Posted at 9:29:20, 4/3/2003
Ahh... my weblog, I have been neglecting you! And to be honest I don't really know why, it's not like I haven't got anything to talk about as quite a bit has been going on recently. I think that when I finally get round to thinking about writing something, it seems a bit late. So I thought I would just post a few comments on what's been happening in the last couple of weeks...
The weekend before last I went to the Big Bad Ben (aka Ben Nevis) for some winter climbing akchion. What? You don't believe me? Well I would show you some photos to prove it but, although I took my digital camera, I forgot to charge the batteries and it refused to take even one photo... grrr... Anyway, it was quite an eventful weekend, but not really for me. I decided to be bimbly and take Lucy (who's never winter climbed before) up the, easy but fun, Number 2 Gully (II), which was pleasant. In fact it was the nicest weather I've ever had for winter climbing (apart from the inevitable "oh we've topped out so the clouds have come in") and we were back to our tent at the C.I.C. hut by 4pm, it wasn't even dark! Meanwhile, the walkers, who are supposedly doing the safe option, were busy throwing themselves down waterfalls!
Okay, so only one of them threw themselves down a waterfall, but that one of them happened to be my girlfriend Ella, who spent the night is Fort Willian hospital being woken up every 2 hours to check she was still alive (while I was being woken up every hour by the howling gale that was trying to carry me and my tent into the sea!). She's fine now (apart from some impressive bruises) but those of you who've known me for a while will know that my previous girlfriend, Elspeth, managed to fall almost the entire length of Stob Coire nan Lochan in Glencoe while supposedly 'out for a walk' while I was struggling up my first grade IV (well okay, it's grade III in some guidebooks - Central Buttress Ordinary Route). Obviously my winter climbing is some kind of jinx! It's a good job I don't go very often really :-P
The weeks have been pretty busy too as I'm actually a fourth year now. This means that I have to do an irritating finance module for the first half of the week and prepare a presentation during the second half of the week (and yes, that's every week), but that's pretty dull to talk about so I'll leave it at that!
This weekend I was vegetating in Edinburgh. Once I started drawing the new design I somehow caught the drawing bug. I've always doodled but I'm pretty crap really so it takes me ages to get anything that looks vaguely good. Drawing on a computer with a mouse takes ages and it's really hard to do anything other that straight lines and stuff so I decided that a graphics tablet would be a good idea.
After a bit oif research ("Ian, what tablet should I buy?") I discovered than no-one worth his salt (!) would buy anything except a Wacom one. Most of these are well over £100, but I discovered that the Graphire2 was generally around £70. Also it was only £2 more in Jessops than on Dabs which meant that, if it didn't work on my Debian Linux machine (where I do all my work, etc.) I could probably take it back (assuming I didn't spill tea on it or something).
...and it worked :-) It did require quite a lot of fiddling to get all the pen sensitivity to work but there's a really good guide which worked really well. So now I'm busy drawing stuff. When I have something decent worth showing people then I'll post it, but in the meantime I though you might like to see what happens when someone who can actually draw gets hold of it! Within minutes of me getting it working, Ella got hold of it (the tablet that is), I gave her a blank page and a black pen and all these amazing drawings suddenly started appearing. They all took only a couple of minutes and I was so impressed that I put them on their own special little page!
Blimey, that was more typing than I've done in a while, hopefully this'll enourage me to tell the stories straight away instead of saving them all up!