Could this be the one? It's looking very likely. I'm talking about that house in Ynysybwl. The one that Kim's friend, Holly, offered to us. It's actually her boyfriend who's thinking of selling it to us. At first I was cautious of buying a house from a friend, but after looking around the house and the area, it seems like a steal.
Kim convinced me to drive up there about a month ago to see the area. Funny enough, the drive through town isn't the greatest and it immediately put me off. It's very cramped and the main street is pretty dead for shops and such, but my mind was quickly changed. Ynysybwl seems to almost have two different sections and the other side has a lot to offer.
We took a drive up there again yesterday so they could show us inside the property. It was much better than I expected. The place is massive. Looking at the pictures of the property doesn't do it justice compared to being able to wander around. There's also lots of space for storage.
We took another stroll down to the Old Bwl Inn, but this time we wanted to try out their Sunday dinner. Just to see if it would ever be a regular thing. It was delicious and incredibly cheap for what it was. We couldn't even finish all the vegetables they gave us.
There are a few things I still have doubts about. Mostly regarding the distance from work and the traffic in the morning. I already spend quite a lot on diesel and it would be an extra six miles per day. That's not even beginning to think about the next 25 years. Kids, schools, insurance. Things are moving really fast, but I can't say it isn't exciting.
Things are going in every direction, but I'm determined to bring it back around.
My collages are really helping with my lack of creativity recently. They are definitely something that I'm proud of. I made that one video at the start of the year, which was really fun to make, but I haven't finished one since. I haven't sat down and written something on guitar in god knows how long either. I'm hoping the coming weather will eventually improve my mood and motivation, but I don't like relying on it or blaming it.
Persona 5 has had me hypnotised for the past month. I would come home and play and play and play until I fell asleep. It's a really great game, but I'm so glad that I finished it the other day. When I came home the day after, I felt like I had been freed from a spell. I had a small motivation boost and managed to focus on some of the things that had gone to shit since I started playing.
Kim and I went to Wahaca for a night out last week. I had already eaten at the pub, but we still decided to get four plates each. It recommends 2-3 plates each, but I thought that was for a small meal. Something like lunch. It definitely wasn't, but I still managed to fit it all in my gob. Looking back, I don't really regret it. Wahaca is always a tasty treat.
Operation House is starting to feel very real. We went to see a mortgage adviser for a free consultation and. My thoughts are that getting this house will kick-start my life again and get me to think about what I really want.
I still feel slightly lost in my general day-to-day life. I'm sure that once I start booking events for the year, it'll get better.
MOT then accident / 31st January
wake up, lots of alarms on phone, up, weetabix, get stuff together, drive to work, fix bottom right brake light, work (everyone but steve), drive to halfords, get headlight changed, sainsburys samosas foam bana, drive to risca, park car for MOT, walk to risca, buy anne frank diary n pajama trousers in charity shop, walk back to MOT, car passed, got vehicle reg light changed, drive back to work thru lanes, car accident, scuff car, woman going too fast, work, doing PYG stuff, drive to cardiff, gig
- - -
? / 1st January
wake up hungover, chat, coffee, brek, ross dacey leave, play persona 5 for ages, kim starts her own save, editing my second a day video for ages, cook breakfast at night, export, upload, watch, smoke, shower, bed midnight
? / 2nd January
up 8, drive to work, back to work after holidays, sainsburys, get coffee tea for office, samosas foam bananas, back to office, do PYB stuff, drive to parents, chat about NYE and middlesbrough, pick ieu up, drive to lidl, get pasta sauce mince, drive home, cook spag bol, drive to alex's, windy, park, walk to tesco, get stuff, cineworld, three billboards, walk to car, drop jos off, drive to tesco, get diesel, home, watch old adverts, mr bean, etc, smoke, bed
? / 3rd January
drive to work, windy, kim said fence panel blew down, catch dobby and put inside, work on PYB, sainsburys, buy soup for coral, samosas n foam bana, started reading my side of the mountain, drive back to work, drive home, kim made curry, upstairs, read more of my side of the mountain, smoke, play persona 5 a bit until after yusuke joined, laptop, bed
? / 4th January
drive to work, sal gilles dale matt steve, coral and eleana at training, steve left, sainsburys, samosas coke zero for gilles, in car, read more my side of the mountain, back to work, drive home, fill gap in fence with stuff, finished my side of the mountain, transfer litecoin to wallet, drop gear off at josh's, drive to the downs, sit down for a bit, home, watch big fat quiz of the year, bed 1.45am
? / 6th January
sleep in, pick up jos, drive to parents, quick chat, pick up ieu, drive to tesco, get snacks, drive home, smoke, josh texted, play some games, watched lost highway, play dixit, bed 1am
? / 7th January
