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{ Monthly Archives } March 2012

Fund-raising for St Richard’s

I bumped into an ex-colleague of mine at work today, who used to work quite closely with Chris. She left several years ago, but still does odd bits of consultancy for the company. I hadn’t seen her since Chris died, so she asked me how I was doing and we had a quick chat in […]


It’s the end of the Financial Year tomorrow, and I’m really looking forward to it! It has been completely manic at work for the past month, culminating in a final report on my main project, which I was responsible for producing. Writing the content was challenging enough – there is a lot of stakeholder politics […]

Clinical Genetics

My father has been enlivening his retirement by looking into our family history, and tracing both sides of the family back through many generations. It’s fascinating stuff, but some of it has more relevance to the present day than we had anticipated. It’s become very clear, looking at the family tree, that just about all […]

College Gaudy

On Saturday there was a Spring Gaudy at my Oxford College for my year and the two years above me. This is a once-every-ten-years black-tie dinner when we get invited back to Balliol to meet our contemporaries, and (of course) get asked for donations to support the College. It was the first really big formal […]

A functioning oven!

DAR phoned and left a message at 08:30 on Wednesday to say that they had sourced the correct element for my oven, and when could they come and fit it? Unfortunately, I’d left the house hours earlier to get to an all-day meeting at a customer site, but I phoned them in a coffee break […]

The wrong shape of element

Thank you to everyone who has commented to say that DAR are reliable and that you recommend them. The oven-repair man arrived on time this morning and swiftly diagnosed that yes, indeed, the element is broken. I had told the shop the make and model of my oven, and he had come prepared with a […]

Even more contractors needed

Carol is making fun of me in the comments for having a house which seems to attract tradesmen like butterflies around a buddlia bush. But it’s getting worse by the day! On Thursday evening my oven packed up. That was particularly annoying because I had made a huge effort for my dinner and prepared a […]

Foot through the decking…..

I had a chap come round yesterday to quote for fixing the broken fencing in the garden. That turned out to be easier and cheaper than I had expected – the fencing is now in fact superfluous to requirements. Since we put it up 12 years ago or so, a large hedge has established itself […]

More work needed in the garden

I was showing Tom and Katie around “the estate” at the weekend, as they haven’t been here since I’ve had the structural engineering done in the garden. It’s quite interesting seeing it through someone else’s eyes – there is such a difference from how it was before that it’s really quite impressive. We went right […]

Eating very well

I seem to have been eating particularly well this week! On Thursday I went to my favourite pub, the Plough and Harrow at Guarlford, for dinner with a group of friends, most of whom used to work with me. That was fun. I did struggle to eat three courses – duck terrine, twice-baked cheese soufflĂ©, […]