Tag Archives: wedding

4th Anniversary

Today it is 4 years to the day that HD and I got married. He still makes me go all goofy.

This is one of my favourite pictures from the day, taken by a friend:


This is the song we danced to at our wedding (all nearly 7 minutes of it!!!). The lyrics are here. It’s an amazing song which stops me in my tracks every time. I have also found rereading the lyrics quite comforting – after both starting and ending the year with a shocking bereavement on Ship of Fools. Miserere, yes.

2011 Project365 (days 119-122)

2nd May:

2nd May 2011

Amazingly, it’s not only been a bank holiday, but the sky has been this colour all day! This was taken in the back garden and isn’t really representative of my day (apart from the blue sky), but this morning I had a job interview* (I decided against asking the panel to pose for the camera before I left) and this afternoon we sort of meant to go and explore a local country park but in the end didn’t get beyond the tip, Halfords and Sainsbury’s. So I took this just now before the sun goes down and the blue sky disappears. I wonder if the pigeon is the ****** that crapped on my washing the other week (the washing line is just below).

* the interview went OK, but I could hear my voice shaking as I spoke and it took ages to calm down, so I’m really not sure how I came across. I’m not hugely confident I got the job, of course I thought of a good few things I should have said while I was driving home, but think that shaky voice notwithstanding I didn’t make a fool of myself and acquitted myself well enough overall. I should hear by the end of the week.

1st May:

1st May 2011

This represents the joys of interview preparation. The job involves working with vulnerable people, so I had to fill in the pages and pages of an Disclosure Scotland form (the Scottish equivalent of the CRB check).

30th April:

30th April 2011

Our final stop on our holiday before heading for the ferry home was to see my friend S, who left London for Northern Ireland just after I left London for Glasgow. This is a picture of Anoushka, her cat, who is a real character. I don’t think she’s quite realised she’s not a leopard – her movements are astonishingly big cat-like.

29th April:

29th April 2011

Whilst people were glued to the Royal Wedding, we were at another wedding: HD’s brother got married on the same day as the royal wedding. It was an absolutely lovely day. The weather was perfect all day, the ceremony was beautiful, it was fantastic to catch up with family members, the kids were all lovely, and of course the happy couple looked amazing. I have chosen a blurred picture as they do not read this blog; I really like this picture though as although it is blurred you can still see how they are gazing at each other and for this moment there’s nobody else in the world, just the two of them.

Weekend in Liverpool

Having not been to a single wedding since our own at the end of 2007, we found ourselves going to 2 within a month! Firstly of course there was the wedding of Auntie Doris and The Mister in Guernsey, and then this weekend some friends from York tied the knot in Liverpool. I’ve not included photos of the couple this time as they don’t read this blog (as far as I know), but thought I’d share some of our adventures anyway. It was my first time in Liverpool ever (and HD had only ever been once, to a 21st birthday party just after leaving uni and hadn’t really explored at all, so really it was the first time proper for both of us). The wedding wasn’t till 3 so we had plenty of time in the morning to explore.

And what a treat! The weather wasn’t bad at all (which of course helped!), and there was plenty of blossom out, which left an impression of Liverpool as quite a colourful city. Actually it reminded me quite a lot of Glasgow – they have a lot of similarities anyway (docks, shipbuilding/industrial past, large immigrant populations because of the docks, two big football teams, up-and-coming areas amongst deprivation, unexpected architecture, regeneration of the city centre, etc). Last year Liverpool was one of Europe’s Capitals of Culture (you’ll remember when I was in Sibiu in 2007 that was Capital of Culture that year along with Luxemburg – there are 2 capitals of culture per year), and of course Glasgow too held that honour, back in 1990 (something which really boosted the profile and cultural vibrancy of the city).

