November 15th, 2011

JC - Jonathan - eww

Still Alive

Just a quick update to say that I am still breathing (just), but have been AWOL thanks to going off sick from work for a fortnight with gastric flu or something similar... Essentially, I was already feeling horribly run down on the Friday (28th October) and then thanks to a dodgy takeaway managed to give myself food poisoning, which saw an opening in my already knackered immune system and pounced. I actually only anticipated being off for a week, but it came back for a second round over the weekend.

To top that off, once I'd finally recovered from the gastro-enteritis, on Thursday (10th November), I slipped on a wet patch of floor whilst doing the washing up and fell flat on my arse, horribly winding myself and catching my arm on the cupboard door on the way down. I now have a lovely bruise and a very sore tailbone (I've had to bring a cushion into work as my chair is rubbish at the best of times)...

On the plus side, thanks to not eating anything / not keeping anything down for more than five minutes, I have managed to lose about half a stone. :P Unfortunately, I have also lost two Christmas shopping weeks in which I would ordinarily have bought wrapping paper, cards, tags, etc., and gym attendance is on hold until the new year because I'm insanely busy from now until January.

Also, in order to actually afford Christmas this year (the trip to Paris ate all our savings and most of my spare cash, and my salary increase back-payment got mostly eaten by tax/NI/pension), I have had to get a loan from the bank. The APR wasn't too bad in the end (and cheaper than they offered Paul), but the plan now is to use most of it to pay off the credit card and save the rest. We will both be paying it off, and in any case the repayments are less than the minimum payments on the credit card since they jacked the APR on that from 11.9% to 19.9%! Anyway, we can now use the credit card to pay for Christmas (presents/food) and have a bit more spare cash, and my account will be out of the red again at least.

I very much like online banking - none of that hassle of actually talking to someone and the loan was sorted in five minutes.

Oh, in other news, on Saturday we had the traditional fireworks-for-Paul's-mum's-birthday at our house because our garden is mahoosive, except we didn't manage to build a bonfire. We got a huge box of fireworks (by the skin of our teeth as the bloke at the shop was actually closing up on Saturday) for £40 and there are still some left for New Year's Eve. :D Paul was going to smash up the garden table on the patio that we thought was broken, except it turns out not to be broken at all, just requiring some bolts to assemble it. That will now save us some money as we only have to buy chairs for the summer... Paul also discovered a trampoline behind the shed!! If it's still in good condition then I'm totally using it. :D

Fireworks were quite fun; David got very excited about it and volunteered to light nearly all of them. Jade and Louis decided to buy a bottle of Cactus Jack's apple sour stuff (after three shots it tastes disgusting), and Patrick got to light his first firework with his uncle Paul. At one point David and Louis became Dangerous Dickenson and his Fearless Assistant, which was quite amusing. Less amusing were the failing rockets and the catherine wheel which decided to fall off the shed and chase us, but it's become a tradition to have some life-threatening danger...

I haven't been at choir for two weeks (and had to miss the 90th birthday concert thanks to sickenss) and because we're now doing entirely new stuff it feels like I've been off for months. Weird. Anyway, time to get organised and into Christmas mode now.