play persona a little, drop ieu home, drive to jos, coffee, comedians in cars, pick up alex, go to cefn onn park, walk around, film, drop alex and jos home, drive home, edited video and upload, get gear, pick up josh, arches, esuna prac doing set, drop josh home, quick smoke, get diesel tesco, get home, lie in bed, watch vids until 2am
? / 8th January
drive to work, sal dale gilles matt ele, sainsburys, smaosas n falafels n foam bananas, back to work, drive home, kim made garlic chicken chorizo and sweet potato fries, eat, park at alexs, tesco get a beer, walk to cineworld, watch all the money in the world with jos, jos got the job at IB, drop jos off, to mcdonalds, get kim toffee latte, drive home, stay up til 1.30am
? / 9th January
drive to work, bad traffic, into work 9.20am, matt ele sal gilles dale, sainsburys samosas foam bananas, back to work, kim got me samosa and pie, laptop, watch black mirror s4e1, get two milks, volunteering, lola j kayleigh mark hannah bethan, drive home, have bath n smoke, write blog, watch ricky gervais show until 1am
? / 14th January
persona 5, got coffees from mcds, drive to ynysybwl, look at house from outside, walk around, pint in pub, walk along river, drive back home, chat about house, play more persona 5, dale came over, blunts, watch big cats, tiny desk videos, bed, high
? / 15th January
raining bad, drop dale off by bridge, drive to work, bad traffic, 20 mins late, sainsburys samosas foam bananas coke zero for gilles, back to work, drive home, make pasta n sauce, lie on sofa, play persona 5 til late - futaba pyramid near end to after beach, smoke, hang clothes up
? / 16th January
shower, make myself coffee in cup, drive to work, sainsburys samosas foam bananas, back to work, collaj-es, drive to lidl, get beer mince spaghetti sauce weetabix, home, jos asks to see jumnaji, made spag bol, jos cancels cinema, played persona 5 - last place to okumura palace, tidy, smoke, put wash on, laptop, didnt go to bed until 4am
? / 17th January
tired, drive to work (matt sal dale gilles elle coral), sainsburys samosas foam bananas falafels, back to work, drive to parents, chat about house, have some food and cheesecake, drive home, music, vids, smoke, watch forgetting sarah marshall, bed
? / 18th January
drop ieu off at parents, drive to work thru lanes, work (sal matt gilles dale), sainsburys samosas foam bananas, back to work, fix clues sql spam issue, drive home, cook spag bol, kim go to gym, hang up clothes, put wash on, go on laptop, sort out stuff, rip go find cd, kim back, smoke, shower, bath, bed 12am
? / 19th January
scrape windshield because of ice, get diesel, drive to work, work (sal gilles dale coral), old faithful pub lunch, 3 pints, back to work, drive to parents, met ollie the dog, play with both dogs, gave dad card for his birthday, family came up, birthday cake, people leave, drive home, download stardew valley, play a bit
? / 20th January
kim got me mcdonalds brek, play stardew, park at alexs, watch coco cineworld, walk to car, drop off pedal to grindle, pick up henry, to tesco, get rabbit food n snacks, drive home, pizza, watch kim play persona, smoke, watch robocop, watch good time, watch a bit of dirty work, henry taxi home, bed
? / 21st January
wake up early, play stardew, drop jos off, drive home, play persona 5, shower, tesco diesel and sweets, drive to parents w/ kim, play with the dog, have sunday dinner, chat, drive home, play persona, smoke, shower, hang up clothes, do dishes, stardew, bed
? / 22nd January
drive to work, work (sal matt gilles dale elle coral), drive home, kim doing food for evening together, kim made sweet potato fries, bbq chicken wings, chorizo wrapped cheese, tostadas, ate brownie that dale gave me, watched black mirror s4e2 s4e3, got way too high, asked kim to leave me alone for a bit, kim not high at all, music, videos, thinking too much for hours, feeling a bit better, kim come down, kim laughing loud at pictures on clues, kim go to bed, stardew valley, build a coop, bed 1am
? / 23rd January
drive to work, work (all), still a little high, sainsburys samosas foam bananas, drive to lidl, sauce n mince n tomato bread n ale, drive home, made spag bol, watch vids with kim, play persona 5 - in palace to after okumuraas palace, hang up clothes, didn't get around to doing dishes, bed 1am
? / 24th January
drive to work, very wet, got a lot of work done, pyb knowledge base articles, sainsburys samosas foam bananas, back to work, made 2 collages, set up facebook page for collaj, drive to parents, chat, dogs, pick up ieu, get diesel foam bananas bp garage, drive home, cook pizza n sweet potato fries, watch videos, talk about bitcoin, drive to cardiff central car park, pick up guys and gear, drop guys off, home, watch qi, smoke, takeshis castle, bed
? / 25th January
drop ieu off, go to work (matt gilles dale coral ele), got paid, lowered overdraft to 100, drive to mcdonalds, get brek for everyone, back to work, sort out money, sainsburys samosas n foam bananas, lowered credit card limit to 500, walk around cwmbran centre, drive to jos' job, lots of traffic, pick him up, drive to bristol, mothers ruin, park, get kebab, henry bruno show up, pint, watch bands my only sun n don juan, twisted ankle, pack car, drive back, drop henry jos off, drive home, bed 1.30am
? / 26th January
wake up, shower, drive to work (gilles dale coral ele matt), old faithful pub lunch, talking about toilets, bak to work, drive to lidl, irish cream, home, stayed in I THINK, persona?
