Preparations and Nattering

We’re aiming at boy s and the cub moving in this weekend, albeit probably on Sunday as I’ll be working on the Saturday which puts a crimp in things. So that’s gearing up as a set of things that need to happen.

In the meantime I’ve enjoyed my last day off on a coffee date with a friend. There was much nattering and talking of friends, family, plans, and laying of plans for them to join us at Pride in Godalming in a fortnight.

Nice way to spend an afternoon, kept me out of the rain.

I’ve even been very disciplined and not looked at any notifications from work – I shall see what awaits me in the morning.

Tidying and Writing

It’s a rare day off, so of course I’m not able to sleep in as my back decided it was time to get moving. As a result I’ve been tidying up and cleaning the kitchen to reclaim some workspace real estate

Those who know my kitchen will now be wondering what sorcery this is. Those who know me will be wondering what is out of view either side of the picture. Those who are observant will be chuckling at the deliberately placed mug.

We ended up not having a game yesterday due to general health of various people, so I’ve taken the time to start writing threads and ideas for this next stage of adventures for the DDC. In the real world we’ve been going at this a little over a year – but we haven’t quite caught up to that in the game as I wanted to reflect roughly where we are in the seasons. It’s allowed me to introduce seasonal festivals as a marker of time in the game, and harvest and autumn are upon us.

It also allows me to start dropping in some Winter Is Coming jokes, as well as references to the Unseelie Winter’s Knight that they encountered at the end of the last (unstreamed) session that we had. It was one of those encounters where there was initial giggles at the name, and then the magic users started getting very serious and respectful as they made their arcana checks.

Kerne’s sister, it appears, is a Warlock pledged to the Archfey. That Archfey is the Winter’s Knight. There are dangling plothooks to write.

I was talking around this and related points while we were celebrating boy s’ birthday – about how we’re at a point where I can use character back stories to start introducing more mythic story elements among the day to day missions and calamities that the group involves themselves in. The most intense sessions have come where the players buy in on an emotional level to the storyline and its been wonderful to DM those and see my sparse notes brought to life and embellished upon.

So, that’s got me trying out plot hooks and elements in my little black book

Explorations

We went to Bletchley Park today, despite the best efforts of the Bank Holiday traffic. We picked it partly our of interest in its history, and partly so we could return our niece to her aunt as it was a little over halfway there.

I’m not entirely sure where the afternoon went as five hours sped by and there was still a lot we didn’t see. What we did find was fascinating and heartbreaking in turn, especially when it came to the areas devoted to Alan Turing. Going from a case containing his Teddy bear Porgy to a recreation of his office was surprisingly affecting as it brought forward the human behind the stories.

We had conversations with the kids around LGBTQIA+ history and in particular around Alan Turing’s treatment – which in turn led to conversations over lunch about our relationships and the polycule. And now Lady H is friends on Facebook with myr s, and the kids want to meet the cub.

Not really what I foresaw for the day, but a positive turn amid the strangeness all the same.

Late Night Musings

My sleep patterns, between stress and Lady M’s snoring are a bit all over the place at the moment. Usually the act of telling someone that then leads to sleep arriving shortly after, but we’ll see.

I’ve finally got round to playing Watchdogs Legion and I’ve no idea about anyone else but I’m enjoying it. With an overarching near future dystopia setting it seems to be moving more freely in its storytelling and the shared universe with Assassins Creed has led to some fun Easter eggs in the return to London. I may even have to reinstall AC Syndicate.

Legion’s tongue is stuck firmly in cheek even in its drama, and I think that’s the appeal for me, even if some of the voice acting is a bit jarring in places.

Still, there are worse ways to distract from stress than have your character fly over modern London, sat on a cargo drone and creating havoc on the streets below.

Interviewing Day

I’ve had a day of interviewing people, the first of two days this week, and the first set I’ve done since getting the new job. It’s been productive, and partnered with a colleague, we’ve kept on top of the associated paperwork with relative ease.

