One of my photos

January 2024

February 1st, 2024 · Posted by Skuds in Life · No Comments · Life

I know its not just me that feels like January lasted for ever. Everybody was joking about it on Twitter so much that it became a cliche, but it really did seem to drag on. Obviously it has been miserable and cold, but its winter, and although we had a little bit of snow it has been warm (for January) after that, so I haven’t been hiding indoors all month.

Most days I was out walking, both with the dogs and on my own. I cover a lot more ground on my own and can listen to a podcast in peace while I walk into the town centre and back or do a circuit of Manor Royal. I also managed to get out on the motorbike a couple of times and even drove the car a couple of times. The first time was going up to Essex. Apart from being a bit cold to use the bike for that long, I wanted to take the dogs with me so had no choice. The other time it was to go to a record fair in Maidenbower and I thought it was going to be cold and wet. I ended up regretting my choice because parking there was terrible and would have been so much easier by bike.

Using the bike is going to get a whole lot less hassle now. I fitted a metal ring to the strap on my helmet so I can make use of the hook inside the seat cover and not have to carry it around with me all the time, but also not worry about somebody nicking it from the bike. I gave that a test when I rode up to the Horsham record fair and it worked perfectly. The only problem is that I can’t really use it if it is raining, but it is still a good thing.

Activity in the month was pretty much the same as ever. I read 10 books on the Kindle, and bought way too much vinyl at those record fairs and markets, but so far have failed in my intentions for the year which were to concentrate on re-reading more of my ‘real’ books and finally get round to listening to Ed Sheeran and Taylor Swift to see what the fuss is all about.

I didn’t watch a lot of TV, apart from the regulars (Pointless, QI, etc.). I did watch the conclusion of season two of Reacher, which was a bit disappointing compared to season one, and compared to the book. I also watched the Fool Me Once ‘limited series’ on Netflix, which I enjoyed a lot more. It was made by the same people who adapted another Harlan Coben book, The Stranger, and set it in the UK and they did a good job of it. The only other thing I really watched was a film called Freelance, which is entertaining enough as a comedy action film, but pretty insubstantial. The sort of thing that passes the time, but you can’t really remember much about it afterwards.

I kept up my winning streak on the Premium Bonds, netting £225. I think that is the 7th winning month in a row now and used part of that to treat myself to a set of active speakers to go with my turntable. Although they are Bluetooth-capable, I chose to connect them up with old-fashioned wires and it is a great improvement over the small BT speaker I was using. I’ll save the Bluetooth for when I want to listen to records on the posh headphones.

One good thing to come out of the month is that I had my final outpatients appointment with Guildford hospital. As it is now nearly five years since my operation and all seems to be going well they are discharging me after one final CT scan, just in case. I’m feeling really good about all that. I something the other day about the survival rates for the cancer I had being something like 50% for five years after diagnosis, and I am well past that now and confident about beating the 10% survival for ten years. I know it doesn’t sound good, but I think I have good reasons to believe I’m in that 10%.

At least January is over now and February can’t drag as much can it? I know its a leap year but it still can’t go on as long as January did.

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