? / 27th January
wake up, kim not there, kim back w/ greggs, drive to aberfan, saw cottage, drive to ynysybwl, drive around, drive to cdf, park in atrium car park, feel bleh, walk to eds diner, food w/ kim ross dacey, home, play persona, almost cancel, drive to alex's, walk to jos', walk to andrew buchan w/ him, meet josh james lucy alex, drink, watch anguZ then excellent skeleton, smoke, walk to gwdihw, packed, walk to porters, drink, taxi to andalucia, kebab, taxi to jos, sleep on sofa bed
? / 28th January
wake at jos's, put away bed, hungover, walk to alexs, drive home, feel bleh still, sat on sofa most of the day and played persona - sae's palace to before shido's palace, kim made potato and lasagne, shower, bath, hang some clothes up, bed 1.30am
? / 29th January
wake up, cant find glasses, drive to work w/o glasses, wet, traffic, 25 mins late, work (everyone), play persona, pick josh up, arches room 2, esuna prac doing set, drop josh off, drive home, bed 1.30am
? / 30th January
check oil, fill up water, icy windscreen, scrape, drive to work (everyone), do 2 collages, sainsburys foam bananas n samosas, check tyre tread, all ok, drive home, kim bought takeout chinese, had beef fried rice n curry sauce, persona 5, spar get 2 milks n foam bananas, volunteering on drinks, wet, get diesel 20, home, play persona 5 - two more letters of introduction to after beat akechi, bed 2am
My parents have talked about getting another dog ever since they got Stan. She sent me a picture of a pup the other day asking if he looked like an Ollie. He definitely did. They were picking up him up on Friday, which coincided with Dad's birthday. I was very excited to meet him, but I feel like Kim beat that.
He is ridiculously cute. Not a bad gift to get for your birthday at all. Kim took a lot of the snuggles to start with. I'm pretty sure she adores him. Later in the evening, he nuzzled up next to me on the sofa and fell asleep on the armrest. He's so small that he can use the armrest as a bed. We've found that he's most active when Stan is around as he likes to follow him and try to play.
Stan got on surprisingly well with him. No aggression. Must be something to do with the breed. Any time Stan felt that Ollie was acting up and pushing his boundary, he would just plonk his paw on Ollie's head and that showed him where the line was. It was pretty funny to watch.
Stan is so well house trained that I take it for granted. Ollie was peeing all over the living room at random moments and we all took turns moving him to the special mat. He only had one bad poo, which ended up landing in different spots as my Mum rushed him to the mat. We were all on clean up duty. It's as the name suggests.
It's crazy to think that my parents have two dogs again. I feel like Stan and Ollie will get on really well with each other. They already compliment each other really well. Flo was too old when Stan came along. She would go after him if he was annoying her. She couldn't really keep up with his enthusiasm levels and always was more of a 'cwtchy' dog than Stan. These two seem much more natural together.
TIL - Doggy Feels
Today I learned that dogs are one of the few species that can express empathy. To be honest, I kinda knew this already. Doesn't hurt to have it confirmed though. Dogs have helped me in many a bad time and they know it.
Blues is a bit too strong of a word to describe the start of this year. I think a nice shade of turquoise is much more appropriate.
As it does every year, enthusiasm kicks in and quickly runs out of steam half way through the first week. I have to be reminded of this every year. To be fair, I've gotten quite a lot done in this first week. Productivity hasn't really been affected. Just my general mood. 100% completion rate of big tasks while also making my way through a long game, having already read a book, watched three films and listened to two albums.
I've been taking my time playing Persona 5 as it's such a long game. I'm really enjoying it. I can't get over how big it is. I've heard it's over 100 hours! I'm about 50 hours in so far. I've just finished reading My Side of the Mountain after a user recommended it on a Reddit thread. It's a relatively short book about a boy who runs away from his home in New York City to go and live in the woods. It was just what I needed to kick off the year. It was such a charming little novel that I could easily see myself reading it again and again.
Cefn Onn park.
My collages are still coming out at a daily rate and have been getting better.
I realised today that it was a year ago I had set off for Norway. I'd love to go back to that day, but I shouldn't let it detract me from my current position. I'm really excited for what is to come this year.
TIL - What's next? Glowing trees?
Today I learned that there is a group working on creating glow in the dark trees. They are working on splicing bio-luminescent genes from things such as jellyfish and mushrooms into trees, which they could then breed for greater and greater brightness. The goal would be trees that could one day replace streetlights. As strange as that sounds in this day and age, that would be fuckin' sick.
I had worries half way through this year that it wouldn't be a special year. I had set myself a lot of goals, but their deadlines weren't until the end of the year. The progress was slow. Near the end of the year, things started to get difficult and there were still many things to finish. After a rough patch, I was able to accept that I wasn't going to get everything done, but I still achieved more this year than I could have ever believed. As always, here is last year's review for reference.
2017 - The Year of Getting Back On My Feet
Bla bla. Set a lot of goal deadlines for the end of the year. They were slowly completed throughout the year.
Notes From Previous Years
2018 - Year of...
I don't have many goals for next year. More than anything, I just want to enjoy the year and use my time wisely. I want to live in the present. Some goals above are quite big, but I think if I spread them over an entire year, they won't be that difficult.
Stats of the Year
Like past years, the 'Most played' are skewed as I've played loads in my car. Baths is great for in the house.
So the basic conclusion for this year is that I got a lot of shit done. I didn't achieve all of my goals, but even when there was a short amount of time, I was still hopeful.
I'm grateful that these Year In Review posts are finally being done. Before this they were just half written posts. They've been in limbo for years.
As for blogging, I'm glad I got a lot of old material done, but I feel a lot of newer stuff suffered. Near the end of the year a lot of interesting things that could have been their own posts ended up in Monthly Recap posts. It's not a big deal, but I feel I'd like to do more singular posts next year.
