Part of who I am

CW : Death

Yesterday I attended a virtual memorial for a ex co-worker from my first job, the event was lovely and emotional, it was also hard as the person in question had chance to record their own eulogy, it was difficult to hear but had some laugh out loud moments too, which was very typical of the person.

I spent some time thinking of when I was working alongside them, the day to day laughs that made the days go faster and smoother, their always cheeky grin that instantly make you think they were up to something. Reading some of the comments from friends and co-workers there is a strong pattern of how much joy flowed from the person, no matter the setting.


I entered the corporate world of shirts and ties at 19, fresh from college and stepped into an environment that was filled with some of the most wonderfully unique people and personalities.
I was taken on as a trainee programmer, given hemps of training, on COBOL/CICS/DB2 (Mainframes in banks) but the practicalities of actually using it in a real environment was a completely different matter.

Those co-workers, all my senior, mentored and guided me as I learned the ropes and continued to support me through-out my 9 year career.
Many of them already had kids and it was so different to move from a learning environment in college to a workplace filled with conversations about “grown up” stuff, other would tell use how good we had it as they regaled us with details of their experiences of working with punch cards and messing up the ordering.


I know that some of those lessons are still with me today, and despite the technology moving on by 23 years they resonate strongly with my values and my approach to work.

 

 

 

Lockdown for me so far

For myself lockdown seemed relatively straight-forward, I have my “Office” setup facing a window so that family members walking by won’t distract me too much.
Munki has been homeschooling Little Troll since September so there has only been some small tweaks needs to handle my being home all the time.

I bought Animal Crossing New Horizon for Munki so there was something new to her distract from events and the fact we will at some point get on each others nerves, this hasn’t really happened but I’m not sure if it’s just luck or down to ACNH.

We are arranging for shopping once every 7 to 9 days to keep the fresh foods topped up, this seems to be working well so-far and we are noting down dates of foods so we don’t forget to use anything. This has actually seen our weekly food waste amount diminish quite a bit.

The Unexpected

The first Monday after the UK entered lockdown (23rd) mid morning we got the sad news that a family friend of ours had passed away (unrelated to CoVID), this came out of the blue even though they had been in Hospital recently they had been discharged and were at home.

Later that same day we learnt that one of my grandmothers had also passed away (again unrelated to CoVID), she had been unwell for a little while but it was still another shock that hit us for six.

This week both of the funerals have taken place and in both cases the number of attendees is heavily restricted, one to under 5 persons (excluding officials and pallbearers) the other 10 persons (including officials).

I couldn’t attend either of the events due to the limitations, there are plans afoot to hold events in celebration of people’s lives in the future once the world returns to normality.
However not having the release/closure that comes from the attendance of a service is something that is very difficult to get to grips with and I found this very overwhelming at certain points this week.

The worlds uneasy slumber

Like me you are probably spending your days staring at the interior walls of your home and most likely at a number of differently sized screens throughout the day.

While trips to get shopping get me away from the house they leave me feeling both physically and emotionally exhausted, those essential works who still have to commute and do their job in such an environment continue to have my utmost respect.

When I saw Belghast was preparing a blogging event for April (Blapril), I was very tempted to to embark on the experience once more, however I wanted to ensure that I was better placed to achieve completion this time before signing up, My last few attempts had to end early due to health and being overloaded at work reasons.


I’m happy to say that I shall be taking part in this great idea giving “a dose of internet togetherness to combat the negative effects of social distancing”. Not having to commute gives me back a solid 75 minutes a day and I want to ensure I ring-fence that time into some constructive and creative like Blapril.

Even if you aren’t inclined to fire up your blog and flex those writing skills, please follow some of the participants, I can’t wait to read the blogs of some of those who have signed up (The reading list is wonderful BTW).

Happy (Thank-Goodness-Neverending-March-Is-Finally-Over) April everyone I hope you and your family all keep safe.

When is the future?

It’s now? Right?
Welcome to the year 2020, YAY! We are officially living in the future, Now I just need my hover car and house in the clouds.

In all seriousness at least we aren’t all eating Soylent Green or glued to our Three-Dimensional Interactive Television’s like Harry Harrison and Ray Bradbury predicted…


Welcome to this, the compulsory first blog post of the year, which is of course rather late.

January is one of the busiest periods in my workplace so all the best will in the world doesn’t allow me to conjure up more time to devote to may extra activities.
February is usually dominated by our Charity Gaming Marathon weekend, however this year we also managed air travel and attending a wedding alongside all the normal madness.

