Finally, the RZ85 meets the Usk

Some time ago I noted our dismal failure to get a Pouch RZ85 collapsible canoe from the shed into the foaming surf. Well with Naomi, Hel and Robin away, and a long weekend to fill, Lois and I had another go. Lessons learned, it was much easier this time, though still pretty tricky and some bits seemed warped with age (know the feeling). We looked ... read more
 

Robin beats thousands at massive local athletics day

Here’s the Brecon & Radnor Gazette’s coverage of the South Powys Primary Schools Track and Field Championships, making the most of the day by confusing “pupils” and “schools” in the headline and opening sentence. Good to see local journalism thriving. The main photo showing Robin hurtling to a very close second place in the sprint. read more
 

Can’t send emails after upgrade to Windows 10 fix

This evening I took the Windows 10 upgrade plunge… I “sat back and relaxed” as ordered, and all was going swimmingly – the kids oooo’d and ahhhh’d as we tried things out, and we all said it looked like how Windows 7 and 8 should have really been, etc etc, until I tried to send an email from Outlook 2013. Nope. Stuck in the outbox. Rebooted. Nope,... read more
 

Keeping the children busy in the summer holidays

Yay, it's the summer holidays! Weeks and weeks of lovely Welsh sunshine, no school, and absolutely nothing to do. We have set Lois, Helen and Robin a challenge; they must produce the following items on Sunday 30th August: A piece of sandstone The Dean's signature A recording (home made) of Mendelssohn's Lift Thine Eyes A fig... read more
 

How not to assemble a Pouch RZ85 collapsible canoe

Recently we picked up the old family collapsible canoe that had been sitting in a barn for years. I think it was acquired in the late 1980s, in Germany, and used in one or two holidays after I had left home. I’d never actually seen it before, but lil bro Nick described it thus: It's got a wooden frame, plus a **** load of thick canvas stuff... read more
 

How not to train for a trail race

To celebrate Sally’s 70th birthday we’ve all entered the Lakeland Trails Helvellyn Race. It’s 15km, with about 300m ascent – figures I would have sneezed at in days of yore. But this is now, with two snagged Achilles tendons, a crunchy ankle, a dicky hip, and a knee that can forecast rain three days in advance. Combined with 70 hour working weeks... read more
 

How to transfer a vinyl LP to MP3 using Audacity

This is a note to self really, as I find that when I come to transfer an LP to computer once every few months I have forgotten how I did it before so it takes me twice as long as it should. There are a lot of possible variations in this process, but this basic workflow does the job for me. I hope it might be useful to someone else too. Setting... read more
 

Westminster Abbey vs St Paul’s - an evensong shoot-out

Whilst in London for our half-term mini break we took (our Brecon chorister) Robin to evensong at Westminster Abbey and St Paul’s, to see how the other half live. First up was the Abbey, on Tuesday. We arrived at about 16:40 and were ushered into places about 6 feet from the Cantoris trebles’ east end. We were furnished with full guides to... read more
 

It's the Pitts: mad world

While sorting out the CDs and making sure they are all on the pooter I found a home-made one from lil bro Nick with two tracks from Anthony Pitts and Tonus Peregrinus: The Flower and Mad World. The latter turned out to be a hilarious and impressive choral arrangement of the Tears for Fears number, and it's so bonkers I could resist uploading it... read more