We drove into town and headed for Albert Dock, which was obviously pretty up-and-coming and at the centre of things. From there we walked into the city centre (we needed to find some shops, as someone who shall remain nameless forgot to pack his smalls!!), and came across this fabulous sculpture, called “Pillar of Friendship”, where each square of the sculpture was by a different artist. I really liked it, we spent quite a lot of time gazing up at it:

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From there we walked to one of my two “must see” destinations – the Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King (the Roman Catholic cathedral), otherwise known as “Paddy’s Wigwam” (or, so my friend the groom tells me, “the Mersey Funnel”). And my goodness it was well worth it – what an extraordinary space, inside and out. I thought it was absolutely beautiful – the lines, the light, the colours, the atmosphere – most definitely one of those ‘thin spaces’ where the presence of God is almost tangible. I could have stayed there all day. Here’s just a small selection of my pictures:


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Here’s a couple more back at Albert Dock:


IMG_2049 I had to explain the pun to HD – I got it straight away, whereas he didn’t see it at all. Usually it’s the other way round, he’s usually much quicker at that sort of thing than me! (If you don’t get it either, think of Liverpool’s most famous group from the 1960s, and their song of the same colour).


The church where the wedding took place had some amazing stained glass windows. This very detailed one (featuring particularly red devil!) was at the other end from the altar, and is of the creation story. The other photo here is of the wedding cake (figures made by the very creative bride!):

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There’s a bit of a story behind this picture. The jacket I wore to the wedding was the one I bought for our wedding, and the only times I have ever worn it was for our wedding, Auntie Doris’s last month and then this one in Liverpool. IMG_2110 As I was driving to and from the wedding I’d popped the keys into the jacket pocket, and felt this lumpy thing, and pulled out the lovehearts. I couldn’t remember putting them there, but thought maybe I’d picked them up at Auntie Doris’s wedding, and didn’t think anything more of it. I happened to mention them to HD afterwards, and he confessed that he had slipped them into my pocket at some point during our own wedding, as a little romantic gesture. It only took two and a half years to find them!! Whoops! (we’re not that good at romance, by the look of things. But it’s cuter this way, and a better story!).

IMG_2117 The reception took place at the hotel where we were staying, and it was quite a striking building. It used to be Liverpool’s main aerodrome back in the day, and was full of Art Deco features inside and out, as well as lots of memorabilia from the earlier days of flying and random planes in the grounds (I resisted the temptation to burst into a rendition of “Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines”). This is HD round the back of the building.

The next day we went, with a couple of other friends, to the other “must-see” bit of the trip – about a half hour drive away, Crosby Beach is the home of the Antony Gormley installation “Another Place”. Like the single iron man sculpture we saw on Herm last month, this is based on iron casts of Gormley’s own body, but whereas the Herm one was just the one in isolation, “Another Place” features a number of the casts over quite a large stretch of the beach. I think we expected them to be a bit closer together, but even so the effect was quite mesmerising. I loved how the iron has become all barnacled and seawater-worn, so you can see how the figures have interacted with the elements of their environment, as well as with the people who go to see them on the beach. This is just a small selection of my pictures – needless to say if you’re ever in the area, it’s well worth a visit! (check the tide tables first though – you don’t want to go all that way to find they’re all underwater!).


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Guernsey photos

After 4 days at work, our little break to Guernsey for Auntie Doris’ and The Mister’s wedding feels like a million years ago. But, here are some pictures to convince me that we were actually there! (click on any for the set on flickr – if you’re friends with me on facebook you’ll know there are considerably more, these are just some of the highlights!)

IMG_1566View from the end of the road.

IMG_1571Les Cotils (reception venue).

Worth enlarging: please can someone explain why the Guernsey Tourist Information Centre would display an Aberdeen City Guide?!!:


A few shots from our day trip to Herm:




I was so excited that one of my favourite artists, sculptor Anthony Gormley, was featuring on Herm, this only got put up last month and I think is around for the next few months.

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I enjoyed seeing patterns on the beaches:




This seaweed made me think of a Dr Who baddie:


We never did figure out what this was. It was marked on the map only as “obelisk”, very helpfully:


These are from near Shell Beach on Herm. I loved the colours of the boats:

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I’m so pleased with this picture of HD:


Final two views from Herm:

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The next day we went to the fascinating Occupation Museum, giving us a view into life on the island in the second World War when Guernsey (along with the other Channel Islands) was occupied by the Germans. Here are a few photos I took:

IMG_1668 Cal stares down the barrel of a gun.

