Friday, 26 September 2008


I haven't mentioned my playlist for a while and I have been listening to tons since February; some new, some old, some older newly discovered and some rediscovered. Here are some of them.

Coldplay - Viva Lavida - Nice change in style enough to drag me back to the Coldplay fold.

Sigur Ros - Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust (which translates as "with a buzz in our ears we play endlessly") . I should be bored with their warbly vocals and endless plains of minimalism with the inevitable crescendos. BUT I'm not and I don't think I ever will, musical Ambrosia.

Portishead - 3: Portihead is back as good as ever

Alanis Morrissette - Flavours of Entanglement: I've been buying the last couple of Morrissette albums out of habit. I think this is last one, all the originality has gone

Nick Cave - Everything he has ever done (have just filled out the missing ones)
Otis Redding - Collection: Sitting on the dock of the bay
Django Reinhardt - Swing 39, Just swing
Anita O'Day - I Told Ya I Love Ya - Exhuberent jazz vocalist from the 40s on.
Robert Johnson - One of my favourite blues artists (next to Skip James)
Smiths / Morrisey - I never liked the Smiths and I put this down to Morrisey's voice and then I heard some Morrisey (solo) songs and I liked them so started listening to more Morrissey and Smiths and discovered I still don't like the Smiths much but I like Morrissey on his own.

Old Newly Discovered
Sometimes you find things and you wonder how you missed them the first time around? Well here are a couple from the 90s (thanks to Alan for reavealing them to me :-)

Alabama 3 - Electronica Country, Gospel and other Americana complete with southern aceents from London. And its good too.

Mercury Rev - "Deserters Songs" and "All is Dream" are my first samoles from these Neo-psychedelics that started in 1991 and are still going.
Les Rita Mitsouko - Been listening to lots of this bunch of French vaudeville rocksters. I like "Marc and Robert" and "Re" the best. Bit like a cross between the Eurythmics & Sailor.

Miranda Sex Garden - You just have to listen to a band with that name, and its worth it.

Wednesday, 24 September 2008

Hello from .... home

Yep its true. After my San Francisco trip being on and off for weeks, it was finally cancelled on Thursday (just in time time to cancel everything at no cost). What nobody calculated was how much of my time was wasted  on line with the travel agents. Oh well C'est la vie.

Lots of Birthdays at the moment. On Friday we were celebrating the birthday of Christine, a very good friend of ours (who's age escapes me :-)  and she had chosen a restaurant that had an interesting Starter and Dessert strategy with their menu kind of in line with a Tapas style consisting of as many little starters and deserts as you want to eat. I can't think why they bother with the main course. Good pigging out recommendation, but somewhat expensive for the quality of the food. Anyway, at sometime during the evening we got to talking about my health and I said I was fine and had no seizures for over 4 weeks... guess what happened on Saturday. 

Still suffering slightly today after taking the grandchildren to one of these indoor soft adventure playgrounds. You'd be amazed at how many new muscles you can still find at 50. I have to say I think their dad had more fun than the kids, but not me, oh no.

Next Birthday, Leon, grandchild no 1 on Sunday.

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Happy Birthday Tasija

My grandaugter Tasija was one year old last Friday.  Here she is working on the Crisp pipeline. It seems incredible how quickly the last year has gone by.

Weather has been awful the past week or so so I have been spending a bit of time tidying up my Music collection. I've been putting on missing album art and fixing the other tags, I have also been making sure the MP3 (for the i-pods) & FLAC (for the Hifi, SONOS) collections match etc. When the weather has been OK Carol and I have been doing the autumn shutdown of the garden. I've been putting the pool down (will it ever go up again?) and have been high pressure cleaning the Drive, there is some highly satisfying seeing the clean stripes following the nozzle even though it takes so much time (2 afternoons so far).

I have had a trip to San Francisco (Open World) planned and cancelled several time over the past few weeks. Today it is on and assuming it continues that way I'll be flying out on Saturday.

I'm presenting a seminar at the Naturhistorisches Museum in Bern for the IET (Institute of Engineering and Technology) on Thursday called "Using capability and service oriented architectures to directly align business and IT goals"  Nice short and to the point don't you think. If that kind of thing excites you I and the IET would love to see you there.

Saturday, 6 September 2008

Amber goes west

Been a while since the last entry, so I still haven't disciplined myself for more regular updates. I think I'll have to set up to-do items in my work Calendar as they get done (mostly).

Amber has been busy this week. She had already her University Bridge studies and got the results on Tuesday....she naturally passed. She had already got provisional offers from Basle and ETH (Zurich),  so she is now running around trying to find rooms in Basle where she has chosen to study Biology.  Basle is the home  of dozens of Pharmaceutical and Life Sciences companies including Novartis & La Roche so Biology and Chemistry is a real strength there. Carol and I are so proud of her, we know she will enjoy the next few years of "study", but we will miss having her around.

Been a busy for me week too; lots of work putting together a architecture report for some of our Russian friends. 

The Builders were finally out as of Thursday. So remember this equates 3 builder days as 5 elapsed weeks in normal human terms. Anyway we can now put the finishing touches to the Kitchen that we decided to do ourselves, this is mainly paintwork, electrifying the breakfast bar and various oddments to go in cupboards and drawers. We also scoured most of North West Switzerland for Bar Stools for our breakfast bar only to buy one of the first we saw. 

It is wierd having the Chemo out of my routine, I have so much more time available now, Unfortunately I am not feeling the health benefits yet as Carol and I have both caught colds