Friday, April 16, 2010

Mistakes & Ladders (T - 3)

Today's soundtrack:  New Order - iTunes Originals

So where did the week go then?  As the new job comes rushing towards me, my final few days of "leisure" are racing by at a rate of knots.  At the same time, my anticipation levels are rising at a similar rate - I can't wait to get stuck in!

At the same time, now my days at home are numbered, Mrs W has realised that there's not much time left for me to knock off the remaining few chores that I've been putting off for the last year.  One of the biggest is getting some paint on the upstairs windows before the wood rots away completely.  Now bear in mind that our 'upstairs' windows are effectively three storeys up, above the garage and the lounge, so getting up there is no mean feat.

Put simply, it involves ladders.

Noting my success at climbing trees last week, Mrs W had obviously come to the conclusion that I'd be just as good at climbing ladders.  So she got hold of the name of a local hire firm who could provide said ladders for a few days.  This week, before I got back to work.

Now I have a confession to make.  Ladders and I do not get on at all well.  Actually, to be fair, the ladders seem pretty relaxed about me, but I am not at all relaxed around ladders.  Especially when I'm thirty foot up the things.  But still, the windows were looking a bit of a mess, and I was actually pretty good up those trees...

Ladders duly arrived, and I was ready to go - paint mixed, shorts on, brushes at the ready.  Next job - get the ladders up into position.  Now the bloke in the hire shop had asked me if I'd anyone to help me, as the ladders (all thirty-five feet of them) might be a bit heavy.  Yeah, I'll be fine (I lied).  A bit heavy was a slight understatement - they weighed a ton!

Somehow, I managed to get them up in place, and started climbing.  And the ladder started swaying.


Still, nothing ventured and all that - and despite a few wobbles and crises of confidence, I managed to vaguely slap a bit of gloss in the general direction of the window frames, covering the bare wood and making things look slightly more presentable than before.

Flushed with success, I then did the same at the back of the house (only two storeys up this time - piece of piss!) and luckily managed to engage the services of the next door neighbour to repair some loose cement around the eaves.

Job done - but at the cost of a mass of bruises where I'd wedged arms and legs into the ladders in a vain attempt to feel secure!

Still, Mrs W was happy, and we celebrated by going out for a slap-up Chinese meal in Frodsham.  It's a nice restaurant and boasts the waiter with the best memory for his customers ever - no matter how long ago we went in (and it's over a year now) he always remembers us (telling us off this time for leaving it so long).  A nice place - the Chinese Delight - well worth a visit if you're in the area.

I also invested in a big external hard drive this week to do a proper backup of all my computery stuff.  Having just upgraded to Windows 7, I thought I'd use the built-in backup utility for the task.  Big mistake.  I set the thing running, and waited.  And waited.  The percentage indicator was crawling along at around 2% per hour. Still, I left the thing running overnight, only to come down in the morning to a 'fail' message.  I set the backup running again, and it crawled along at the same rate as last time.  A quick Google suggested I wasn't the only one having a problem.  So I canned it and downloaded a backup programme I'd used on a different computer and set that running.  Still not quick, but about five times quicker than the Windows option!

So - New Order in the background as I type.  The 'album' is a unique iTunes collection, following a specific format of original tracks combined with some re-recorded tracks and brief interview snippets.  Against all the odds, New Order rose from the wreckage of Joy Division, found their own style and made some cracking albums through the '80s.

Here's True Faith from 1987.  I love this video.  Not a clue what's going on, but what's not to like about bouncy people dressed in funny outfits?

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