The wedding was a blast and we all had a lovely time catching up with friends. Travel home was to a different airport as they had cancelled our flight, but the taxi driver played games and ESO so the 4 hour journey wasn’t too taxing.


The GameBlast20 Charity event went rather smoothly, in the past Munki and I often run a donation page each and stream in parallel over the weekend. This year we had a re-think of our approach and run a single donation page and run our stream in a relay fashion.

This year our charity team Digital Rogues did fantastically well, raising a wonderful £1,228.27  for Special Effect.


This year will see the 20th anniversary of me registering welshtroll.co.uk domain, I may not post as frequently as I used to but I still want to try and commit to posting on some kind of schedule this year, which leads me nicely on to…

2020 Goals

I wanted to write down my goals for this year, they aren’t anything too crazy but it will give me some focus throughout the year.

  • Redesign my Monster of the Week Templates for Roll20 – I kind of cheated on this goal as I started working on it in January, the bulk is completed I need to do some further clean up of the code and CSS.
  • I would like to flesh out more of the CyberPunk RPG world I started building last year, I am still adding additional elements into Kanka.io as they occur to me, however I’d like to dedicate some time to detailing more of the backstory and global history.
  • Replace my car – I have had this car for 5 years now and I need to start thinking about an upgrade, however I tend to spend again mulling over the details.
  • Think about a gaming themed tattoo, I have many ideas but I want to get a final shortlist of themes that I’m wanting to get, then decide on one.
  • Post at least once a Month, was going to aim for once a fortnight but I want to at least give myself some wiggle room.

I’ll sign off with the title song of this post.

Two months in and the pace is …

Crazy!
2019 has been crazy year so far, I have a huge project on at work that is using up so much extra time and headspace, combine that with some last minute training, charity events, and a head-cold, I think I’ve just about hung in there but my time has been limited.

28th Jan

  • I got to see my favourite band VNV Nation, in a venue closer than 2 hours away, The gig was amazing and the new material just blew me away live. It was odd not seeing Mark on stage but I felt that the music didn’t lack any energy because of this. VNV live is a wonderful thing as there is so much warmth from the crowd and the interactions from Ronan.
  • My clan mate DefinitelyMod entered himself and tagged me into Corsair/Elgato’s 1 millionth twitter follower giveaway.
    In a shocking twist of fate, our names were the first pulled out of the hat. So we both got sent a Corsair M65 RGB ELITE Optical FPS Gaming Mouse and an Elgato Stream Deck Mini.
  • I took part in the launch day event for Sunless Skies, streaming the title that I had been playing since Kickstarter, every minute streamed raised £1 for the charity Special Effect, I had a fun time and got to play the final version of the sequel.
  • Munki crocheted a lovely blue shawl for my Nan for her 92nd birthday, when we visited she was in great spirits and loved the gift. I think I’ve seen her using most times I’ve seen her which is nice.

4th Feb

  • In later part of 2018 we got sent an email with some VERY good deals for a 4 night stay in a destination that our whole family loves to visit, so despite being almost Christmas we decided to make our Christmas presents to ourselves this holiday.
    It was a great mini-break and even though I was suffering with a headcold, we all came home with a smile and some fun memories.

 11th Feb

  • We recently had a shift in our departments naming and suggestions were wanted for a logo/symbol, basically something to represent our identify to the wider business. To cut a long story short submitted a few designs and through some democratic voting my designs were picked as the one to be taken forward for the art/design folks to shape into something usable. The ultimate silver lining is that for having my designs picked I earnt a £50 Amazon voucher. \o/
  • I managed to get my Diablo 3 seasonal character to Conqueror tier, which after Chapter 4 is the one to aim for since you can get the additional Stash tab ( if you haven’t already reached the earn-able limit 4). This seasonal has been great fun since the last patch the quality of life feels more balanced and the set bonus that got a buff definitely feel more rewarding to play.

18th Feb

  • 2019 was our 4th year taking part in the GameBlast gaming event fundraising for the charity Special Effect. We got another new member to the Digital Rogues roster this year as BroadSider joined in the fun. I am very happy to have reached my goal and that our group also pass our £1000 goal.
    I got to play some great games over the charity weekend and I really enjoyed the Return of the Obra Dinn which I bought after watching Pam from CannotBeTamed‘s Best games of 2018 video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IBAhFlSs8Hc

So it’s been a bit of a crazy time these last 2 months, fingers crossed that things will calm down enough for me to write a proper blog post and not just a list of bullet-points.

Finally I wanted to give a shout out to the wonderful Psyche who has just relaunched her blog https://www.psycheplays.com/