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Brighton, England

Weeknotes #16

This week has flown by! With little notable to write about, let’s see if I can cobble something together.

Progress on my garden continues. On Monday I decided that I want to grow my own fruit and vegetables, so starting with two small planters, I’ve planted some tomatoes, lettuce, peppers and carrots. My record for keeping plants alive is fairly abysmal, so attempting to grow food (with the additional risk of various insects and vermin wanting to spoil the fun) may prove challenging, but I’m willing to give it a go. One week in, and nothing has died. Yet.

Aiming to make the most of working in London, I’m slowly sorting out tickets for various evening events and meet-ups. On Thursday I walked from Westminster to Islington to attend Front-end London, my first time back at Diespeker Wharf in nearly four years. Some of the organisers have moved on, as have any regular attendees I would recognise, so it was odd to be back – and a bit underwhelming too, to be honest.

The real highlight of this week was Dave sharing some old camcorder footage he’d found, filmed during a camping trip to Wales in 2005.

On reflection, the years between me graduating from university and moving to the States where a halcyon period. Friends from school were getting to know my friends from McDonald’s, and the annual weekend mountain biking in Coed-y-Brenin was a key date in the social calendar (it still is, less the mountain biking). It’s wonderful to discover that a small portion of that time was captured.

Beyond mountain biking, it’s funny to look back and see what counted for entertainment before the advent of the smartphone. Be it kicking a football (often at each other), failed attempts at launching a bottle rocket, or trying to make a second-rate laser-tag game work, what’s most noticeable is that nobody can be seen staring at their phone.

My appearances in the video are mostly embarrassing (and not just the point where I reveal my arse), but it’s the sections where Kris features that take on the greatest significance. It’s been just over a year since his funeral, so enough time has passed to allow me to watch this footage and smile. His tour of the on-site toilet and its plumbing is hilarious, as is his attempt to wake me up – it’s like watching Steve Irwin wrestle a Crocodile! Dear God, I can be grumpy.

At one point in the video, I’m heard saying “I can’t wait to see this video Dave”. Well, it only took 14 years. In an age of unlimited video, nothing Netflix or Amazon has could rival the enjoyment I had watching this shaky, low-resolution camcorder footage. Thanks, Dave.

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