Not very outgoing

Today’s guest picture comes from my Somerset correspondent Venetia. She kindly responded to a call for guest pictures by sending me this delightful bridge which she passed on a recent walk with a friend.

We were threatened with Storm Barra today, but the anticipation was much worse than the reality. We got wind, and we got rain, and we even got sleet for a time, but neither the wind nor the rain amounted to much more than a typical miserable winter day in Langholm.

However, what we did get was quite enough to keep us indoors for the day, and the light was so poor, that even if I had been minded to go for a wet walk, taking the camera with me would have been a waste of time. The birds agreed and didn’t come to the feeder at all.

Margaret did manage to get round for coffee before the rain started, but it was raining by the time that she went home.

I might have sneaked out for a quick walk after breakfast, but I attended to one of the internet problems that I tried to solve yesterday instead. After some more frustration, I spoke so sharply to a robot on the phone that it took the huff and went away. Then a real person answered and sorted my problem out within a couple of minutes. I must shout at robots more.

My Microsoft problem was no so tractable. The website offered me a phone number but when I rang it with hope in my heart, it said, “Use the website.” An exquisite form of torture. Fortunately, the solution to my other problem made solving the Microsoft problem much less urgent, so my mind is at rest and my rage has abated.

It was not all good news though, as I spent some time in the afternoon improving my recorder music spreadsheet only to lose all the improvements in a moment of complete carelessness. I gave up and went off to ride my bike to nowhere in the garage for an hour while I listened to some jazz record requests on the radio. It was very soothing. At the same time, Mrs Tootlepedal was pedalling away on her bike to nowhere while watching television.

The header picture sums up the day today. We pulled the curtains and shut out the weather as soon as we decently could.

I only took two pictures, one was the wall in the garage that I was looking at while I was cycling . . .

. . . and the other was the wall that I was banging my head against while I was trying to get sense out of Microsoft.

If the weather permits, we are going shopping tomorrow, so at least we will get out of the house.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

31 thoughts on “Not very outgoing

  1. How is it that you seem to have gorgeous bridges everywhere you look in the UK and we have . . . none? Sigh. It’s a lovely guest photo.

    Thankfully we had none of your storms here today, but it was a bit nippy and I had to get out the “level two” gear to walk to the gym – but I’ll take that any day over toppled trees and widespread power outages!

      1. Not really – just warmer than level one, and not as warm as level three! After that, I just stay home. 🙂

  2. Sympathies over that ‘moment of compete carelessness’. We’ve all had them, but knowing that doesn’t ease the pain. Most disheartening.

  3. I had a computer science professor who took great delight in running to a utility closet and turning off the power to all our computers. The lesson was “save often” and I learned it the hard way. Luckily lessons learned the hard way usually sink in deeper, and it has come in handy more than once.
    I hope tomorrow will bring you some sunshine.

      1. Absolutely. These day of course, the programs often save automatically as you go along, and that can catch you out when it doesn’t happen for some reason.

  4. I like the bit about shouting at robots. Trying to reach a real person on the phone can be very frustrating and even then, it doesn’t always mean the problem is solved.

    1. We have many that were built when stone working was a widespread skill. We wouldn’t get so many built like that now except on small scales like the one in the picture.

  5. “I must shout at robots more.” I am sorry the computer problems came to that. I once had a manager who asked me if installing automated network and machine monitoring software would reduce the need for employees. My answer was no. Someone still has to pay attention to the messages generated, fix the various problems which spanned multiple hardware types and operating systems, and monitor the monitoring package to make sure it was working properly. In essence, they just added the need for an extra employee with yet another level of expertise.

    1. I take your point but on the other hand machines don’t have off days when they have had an argument with their other before coming to work, nor do they need tea breaks and sympathy. It is getting the balance right which is the tricky thing. 🙂

      1. Yes, the balance is the tricky thing. Programs, especially big software packages, often have bugs, along with the operating systems they run on. I remember one such monitoring package use to blow up nightly around midnight and I was getting called at home nightly for a while. The software vendor finally told us the program had a “memory leak” problem. Memory was allocated to the program for some task, but not released to the operating system when done – a programming error. The machine had to be rebooted and everything started up again nightly. That was getting tiresome. I can’t remember if I finally convinced Ops to just reboot the machine and call me if that went poor;y, or the vendor fixed it first.

      2. One of the irritating things about the opacity of software is that you can rarely tell if a malfunction is your fault, the vendor’s fault or your machine’s fault. It makes trying to sort problems out quite wearing.

  6. Hope you’ve had a better day today. Cycling to nowhere in a garage is very commendable and listening to some good music is relaxing so all in all a day that could have been horrid turned out not too bad for you! I always try to be positive!! Love the guest photo such a pretty bridge.

      1. Not too bad but more large branches down! It’s all fire wood…when it’s cut up…that’s the problem…cutting it to size!

  7. Perhaps that wall could have a rotating series of posters. I admire your perseverance cycling in there.
    A day of computer hassles can wear me out far more than a day of work.

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