Winter has been interesting. Looking back, I did a lot more than I thought I had – and there have been some big changes.
Some things that happened: I saw in the New Year with a lovely quiet party, then went for a New Year’s Day Walk. Inspired by that, I decided to do all of the Cheeky Walks this year and have so far done 6 out of 21. I visited the Chepstow Mari Lwyd and the de la Warr’s Ladybird exhibition; organised three Brighton Java sessions (one I spoke at one but wasn’t happy with the talk); restarted the Not for the Faint-Hearted Sessions; wrote 32 daily blog posts in Two Towns about psychogeography and adventure; had a great surprise-night-out at 8 Miles High; went to Mathilda’s Slash/Night2; started a programming blog; enjoyed watching The Babadook and Bitter Lake; saw the eclipse on Brighton Beach. I didn’t have any interesting nightmares.
I finally made the leap to working for myself. I handed in my notice at Crunch in January and now have my own company, Riddlefox, and will be starting my first contract at the end of April. To celebrate the new company I bought an actual fox:
I also made a trip to India, visiting New Delhi, Mathura (leaving after three hours), Bharatpur, Dausa, Pushkar, Mussoorie, Rishikesh and Haridwar – not bad for two weeks. I have almost sorted out the photos and will probably blog things in a week or two.
Probably the biggest event of the winter was my Mum being ill. We all had a difficult wait before she went for an operation the day after Mothering Sunday. She seems to be recovering (as well as settling into the new house with Dad). It’s going to take some time for things to get back to normal (or, rather, a new normal) – but, thanks to the work of the doctors and nurses, we’ve been delivered from something that could have been much worse.
The last two Season Notes have both featured disappointment at how underwhelming my reading is. I finished 35 books in the winter of which, as usual, few were any good. Viv Albertine’s biography Clothes, Clothes, Clothes. Music, Music, Music. Boys, Boys, Boys was inspiring and heartbreaking; after 6 months, I finally finished ST Joshi’s massive Lovecraft biography; Release It! was one of the best technical books I’ve read
Despite doing a lot I still feel disappointed by what I didn’t do. I only sent out the novel a couple of times; I lost a lot of weight and put a chunk of it back on. I’m having treatment for my hip but still not running. I still feel busier than I should be and I’m still keeping to-do lists, despite knowing they’re bad for me. I should either do something about these things or stop caring.
Spring is coming and it will soon be warm enough to swim again. There are so many exciting things on the horizon: the General Election, gigs by Eddie Argos and the Nordic Giants,The Brighton Fringe Festival, my 39th birthday and Glastonbury (Kayne West!). I have upcoming performances at Hammer and Tongue on April 2nd, at the Catalyst on April 16th and at the Odditorium on May 28th (you can subscribe to the new mailing list if you want updates on these sorts of things). I’ll also do some promotion for my secret Lovecraft short story project. And there’s my new contract. Life is good.