So once again I have not been blogerifying (am I ever going to get a regular blog going...probably not methinks!), but this time I've been away for the past 3 weeks - another trip to Poland (more dentistry - more to follow...) & then 2 weeks with Madd Thoughts & her extended family (13 of us all told.
I think this blog might well turn into a bit of an epic one, but hey ho - we continue.....
Firstly, Poland & more dentistry, after the exploits of the last time I was in Poland, I had a felling there will be a lot more fun/pain/work to be done...I was right! This time 12 hours were planned & more rebuilds, fillings & an epic 5.5 hour root canal happened & then to top it off an extraction - definitely the most trouble so far. So a big burly polish surgeon firstly drilling hard with what felt like a regular industrial drill, then using what I can only presume (I kept my eyes tightly shut) was a corkscrew, then opening my eyes he had a scalpel (to open my gums up to let my wisdom though). When it was all over, my jaw as swollen, I couldn't eat properly for days, I was bleeding for a long time, oh & I had some stitches as well....
But next fun (actual, much more real, fun) in France! So after the pains of Poland, I drove about 500 miles with Madds to northern France - a small village in rural Brittany, called Le Gouray. It was a long old journey, & so needed a couple of days rest, but it was all well worth it, when we eventually got to the house. It was simply huge, 7 bedrooms on 2 stories a massive garden & drive, all in the picturesque locale.
The beaches were no closer than 30 minutes, but were really good, sandy & not (completely freezing cold), but I was quickly struck with an idea - snorkeling! So after a great deal of searching, we found a pair of snorkels each, which just happened to come with some flippers as well - Madds got the hang of it very quickly - me, not so much! It was great to do not too much for 2 whole weeks & spending some quality time with Madds & her family. We swam nearly every day, went round great markets, had a hog roast, Nerf wars & I learned how to swim with flippers...underwater!
The only slight issue was my Kodak camera broke, which was expensive to replace, but a new Panasonic Lumix DMC ZX1 (here it is on Amazon) was acquired, which was a far superior machine & took some much better photos.
OK now onto other (arguably more boring) things - my whole department has moved into a new office - for the first time in it's short history (since 2002/3). It's a totally different environment - more professional & office-based & much less like a call centre - much better if you ask me. The only issue is that it's rather quiet, but when everyone comes back from holiday/training I'm sure it will get a little bit busier & more...homely.
I seem not let too many blogs go, without some form of wedding update...therefore: The Wedding has not really formed much of conversation recently, because of certain things getting in the way - my 30th birthday party, Madd's birthday, the holidays, etc. so not much has happened.
However, discussions have begun again - we might well bring the date forward & the budget may well become a little smaller was well - there is the possibility of ditching a formal reception, in favour of a much less formal affair - inviting all guests, rather than just the preferred selected dignitaries/necessaries. I think the reality is that because neither Madds or myself have a massive budget & I know that my family do not have the capacity to help in a financial way - therefore the budget is going to be seriously linked to what I can save myself.
From the beginning, my attitude was that I wanted not too much fuss, not too much pomp & ceremony & definitely not too much esxp- I am most interested in getting married to Madds - not in how good a party we can throw for people!
The final bit of this blog update has to relate to my plans to visit New Zealand next year. My good friends Doodles & Alan are due to be married in early March 2011 & I feel that I really need to be there for my friends, as does Madds (who is to be a bridesmaid...proved we can get there). The plan is to not go on another holiday till then - a long old time, but totally worth it methinks - skiing vs. New Zealand = no contest really!! But the big question that surrounds this whole idea is how on earth am I gonna pay for that?!
Even thinking as laterally as possible - £1k for flights another (conservative) £1k for spending, then £500 on car hire & then accomodation on top, unless I can do something like crash at various places/camp in places. That coupled with saving up for the wedding makes it look almost impossible...however, I think some deals will need to be done to try to fix it all up - seeking help wherever I can get it - say if flights/car hire could be taken care of that would take a serious amount away & speaking to some of the locals to see how much I really need when I'm out there & which sofa I might be able to blag - we shall see, or even could I do without a car. Finally - how are me & Madds gonna both be able to afford it - it's not going to be an easy ask/task methinks - expect updates...if things get going!