I need to take a paragraph to mention how much the To Do website has helped me this year. Without it, I wouldn't have gotten ANYTHING done. I'm serious about that. It's an incredible tool that I'm glad I put my time and effort into developing. I'm certainly reaping the benefits now.
dale told me about caves episode ages ago. finally watch planet earth caves, then blue planet 2. stereotype of stoner watch nature docs, but never watched them.
Tw Ank Demos / 6th December
drive to work, sainsburys, samosas foam bananas, back to work, coral ellie put up tree in work, pyb results page, drive to lidl cwmbran, falafel, drive to one louder, twisted ankle recording demos, listen to them as mixing and bouncing, pack the car 9ish, drive to cardiff, drop guys off, drive home, run bath, smoke, drink, bed Sounding really good. Very solid album if they decide to release them all.
works do / 8th December
reddit secret santa
british problems book, jaffa cakes, hobnobs
wake up, old blogs, drive to alexs, park, walk into town, sainsburys samosas foam bananas, lush, presents, look around, back to car, drive home, put wash on, drive to alexs, park, tesco get jaffa cakes, meet ieu at cineworld, usher didnt know row order, almost had to change seats, watch star wars viii, drink two ales, walk to car, drive home, kim in bed, smoke, watch vids, bed 2am
? / 16th December
drive to cathays comm centre, unload, park car up road with alex, esuna gig diy cdf, drive to alexs, park, smoke, saw star wars viii again, smoke, walk to jos', bed 2am
Over the holidays I clicked on the random subreddit button and arrived at /r/BitcoinBeginners. I tried to buy some ages ago (maybe 2013), but couldn't. Missed out on a huge opportunity there. Everyone in the subreddit were saying that despite the recent price spike, the 2nd best time to invest would be now. It's looking positive that it will continue to increase. So I joined a site called Coin Base and bought a tiny bit of a Bitcoin. I thought I may as well expand my portfolio too and invest a bit in Litecoin and Ethereum in case either of them took off.
- - -
? / 2nd December
early, kims family go to bath christmas market, go up to bed, blog, family come back, wait around, play guitar, mum and family too ill to come, drive to cardiff, park st davids, food at jamies, wine, chicken, tiramisu, crosswords, drive back home, bed, smoke out back
? / 3rd December
wake up, david drive home, kim and barb go to cardiff xmas market, lizzie in my room, play guitar, play rocket league, kim and her mum back, lizzie and barbara leave, in my room, laptop, eat garlic bread, drive to henrys, pick up amp, get beer and matchmakers at tesco, eat them, drive home, dale comes over, watch blue planet two eps, smoke, pizza comes, twilight zone, always sunny, bed
? / 4th December
leave dale to sleep, drive to work, sainsburys, samosas and foam bananas, back to work, didnt do much, steve left, coral gave me banana, edit year in review blogs, stay til 5.45pm, drive to sainsburys, samosas, drive to one louder, drop amp off, drive to parents, theyre ill, chat, pick up ieu, drive to tesco, ale n popcorn, cineworld, watch muppet christmas carol, drive to tesco ely, lucozade for kim, home, smoke, vids n music, bed
? / 5th December
Drop Ieu off, drive to work through lanes + samosas, Finish blogs in 2016, Lidl, home, falafel + watch Jingle Jam stream w/ Kim, She fell asleep + soup
? / 9th December
laze in bed, hungover, kim drive to parents about 4pm, sort out old things in conservatory, chat, pick up ieu, kim drive us home, watch hey arnold xmas, mr bean xmas, limmy xmas, bed
? / 10th December
too snowy in risca for mum to pick ieu up, laze about, ps4, play monster hunter beta, feel drained, esuna prac, jos brought 2 beers for everyone, play set, drive tesco, indian ready meal, home, smoke, mulholland drive, kim annoyed, i annoyed, socially exhausted
? / 11th December
leave jos in house, drop ieu off by risca comp, drive to work motorway, matt not in, chat, steve in later on, got lots of clues done, steve left, drive home, lots of traffic, bad accident on other side of m4, got home, kim made chicken parmo and sweet fries, eat on sofa, then upstairs, on laptop, smoke, me and kim slept really early on, 9pm?
? / 12th December
woke up 6-7ish, drive to work, matt sal steve not in, sainsburys, milk samosas foam bana, icy floor, eat then walk around cwmbran, back to car, back to work, sorted all months and titles on second a day, drove to lidl, irish cream n falafel, drove home, kim made korma, eat, watch yogscast poker stream, go to volunteering, get milk, hot drinks with lola, wet, drop off pots pans to shamza, home, drink some irish cream, wheezy waiter, hang up all clothes, bed late
? / 17th December
wake at jos', walk to car in rain, drive to greggs, get steak cheese roll and coffee for kim, drive home, give her food, chat to kim about help to buy isa, call her parents about paying off debt, laptop, drive to lidl, made spag bol, kim paid off my vanquis and aqua debt, glad but not sure how to feel, laptop, little bit headache, watch grand piano, sleep 1ish
? / 18th December
wake up, drive to alexs, park, shopping in town, back to car, drive home, walk to lidl and home bargains, buy stuff, back home, make curry, laptop, guitar, shower, bed
? / 19th December
drive to work, steve sal not in, pyg newsletter, sainsburys samosas soam bananas, back to work, drive coral to cardiff, drop her off, drive home, make curry, get 2 milks, drive to volunteering, hot drinks, drive home, watch vids, download albums, burn 2 discs, play guitar for a bit, tab out old esuna stuff, try to write some new stuff, bed 3am
? / 21st December
wake slowly, videos, kim asked me to get shoes for her, drive to mcdonalds, two mayo chickens, drive to tesco, get shoes for her and foam bananas, drive to tesco ely, 50g tobacco, drive to lidl, irish cream, drive home, found out i had been paid, put overdraft down to £200
? / 31st December
tidy house, drive to tesco, get food n stuff, put on conveyor belt, forgot wallet, call kim to come, drive home, put stuff away, ross dacey over, cook food, play board games, drink, taxi to gwdihw, meet dan n cat, midnight, smoke, walk to the moon, band on, taxi home £20, bed
As you may have gathered from the title, the topic of today's post will be Christmas. A special time of sharing, but mostly just a time for eating yourself up a belt notch. I didn't really take many pictures this year. I spent too much of it not on my phone and having fun so there's that.
