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Archive for October, 2005

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COR13 Curse of the Missing Text

Monday, October 31st, 2005

Unlucky 13…

Shouldn’t be working on Halloween’s Eve anyway, not even to sort out some minor details.

My file has only partly been converted to RTF; by that I mean that most of it is missing. I worked on that file over 3 days. It contains most of the scientific notes for my NaNo novel. Still, I should be grateful that it seems to be intact on the Palm itself.

That part which has been converted has lost all formatting and random page breaks have been inserted everywhere. I dare not write large documents on this wretched machine!

After re-saving the file (making sure to select ‘save as text’), my card-reader cum card is now stuck in the USB hub. Windows (I’m not a fan of Windows!) first failed to recognize the disk, then failed to open it and now fails to stop it. The red light shines menacingly at me: I dare not remove the thing.

Some malware has entered the system. I dare not restart it.

Happy Halloween

COR 12: The Final Setup

Sunday, October 30th, 2005

This seems to be it. My Palm has achieved indepndence from the desktop and I am ready to hit the road. Here is the final setup:
[read on]

Missing Hedgehog

Saturday, October 29th, 2005

There’s no sign of Sonic. Sure, the catfood has disappeared, but the neighbourhood cat looked a bit smug in the morning and there’s no telling who the lucky recipient was. You can smell the stuff from two blocks away; there’d be no shortage of takers.

I started with putting the food out at about 20:00, when it is suitably dark, near the leaf mounts behind the shed where Sonic hadn’t taken refuge and am now moving it slowly across the lawn, a little closer every day, until we can see it from the sliding doors. Or could see it, if it wasn’t pitch dark. The only way to be sure who is actually eating the food would be to lurk all night long observing the bowl, or else install a night camera triggered by an infrared beam as seen on ‘Wildlife on One’.

I should never have let that hedgehog go in the first place.

But let’s be brutally honest here: this thing is getting in the way of my travels. I shouldn’t have worried whether John would take care of it—he went all dewy-eyed and insists I’ll buy only the finest catfood (It’s a hedgehog for cripes sake!) I can see our planned two week holiday in Bali go ‘puff’ if he claps eyes on Sonic again. But I do feel guilty about letting him (her?) go; I’m even considering taking down the little ramp I built so I could trap Sonic again. But I doubt that even hedgehogs are that stupid.

Prickly Visitor

Thursday, October 27th, 2005

This morning, when I pulled back the heavy curtains from the double-glazed sliding doors facing the garden, I saw a grey, blurry blob moving alongside the wall; quite slowly but with an implied sense of urgency. I squinted: it could only be a hedgehog. I went upstairs to recover my glasses and sure enough, there it was, moving about restlessly in the unaccustomed sunlight. It must have tumbled down the low brick wall and was now unable to get back out onto the lawn. Moving about so much must have cost it a lot of energy and it looked small for this time of year.
[read on]


Tuesday, October 25th, 2005

Gaaaa…I’m sitting in the surgery, waiting for a blood test. I have just handed over 50 quid for a rabies vaccination and my arm is still sore from yesterday’s jabs. The nurse had a glint in her eyes as she went through the list of tropical diseases; it is not something she often gets to do in Tadley.

[read on]

COR 11

Monday, October 24th, 2005

I have a Windoze box! Yeah, I know. Bought at an auction for 140 quid. It has all of 128MB RAM, but I have just (for the first time ever) copied and pasted the entire entry in one go! It also meant that for a brief, heady moment I had two working PDAs. My head was spinning—at least until the Palm HotSync manager decided to stop working. I unistalled the whole thing, cleaned up whatever I could find, restarted the computer and reinstalled from the .zip file only to find my stupid data entries still there i.e. nothing had been fixed. Cheers, Windoze; trying to make our lives easier as per usual (not). So ‘m still physically dependent on my husband’s laptop to HotSync. But once, just the once, I was able to do this all by myself and during that process I managed to install a trial version of the glorious BackupBuddyVFS. I installed it on the SD card and backed up the Palm. I restored the Palm. —The ‘date and time’ preferences screen popped up.

[read on]

I’m fed up! (COR 10)

Saturday, October 22nd, 2005

So, the Palm backup card didn’t work and it trashed what was once a beautiful system. The Wordsmith backup on my SD card comprises a trial version, which may be better than nothing. I paid for the whole hog, but I’m fully prepared to limp on with a trial version. At this rate, I’m almost prepared to chalk my novel onto slate, once I hit the road. Which begs the question: what is all that IT hoolabaloo for, exactly.
[read on]

COR 9: running around in circles, tearing out my hair

Friday, October 21st, 2005

9 days to go until start of NaNoWriMo; 1 month until I’m on the plane to Bangkok and I still don’t have a working PDA.
[read on]

Glorious Autum

Monday, October 17th, 2005

This weekend the grey clouds lifted for two days of glorious sunshine, just in time for my sister and her squeeze to finally visit us.

“Let’s go for a walk,” she beamed.

Oh no! The heath is pleasant enough but overly familiar and we would probably sink ankle-deep into the mud.

“Come on, let’s go into the woods!”

Woods? I have seen a few strips of woodland around the Friendly Neighbourhood Atomic Weapons Establishment, but that is miles away and surrounded by busy roads.

John was even harder to mobilise than me, moaning about a cold, but when I saw my sister’s face fall, I relented and pulled him along. He perked up when he looked at the map: there were a number of small footpaths leading into blank areas which might or might not be covered in dense forest where we could get suitably lost.
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Call me crazy, but…

Friday, October 14th, 2005

I have just signed up for the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo; I know, it’s a stupid name) even though I’m flying out on the 21st rather than the 29th as originally planned. But, hey, by then I figure I’m so into the flow that I’ll make the 50k wordcount while waiting for my interchange at Aman Airport.
[read on]