Interesting. In the past I would have been flattered that someone from Redmond, Washington was systematically working their way through my blog. At least that's what it seems since they have been reading since I cleared the blockage, yesterday.
Now I wonder why my old postings are so interesting to the spymasters. You can see who is on the blog in the LiveFeed on the left.
Perhaps the reader will identify themselves, if they are innocent.
As everyone will have noticed, I haven't been updating for quite a bit. Largely because I didn't have much to say, or perhaps there was not enough going on, though there was certainly plenty going on in my head.
I also just noticed that with the demise of one of my widgets, the site was blocked by a domain-name site so nobody could read it.
Anyway, that is now fixed.
The LibraryThing widget for "currently reading" was stuck on the reading I did for my master's dissertation. It had the pretentious title "Popular genealogy: living with the ancestors or render-vous with the self". Still it got me a distinction. Now it seems to have updated. But Goodreads has what I am currently reading, for those who care.
There are plans for a new blog in the autumn. Watch this space.
Some time ago, I noticed the scroll bars on the mailbox window of Apple Mail had disappeared. One moment they were there and the next, so it seemed they weren't. Sometimes they came back for a few moments and if you were quick with the mouse or the trackpad, you could grab them. But sometimes they resisted appearing completely. Now I have a lot of mailboxes in that window, collecting mail filtered by lots of rules. It's supposed to make me read only the ones that relate to work, and leave the fun ones for distraction later.
But I never had time to search to find out what had changed, since it wasn't me. Today, in my traditional New Year effort to fix all the computer things that are irritating me, I finally googled and found the solution. It seems that the scroll bars have vanished on all the apps, because Apple decided we didn't need them all the time. It's a setting in System Preferences under General. If you set the scrolling to "always" they don't disappear.
But it seems Apple has decided we don't need arrows on the scroll bar. I can live with that.
It's pretty shocking that after four months in a new place I haven't managed to blog about it. But that's because I really haven't got out and about in Edinburgh due to the time pressure of being a student. Hopefully that's now better under control and my New Year's Resolution is to revive my blog and post stuff.
So yesterday I went for a walk. Hopefully I can still remember how to use Typepad and get back to blogging about my student life.
And remember to update the Librarything widget showing that I still haven't finished the books I was reading two years ago, and probably am never going to finish them now.
It's amazing how my blog still keeps getting visitors even though I haven't added anything recently. Some of the content must be interesting to some people at least.
Despite having all the kit, I have never managed to get used to listening to music on earphones. So I almost never use my iPhone or iPad for listening to music on a plane. I have proper speakers with a dock at home and the sound is much better.
For the same reason I can't really ever get on with podcasts.
I didn't realise why, until a friend said he didn't like stuff in his ears, and I have to say I feel the same. I guess those big ear muffs might be better, but I don't like the idea of going round with boxing gloves on my head. Nor do I like feeling it's a bit dangerous not to hear what's going on in the background.
I am 64 and wondering what I am going to do next in my career. I have plenty of work and nobody thinks about my retiring, but I am a bit bored after doing more or less the same job since 1994 (17 years). Before that, the longest I ever stayed in the same job was 9 years, even though the work changed every one or two years.
Wu Wei has been my personal blog since January 2005, which has followed my home moves from Greece back to the UK to Lithuania, and my work moves from Kosovo, Bosnia, Serbia, Montenegro, Ukraine, Turkish Cyprus, and for the last 4 years to Georgia (Caucasus). Its title came from my interest in the Tao, my need for some way to understand life's buffeting as I grappled with temporary contracts in different countries and tried to keep a stable life for my growing kids.
I used to blog when I was sitting bored, either at home (doubting about my next contract) or in a hotel room in a strange country, but Georgia is no longer strange, and I have friends and a life as well. My blog seems to have a life of its own, with the popular posts remaining with large numbers of hits (it seems there are still plenty of people who want to know about Greek horta and reviews of Albanian novels about blood feuds).
My family history (the Eastern European father of known but mysterious provenance) and my own early adventures (travels, marriages, homes in various parts of the UK) are still a work in progress, but being written. Family photos are nearly all scanned but not yet forming any story.
I now communicate with blog friends by Facebook and twitter, or even in person sometimes. So the blog has been rarely updated recently.
But now I feel the urge to write stuff again. My contract in Georgia is coming to an end, I am wondering whether to go back to university for a year, my ailments are growing and my kids are independent. Life in Russia is getting more interesting to comment on. Thanks to Bee studying social anthropology and learning Arabic, my holidays are more exotic than my work these days.
So what next? I thought I would explore that on the blog. So maybe I could find encouragement and a different set of blog friends. I hope my younger blog friends will not mind the occasional (hopefully) foray into diet restrictions, illnesses and any memory lapses. Probably there will be some changes in the design of the blog to keep my IT skills up to date. Irritation and rants will be as normal (being a feature of most people's blogs) but hopefully they will not take over, indicating I am becoming a grumpy old person.
I have only one friend older than me, and while I am very fond of her, it is difficult to discuss careers and ageing with only one person available. So I decided to look for blogs on ageing, or at least blogs from older people who are still active, and willing to discuss ageing issues. So links may increasingly go to those blogs.
Best wishes for the New Year. As the Chinese curse has it, may we all live in interesting times.
It's bad enough to lose your debit card and have to cancel it.
But Citibank then makes it impossible for you to log onto your bank account and see if anyone has stolen money from your account. It also makes it impossible for you to pay any bills. What's more they do not tell you this, merely putting up some error message which makes you believe that Citibank somehow has decided to prevent access to its website over Christmas for everybody. Of course this is unlikely but by now I fail to be surprised by anything related to Citibank and bad service.
Not only is this bad enough news, but Citibank will not send you your card by airmail or courier, no matter how dire the emergency. They also will not help you get emergency cash, but think it is helpful to repeat ad infinitum that you should go to a Citibank branch in your country, even when they do not know where you are, and imagine that Citibank branches are scattered all over the world.
Of course with service like this, it is not surprising that there are few branches of Citibank in other countries.
Recommendations for a better bank please, so I can implement a long standing New Year's Resolution?
Apologies to regular readers of this blog. Irregular readers seem to find the blog whether I post or not, which is strange. It seems I have created some sort of reference work which google brings people to for certain topics.
At the moment I am feeling stuck as far as blogging is concerned. Not much interesting is happening in my life, either at work or at home or with travelling. It seems I have settled into a comfortable but boring rut in Georgia.
Need a change of country, but have to wait till the work creates it.