Loved Things, A Brain Dump of Sorts


  1. Chilli flavoured plantain chips
  2. Peri-peri chicken (having a cheeky Nandos is a thing, you know)
  3. The scent of warm waffles
  4. Friday nights (the prelude to the only truly quiet times I have)
  5. Catch up TV (for how easy it makes indulging my fascination with Leroy Jethro Gibbs)
  6. Postcards (sending and receiving them)
  7. Running into old friends in the most unlikely of places.
  8. When a shuffled playlist throws up a particularly apt song
  9. Early morning runs by the beach
  10. Scoring a late (winning) goal in Football Manager

15. Finding My Rhythm

Beach Boulevard, Aberdeen, 2016

One of the things I’m looking to achieve this year is to run a 10k race, which is why three to four times a week I grab my gear and hit the road. I use the MapMyRun app which paces me during the week from a leisurely 2k easy run on a Tuesday to a longer (now 5k+) run on the following Sunday.

As my run times improve and the distances lengthen, what I realise is that my natural predilection for just hitting go and running works fine for speed but works against my distance, as I am often far too winded to post a useful time once that initial burst of energy has fizzled out.

Being paced by the app has allowed me to find my own rhythm, a pace that allows me optimise both overall time and distance. None of my split times come close to challenge my top speed, but by running at that speed for longer, I find I make better progress overall. Therein lies the lesson for me… Find my rhythm.

09. Epic Fail

Uneven shelf — BUT functional

The plan — if stopping at the B&M across town and picking up two wall mounted shelves and a spirit level with no inkling of what to do with either counts as one — was to spend the evening measuring, marking, drilling and putting up two shelves. The objective was to provide storage for books, a journal and my phone in a location accessible from my bed. I was certain it would be an absolute doodle, given my decent score in woodwork in my secondary school days, and my machine shop expertise during my undergrad.

Ruined wall (for another day!)

It took only a few minutes before it became apparent that I had both underestimated the level of skill required and overestimated my previous knowledge. By then I had already mucked up the first location I had identified, with only my refusal to admit defeat driving me on.

I just about got there with a functional product in the end, poorly aligned edges and simmering frustration notwithstanding. For what it is worth, I suspect my time would have been better used paying someone else to do it whilst I focused my energies elsewhere.

Lesson Learned.