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I took these in St Peter Port, the island capital town: so British, yet so different (it’s amazing what a coat of paint can do!):

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Later we drove round to the other side of the island, where we found a German observation tower looking over towards Lihou Island (which can be reached at low tide by a very lunar-looking causeway – here’s photos of them both):


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And then on to the wedding (the reason we were there, of course!). I’ve just picked out a couple of my favourite pictures of the happy couple to start with:



And here’s a few more I liked:

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IMG_1792 The reception featured lots of cakes. We needed a bit of a savoury injection as I for one felt like bouncing off the walls after all that sugar, so HD nipped out to the corner shop and bought some cheese and biscuits. This cheese label made me laugh – Pirate Cheese!

The next day was Easter Sunday. Not only did we go to church, we Mystery Worshipped it. This is the Town Church in St Peter Port:


which had some amazing stained glass:

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We had lunch in Candie Gardens:


Then HD and I went to the German Underground Hospital while Cal went for a walk in the sunshine. The Hospital was quite extraordinary, in a sobering kind of way:

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After that we went on to probably the most bonkers place on Guernsey, the Little Chapel. We absolutely loved it, but it is truly bonkers. No other word will do!

IMG_1852 (HD is in this picture to give a sense of scale).




We finished up the day (our final day) with a clifftop walk starting from Le Petit Bot bay:

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What a lovely few days. Guernsey was such a pretty and welcoming place, it was a great way to spend a few days. As I’ve mentioned here before we are harbouring a bit of a dream to live on a Scottish island at some point, and I think that I would still prefer that to Guernsey – I like my scenery a bit more rugged (not to mention the weather, I guess!) and found Guernsey a bit genteel for my taste. But as a place to go for a holiday I’d definitely recommend it, we had a great few days. Thanks to Auntie Doris for giving us the chance to see it, and we wish you and The Mister every happiness as you start out married life!


It’s been a while since I blogged, some of you may have seen from facebook photos that HD and I went to Guernsey for Auntie Doris‘ and The Mister’s wedding. We got back yesterday (sadly leaving the blue skies behind us) and I am now spending far too long sorting out photos instead of marking essays. If you see me on the internet tomorrow you are allowed to poke me with a sharp stick as they’ve got to be done by then.

I’ll put wedding photos up in the next few days – probably towards the end of the week. In the meantime though, massive congratulations to the happy couple who looked radiant and happy and are obviously great together 😀


I’m sorry I’ve been so rubbish at blogging – this month has been really manic. Obviously with the honeymoon at the start of it, and then since we got back last week it feels like we’ve not stopped – having the boiler put in, trying to sort out the dead car, marking essays, trying to make the flat less of a tip, etc etc – I’ve wanted to blog, but just haven’t been able to. I am going to put up some photos from the wedding today though.

Before the day, lots of people were asking if I was nervous, what I was doing about flowers or this or that or the next thing, and it was starting to get embarrassing that I wasn’t particularly nervous, and most of the details I was gloriously clueless about (but that was fine, I wasn’t worried!). A few days before we had a bit of an “aaaaargh it’s really happening” kind of moment, but not in a bad way, just in a “this is going to change things for ever” kind of a way, which I think merits the occasional “aaaaargh” to be honest.

We drove down to York a couple of days before the wedding, and stayed that night with a couple of friends who had got married last summer. It was the perfect place to relax, it was very laid back and I didn’t feel under any pressure to talk constant wedding-talk or anything like that! What was a pain though (literally) was just before I was going to bed I was cutting my toenails and managed to cut a chunk out of one of my toes, which was a bit silly, but I suppose it took my mind of any thoughts of nervousness, should they have appeared.