Christmas Eve was great as usual. Ross didn't come down this time, but Kim, Ieu and Dan did and I ended up seeing a load of people from Risca that I hadn't seen in almost decade. Motor, Dave, Sam, Georgie, Slug. We played pool until the early morning and only left once I noticed that Dad had texted me asking if I needed a lift.
Christmas Day greeted me with a hangover that was quickly cured with a present from Alka-Seltzer.
Speaking of Christmas, I've seen Star Wars VIII three times now and enjoyed it each time. Definitely a really fun movie that kept going further even when I thought it was about to end.
We took our annual Christmas Dinner back to Pieminister again this year. For Secret Santa, I had Dan and got him a skull ornament smoking a cigar. Dacey had me this time and got me a vertical half-pint glass and a ball catching game.
23rd - drove to alexs, park, walk around town with kim ieu, chopstix with kim, walk back to alexs, drop ieu off, drive to tesco, get ingredients for baileys cheesecake, drive home, dale came over, watch planet earth 2, smoke, bed
25th - wake up early, hungover, headache, tablets, open presents, persona 5, old canes, animal farm, go up to kims, chat, xmas dinner, kids come over, play dixit, kids go, play cards against humanity, walk home, bed
26th - wake up, chat, drive home noon, play persona 5 all day, get two milks, volunteering in rain, fail putting up gazebo, give out drinks n xmas dinner, home, persona, bed 3am
In unrelated news, I bought some cryto currency
28th - got up early, walk to town, check lush with kim, primark bought jeans, cex bought ff7, walk back to kims, buy 18gbp bitcoin, drive to escape rooms, did it in 40m2s, first place, drive back to house, buy 5gbp litecoin, buy 5gbp ethereum, go to morrisons with kim, food beer samosas, go to kyle caitlins, watch soaps, eat food, drive back 10pm-ish, bed after 12
Well this came as a surprise. I've been trying to pay off my debt for what seems like forever now. I came really close this year and realised that it may take me just a few more months to another year. Kim brought up the topic again of using her Help To Buy ISA money to pay off my debt so we can start fresh and start looking for houses. I've been against doing this in the past as she will lose the bonus that comes with it.
But today, she called her parents to check if there were any other downsides. They said there weren't and Kim gave me the choice one more time. This time I agreed and now I don't have any debt...
This is strange.
I've spent what feels like my whole adolescence paying off debts and now it's all over. That first year I forgot about Council Tax, endless parking tickets, my HSBC overdraft, the Orange phone bill, my CCJ and now both of these credit cards. You'd think I'd be jumping for joy, but honestly I don't know how to feel. I don't think it's hit me yet. I'm interested to see how it impacts my credit score.
Of course this now means I now owe an arm, a leg and a few fingers to my incredible girlfriend. I'm not debt-free from her yet, but at least she won't be charging me interest and giving me bad credit. I'm paying her back month by month and it will take some time.
Here's looking to the future.
It's getting pretty chilly now. Things are getting that frosty colour. You know the one. It's next to that other colour in the rainbow.
I used to follow a lot of YouTubers. CharlesTrippy. Charlieissocoollike. WheezyWaiter. I loved the whole vlog movement until it got too much about teenagers showing off or overacting everything. I like real life. Mediocre videos that I can relate to. Days that feel similar to my own where not much happens. There's a certain charm to it. That's why I've started watching WheezyWaiter again.
Not to say that his videos are mediocre, but the old daily vlogs I've been watching are just short everyday moments in life. I can imagine him forgetting to film and not worrying about it. If the video is short that day, then so be it. His main channel videos are great too. I've been out of the loop with him for a while. Back when I first met Kim, I remember laying in bed and watching almost all of his videos in order from the very first.
He's easily the one YouTuber I care about most and actually get excited when he uploads something. His videos range from daily life, to skits, to figuring out your passion, to self-improvement, to just straight up comedy. He got married not too long ago and they're just about to have a baby. I'm excited to see how their lives change and how the channel develops.
Fireworks A Day Early / 4th November
Ross and Dacey were going to the Caerphilly Castle Fireworks show so Kim, Ieu and I tagged along. I don't even remember the last time I went there to watch it. I thoroughly enjoyed it. The display really didn't disappoint, but we obviously had had enough fireworks that evening as we weren't too fussed about getting any for the 5th. Everybody else in Ely had other plans. It was so fucking loud and constant all night.
