I’ve been wanting to get back out on my mountain bike for months. As much as pulling the kids along is great fun(!), there’s nothing quite like shooting through the trees, twists and turns of a good single track. So I made a last-minute decision to go for a ride today, and what a lovely ride it was.
Autumn is coming and there was a low sun pouring through the trees.
After spending some time working in town I walked home the scenic route. Minster Pool was unusually calm and the setting sun provided just the right amount of illumination to show off those first few yellow leaves of autumn.
Having never been much of a traveller, getting a job that means at least two trips per year has led to a big change in my attitude about travelling. In fact, the day I joined the company I was in Lisbon meeting my new team mates!
Since then I’ve been to Park City, New Orleans, Philadelphia, Vancouver, New York and Barcelona. It’s given me the thirst for more travel (especially to find good beer!) so I’m making a list of the places I want to visit.
Brussels & Bruges (for the beer, of course)
Florence (for the food)
Japan (because I’m a short-arse)
Seattle (beer again)
Calgary (well, the Rockies, because I want to go stay in a log cabin in the snow!)
Thanks to how awesome my job is* I recently spent a few days in New York.
It was the first time I’d visited New York and although it was a short trip packed full of meetings I got to see some sights 🙂
My first (I think) propeller plane flight.
Seeing Untappd used in a bar was pretty cool, including my check-ins.
Drinking Black Ops, a New York beer, in a New York bar. Damn that’s a nice beer.
Seeing One World Trade Center and the 911 Memorial.
Riding (and trying to figure out!) the New York Subway.
Visiting the offices of CBS, Time Inc. (in the week they named Trump person of the year, no less!), News Corporation, New York Times, New York Observer, Interactive One. NYC is the media capital of the world, and experiencing the offices and (in some cases) the newsrooms of these global media companies was impressive.
Checking out the amazing (giant) Christmas ‘decorations’ throughout New York.
Eating some amazing food.
Visiting the Rockerfeller Centre, Times Square, Wall Street and seeing (from a distance, in a taxi) the Statue of Liberty.
My plans to visit New York just over two years ago fell apart, but this short visit has made me want to return again. It’s on the (growing) list!
Someone should do a thing where you can print postcards full of facts that counter Daily Mail bullshit to enable an army of people to go out and slip into copies of the racism rag posted in cafes, pubs etc. People who pick up the DM will find themselves reading a card educating them on why what they’re reading is such hideous, divisive drivel.
Our Google, who art in Mountain View,
hallowed be your Matt Cutts.
Your Googleplex come,
your search results be done,
online, as it is in heaven.
Give us this SEO, and deliver our traffic,
and forgive us our keyword spam,
as we forgive those who spam against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from Bing.
For thine is the internets,
and the links, and the glory,
for ever and ever.
A few weeks ago, for a work trip, I spent a couple of nights at the Grassmarket Hotel. It was a bit more interesting than the usual so I wanted to post about it.
Arriving at first, there was no-one to greet me which was a bit disappointing but it seems the bar next door is connected and someone quickly came through to check me in.
The room was small (okay, tiny) but much more interesting that your average.
It’s not everywhere that plasters the wall with Dandy covers, eh? I guess you’d call that quirky. It’s kinda fun, and makes you appreciate the place more than just somewhere to sleep which is nice.
They’ve made a nice extra effort to make the whole tea and coffee thing that bit better.
For a start you get mugs, not tiny cups – awesome for that first cuppa in the morning. There’s a proper teapot too, and a nice selection of alternative teas as well as the standard English Breakfast Tea.
There’s a big bottle of water as well and some nice big glasses to drink from instead of making do with funny tasting tap water.
You may have noticed the copy of the Dandy too 🙂 I didn’t read it, but it’s definitely a nice to have.
The bed was big and soft with four great, fluffy pillows that should suit any preference. For someone who struggles to sleep in a new place, I had a really good kip.
While the character of the place may seem to some like trying to hard, I like that it makes you smile a little and puts you at ease in what is a strange place, helping you relax.
If you ever need to go to Edinburgh, I’d suggest you give the Grassmarket Hotel a go.
My mini-me had just turned one year old at the start.
I gave up seven years of freelancing to become a salaried employee again, with the fantastic Code For The People, who six months later sold me to Automattic.**
Lots of travelling was had. In August, I took my partner*** and the boy to watch my partner’s brother marry an American girl from Akansas, then I spent my first few days as an Automattician meeting my new colleagues in Lisbon. Right now, I’m in New Orleans meeting with the team again**** 🙂
On a bittersweet note my partner and I separated, but I’m now a father again to a little girl.
This year? Keep my job, buy a house.
* Matt being the new “big boss” (haven’t had one of them in over a decade!) who at only one year older than me is substantially more successful… grrr! 😉
** I’m absolutely not complaining!
*** Now ex.
**** Though today is the last day, so I’m mostly spending my birthday in airports…