The next day we met up with the photographer to sort out final details, picked up the cake from the best man who had been cake-sitting to take it to the hotel, and then I checked my stuff into the hotel and we went shopping. We’d bought a few of our thank-you presents, but not all of them, but managed to sort everything out (just forgetting about the wedding favours but I wasn’t that bothered about them so forgetting to do them wasn’t a trauma). When I got back to the hotel I met up with my bridesmaid and various family members, and in the evening we met up in the hotel bar to exchange late Christmas presents with family we’d not seen before Christmas, and HD and I had a meal with his family, plus the bridesmaid and best man (my family having eaten already). Once that was over and L (bridesmaid) and I were in our room, we had a quick makeup rehearsal (we’re talking 2 minutes here) and had a bit of a think about what I might do with my hair (yes that really is the level of lack of organisation we’re talking about), then went to bed. Unfortunately neither of us slept a wink. Not because of nerves, but because there was what sounded like a generator just outside our window which was whirring ALL NIGHT. Obviously, in the morning we got up and looked gorgeous.

Breakfast was a great big fry-up (lovely!), and then once we were back in our room L brought out our second breakfast:


We relaxed a bit (the wedding wasn’t until 2), I chatted with family (and discovered that my niece had been puking and pooing all night and so was being taken off to the NHS drop-in centre – just as well I’d decided not to have any kiddie bridesmaids!), and then I did my face and hair (differently to how we’d thought the night before) and then the flowers were delivered. I’d been so disorganised about the flowers, I got together with the florist only 2 or 3 weeks before the wedding, and hadn’t really known what I wanted so just left it to her and she did a brilliant job. I don’t have a good photo of the bouquet yet, but basically it had dark red roses, a few big blue thistles, a couple of types of berry and some holly, and it was gorgeous. It would never have occurred to me to have thistles in a bouquet, but they all worked so well together, I was really pleased.

Eventually I got into the dress (with some help from L and from me taking a massive deep breath in!). I’d left it as late as possible because I knew that once I was in it I wouldn’t be able to take another deep breath for the rest of the day! The photographer had arranged to come at 12.45 to photograph our final preparations, he was right on time but was really surprised that we were a. totally ready and b. really relaxed (I didn’t tell him about the gin!). But as I said to him, I’m marrying the right guy, I’m happy with everything that’s happening, I’m surrounded by people I like – what’s to get stressed about?

When L and I got into the (rather small) lift down to the hall we did have a bit of a comedy moment. Totally spontaneously, we looked at each other and both went “Aaaaaaaaargh!” simultaneously (think the moment in “Home Alone” where the mum realises she’s left Kevin behind) and then cracked up laughing. Neither of us really felt “aaaaargh”, it just felt like the obvious comedy thing to do. Which meant that we were still smiling and laughing when we got to the church.

My father-in-law drove us (me and L) to the church, as the friend who was going to do it was ill and wasn’t able to come to the wedding. I was quite happy to go in a normal car – one thing I’ve never been able to get excited about is wedding cars, it all feels too fussy for me, I was quite happy just arriving in a normal car with no ribbons or frills. I’d also decided that I didn’t want to be given away or to have a formal walking-up-the-aisle thing, so it felt totally natural for HD to meet me as I got out of the car and we walked into church together (the photographer told us this was the first wedding he’d ever done where the bride had been met by the groom before the service had even started). To start with, as it was still 10 minutes before the service was to start, and people were still arriving, we just sat together on the sofa at the back of the church and chatted with the various people who were hanging around there, and then we walked to the front of the church together. This was one of the most special moments for me – we honestly hadn’t planned how I/we would get to the front of the church, but basically as soon as we appeared everyone stood up and cheered and clapped, and it was lovely – really informal and happy and fun.

Of course, once we got to the front of the church, we still weren’t ready to start, so we stood there like lemons for what felt like forever until the best man rescued us with an announcement that the service wasn’t ready to start for a minute or so so everyone could sit down again!