Red Stripe Mission / 7th November
So Josh messages me one evening and asks if I'm free. I thought it was strange as I thought he was going to Amsterdam that night. Perhaps he wanted a lift to the airport? No. He said 10 Feet Tall had cocked up an order and had no Red Stripe before a big event. He wondered if I was free to go to the Cash n Carry, pick up 10 cases and take them to 10 Feet Tall. I was actually free for once so I said yes.
When I arrived, I had no idea what I was supposed to do. Everywhere had signs for people to show identification and proof of business. Josh had given me an account number, but nothing else. I just walked in the warehouse and was amazed at how much there was. I finally found the Red Stripe and stacked up 10 cases. Josh's estimate of how much it would cost was very short. It was roughly £240! I didn't have that much so I had to drop a case and just get 9. Thankfully I was able to pay for them and get them to 10 Feet Tall in time. A guy took me up to the safe and paid me in cash for the drinks. I even got £30 for my effort. Sick.
Two Years of Stan / 8th November
Stan has now been a part of the Rees family for two years now! I remember when I came over my parents' house that day and saw him. He was so tiny. Flo didn't really know what to think of him. He didn't even have a name at that point, but I'm pretty sure they came up with Stan that day. He's such an excitable dog and always wants to entertain everyone.
Confiscated / 13th November
We played a gig at The Zen Bar in the ATRiuM for Josh's birthday. It really wasn't the best gig for a number of reasons, but we wanted to make the most of the night afterwards. We all hilariously crammed into the car again with the gear and loaded it into Alex's house before heading to Porters for a few bevs. Annoyingly my guitar and backpack was left in the venue, but I quickly ignored it. Gwdihw was next, dances were danced and Josh went home. We carried on the party at The Moon, but left not long after.
I stayed at Jos' and tried to get my stuff back in the morning. The guard was having none of it and said I needed a tutor signature to even get in the room even though I said I wasn't a student any more. I came back on the Monday. The room was open and I grabbed my guitar, but the guys said my bag was with security. I knew it would be about the green in there. When I asked about my bag this time, they asked me to wait for a few minutes.
When they finally came over, their faces spelt disappointment. Once again they thought I was a student and asked for my student ID. I told them I wasn't and I basically just got a telling off and they my green confiscated. Could have gone a lot worse. It still fucking stunk afterwards. My own fault.
Bye FCP7 / 16th November
I recently updated to High Sierra on my MacBook and wanted to check out what was new. Apparently getting rid of any FCP7 support is a new feature. I had so many unfinished projects that I now can't open. There is a way to export the project as XML so you can use it in other programs. The only thing I could try was to find other people on Reddit that still have the old OS installed.
I've always been hesitant to learn a new video editor as FCP7 did everything I needed, but I thought I may as well learn something cross-platform in case I ever need to work on Windows. So I downloaded Adobe Premiere Pro. It's surprisingly similar. I tried FCPX too, but on first impressions, it didn't really click with me and felt too much like iMovie. I managed to find one guy who helped me export my current main project (One Second A Day) and hopefully I can go to him for future exports. RIP FCP7. You were a good friend.
Old Mates / 18th November
We played another shitty Esuna gig at the new Le Pub in Newport. It had nothing to do with the venue. It's come out really nice. We decided to play because we didn't want to be one of those bands that only play with others in the scene. Living in a bubble. I'm still glad we played. It just wasn't promoted well and I didn't enjoy the music all too much. The guys were really nice though.
Earlier in the evening, I spotted a group of my old mates from Risca walking towards town. Unfortunately they passed the venue, but later on I saw my old mate Josh at the bar in Le Pub. He couldn't believe it. We had a quick chat and he said that a load of others were here too. Leggy, Georgie, Slug, Double D. It was so surreal seeing them all again. I immediately felt. They wanted me to come out and join them as it was Josh's birthday, but I had to get all the gear back and drop the guys home. I instead chatted with them for 10 minutes and promised to see them again soon.
Autumn Pics / 19th November
Dani had been asking me every couple of months if I could. It was supposed to be a present for my auntie Kim last year. Schedule differences made it difficult and we both kinda forgot about it. She recently messaged again and I made sure to set a date for it. A few pictures around the grounds of Tredegar House in the Autumn time sounded nice. Especially if it was around the golden hour.
I hadn't done professional pictures in a while so I was a bit rusty. I got there a little early so I could get the camera settings right and scout for a good location. The family arrived and we found a nice spot with lots of leaves underneath a tree. After a few shots, I felt like these photos would actually look pretty decent. I have no desire to be a professional photographer, but I enjoy doing stuff like this for family. I took a good 200 and sent them all over for Dani to choose. I think she was really happy with how they turned out.
Shrooms / 23rd November
I was thinking of making a post just for this, but I realised I wouldn't have much to talk about. I find that after doing hallucinogens, it's difficult to remember much of what you saw. I'd been speaking with Dale again online and we decided to meet up after not seeing each other for a few months. He came over and brought some dried shrooms with him.
We took them quite late in the evening so they didn't kick in until we went outside for a smoke. I just remember my vision being quite wavy and all over the place. I went to go for a piss and didn't even know if I went or not. I kinda just wanted to be by myself at one point in the kitchen, but I felt much better after sitting down on the sofa and putting on some music. Just standing up was difficult.
