December 23rd, 2009



Made it here in one piece yesterday. I slept on the plane, watched dawn over Bristol airport, and then slept again in the car from Bristol to my parent's place in Devon. Which meant that I spent the day feeling tired, but not dead.

Their new house is very nice - apparently it used to be the groundskeepers lodge for the estate it's at the edge of, and it's clearly been upgraded on several occasions - some of the roof timbers are rough hewn from the nearby woods. The ceilings are quite low (about 8-foot), but the rooms are spacious. They're going to be doing a lot of work to it over the next year or so, so it'll be interesting to see how different it is whenever I visit.

They only moved in a short while ago, and the phone only got set up 3 days ago due to BT's incompetence, so there's no broadband yet. I was able to make Dad's life much easier by using my mobile to get him some low-speed internet for him, and also by getting his new iPhone up and running - having to download the entirety of iTunes just to activate it was rather a pain.

Other than braving the warzone that is Tescos things have been delighfully quiet. There aren't even traffic noises here, and the stars are incredibly bright due to the fact that the nearest town is a fair distance away. We decorated the house with tinsel and baubles, ate roast lamb for dinner and then played a game of Citadels, and then bed.

I woke briefly at 3am to use the toilet, and was joined by Uther, my parents' 10-month-old Alsatian. He greeted us at the door when we first arrived, and I was somewhat shocked to discover that he's now long enough to put a paw on each of my shoulders while he washes my face. He's very friendly and playful, although not terribly careful, so Noah (3.5 year old nephew) keeps having to duck at the last minute when a massive tail whips by. In any case, Uther came to investigate who was padding around the house in the middle of the night and then joined me in bed, delighted to find someone awake enough to play with him. He was very well behaved though, as soon as I turned the light out he rested he head on my chest and went straight to sleep. I do miss having a dog sometimes.

Today I have a blocked nose and a sore throat, but neither one is so bad that I care an awful lot. I shall simply hope they don't get worse and spend the day relaxing.

I hope you're all having a similarly relaxing time, or soon will be.

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