At this point, I really must recommend our priest. She used to be HD’s landlady, and has been friends with him for years, and this was her first solo wedding (she’d done one before in conjunction with her training vicar, but we were the first one just with her presiding). It was brilliant having a friend take the service, she was so relaxed and informal, and also so funny, so put us right at our ease. A few weeks earlier she’d asked us what we wanted her to wear, although once she’d given us the choices (a. cassock and surplice ie overgrown choirboy, b. plain clericals, or c. gold shiny chasuble that makes her look like Liberace) there wasn’t really much of a choice – Liberace it was, and she looked fabulous!


The Liberace chasuble had the advantage of comedy value – when I arrived at the church and saw her I just laughed out loud, which dispelled any nerves I may have had, and when I said “OK now I don’t feel quite so over-dressed” she laughed out loud, which hopefully dispelled any of her nerves too!

The service was a full-on Visions alt.worship service. We used the Common Worship marriage service pretty much word for word, but with the video and image projection and clubby backing tracks it made for a very unique wedding service. At the start of the service we had lots of incense, which made it even more atmospheric (I did wonder what some of my madchurch friends would make of it, but one told me she’d loved it, especially as it had really calmed the kids down!!!!), and I really loved the explanation given of why we were having incense, in preparation to worship and as a sign of our prayers to God. Here are some of the pictures of the service:

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Some of the images used were of the Brancusi sculptures that we’d seen in Romania last year, it meant a lot to me that we were able to use those, and meant that it was even more of a personal touch.

After the service we started taking pictures outside the church, but unfortunately it started to rain (not heavily, but enough to be a pain) and the light got much darker, so we had to finish the official formal photos at the hotel. Not that we had very many official formal photos, mostly the photographer just wandered round snapping, which was exactly what we wanted. I’m looking forward to seeing his pictures, though I’m not sure when they’ll be ready. Here are a few from outside the church before it started to rain (these are the ones I linked to originally):

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Here are a few pictures from the reception, which was at the hotel where I was staying the previous night and which was pretty much just round the corner from the church. I enjoyed that too, the hotel were pretty laid back as well and weren’t too bossy or anything which was good. And the pudding was great (check out the photo of the chocolate cake!):

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and the foodie bits:

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After the food and speeches (which included a joke about chocolate at my expense which everybody thought was hilarious for some reason, can’t think why) we all trooped out to the reception and bar and milled around while the tables were cleared away. This also gave us time to set up the laptop with the card reader (an idea shamelessly nicked from aj and emma of Bob the Blog) so that people could download their photos for us (this is where all of these photos, apart from the gin ones, have come from). As entertainment we had our brand new mp3 player plugged into a stereo and put on shuffle, which worked absolutely fine (apart from some of HD’s choices which cleared the dance-floor!!!). We did have a first dance – I hadn’t ever really thought I wanted one, and was quite surprised that HD really did want to do it, but he chose a great track which was rather unusual (I bet not many people do their first dance to a song called ‘Miserere’!) but which was perfect for us (I should explain that despite the title it’s basically an anthem celebrating life – it builds up to a really affirming chorus of “Long live living, if living can be this” which is just gorgeous. It’s by an (I think) Australian group called The Cat Empire if anyone wants to look it up). I honestly wouldn’t have been able to dance to anything cringey like Whitney Houston, but even I could manage this, and despite the blurriness I love this picture of us having that first dance:


This was also the point that we were confettied – it was only later that I discovered that the confetti (which was shiny stars and circles) had a dye in them which meant that, as if discovering them *everywhere* wasn’t bad enough, they had left imprints on my skin – I had a very attractive line of pink stars on my boobs for a couple of days, very classy! I haven’t seen a picture of that, I hope someone managed to capture the moment (the confetti-ing, not my boobs, I hasten to add!).

What was great was that we were staying in the hotel that night too, so we didn’t have the hassle of getting somewhere else. We had a lovely room, and they’d provided us with champagne, and it was all very lovely. Though I’m not going to blog about that (you’ll be relieved to know!). Suffice to say, all in all it was a perfect day, and lots of people have told us how much they especially loved the service, including family members who wouldn’t normally go anywhere near church. I’m very happy 🙂

I’ll blog about the honeymoon soon, we had a few adventures there too which I want to record so I don’t forget. But I think this is enough for now (thanks to the one reader who’s managed to make it to the end!).


