Saturday 6 July 2024

I started a post a month ago, but parked it.

 We have seasons. 

These days I don't feel much like talking to the world, or in fact people in general. Things are not as they were, and while I'm still who I was, things that were once a core part of my life have become areas of uncertainty and best. Assumptions made, foundations laid, turned out not to be quite what they appeared.

But life does go on. I'm still playing with Gospel Bell, still taking pictures. The idea of retiring in a couple of years is now extremely appealing, though the fine (and even some course) detail is still to be worked out. 

So I'm not dead yet. That will come, but likely not very soon.

Monday 18 March 2024

Is this the year of closure?

 Not the year when I get release from things - rather the 12 month period when the websites I've been using for a long time finally disappear.

I first joined Harmony Central in the late 1990s, having found them through OLGA - online guitar archive - because they had tab for a lot of songs. Eventually OLGA had to go for legal reasons, then the site was sold multiple times over while keeping the original guys in place while trying to (badly) update the software to cope with traffic levels. I got banned for a week for using a word that had racist connotations in America, and having broken away decided not to return after. Another round of badly managed changed and the site fell off a cliff, with at least 2 other forums being started by HC refugees. 

I went back a couple of years ago, and instead of thousands of posts per hour, traffic was down to a few posts per week. Some of the guys remaining were cool, and it was nice to hang out there again.

Then today, the forum was unavailable. I know it had been hanging by a thread - looks like the owner just stopped paying the bill for hosting.

Bye HC -  so long, and thanks for all the fish.


Or not. It seems HC is still going after all, something about which I'm very pleased.

Sunday 18 February 2024

Weird. Very weird.

I've just spent an hour sorting through family photos - a task I'd promised to do as part of clearing the flat, and seeing my parents as I remembered them, but 20 years younger than I am now is very, very weird. Pictures of my father with dark hair and beard. Pictures of my mother, young and yet never *quite* young looking. 

Also odd was seeing pictures of my 18th birthday - looking much older than 18 - pictures further back of me wearing Delaune cycling club colours aged 15/16, further back still before the cycling gave me a stoop and neck problems that continue to this day, when I stood straight at 13 or 14.

Then there are my mothers pictures of her trip to Yemen in the brief window when westerners could visit with only a moderate risk. There's not a single picture of her in the set, but these are rare and almost unobtainable views. There's also poetry in the back, not hers I think, but written by someone she met there.

Pictures can sometimes carry so much.

Everything stays the same, everything changes.

 As I'm getting older it feels more and more difficult to talk, to communicate. Some of that is possibly thanks to trying to learn French and the re-wiring going on (not literally, but learning languages does cause some changes) in my head, but some of that is just the sheer effort required to do and say stuff, whether in words, music, photos or email. I'm still me, but it feels like an old me.

 It's probably why the blog is a wilderness now, barely tended. Maybe one day I'll want to say more again AND have the energy to do it.

Monday 29 January 2024

That may have been the longest break ever on here.

 Sometimes one just needs a break. There had been lots of good intentions to post at various times, but when it came to it, there just wasn't the will. We also got sick, first with Covid in early December, then with a nasty respiratory infection that just wouldn't let go. We started feeling it on boxing day evening, and it pretty much dominated things for the next few weeks: last week was the first time I was anywhere near being normally productive, end even then it wasn't ideal. Bluergh. It's been so bad I've been wondering if retirement was going to become more than just desirable, but at least it's receding for now.

So what else is new?

Nothing really. We look forward to returning to France in the spring for a couple of weeks, we both still battle with (our lack of) French, after a long break since early December I've had a couple of gigs on guitar again. 

Oh, and our son is 36. It's hard to believe that we are quite firmly an older couple, with offspring closer to 40 than 30. Just bizarre.