1 January 2021 (Friday) - New Year's Day

Spanish New Year’s Eve is usually one of the highlights of my year and its forced cancellation did have me thinking that last night was going to be something of a disappointment. But a rather good bit of dinner followed by a family Whatsapp quiz all leading up to a virtual Zoom-ed Spanish New Year turned out to be a rather acceptable substitute. I suppose it isn’t surprising that I slept through till half past nine this morning.


I made some toast and scoffed it whilst "er indoors TM" and four dogs continued to snore. I had my usual root around Facebook and sent out a few birthday wishes. Some friends really did have a birthday today; others just claim that their birthday is today for cyber-security reasons. Personally I don’t use my birthday as my password, but that’s just me…

There wasn’t much happening on Facebook this morning; presumably (like me) everyone was still recovering from the excesses of a night on the razzle. It isn’t until you’ve staged a lager-frenzy at home that you appreciate the health-giving benefits of having to walk (stagger) home after a night on the razzle.

There was a minor squabble kicking off on the fans of Radio Four Facebook page. You’d be surprised how much argument such a dull-sounding Facebook page generates. This morning’s argument was a religious one; apparently one of the radio’s programs gave a rather simplistic view of religion and various people were claiming to be outraged. When I was a steward in the Methodist church (equivalent of a Deacon in the Church of England) it was my experience that the vast majority of so-called Christians (especially the churchgoers) believed all sorts of stuff; very little of which had any bearing or connection to what the church taught or what was written in the Bible. Very few of the active churchgoers seemed to have any understanding of what they professed to believe, and even fewer had actually read the Bible.


As I waited for "er indoors TM" and the dogs to emerge from their pits I got onto EE’s Live Chat and swapped text messages with Harsimranjeet in the hope of reclaiming money which was outstanding on the accounts I had with them which I closed when I realised that Sky did the same thing as EE but far cheaper. Harsimranjeet was very helpful (bearing in mind I’d packed up with them) and after a little fiddling about he asked if I could give him two minutes. After three minutes he said I’d be getting a refund soon. That will be something to look forward to.

Flushed with success at having got a result from a Live Chat thingy I contacted the power company about my still-not-repaired SmartMeter. I got through to Arjit B and told him the entre sorry tale in that the gas meter thinks I should be paying nearly thirty thousand pounds each month, and that I am continually being told that someone will be in touch in two days’ time but no one ever gets back to me. Arjit B asked me to stay connected, and I did. After twenty minutes he told me to try again tomorrow as the SmartMeter department was closed today, and he didn’t have the ability to leave a message for them. He typed “I have tried on my end but it is not letting me” so I suppose he tried…


One of the highlights of the geocaching year has always been the New Year’s Day walk in which up to fifty of us go on an organized walk. However this year that wasn’t possible. A much smaller and scaled down geo-walk was the order of the day for everyone, and a few months ago I’d seen a multi-cache in Charing which looked as though it would be ideal for a lonely walk today.

We got the dogs organised (Fudge seemed surprisingly quiet) and drove off up the A20. We were soon in the car park and our starting point was easily located. My phone’s geo-app felt the given co-ords were out, but I’ve always felt that this particular app isn’t the best for location. We soon got the required information, did the sums (such as they were) and plotted a plausible location where the plastic tub had been concealed. I won’t say where the thing was hidden, but I will say that the walk was ideal for today. Just far enough for a cold day. No mud, and things to nosey at as we walked, One good dog-walk later and we had the cache in hand.

I took a few photos as we walked. We came back to the car park where we let the dogs have a run round the nearby field. As we left I noticed quite a few people approaching from several directions. There was an open-air picnic being staged there. That was a little bit cheeky… So much for Tier 4 rules, eh?


We came home where Fudge was sick. Rather impressively sick. Fudge seems to have something of a TARDIS-stomach; when he “blows” he manages to bring up impressive volumes of vom.

Having mopped up dog-sick I then spent far too long working on my Atlas of Haematology. It’s a project I’ve been working at (on and off) for years. I intended to spend maybe half an hour on it; I was working on it for the duration of the David Walliams TV pantomime and Gene Wilder’s “Willy Wonka”.


I had a quick dunk in the shower, then tuned in to the New Year’s Day virtual geo-meet. We couldn’t meet up in person, but it was good to chat with friends on-line this evening.

"er indoors TM" then popped to the KFC to get dinner which we scoffed whilst watching the New Year’s episode of “Doctor Who” – an excellent story totally spoiled by some rather dreadful characters. I’ve often said that sci-fi only works if you can relate to the people in the story, and it speaks volumes when you find yourself rooting for the daleks rather than the hero’s sidekick. Fortunately two of the leading four characters left the show this evening which has got to be a good thing…


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