Wednesday, August 24

In The Paddock 2

The Saladeers and Erection Team laid the foundations for the second 'Party In The Paddock' - another brilliant evening, followed, of course, by possibly an even better one for the organisers at the 'Better Tidy Up The Field And Polish Off What's Left' event the next day.

I didn't get a chance to snap any pictures this time, other than a few earlier on, but I hope someone will contribute a few of theirs which I'll add here soon.

The book 'Minutes of The Paddock Committee Meetings' may also be serialised here when I have the nerve.

Saturday, August 6

Dunstable College gets a new web site

30 miles south of Astcote is a place called Dunstable. It's where the traffic grinds to a halt and is annoying close to Luton but its saving grace is that it has a friendly college called Dunstable College who have paid me every month for over 10 years now.

The nice young man I took on to help me do the new web site disappeared at the start of the summer break having created some interesting coding to transfer data for courses etc, and forms that would magically help visitors get information on-line etc. But before he'd actually finished it. I'd put most of the pages together but, whilst an enormous improvement on the old site, just as the house hell broke out (see below), I realised that I was in another tight spot having promised the Principal that people visiting the site during the crucial summer recruitment weeks would be able to see some decent pages and get useful information.

A colleague and I managed to fix most of the pages and are still trying to transfer data and we've just replaced the old one with our efforts. See them here. Just as we were about to celebrate I noticed that all the vertical scroll bars were missing! Neither of us are particularly good with html code (that was why we'd got the lad in) but we've learned more in the last few days than either of us had picked up in the previous x years! Fixed the scroll bars in Internet Explorer, at least, although they're still not there in Firefox which is the browser I like best. Hope our prospective students aren't all trendy Firefox users!!

We're still rapidly correcting mistakes but, basically, the whole thing comes from here in Astcote and there's no way I could have done it, house hell or not, without the facilities and ability to work non-stop in this little studio of mine. So thank you, little house.

Russell - I may need that Hymer!

Don't sell it yet! Your dad might need it!

It's still Summer Time, Katie . . .

Katie is the brilliant daughter, who interestingly signs off as my eldest daughter, living and working even further up North than my LSDA colleague. So this is for her in case I forget to phone, e-mail first. And for the rest of you too - but she gets to read it first, OK. I/we haven't moved. I'd tell you if we did, before we did. There was a sort of plan emerging and it was looking very much as though it was proceeding, although anyone reading between the lines would have appreciated that I wasn't entirely happy with the idea. However, the really annoying, awful and bad-mannered Egyptian man who had said that he was buying our house and would be moving all his stuff onto our drive if we didn't agree to complete a few days ago backed out of the deal at the last minute. He was going to try that trick of getting everybody in the chain committed to spending loads of money and then offering less in the hope that we'd have to accept the lower offer or lose money but I told him where to go as soon as I got wind of what he was up to.

This didn't make me particularly popular but there you go. So, having spent a week packing stuff up at the last minute and crawling into bed at some ridiculous hour exhausted, dusty and speaking to no-one except lawyers and agents, it's all off and the MK house is in boxes, beds dismantled, loft empty and everyone a bit down in the dumps.

Thank heavens for The Village, I say, but I have to say it quietly to myself . Anyway, yes, I'm looking for somewhere suitable to put everyone and possibly myself but no, I'm not moving and I will tell you when there's something definite.

The rest of you, including my eldest son who was last heard of in Brighton and owes me a birthday card and a finance company quite a bit on a Hymer camper van, will find out shortly afterwards. That's if I don't run out of money in the meantime which was another reason for moving.