I was going to put up some wedding photos on the blog today, as at least one reader (*cough*alice*cough*) wanted to see them, but flickr is playing up for me so I’ve wasted a lot of time and ended up achieving nothing (oh God that sounds like my PhD, but I digress). I’ll have another go, probably tomorrow, and in the meantime will try to put some up on facebook for those of you that can access that.

In other news, the boiler is in and our flat is lovely and warm – I went out to the supermarket the other day, and when I came back my glasses steamed up. And I realised that that was the first time that had ever happened in this flat!

I also intend to join in on the “blog about all the books you’ve read” thing that a few other people have started. Unfortunately, most of this year’s reading has consisted of first year essays, so I shall spare you my review of that (basically I think “woe” just about covers it, as mentioned in the previous entry). I might include a few academic texts as well, if they’re interesting enough to be of wider interest than just my PhD. First though I have to mark 4 more essays which were handed in after Christmas.

Also (just to make you all jealous), the Celtic Connections festival started this week, and we’re going to some gigs this year too. Not as many as last year, but I’m still looking forward immensely to the ones we are going to. Reviews will of course appear after the events. Hooray!

[Edited to add: hello Lithuania! I like your flag!]

Last entry for a while

I think this is going to be my last blog entry of the year. We get married in 3 days’ time! So we’re off down south to do the deed – after feeling calm all year all of a sudden I don’t feel very organised. But not organised is good, it means things are less likely to go wrong (I hope). We had a bit of an “argh – we’re getting married, how scary is that” moment a couple of days ago, but other than that haven’t freaked out too much!

I’ve got all sorts of profound thoughts on the subject, but none of them are coming out coherently at the moment! So I shall save them (maybe) for when I get back. After the wedding on Saturday we’re back home on Sunday, but only with enough time to pack frantically before going on honeymoon on Monday. Apparently there’s free wifi in the hotel where the reception is, but I hope you won’t be too offended if I don’t get round to blogging 😉 Where we’re going on honeymoon is internet-free, so we shall have to think of something else to do.

One thing we probably will do is play the very reverent and intellectually demanding game that I bought HD for Christmas. Hours of fun for all the family!

We’re back on the 12th of January. See you then!

Wiblog entry for 24/12/2007

HD and I have been remarking for a while how calm we are considering that in 5 days’ time we will be married (eek!). However, I am feeling distinctly uncalm thinking about a certain well-known online retailer whose site is still insisting on telling me that the delivery (that was dispatched a week ago) that includes the MP3 player which will hopefully be providing the toons for our disco has an estimated delivery date of the 22nd. It didn’t arrive. And didn’t today.

I phoned them up earlier and they were very apologetic, but said that they hadn’t expected the volume of online orders they had got and were a bit overwhelmed. I’m sorry, but as I’ve already said on facebook, that’s like British Rail (or whatever they’re called these days) saying they hadn’t expected all those trees to shed their leaves.

All is not lost, I can still put all the tracks on iTunes on my laptop so hopefully it will all be OK, but it is a right pain nonetheless. If not I may have to get Kerensa to do an impromptu set – I’m sure the choral soprano bits from the Verdi Requiem will go down a treat as an alternative 🙂

In other news, we had hoped to get to the cinema later today – Glasgow Film Theatre for the last few years has started a tradition of showing “It’s a Wonderful Life” in the week or so leading up till Christmas, finishing on Christmas Eve. Unfortunately we were not very organised (no surprise there then) and when I checked this morning all their showings for today are fully booked. We’ll have to try and be more organised next year. We are still on schedule to make it to Midnight Mass though (which is lovely at St Frodo’s – Lots of incense :D), and I did just remember to take the veggie haggis out of the freezer so tomorrow’s Christmas lunch shouldn’t be too disastrous.

I’ll probably post tomorrow as well, as we’re around for a few days more, but for those of you who are departing to the offline wastelands, have a great Christmas and a peaceful and relaxing holiday for you and yours.