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  • Writer's pictureGethin Thomas

Winter Creeps Up

Originally published on Photoblog by Gethin Thomas NOVEMBER. 13, 2020

I was really surprised to see these trees at the end of the creek tonight, I hadn't really noticed Autumn pass as the weather has been so mild. Then suddenly I am looking at bare trees which was a genuine surprise.

There is also the fact that this is our first year here and we now have no trees in our garden, where previously we had five mature trees plus neighbouring ones and an open plan property frontage so every year was leaf fall roulette. Where would they fall and when. The weather was a critical factor, as some years you could wake up one morning and find they had all blown away during the night, down the golf course leaving you no work at all. In other years they seemed to keep falling for weeks, requiring constant clear ups every few days. Another factor was rain. If they came down in the rain, it was double the work. Wet, slimy and heavy. Then there was the operation to dispose of them, bags and bags of them. Well our move seems to have cured that problem. The leaves that were on these trees are working their way out to sea with the tide. Not a Karcher leaf blower in sight.

No news on my AWOL PC yet. I met a man in a car park I had never met before and handed it over. Officially I was on a food buying mission if stopped by the Covid police. Actually that was true and I must state that now, clearly, as this is in the public domain, I was very definitely out hunting for food. I was foraging for delicacies in Lidl.

Lidl is my supermarket of choice, so you already know I am no snob, if you've heard of Lidl. I forage there for little delicacies like sour jelly beans, their own French Blend coffee, and air dried ham, I don't consume those all at the same time I hasten to add.

They have a centre aisle which is really why everyone is in there, it has a crazy random selection of homeware and hardware, usually seasonal which changes every week, how can you resist a torque wrench with your croissant. How do you think they get the crescent into a croissant, but with a torque wrench. Lidl is cheap, I sometimes feel they are paying me to go. There is an old Lidl joke I like. "I won as a prize, a trolley dash in Lidl, thirty minutes to fill a trolley. I managed to get £20 worth." It's the way I tell them. For you Americans, think Walmart with a European twist, fewer guns and thirty per cent cheaper.

The main road in the village is now open, you'll be relieved to know, if any of you were thinking of visiting. But please do the polite thing and warn me first. So we are now free, but when I handed over my PC we were still marooned so were forced to travel further afield to buy food. That involved a chaotic meet up several miles away at a secret location that the PC man was travelling through, (near Lidl) which meant I didn't have to do a forty mile round trip to drop it off to him at his place of work, which I'm really hoping does exist.

I have taken to carrying a sliced loaf in a clear plastic bag everywhere I go and swinging it around ostentatiously, as an advert to the fact I am out on legitimate business, acquiring the staff of life, not trying to buy non-essential items like Fairy Lights which arrived today from Amazon. I don't know if it was the same Amazon man I met on Tuesday as all I saw when I answered the door bell was a flash of white van disappearing up the lane. I also couldn't see if his wife was still with him, after Tuesday she may have filed for divorce.

The PC man who isn't very PC at all drove off with my PC and promised to "get it up on his bench" sometime today or tomorrow so I am waiting with bated breath for a call. Either that or I will never see it again, one of the two.

The word for the day is Bated- It means to restrain. Well I didn't know that. So you should be actually holding your breath when you say that phrase, which really means you can only lie when saying that phrase, because I'm not sure you can say it and hold your breath at the same time. It is also used sarcastically presumably with a roll of the eye to imply you are not really eagerly awaiting whatever it is at all and are singularly unimpressed. So the phrase means waiting eagerly or anxiously and also not waiting eagerly and anxiously. That's the English language for you.

As miracles would have it, the day before my PC threw itself off the desk in despair after yet another update, (I actually sympathised with it and if I'd been on the desk at the time I would have held wires with it and gone over the edge too), I had gone through some documents backing them up on an external hard drive. My photos, I always keep on an external hard drive anyway, well four of them actually, it's become a little obsessive (possibly). Whenever I get a new hard drive they seem to be cheaper and more massive than the last one, currently I have one which contains every human thought ever contemplated throughout history, well it could do. But I even worry about that one not being quite big enough. At any rate whenever I get a new one I transfer everything I already have on the previous one on to it and then start adding again. So they get bigger and bigger, while also getting smaller and smaller and I end up with about 10 copies of every photo I've ever taken. At what point will we move on from Terabytes and what comes next? OK I just had to look that up. After terabyte comes petabyte. Next is exabyte, then zettabyte and yottabyte. I am so excited about getting a yottabyte hard drive, I want one now. But I suppose I will have to wait. By then I will have 132 copies of every photo I've ever taken.

At least when I die, whoever has the misfortune to clear up after me only has a tiny drawer full of little black cubes to take to the tip, rather than an attic full of eighteen tons of photo albums to pulp. So I am nothing if not considerate.

I categorised this post under "interesting things" I may have been a bit presumptuous.

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