The rest of the night went smoothly until I went to bed. Looking at the shadows in the dark room sparked my imagination and I found it difficult to get to sleep. My mind was racing. Some mind numbing scrolling through Facebook and such did the trick. I'll have to remember that. I did enjoy doing them. I just don't think I knew what to expect. Thankfully, it never got too much for me.
The Jungle Movie / 25th November
The long anticipated Hey Arnold movie that fans had petitioned so long for was finally here. I'm a big fan of the series (especially the early episodes) and hoped it would answer a lot of questions. I'm still not really sold on this whole 'parents being adventurers' and Arnold being this sacred kid. It has nothing to do with the rest of the show and just came out of nowhere. The first movie got a panning, but I thought it represented exactly what the show was about. An evil corporation wanting to bulldoze the neighbourhood to gentrify the area and the characters rallying to save it.
In my eyes, Hey Arnold is about the lives of kids growing up in a dangerous city. Coupled with a killer jazz soundtrack and an adorable love story. It was a nice change from safe suburban cartoons. Tell me if I'm wrong, but jungle tribes and actual fucking magic just seems like a really weird direction. Even so, I liked that they patched things up and pretty much ended the series. The earlier stuff will always hold a place in my heart.
This post is pretty off the cuff. I should be finishing my old blogs, but I felt like I needed to get this out there. I don't know why I don't need people. At least for a few days or a week I'm sure. Naturally I've never managed to go very long without seeing someone I know so I've never been able to test it. Don't get me wrong. I'm not saying I don't need people at all. I'd crack after a certain amount of time, but why so long in the first place? I hardly ever have a huge urge to want to spend time with someone. It's been a huge difficulty with friendships and definitely in relationships.
I went away for a week by myself in January to Norway so I could have some time by myself. That was the most solitary I've been in a while and I actually really enjoyed every day of it. By the end of the week, I had recharged my introvert battery and was excited to go back home and see people, but I didn't have to. I'd like to, but if it wasn't possible for whatever reason, it wouldn't really bother me. Is that wrong?
I have great friends. Incredible friends who want to spend time with me and I want to spend time with them, but a real NEED? A need to message a friend and really really hope that they say yes or else I'll feel like shit? Can't say it's really happened to me. Well, not recently. Perhaps I don't ask because of a deep fear of rejection or more likely a fear of dependence? That if I ask someone if they want to hang out, they will know that I have nothing better to do. It sounds really stupid writing it out like that, but I'm just spitballing. Perhaps I've just been fortunate to always have someone there that I've never gone without like some people have? Or maybe it's just as simple as not wanting to bother them?
This sounds super unrelated, but it absolutely isn't. My favourite video game of all time is Final Fantasy 8. The main character is a person called Squall. He was an orphan who became attached to a girl at his orphanage that was like a sister figure to him. She left and it crushed him. He decided to grow up without any emotional ties or dependencies to anyone. I don't feel like my life is in any way similar or linked with this fictional character, but he really resonated with me as a kid and still does today.
There were times where I didn't want to do anything with my life because I was scared of losing everything. I would intentionally be a dick sometimes so people wouldn't get attached and vice versa. One time when I was a teenager, I went to my Nan's grave at night and told her about all of this and how confused I was. It helped to get it off my chest, but it didn't solve anything.
I'm unsure what the point of this post is. I think it's to try and figure out if I want to be this type of person who depends on others. Everyday I strive to make myself a better person thus alleviating dependence on others. If someone can't or won't do something for me for whatever reason, I won't complain. I'll just do it myself or I'll find another way. I feel like I always have.
Getting back on topic of finishing old blogs, I know I said I wouldn't mention them until I was done, but fuck it. I needed to write something in the present to prove that I could do it. It's been really difficult recently finishing the older ones, but I'm close. I feel that once I have completed all of the 2016 blogs by early December, I can begin to live in the present and things will begin to change for the better. I can start asking people to do things. That shouldn't be too difficult, but the dependence will take a lot of time.
apof then car locked / 21st November
drive to work, cwmbran, sainsburys, samosas n after eights, back to work, big tea run for people in meeting, drive to alexs, pick up alex, chat about jury duty, confused about where to park, park in car park, walk to exchange, chat with MoE, watch memory of elephants, smoke, get kebab, watch misty coat APOF, walk back to car park, car locked in car park, late by 15 mins, book megabus, wander, wait for bus, late, get on bus, sleep, back to cardiff, spar milky way, walk to alexs, sleep on sofa, wake up alexs sofa, 6 am, walk to kingsway, spar coffee, get on megabus, sleep, wake about 7.45am at bond street, walk to car park, pay £2, drive to work, sal got me sausage baguette, finally worked out PYG font issues, drive home, pick up kim, to jos, get jos, to henrys, get henry, drive to bristol, windy rain, tired, cafe kino, unload, park, pint in crofters rights, watch three dead, watch last hyena, watch twisted ankle, pack up, drive back, mcdonalds, mayo chicken etc, drop henry off, drop jos off, drive home, smoke, shower, bed
bands came on - By this point I was starting to perk up as I knew that it would be over soon.
Undertale is one of those games that you don't even realise you're falling in love with. I had heard a bit about it online. An old school 8-bit RPG with a quirky play style. I wondered if it was worth getting. It had recently been ported to the PS4 and was going for about £12 on the store.
