The old year is drawing to its close and for some this is a time for reassessment and the making of resolutions for the New Year. Bugger that! For me to start making resolutions now when I have been signally reticent from doing so for all the other years of my life would smack of desperation.
No, I shall merely do what I have done ever since I started working in the field of education (and how apt that metaphor really is, especially with regard to the preparation of the ground) and that is to look upon the arrival of the New Year as the countdown to the start of a new term and finding our “clients” insufferably refreshed from the holiday, while we, however . . .
My reading of “Varney the Vampyre” (originally published as a Victorian “penny dreadful” and which, but for electronic publishing would have been justly forgotten) continues apace. It is indeed awful and gives new meaning to the word “hack”, but I find it strangely compelling. Not only because of the dreadfully bathetic title, but also because the writing is of so low a character that one can confidently read it as though it was written by oneself on an off day! Delight!
Lunch was in a vast restaurant in Gava which was advertising places for the New Year’s Eve bash at a mere €65 per person. Our meal was a more civilized €11·50 with drink and coffee; more than acceptable.
The visit to the doctor was most encouraging as he has pronounced my lungs “perfect” and I can stop taking the inhalers at once – which might also have some effect on my voice as they might have been making my vocal chords raspy.
As a purely psychological reaction I have begun to cough more and later this evening I will probably do a reasonable vocal impersonation of Louis Armstrong – but I expect to be better by tomorrow. I have had enough and more than enough of not feeling fully well. I want to enjoy the rest of my short holiday.
Tomorrow we will be going to Terrassa for lunch and then the evening celebrations the high point of which is eating twelve grapes each one to the sound of the bell tolling the hours at midnight.
Traditionally the clock that is shown on television is one in the centre of Madrid but I expect that we will be tuning in to the Catalan television version and so will see a clock tower is some god-forsaken part of deepest darkest Catalonia where a small village will have its Warhol fifteen minutes of fame - or rather just over twelve seconds of fame before it lapses back into obscurity, the lighted clock tower sinking back into the pre-television lights darkness.
The charging tray has been a great success and all I need now is one of those fine nib permanent markers to write which gadgets will work with which leads on the thoughtfully provided labels. At the moment it would seem that a strange wave of logicality has swept through the electronics industry and the lead with the little boat like configuration is able to power a whole range of things. I must admit that I have a healthy scepticism about any “logic” that the makers of sleek metallic containers of flashing lights might use on their products and I suspect that I am doing irreparable harm to the delicate electronic insides of my favourite things.
So far, and using only four of the myriad available leads I have been able to charge camera, phone, Kindle (two types), Nano and iPod. I might actually have bought something which is more than a mere gadget and is actually worth the money. I shall savour this unusual experience!
I have to admit that some of the connectors on the leads that I am not using look positively medical in their complexity and I shudder to think what is actually powered by them. Presumably they relate to some of the vast array of chargers that narrow-minded mobile phone makers made sure could only power their own products until some sense was beaten into them. It never ceases to shock me that, despite the historical fact of the VHS/Betamax debacle manufacturers have been allowed to get away with spurious attempts at commercial exclusivity.
Now it is only Apple who spurns industry standards and demand their own. It cannot be too long before the iPad falls to the ubiquity of the USB and the mighty citadel of Apple purity falls! After all there are USB ports on my MacBook Air so the logic would suggest that the iPad should not be exempt.
I note that Channel 4 is going to give Stephen Fry some indulgence space to nurture his verbosity on his 100 favourite gadgets. I think that we (Toni) will have to set the Machine to record this, as we will be in Terrassa at the time of the broadcast.
Something to look forward to.