23 January 2022 (Sunday) - Flat Tyre (?)

I woke in a sweat in the small hours following a nightmare in which Captain Kirk (out of “Star Trek”) had been caught copying my Coursera essay on exoplanets as it had been found out that the only qualification Captain Kirk had was a “sistifitcat in porking foxy aliens” and he’d only scraped a bare pass mark. Somehow I was in trouble with Starfleet Command over the whole sorry mess even though I still haven’t got round to writing the essay in question yet.  Waking came as a relief.

I went back to kip and stayed asleep until nine o’clock, then made toast and peered into the Internet as yet another COVID test incubated. Facebook told me that today was an anniversary. Five years ago I took a photo of me walking up to Maidstone hospital with the caption “”Right.... let's see how this pans out...” It has to be said that I walked through the door of that place absolutely terrified, but it turned out to have been one of the better decisions I’ve ever made. Where I’d worked before then had a formal “zero tolerance of bullying” policy, so (with such a formal policy in place) the manager bullied to his heart’s content safe in the knowledge that no allegation of bullying would ever be taken seriously by his superiors.

Whilst I am looking forward to retirement, leaving the workplace will be a  lurch and I would want to go back for a few days each week. Where I am now is *so* different to where I was… I don’t feel physically sick at the thought of going into work anymore…

I had an email telling me of a new geocache not too far away. But it had gone live an hour previously and I was far too late to get the First to Find. Using the Munzee map you can stalk what people are up to. The new geocache had gone live at ten past eight, and the local FTF-hound’s wife had Munz-ed a Munzee on the way to that new geocache a few short minutes later.


We settled the dogs and set off to Hastings to visit parents. After a few miles the car beeped and announced it had detected a lack of pressure in the front left tyre. That was worrying. We stopped and had a look at the tyre and couldn’t see anything wrong. I didn’t want to take a chance so we drove back in to Ashford and to Kwik-Fit where the nice man checked the tyre pressures, said they were all a tad low, put some air into all the tyres and sent us on our way. I asked if maybe having a look for a nail in the tyre might be a good idea. He said if there was a nail in the tyre the alarm would go off again soon, and that I should come back then. I must admit I wasn’t keen on that idea, but with absolute faith in the Kwik-Fit man we went off to Hastings and got there without further incident.


My Dad was in good spirits. We had coffee and cake with him, and he was telling us about his new neighbours who sit at the end of their garden wearing coats trying to catch what sunshine they can in an attempt to get warm. The house they live in is a very open-plan one; clearly too open-plan.

Once we managed to find a parking spot we then found that mother-in law was also well, and then drove home again without the tyre pressure sensors going off. I never had any warnings about tyre pressure in my old car, but then again I never had tyre pressure sensors in the old car. I wonder if I was driving round for years with partially deflated tyres? How often are you supposed to pump up the tyres anyway?


We came home and took the dogs for a little walk. We got to the park, let them off of their leads, and after less than twenty yards they were back on their leads and being marched home in disgrace. Pogo reverted to his old “shout at everyone and everything” ways and I wasn’t having any of it.


I made a start on thinking about my Coursera essay (the one Captain Kirk copied!). I’ve been presented with a list of seven exoplanets and have got to choose the best one for humans to go live on. Two didn’t have liquid water and two probably had aliens already there, so they were easily ruled out. As for the rest… I decided to worry about those later as my brain was hurting.

“er indoors TM” boiled up a particularly good steak dinner which we washed down with a bottle of merlot before setting about a lump of Stilton all whilst watching “Lego Masters: Australia”. Not a bad way to spend the evening really…

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