I had just played a gig and spent the night drinking for Josh's birthday. I ended up spending the night at Jos' place. The next day I returned home to lock myself away from the outside world and play a few games of Worms Battlegrounds with Kim. I quickly checked on the store and debated whether or not to get it. Eventually I gave in, bought it and convinced Kim to play.
From the very beginning I was hooked. I loved the introduction, the art style, the inventive battle system, the humour. All of it. God damn. I don't think I've laughed harder at a game in all my life. The sense of humour in this game really made me laugh out loud. There were a lot of funny 'What-the-fuck moments', but there were also a lot of "I can't believe they are actually doing this" moments too. On the flip side, it gets real emotional at certain points. Like really emotional, especially for an 8-bit game.
Kim and I finished it that evening. You know that feeling when you're enjoying a video game so much that you're debating whether to actually go to bed or not? I very rarely get that, but Undertale succeeded at giving me that feeling. It's one of the very few games that I immediately restarted after finishing. There's an obvious reason why if you've played the game, but I still feel like I would have regardless. I must also note that the replay value in this game is fucking insane. The amount of extra scenes and dialog you can trigger is ridiculous. I think people are still discovering things now.
I haven't spoken about the music yet because I have to let you know that the music in this game is immaculate and probably one of its greatest assets. The main theme of the game is simple yet beautiful and carries through in different forms in most of the game's songs. Every song expertly matches the event or place that you are experiencing. Side note: Some songs are so fuckin' sick that they require you to learn them on guitar and bust them out whenever possible.
If I had to dig deep and try to find at least one criticism about the game, it would be the length. It's a short game that can be completed in about 6 to 7 hours. I really wish the world was bigger as I love it so much and all the characters that inhabit it. In some ways I'm glad that it's short as it can easily be completed and it doesn't overstay its welcome.
I'm going to give the game some space after completing it for a second time and I'd say in roughly a month or two I'm going to get right back into it. Thank you Toby Fox and thank you Undertale.
It's finally out! Our new single, Danger First, is now available online on various services, but if you'd like to download it, you can get it for pay-what-you-want over at our Bandcamp page.
It has turned out really fucking well if I say so myself. Leone and Tom at Bywyd Studio did a stellar job and Dan Beesley did another great job mastering it. Danger First sounds amazing. We added Sharkboy as the B-side to it, which complements it well and definitely sounds like a B-side.
We were going to release it with a music video, but it was taking way too long and we had pretty much everything else ready to go. I'd like to get it done in the future as I really like the idea we have, but I'm happy with this for now. At first I wasn't too sure about it as a single, but I came around after some time
The artwork was actually ridiculously easy. It was the first and only draft I had made way back in the year and the guys all seemed to like it. We had the idea of using a solitary exclamation mark, so instead of just using some random font for it, I went back through my photos and remembered I had a picture of a doorway from Dunnottar Castle in Scotland. Its straight line with the jagged edges worked really well as the line for the exclamation mark. All that was left to do was add a circle, colour it all in red and add a light texture. At one point it had the track names and the band name, but I thought it would look better and have more impact without it.
So stop loitering about on this page and get over there!
Kim and I were planning on going away around October half term like last year. We were hoping to go abroad, but it wasn't really viable with our budget. Instead I was trusted to book out a place on Airbnb for for two nights. I found a cosy bothy in North Wales with a hot tub and a great view. Once again, Kim had no idea where we were even going until we arrived. I had never even gone that far north in Wales and I've lived here all my life. I was excited.
While we were there, we tried to squeeze in the seaside towns of Rhyl, Colwyn Bay and Conwy. We had a great breakfast in Rhyl and found a cool small chain video game shop with a lot of rare stuff. In Colwyn Bay we took a stroll around the town and found another one of the video game shops with more rare stuff. Conwy was arguably the best of the three.
A walled market town with a beautiful castle and lots of independent shops. I could have spent a lot more money there, but was happy to just take in the town. We were a bit late for the castle tour so we just walked around the walls for a short while and enjoyed the views. Before heading back to the bothy, we also managed to drive around the Llandudno peninsula in the night, but not enough time to walk around the town.
Eating out both nights was a nice treat. We had a late Sunday lunch at The Piccadilly Inn the first night and then a big portion of local fish and chips at The Mulberry in Conwy the next evening.
The wood-fired hot tub was fantastic. We had a bit of trouble getting it started the first night. Impatience was the key word. We wanted to get in after an hour and we found out the hard way that it takes a little longer than that. We probably climbed in and out two or three times. When it did get hot, it was a relaxing burn-the-hairs-off-your-skin hot. We were in that hot tub every evening and every morning. And I wasn't sick once! Even while drinking ales.
Like I said, I feel like we could have done with more time. I always think that we can get everything done in a day or two and I'm always proved wrong. Another day or two would have felt just right I think. We thanked and said goodbye to our host and he even gave us some Baileys chocolate for the ride home. How did he know!?
The drive back down was pleasant. We stopped at Abergavenny on the way to have a walk around the town as we hadn't done so before. We had pre-booked tickets to see the re-screening of The Shining with Ieu and Jos as it was Halloween.
Well it wouldn't be Halloween without some form of vandalism. We drove back to my house and were pleased to see we weren't egged this year, but when I opened my boot, I noticed my rear window wiper had been burned off. It was as if someone had attached a firework to it and blew it up. Fucking scum. What an annoying end to an otherwise great weekend.