home                      open university

Sunday, July 22, 2012


Having returned some weeks ago from Florida (hot, humid, thunderstorms, mozzies ... all as expected!) I was feeling a bit bored. I've registered for the OU's Human Biology course from October (cheap fees on TA) and have already bought and read the first book (LOTS of big words!) and, although I've been reading a whole load of Peter James books (love them!) and spending time planning for my friend's visit from Canada - I still felt a bit 'empty'. There's plenty of housework and cooking and stuff - but that's just as boring as doing nothing, imho - so, I bit a shiny bullet and enrolled on a free course offered by Coursera, from the University of Michigan: Fantasy and Science Fiction: The Human Mind, Our Modern World. I'm doing a blog for this course, so that I can get all the details of timings sorted. Goodness only knows how I'm going to fit in all that reading!

Monday, February 13, 2012


How come I can build my own PC, but have extreme problems replacing the Ctrl key on the laptop? The cat jumped up and dislodged and destroyed the key - and I ordered a replacement (from Lithuania!), but I struggled for an hour to get the damned thing on!


HATE, HATE, HATE it! And everything seems to have gone wrong! We had a flood in the bathroom, so had to buy new flooring. I then left the tap on (senility) and re-flooded the new floor and drips came through the ceiling onto my laptop! Then some thugs threw a stone at our window late at night and broke it - so more money for new window. All this IS of course, covered by home insurance - but home insurance is worthless when there's a £100 excess! I can happily report that my laptop is 'better' if not totally cured (ie the water marks on screen are hardly visible now). The car now won't start - glow plugs or something! And I've had tennis elbow for the last 3 weeks and have been feeling very miserable. At least there are daffodils coming into bud.
So, because our overdraft was already looking dismal before all this extra spending, I've had to withdraw from AA100. I'm hoping to keep the Transitional fees arrangement thingie active by doing the science shorty S176: Living without oil: chemistry for a sustainable future - the book arrived today and I'm going to snuggle up with it this afternoon. I also need to thoroughly edit my novel (!!) - it's had favourable feedback from friends and family, so perhaps there's some life in it - but it does (IMO) need a LOT of work! I've also been following one of the free Open Yale courses - this one on American Literature since 1945. Great stuff! I've read half the books, but am now taking a break to get on with other stuff. I've got a blog on here.
Despite our financial shortcomings, the trip to Florida in June is going ahead, although I've changed some of the accommodation to try to save some money. We fly to Tampa, stay overnight - 3 nights in Kissimmee in a house rental (with pool), intending to visit Kennedy Space Center and St Augustine from there (NO DISNEY!) - 2 nights on the Florida Keys - 2 nights Miami - and 5 nights in a house rental (with pool!) in Bradenton near Anna Maria Island and St Petersburg. Looking forward to it - though not looking forward to the heat and humidity!
Our Canadian friend is coming to stay in September! REALLY looking forward to seeing her again and showing her the sights of Devon and Cornwall!