Most of my time outside of work at the moment is filled with sorting things out for moving house. Most close friends will testify to this as they’re probably now sick of hearing “no not in yet, need to sort a, b, c & d” first.
Moving house is a pain in the bum. Through the changing circumstances of friends and others around me I’ve had to move house during the last two summers. I always forget how much stuff I have, I forget how long it takes to pack, I forget how much cleaning, sorting and nesting needs to be done before a new house becomes home. And that’s *after* you find somewhere to move to.
Now more than ever it feels like there’s not enough hours in the day. There’s so much good stuff on like the Carlsberg Comedy Carnival and the Festival of World Cultures. I have a stack of blog posts, articles and books I’m egging to read and now that the world cup is over good movies are hitting the cinemas once more. I haven’t had a chance to get to grips with the new version of WordPress yet or written about useful geeky things I’ve come across at work. I haven’t had a chance to get a haircut!
Hopefully in about 2 weeks time this will change. Living in town is going to give me back on average 2 hours per day. That’s a gain of 14 hours a week.
I’m determined to make good use of this gain. It’s probably going to be a challenge given I could easily spend one of those extra hours a day in bed in the morning by delaying the alarm clock!
It’s going to be an interesting and hopefully fruitful challenge.
Tis that time of year again. Time to sort your holidays for the holidays.
December 26th, besides being my birthday is the last bank holiday of the year. This year it falls on a Saturday which makes the “how many days off do I take?” question a bit more tricky to answer.
Citizens Information website to the rescue. Fair play to them, information is there in black and white and tells us that as the bank holiday falls on a weekend day, we are not automatically granted a bank holiday on the following Monday, as you may have thought. Here’s the skinny:
Public holidays falling on a weekend
Where a public holiday falls on a weekend, you do not have any automatic legal entitlement to have the next working day off work. This occurs in 2009 when St Stephen’s Day (26 December) falls on a Saturday. This means that Monday 28 December 2009 is not a public holiday. When this happens you are entitled to the normal alternative arrangements concerning employment and public holidays that is:
A paid day off within a month of the public holiday
An additional day of annual leave
An additional day’s pay
The nearest church holiday to the public holiday as a paid day off.
Your employer can require you to attend work on those days.
While on the bus home, the chatter on Twitter about the 09.09.09.09.09 timestamp home sparked a memory of a blog post I had read. It was on Darragh’s blog, on 08.08.08 (and probably at 8.08am too knowing him) looking back on the year that had passed. I hope he doesn’t mind be borrowing the idea as a mould for a post that I’ve had lying around the nether regions of my head for a while.
So where was I this time last year?
This time last year I was living in the apartment I’m now looking across the rooftops at. Luckily, this apartment was quite compact and all on a single level as I tore ligaments in my left ankle and was resigned to crutches for about 3 weeks, unable to stand or walk on it. It was horrendous for someone as independent in mind as I am. But it helped me learn a lot of things about myself and people close to me at the time that I thought I could rely on so not all bad
I had time booked off work to (finally) take a holiday for the first time in nearly a year but had to leave booking it till the last minute as I wasn’t too hot on the idea of spending a holiday abroad on sticks. Thankfully it all worked out and I got to book a trip to France sans crutches where my long-held romantic notions of the country were confirmed. The food, the wine, the landscape and cityscape of Lyon and the Rhone Valley, the lifestyle, the attitudes. I loved it. Lesson learned: holidays are really good for you.
In summary, things were pretty good – nice new place to live, job I loved, had started learning to drive and in the full of my health (well, from the knees up anyway!).
And this year?
Right now, I’m the happiest I’ve ever been. I’m thankfully still in the job I love, in the full of my health, living in a lovelier (and cheaper!) new place with a great family and group of friends around me none of which I’ll ever take for granted. And I’ve found my best friend.