Dear Diary... July 2005

Sunday 31st July - And just to add insult to injury..

I ended up with a cold for the remainder of the month, a real nasty one as well that made me just want to lie in bed and do absolutely nothing. It always seems to be the warmest weather where I tend to suffer the most, and I was just so bunged up and horrible - even with my usual armed weapon of medicine that normally at least lets me get on with the working week, it was just pretty tough going overall and I just wanted to curl up in a corner, let the day pass, go home and go to bed.

The course went okay too, although part of the cold had its hand in not making me feel 100% able to concentrate on everything. I did learn a fair bit though and at least now I'd feel comfortable in being able to do some administration of a SUSE Linux server, not just that, but I had a chance to put the skills into practice yesterday when my brother had installed SUSE on a laptop, plugged in a wireless card and wanted to get Internet access through his wireless router. After a bit of testing, it turned out that in the advanced wireless configuration you could specify the mac address of the wireless router in expert settings. This as it turned out was the reason my brother couldn't get reliable access from the laptop, as he told me there were other wireless routers near his house, so I guess the laptop was picking them up as well and trying to authenticate to that other than his own. Still, got that sorted out and whacked Mozilla Firefox on it (as you do) to be able to browse the web properly.

And the pre-season for the football has started in earnest with the Champions League final qualifying round draw along with lots of friendlies and such like. Thankfully for my beloved Manchester City, a time to give some of the team a good work out, and with a couple of games over the weekend, it seems that one of our new signings is doing the business. Ironically it's Andrew Cole, who used to play for that other team just down the road. Of course this meant that he's not proved too popular with the fans, but apparently when City were singing a song about him at the weekend which basically says he's not playing for them anymore, he saluted the fans. Good PR move if nothing else. And a goal too. Be interesting to see what happens during the season, which is less than two weeks away, yes! Can't wait.

Thursday 21st July - Fate deals its own hand

Well, life goes on. Albeit slowly. And everything seems to be on the go slow at the moment, even work seems to have ground to a halt as there's so much going on but so little time to do everything. I'm going to try and blitz as much as I can stuff tomorow as I've got a course in a week, but if the truth be told part of me doesn't really want to go on it because I just don't feel my brain is going to take all that intense stuff at once. Ah well, just have to see what happens when I get there, and take things as they come.

And more bombs hit London. Thankfully no one was killed this time, but nonetheless it's a stark warning that anything like that could happen at any time, and try to undermine the people who live there. The worrying thing is that it was almost the same modes of attack as last time around: three tube trains and a bus a bit later on. I'm sincerely hoping that something is done sooner rather than later to try and combat these pathetic excuses for human beings that do nothing but prey on the lives of innocent everyday people. Unfortunately it might also have a negative effect in that it breeds more racism, despite the actions of so few that should not speak for so many ordinary people. Nonetheless part of me really wants to try and avoid the capital at the moment and just be thankful the most we've had here in Manchester are security alerts where nothing has happened.

I remember back in 1996 when the IRA attemped to rip the heart out of Manchester with a bomb in a van decimating a fair bit of the Arndale centre and the surrounding streets. While the city's recovered and the Arndale is being rebuilt into a much nicer place (in a strange way, Mancunians have taken on the whole bombing issue and reversed it as an opportunity to transform the city) I think back to that fateful day. I was due to go into Manchester to do some shopping and instead I decided to stay put. Little did I realise until the afternoon that it was a wise decision and I wasn't caught up being evacuated or having shrapnel hit me. It's almost fate that decreed it, methinks, and I was pretty relieved.

Monday 11th July - Comfortably Numb

As you'll have noted, this is the first diary entry for almost two weeks, and this is solely down to some personal happenings in my life that I wish to remain private, as they're family-related. All I'm willing to say is that at the moment I just feel a bit numb at what's happened, and that it might take me some time to return fully to normal. It's just my own wishes that way that I keep certain things private, because the people who need to know do know, and I feel it's not my divine right to publicise anything family related too much. I hope you'll appreciate that.

Anyway, apart from that, it's been quite a sombre mood anyway as my motivation's also took a bit of a nosedive. I really want to get started back into writing a book again, but the time really is against me at the moment. There's too many hours in the day and not enough time to spend to do all the things I'd really like to do, and with the heat being so unbearable at work at the moment (a reading of one of the rooms I worked in today saw a temperature of over 40 degrees, go figure) it's not giving me much incentive to really crack on with stuff as no one can be bothered in this intense weather. Oh, for air conditioning in our office that would make it lovely and cool all day!

As you can also imagine, I really felt upset on Thursday when London got attacked by terrorists. The world has no place for such cowardly acts, and the way the emergency services and the public responded to the bombings, with on the whole calmness and common sense, just showed the true stoicism of everyone, how a cool head keeps everything around them going and that even in desparate times, hope is the thing that keeps us all going, hope for a better world, hope for those poorer than us, and hope that one day terrorists around the world will be brought to justice and not banished to hiding where they can plan cowardly and dastardly deeds. It's sickening to think that it's not even politicans or public figures that are being killed, but ordinary everyday workers like you and me, people who are the fabric of the towns and cities across the country. If you have a beef with someone because of a political decision they've made, lobby them, not the everyday people who may have had different opinions and indeed who might actually not want what the Government does.

One good thing that came out of these unfortunate events was a united front from all the major religious leaders, denouncing what happened and explaining that true followers of the Islamic faith would never commit to such actions. Of course the average intelligent human being knows this: only the tabloid media aim sometimes to try and tarnish all Muslim people with the same bad brush and incite even more hatred, which is such a backwards step in this day and age.