Archive for January, 2010

Same old same old

All too often I have heard people say that its bad to be stuck in a routine and that change is good.

Why would this apply to me?

Surely I am just one of these people that this won’t happen to so I can just tune out and not worry and say anything about it.

Well, it seems not. It seems that I, Nicholas has also to worry about being too comfortable and relaxed in my own little routine.

This has all been brought to light as a few weeks ago I learned that the time was coming near for me to leave the particular section that I work in and move to a totally different office. Its in the same building but comparing it to the work that I am doing already is like saying to me that I have to learn a different language.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I know all too well what it is like for people at the moent not to be in work and I am not complaining about this move at all. It just brings to light how much I have gotten comfortable doing the job I do.

I started in my present job in May 2007. I really love the work. Its different every day. I mostly talk to people by phone and give them information and also reply to emails and written letters that come to our office for information. I work in a state department but I will not say any more about it. I have some very good and supportive colleagues and I am lucky in that regard. I suppose the real comforting thing for me is that I know, and have built up a lot of knowledge since I have started in my present position in the information section.

So, on Monday week this all comes to a different type of adventure and a different chapter for me in my current department. I will be doing a different sort of corporate services role. Ok, its not the most complicated role to take on it still makes me a bit nervous and makes me very conscious of what I am doing but hopefully I will get things right. HOpefully this move wil be good for me and moving around different areas like this in my job might make me more open and adaptable to change.

Maybe you can relate to this and have some helpful hints for me I welcome any helpful suggestions that you feel will help me.

The weather and a little rant

Ok, before you start commenting and say why am I ranting about an “act of god” I am not. I am just fed up with all that has been going on in this country over the past week.

We have had this cold spell for about 3 weeks now. The week leading up to Christmas is one of my first memories of hearing about very bad conditions in parts of the country and then at around that time it started getting very icy round here also. Indeed, I had a near miss with a stupid plonker that was swinging his car out of a business premises as I was walking across the opening in front of him. I had the right of way to walk and he just put his foot to the floor and drove right out in front of me narrowly missing Ralph my Guide Dog.

IN the mornings and evenings going and coming to work Ralph was very good. He would walk slowly and we would have some ice under foot and it was quite slippy. I could live with that and just decided to give myself extra time but then it started getting worse.

After Christmas as I have previously wrote I went to England for a few days. IT had rained on Christmas day here and I thought we might be coming near the end of it and the place might be heating up but was I wrong!

In England we had a few frosty nights but nothing like what I came back to last Saturday. I had a few drinks with my sisters and my sister Audrey’s boyfriend in a pub down town and when we came back out to the car sometime after 10:00 one of the doors was frozen closed.

I am not going to start recounting all of my days from then until now but needless to say the weather was getting very regular and you could depend on it being cold. And on Monday the alarm bels started to go off when we were told that the supplies of salt were running low and we needed a lot more of it to keep the roads clear.

Since Wednesday we have had snow here. I mean the ground just got covered in the space of two hours. I had a late lunch and it was starting to fall at around 2:00 and by 4 when we abandoned the office it was still falling and the ground was very well covered.

So, then starts the blame game. First we are told that its the responsibility of the local authorities to keep the roads clear and they are on top of it. Well, maybe they were trying to be but it is, and was always clear to me that they weren’t.

I don’t blame the local authorities at all. I realise the important task they have with the limited resources. Its always the case though. The people at the top will never take responsibility and will look for the heads of the people at the bottom. I mean, you have the government followed by the department of the environment who are responsible for all local authorities and then the authorities themselves. In fact, our environment minister was so confident that they were all on top of things that he then decides to hand over the control of the gritting of roads to the NRA. Now, they probably should hav had a more active role in this from the beginning as they have knowledge of the road network for the whole country. And, if all this is not bad enough and if you are not sure by what I am writing that they are definetly on top of things which they keep saying they are, we are hearing that by next week in order to conserve the stocks of salt that they are fast running out of we might have to have some road closures.

But don’t worry folks. They are on top of things. Everything is fine. Hospitals are reporting people with injuries as a result of falling or slipping on ice and just today it has been anounced that all schools are to close next week. Public transport is being suspended in certain parts of the country including areas around here.

I do feel sorry for Ralph. He has been very good over the past while as I haven’t been able to work him. I bring him to work when I get a lift and today I worked him to the shop next door as I had a colleague walking with me. I have also heard that this bad freezing weather may be bad for his paws also so will have to be careful with him over the next while. I am not going to go on about how great he is and the independence that he brings to me cause well, if you have seen a Guide Dog working or know someone that has one you will know that already but I could not go back to using a cane round here at the moment. It would be difficult at the best of times to use one in this locality and especially at the moment with this weather so hopefully I can manage with lifts and some nice slow walks.

I suppose the only winner in all of this is the heating suppliers and I am dreading my bill coming in the door.

So, I will slide out to the kitchen now and make my tea.

England and the new year

Well, I went to England on the 28th which was last Monday actually a week ago today as its after midnight now when I am writing this. I wasn’t sure how the roads were going to be for travelling to the airport and I had been offered a lift so I wouldn’t have to take the train and I was glad of that. I had a gig the night before and the roads were terrible trying to get there and coming back but we managed it.

The phone woke me at 9:00 and I was leaving at 10:00 so it was all go to try and get myself packed and ready.

Got to the airport nice and early and got myself and Ralph through security and down to the gate with plenty of time to relax before getting on the plane. For anyone reading this for the first time Ralph is my Guide Dog and I was taking him with me for the few days. He has flown before and doesn’t mind it apart from the take off and landing.

I was very impressed at Stanstead when the lady that was assisting me asked if Ralph might like to go to the toilet. I also found her to be very friendly and efficient and also the guy that assisted me on the way back was the same so I would have no problems flying in and out of there again as I think this is the first time Ralph has been in that airport with me. I was also impressed with Ryanair who, on this occasion apart from forgetting to put my assistance needs requirements forward to the airport assistance people didn’t give me any further hastle and I had a nice pleasant experience both going and coming back so fair play to you lads. I will fly again with you and Ralph will be happy to also.

You will remember in my last post I said that I didn’t have an idea what Louise had gotten me for Christmas. Well, the moment of truth came when I got to her dads place. She bought me an iPod Nano. I have to say its a lovely little thing and I am still getting use to it but I am excited as to what it will allow me to do now in terms of being able to buy and download music and even books. I would like to start reading more so hopefully I can start getting my hands on more audio books. I also have to thank my good friend Stuart Lawler for his assistance in getting it working. An iPod was something that I had thought of getting for a while but I always go on about things like that but never act on it so I expect Louise was fed up listening to me talking about it and thought it would be the ideal present and, I have to say I am thrilled with it now. I have to get myself familliar wit putting podcasts and stuff on it now but I expect it will all come in time.

The rest of the week just consisted of going to London to meet a friend and catching up with Louise’s family.

We celebrated the new year at home with her dad and a few beers and some food. It was nice. I hate the evening actually. Its always very depressing and if you are in a pub you get people coming up and hugging and kissing you and stuff and I just hate all that. There was a few bangers going off outside but it wasn’t too bad.

Saturday I got home to freezing conditions. I mean, it was cold in England before I left but nothing like what I experienced when I stepped off the plane. And, if that wasn’t enough when I got on the train home there was no heat on it and I am almost sure that it was blowing out cold air.

so, its all over now.

All the hipe and rushing around, and presents and then the waiting around for the new year and the crap movies and stuff on Tv.

Its back to work in a few hours and who knows what the new year will bring from here on. But, I am ready for it so lets go.

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