and (b) has proper curtains. More realistically, we should at some point have multiple spare beds, and a games table, and a house that's generally a more desirable place to visit. But that'll take a bit longer :)

ETA: the new location should be visible at the top of my journal page to anyone with access/flist status. Message me if you want to see it and can't!
tigerfort: (Default)
2015-10-14 01:03 am

The Final Countdown

(Although given the time, perhaps "Moonlight Shadow" would be a more appropriate title.)

The Movers' vans arrive in a few hours time, and my next entry - barring catastrophes - should be made from Devon in about ten days time.
tigerfort: (Default)
2015-10-09 01:58 pm

No more magic smoke

As alluded to elsewhere, my computer has given up the ghost. While there are many worse things that could have happened the morning after exchanging contracts on the house move, turning my machine on to see the message

Drive Read Error
Press ctrl-alt-del to retry

did not fill me with joy. Since it still complains about drive errors even with the drives taken out I'm pretty sure this is (a) a motherboard fault and (b) a terminal one. Hopefully it hasn't trashed the actual drives on the way out, especially since my backups are (oops) several months old. None of the data on them is actually valuable, but losing/having to redownload it would be irritating.

Also, of course, moving house involves a lot of communicating with people, and while my spare Raspberry Pi is ferpectly adequate for text emails, it's not the best machine in the world for dealing with people's websites (and doesn't have my comprehensive collection of relevant bookmarks and stored passwords). Again, hardly the end of the world, but adding nuisance factor to something that's already stressful and time-consuming.

And because of the short notice, we're going to be without phone and internet connections for the first week or so after we move. Which might make it easier to get more than just our computers unpacked, now I think about it, so maybe that's not all bad :)
tigerfort: (Default)
2015-08-30 04:40 pm

It looks like the seafront at Southend

I had a semi-dream, last night, in which I discovered that being always one step away from actually getting a mortgage was a kind of Sisyphean punishment I'd been sentenced to. I really wish it hadn't felt like such a plausible explanation. (No idea what I'd done to earn the punishment, mind.)
tigerfort: (Default)
2015-05-12 04:19 pm
Entry tags:

If only someone had thought of that...

Two weeks ago:

Me: The house is very cluttered and full of boxes, so you can't get to the walls or anything. I'm worried it might put people off, so I'm trying to make space as fast as I can, before we put it on sale.
Agent: That won't make any difference, don't worry about it. People can see that they'll need to redecorate, and the clutter isn't going to affect that because they know the boxes will move out with you.

Today:

Agent: The feedback from the viewings is that the house is very cluttered and full of boxes, so people can't get to the walls or anything, and it's putting people off. Is there anything you can do to make space (preferably by the next viewings, this afternoon).
Me: [fumes silently, rather than saying "you've just wasted a fortnight, on which you intentionally focussed your marketing efforts in order to get a quick sale".]
tigerfort: (Default)
2015-04-29 11:30 am

Moving on

Fort for sale (Tigers not included).