- We're really into autumn now. Temperature has dropped and it's getting dark before work finishes.
- Last weekend I got a flu jab, as I'm now getting on a bit and need such things. What I really want is a low-level cold jab, as I feel like I've had one of those getting on for a month now.
- My old noise-cancelling work headphones are starting to creak a bit so I treated myself to some AirPods Max. They have the best 'transparency mode' I've heard, excellent noise-cancelling, but crucially they're large and fit over the ears—while my last ones were grand they slightly squashed my ears in a way that became uncomfortable for prolonged periods, while I can wear these for 3-hour stretches with no problem.
- I went out for Sunday lunch with some old work friends I've not seen for a good few months, some of whom came to work from my office on the Monday too, which was really nice. Since we've got so much space in the office it seems a shame not to have more folk use it; I'm going to try and encourage more people to join us there.
- First visit to the Fiddler's Elbow Irish folk night in a while, nice to see everyone and nice to hear my man Roger on the bodhrán.
- Driving lessons continue, I had my first lesson that was just me driving this week! Stalled in the road a few times, which panicked me the first time but after a couple I was able to calmly restart and set off again.
- Outside of the driving itself, I think learning something completely new has actually been supremely helpful to me while I've been doing training for other folk on things. Having something myself where I'm a total beginner makes it easier for me to access 'beginner mind', and thus reminds me how sometimes I'll just do stuff for 'no reason'—because I've still not got the muscle memory for it, and so don't have "to hand" the thing I need to do and you, and I end up cycling through all the instincts you have rather than thinking it through.
- I don't talk a huge amount about my therapy on here, but I feel like I've come to a natural resolution with the current "arc" of it, just as we're about to take a few weeks off from it. I've been with my present therapist for about a year and the sessions have taken me—slowly, subtly, but definitely—away from the constant feeling of "about to bubble over" to much more stable and able to handle things as they come; to stress being a useful signal rather than something completely overwhelming. It's taken a while to get here and (depending on where you're starting from) it can be a somewhat inconsistent stop-start process, but I've found it to be very worthwhile. Would recommend.
- We've started practicing for our Alternative Carols By Candlelight. Some of those harmonies are tricky!
- It's a haircut week. I've been getting my hair cut about once a month; can't remember whether I mentioned that on here or not, but it's something that's been a nice little rhythm throughout the year. Before this I was very much a "every six months, mostly" kind of guy, but this is definitely better—keeps me 'on-model' year-round.
- We were going to a bonfire on Wednesday, but it was too windy so it got cancelled. We were thinking about a trip to Lewes but without anywhere to hole up in town beforehand it'd be a bit of a slog of a journey. We ended up going to Worthing fireworks on Saturday instead—very rainy, and a long bus trip, but lots of fun!