You've got to laugh... Otherwise you'd go mad. My hopefully-quiet working-from-home and easing-off-a-bit Friday was actually a 14 hour day of hard work. Bugger.... Worse yet, Saturday was another 8 and Sunday a further 6. This is unsustainable.
The only relief in the weekend was a blissful couple of hours on Saturday afternoon trying to get the Christmas shopping started with Mrs G and a couple of beers on Saturday night, followed by another couple of hours on Sunday nipping to the post office and picking up train tickets for today.
Friday was just hellish. I spent the entire day trying to yet again unpick someone else's logic and understand how they'd arrived where they had, only to find that they'd started off from the wrong place originally. This meant going right back to the beginning and working out every change they'd made over the last two months. (Sarcasm on) Nice. (Sarcasm off) This continued late into the night.
Saturday afternoon - after a couple of calls and more maths work on Saturday morning, we had some time with Son via the wonders of Skype live and sleepy from Australia. He's moved on from Hong Kong and is now staying with some good friends of ours, an hour outside of Sydney. I can sense the relief in Mrs G who is clearly glad that her first born has made it to a known location with known people. He's clearly having a great time and is planning to hangout in Oz until the new year. Currently looking for bar work in the Sydney area to top up his coffers. Great to catch up with him. After this, Mrs G and I got on the old bikes for the only exercise I'm getting at the moment - although the distant hotel helps with a bit of walking obv.
This week, they've opened the new cinema in the Quays and those of you that know me will be aware that I'm a bit of a movie buff and so this has been eagerly awaited. Not so much by Mrs G who is less of a fan, but on this occasion actually suggested going to see something. We wandered into the brand spanking new 10 screen thing and tried to peruse the wares that would be available for our viewing pleasure... But not a bit of it. How is it, that in the foyer of a cinema there is nowhere to see what the hell is being shown. No list, no show times, no idea if it's full .. Nothing... What the hell? There's a girl with a desk and some machines to collect prepaid tickets and an escalator upstairs. Must all be happening up there thinks I. Up we go. A place to buy popcorn, a place to be ripped off with expensive sweet treats and buckets of coca cola... And yet still no sign of what's on... What is this madness? It makes no sense. Back down stairs and a word with the girl with the desk....
ME: "Umm, excuse me. Can you tell me what's on?".. GWTD: "Errm, well, um.. There's this screen" points to a big screen on the wall showing some trailers for films, and no indication of show times, or even if they're being shown in this cinema, or even released yet - some of which I know are not... GWTD: "..and I have a leaflet, and I can look it up on the internet using this tablet that they've given me"
The penny drops. They're not ready. They've opened before they've finished. Poor girl hasn't a clue what's going on and nor does anybody else. Clearly somebody at head office set a deadline for this place to be open, and as a result they're open... Just not ready to be open. Familiar story and one I'm getting sick of. (Old man rant on) What is wrong with people? Everything can be done properly if you plan it properly. FFS (Old man rant off)
We left none the wiser as to what's showing, and disappointed with a poor start to what will no doubt be a great venue - once it's finished. Cineworld management should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves. :-)
Sunday had more maths, more phone calls and more maths. We did some more cycling - though not as much and stopped in Coffee#1 for a beverage, which while it's a chain, is a very nice chain compared to the limes of Starbucks and Costa - both of which are pretty terrible.
And so to Monday morning and back on the train as per...
While I'm in ranting mode, let's just consider the state of the so called "First Great Western" service. You may remember last year I had a bit of a moan about the lack of wifi service (to mention just one thing) on this busy commuter route. A service that every other train company can manage. You may also remember how I retracted my gripe somewhat on the basis that they had a press release stating that they would be rolling out a wifi service in the very near future. So where the feck is it? Yet again they fail to deliver. Their ticket prices continue to rise, while their service generally deteriorates. There's still no update on the "entertainment" system which has either been showing the same thing for a month or absolutely nothing at all because it only works half the time. And the power sockets sometimes work and sometimes don't. If you've got any sensitive electronics to charge, I'd give it a miss. Now I know these are first world problems, and there are more important issues to deal with in the world, but when you're paying more than the cost of a flight from Scotland to London to travel 120 miles in 2 hours (do the maths - that's 60mph - so no rush), you do expect the services that you're paying for to be working.. And possibly even enhanced given the exorbitant costs... I hate moaning and griping about every little service, but they drive you to it in the end. Still... You've got to laugh. :-(
And what of this weeks plan? Well with a major hurdle today, and another one tomorrow, the hardest of the heavy lifting should be done by Wednesday. I'm expecting two days of long hours and the going home early on Wednesday. This is my plan, and I am doing my best to stick to it. Of course there is no accounting for the sitters and talkers, but at least I have a target (which I suspect is more than they do).