Tomorrow there will be more, and then the hard debate to separate the top scorers in a meaningful way so that we can give useful feedback.

One of the most exciting parts for me has been the knowledge that I’m closer now to filling out the last vacant position in my team of managers. Its been a while since I’ve been able to say that.

Nephew Wrangling

We’ve got Lady M’s nephew staying over this weekend and he is, like many lads his age, absolutely obsessed with Tesla cars.

With that in mind, we arranged to take him to a nearby Tesla showroom where (following some calls) he was allowed to explore the vehicles and discuss all sorts of details about them with the slightly bemused staff.

Safe to say his mind was blown by the opportunity to literally get his hands on vehicles and tech he has been reading avidly about for so long.

So engrossed by all this was he that we had to bribe him with lunch to get him back away from the showroom..!

And then he and I spent a good portion of this afternoon playing games, including an epic session of N-Tropy which resulted in a terrifyingly large towering edifice of balanced pieces of wood straining the laws of physics.

It’s been lovely having him around and having some time to bond a bit. A quiet Sunday still awaits too.

Nearly the Weekend

It has been a very full week with a lot going on and I am very much looking forward to the weekend so I can switch off and enjoy a visit from my nephew E. He is bright, and engineering orientated, and it seems utterly taken with Tesla vehicles – so we’ve arranged a nice surprise for him that will probably leave him absolutely gobsmacked.

I’m even holding out hope for a bit of a lie in, but I won’t hold my breath.

For now though I’m getting on with preparations for another full week next week including interviewing for a manager for one of my sites, so that’s exciting.

Back To It

I’m more or less recovered from tweaking my back, and so today was very much a heads down get the work done day. The wrinkle towards the end was stepping in to help close up an event at one of my libraries. I learned a couple of new skills in the process too:

Namely, how to fold up a gazebo; and how to fold up a caravan – as you do – the latter being the staging and inspiration area for the event that now moves to another of my libraries tomorrow. I’ll be overseeing that too.

The adventurers don’t stop.

Memory Lane

By fervent request of myr s, we trooped back to The Plough for a Sunday Roast today, and had a slow couple of hours soaking up the atmosphere, talking to other diners, and saying hello to various dogs roaming the public area. The cub was as restless as usual between bouts of fierce attention to detail, while myr s was disappointed that the landlord wasn’t present as they missed his broad Irish accent and humour and haven’t seen him since before the first lockdown!

Then,with the cub champing at the bit, I walked him over The Green to the playground that has served so many over the years. We used to take the Charleesi there regularly, so memory lane yawned wide, contrasting with the newer equipment currently installed but still latching on to the activity of watching a child chamber everywhere, and pushing them on the swings.

Just a quiet moment of reminiscing, and then just for good measure I tweaked my back a bit – so hello painkillers and deep heat this evening…

Brunch and Shopping

It’s been wonderful to just stop today and let the day happen. Admittedly that took a while to start as my day started before 7am with a text from one of my branch managers informing me they were waiting for an ambulance. That was a good start to get the adrenaline pumping.

They are, I hasten to add, okay now though won’t be working at least until next week. Then there were another flurry of calls and texts that had to happen to sort out cover and some other things, but after that I could enjoy the day. I consciously closed down all work-related tech, which helped.

And so we wandered into Staines, did shopping of both the window and real variety, and had brunch in a Costa before seeking books and some nice things before retiring back to the flat – where the cub and I played several games of chess and Chinese checkers and myr s and Lady M collapsed to recover their spoon levels.

All in all, it’s been lovely. Other highlights included the cub realising we’d set up the old xbox in the room he was sleeping in; the look on Lady M’s face when the cub called her ‘mum’, and acknowledging a burgeoning friendship with someone I’ve been chatting to on a Discord server.

Tomorrow? Well that depends on the weather, so who knows?