Life update and the inter webs

I’ve not had a huge amount to get me writing so far in 2024. So it’s time for a catch-up now that we’re headed out of February already.

As you’ll see below I’ve made some changes to the website to align things in a slightly less irrational manner (I mean, who knew!) but the intention is a lot more running-focused content, even if the amount of running I’m able to do is limited.

So, in no particular order, here we go……

Running matters

The weather has been somewhere between terrible and off-putting and, coupled with a cough that just won’t go, and a gammy foot acting in a similar vein my running adventures have been somewhat limited to coaching for my main running club and leading runs for my trail running club.

So there’s been plenty of running, but none of it particularly noteworthy.

Unless you count getting your feet very wet multiple times a week, noteworthy!

When not raining hard, it was snowing....

When not raining hard, it was snowing….

And with the situation of a bad foot that probably is never going to be reliably fixed, that’s kiboshed any race plans for the foreseeable future. There just isn’t any point trying to get excited about an event when the likelihood is that I’ll have to cancel it before it comes around. I think I’m through the grieving process of this now. It’s hard to accept that I’ll not be racing in the future, but the reality is that I need to be able to run in order to manage the rest of my life. So keeping that possible is the priority.

Feline matters

But life outside of running has continued apace. After having to say goodbye to my elderly cat last summer, I left a long gap before thinking about adopting again. I had always intended on getting another cat, but it’s not something I wanted to rush into, the timing had to be right, as did the cat. I’d been offered 3 different kittens within about 48 hours of Squeak’s passing……

In fact I wanted two cats in the long term, to make sure that when I’m busy with work and not at home quite as much as I’d like to be, they’d be company for each other.

Gone but not forgotten

Gone but not forgotten

I’m in contact with plenty of cats through my pet-sitting business, as well as assisting with a local rehoming charity. So that pretty much scratched the itch in the meantime.

And then it happened. The charity sent me details of a cat to advertise in January and I immediately knew I wanted to meet her. Her previous owner warned that she was quite shy, yet within a minute of me walking into the room she was purring in my arms!

The only downside was that I was about to go on holiday for a couple of weeks, but this allowed time for her to be vet checked, spayed and the paperwork sorted out. A few days after I was home, Cleo moved in!

Cleo, Queen of the robot hoover

Cleo, Queen of the robot hoover

And that should have been the end of the cat story, even though I knew I would want her to have company. The charity knew my intentions and it appeared that fate had plans to intervene too. 3 weeks later, another kitten needed a new home, preferably to ‘gain’ a ‘sibling’.

No advert was sent, just a message:

I wasn’t sure how Cleo would cope so I agreed to initially foster the kitten. But it only took 4 days before they seemed to have accepted each other and thus the adoption was agreed.

Elvis, Cleo's new 'brother'

Elvis, Cleo’s new ‘brother’

It’s been a shock to the system after years of an old-man cat to have two kittens hammering around the house at breakneck speed. But my little home is feeling complete again.

Musical matters

I’ve had a long break from all things music. Despite putting together a soundtrack album for an independent film in early 2023 the experience wasn’t enjoyable, and it really was indicative of how 2023 went as a whole i.e. badly! Actually both were horrible as you might be aware of if you’ve read my 2023 round-up post.

And I’m not sure exactly why I felt like this. The tracks created were strong enough (in my opinion anyway!) and it wasn’t that I felt I was putting something together that wasn’t up to the job. It just wasn’t fulfilling and it wasn’t making me happy. Quite the opposite in fact.

As with any hobby, if it’s not fun it’s not worth pursuing. So I took a break, with no end date planned, with a view to come back only if and when I felt ready to.

I packed all the equipment away completely and shoved it in the loft, I just didn’t want anything to do with music.

a cardboard box of synthesisers

Why go into the loft to photograph the gear when I can let AI conjure it up for me 😉

I dropped out of all the online groups I’d been active in and just cut that aspect of my life out of my life as that was having a negative impact on me. It’s difficult existing in a world where everyone is creating all the time, when you’re absolutely not.

Life has been (and continues to be) difficult in all its other avenues and trying to maintain the mirage that everything is OK is a fools game. So better to get my life together and sort out things as best I can. Nobody else is going to do that for me after all. Everyone else is battling whatever is being thrown into their own lives.

I’ve periodically rejoined some of the groups in the last few weeks, to see if I can muster some enthusiasm again for music, but for now everything is on ice (not least because the truck fire that was 2023 seems to still be rolling on through 2024).

Distribution changes

I was also conscious that the music online wasn’t remotely covering the costs of keeping it online, and cancelled the subscription with the distributor. It turns out there are other, much more cost effective ways to do this and I ended up finding a distributor who fitted my needs a lot better. Sure, hobbies don’t have to be a profitable endeavour financially, but there comes a point of ceasing the unnecessary haemorrhaging money for no reason.

Initially I thought it was just me, but in recent days I seem to have found a run of YouTube material suggesting otherwise. It’s also worth taking into account that platforms such as Spotify have changed their payment policies and whether they actually pay small creators at all.

A music website

I’ve also been conflicted about where to ‘home’ my musical endeavours. Clearly sitting in one corner of a trail-running website is not the natural home for such things, even if the a large focus of the site is writing about life things that happen to coincide with being a runner. I found that when I was trying to promote my music previously that it didn’t make a lot of sense either. But inertia rules and I just went with it. Until now.

So, all the musical projects have now been spun off onto their own site, which you can find here. They’re all together still,  as there’s not enough for each project to warrant their individual spaces that I’d still have to caretake. Maybe if one of the individual projects suddenly went into the stratosphere I could do something different, but that’s unlikely to happen!

Perhaps the timing of this given my musical hiatus is a bit odd, but I am hopeful that things will start to move forward again. I just don’t know when.

I’ve adjusted the menus on this site to direct you over there if that’s the content you’re after and similarly the placeholder pages have been updated accordingly. So it hopefully makes a bit more sense, even if it’ll take google a little while to catch up on the changes……

That’s all the news for now!

When I started this post I somehow happened on one which I wrote back in 2016 which definitely gives me some perspective of how far I’ve come despite the setbacks of the last 18 months. Well worth a read (again IMHO). Here’s the link.

In the meantime, hopefully the weather will improve soon as I’m fed up of the wall-to-wall rain we’ve had all winter. Then I can get outside and hopefully be fit enough to do some running that is worth writing about!

Be the first to comment on "Life update and the inter webs"

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

error: Content is protected !!