1 January 2018 (Monday) - New Year's Day

As it was New Year’s Day, over brekkie I had a little retrospective. In many ways one year is often rather like another, but here’s a flavour of 2017 (in my world).

·         My father-in-law died (as did some friends).
·         I left my employer of more than thirty years and now work somewhere where I don’t feel physically sick (every day) at the thought of what epic mountains the boss will make out of trivial molehills.
·         I went on my first foreign holiday. I liked it.
·         I’ve helped "My Boy TM" build me a pergola.
·         Whilst fishing I broke my personal best fish record four times.
·         We staged a few dinner parties. (Must do more).
·         We had a road trip to the Isle of Wight.
·         Having spent ten years building up the astro club and pretending all was peachy with it, I finally walked away from it. (I’m told this is for the best as ultimately I was very bad for the club!)
·         I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve fixed the fence.
·         I’ve been on day trips to Bruges and Cite Europe
·         I’ve discovered afternoon tea.
·         There has been a new series of Star Trek
·         I’ve been to the theatre (twice)
·         "My Boy TM" turned thirty.
·         "er indoors TM" had a big birthday too
·         There was a new album from Sparks which did surprisingly well in the album charts.
·         I met some childhood friends I’ve not seen in years.

All things considered, my year wasn’t uneventful. It was certainly better than some have been. As for this new year?… Who knows – that’s what makes this life such an adventure. It is traditional to have New Year resolutions; I haven’t made any this year. Realistically I need to lose weight. I can do this. But having done so, the weight will just come back. Will I diet? Maybe.

With "er indoors TM" still snoring I did a little geo-puzzling and solved another of the fiendishly tricky puzzles that hopefully a gaggle of us will hunt out during a trip to the wicked city in a month or so. I then wasted an hour trying to solve an RSA encryption. I didn’t solve it.
As I puzzled the rain outside got worse and worse. The plan for today had been to join the geo-gang for a walk, but I’d heard that the walk went across ploughed fields, and I’d also heard that the pub in which people were meeting afterwards wasn’t overly dog-friendly. Turning up at a posh country pub with two mud-encrusted hounds wouldn’t go down that well.

"er indoors TM" eventually got up, and after watching a documentary about Laurel and Hardy we walked the dogs round the block. We came home after twenty minutes; all wet through.
I then spent a little longer working on the RSA decryption; I ended up with a negative mod function which is mathematically impossible. I’ve since been told that Excel isn’t up to mod 403 decryptions. If it isn’t, I shudder to think what is.

We took the dogs round the block; twenty minutes walk had us all soaked. We then settled the dogs and drove out to High Halden. There was a formal geo-meet after the walk (that we’d blown out of). The meet-up was rather good. I do like meeting up at these geo-events. Some people have been going for years; for others they have only been to one or two. It is always good to meet old and new friends.
We stayed chatting for two pints, then came home as it was getting dark.

"er indoors TM" boiled up a rather good pasta bake. We scoffed it whilst watching the second episode of the Festive Bake-off. Not a bad show really.

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