Wednesday, 21 December 2011


There's an ancient monument up in Orkney called Maeshowe that is aligned so that at sunset at the winter solstice the sun comes in the window and lights it up. They've got a webcam in there now so I think I've captured the exact moment for you. Exciting isn't it? (More information.)

I have been off today and had a super-duper run around Arthur's Seat. Worried that I've not run any distance at all recently I set out to do around 12 miles. The temperature has leapt up about 10 degrees so it was nice to run in shorts again. Because I was going out alone I thought I'd take some music along for a change. This meant putting a few tracks together in iTunes.

Peter complains vehemently that I have ruined the music library in iTunes with my predilection for tunes from the 80s. As its already ruined I couldn't see any  harm  in downloading a few tracks from The Cult which were rattling around in my head. Genius put together a collection of 50 of my most intimate musical friends and away we went together.

Outside was blowy but warm. I was overdressed with a Helly Hansen under another long-sleeved top and gloves on but its been so harsh recently I really couldn't get out the door without them. I thought vaguely about hiding a layer in a tree and picking it up late in the run but I couldn't really be bothered with stopping and starting so decided to just be hot and run.

As its that time of year when review comes automatically I thought I should have my own review of the year and thoughts for the future.

I think I have to have another stab at the Fling. I can't let it go quite yet. Current thinking for training is train more, like I did last year, but maybe don't eat so much this time! (We'll see though - this can be revised.) One thing I didn't like about the training is my muscles just get awfully stiff but I've been taking fish oil capsules and I (tentatively) think they have helped. When I get into the 30 and 40 mile runs I'll really be able to say.

I've a hankering to do a spring marathon and try and run a bit quicker than I've managed in the last couple of years. Lochaber looks likely. Can I do quicker marathon training alongside slower, longer training? Time will tell.

THE 80s.
Now that the 80s are essentially back I think its quite legitimate for me to listen to music from that era. There are a few differences. I'm a bit older. David Cameron's voice is not as horrible as Margaret Thatcher's was. I thought there was value in living through that era where nothing was handed to you on a plate. I was one of many graduates entering the "real world" at a time when there was high unemployment and there weren't that many people looking for graduates in English. What happens when there's no chance of getting a job that you're suited for is you get to take a tour of other jobs. See the world. See hotel kitchens. Push a wheelbarrow for an archaeologist. Work in the gift department of John Lewis' as a Christmas Temp. Its interesting just to see how things work. One thing that has been of lasting value in my life has been cycling to work. Cycle to work and if things aren't the way you want them to be, don't waste your time blaming the government.

One more piece of advice. I've got a wee widget on my blog that can tell you what searches people did to come to your blog. The search that most people have used that has brought them to my blog has been the search for an image of a jellyfish. Not that they stayed once they got here - but if for some reason you want a lot of hits on your blog put up an image of a jellyfish.

I think that's it. That's my review of the year and my advice for generations to come. Don't waste it.

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