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Tuesday, 27 September 2005.  I have reconsidered my decision regarding the site. See here  (and see previous diary page.) I think that an appropriate quote is, “If it be Thy wish, then let this cup pass from me.” Ho, hum!

Monday, 03 October 2005. Lesley would have been fifty today. That’s how old I was when she died in 1983. “They shall not grow old, as we who are left grow old………….” So sad. I often wonder what difference it would have made to my life if she had been around.

That’s me off to the dentist! A back tooth has been playing up for a week, and over the weekend, it got worse. Good job I took out the insurance with Denplan. I begrudged having to go private because there are not enough dentists on the island, but when you have a toothache, no cost is too high!

Quiet in the pubs over the weekend. The season is over. They tell me that it gets busy at Christmas & New Year. Heard the first Christmas song on the radio, and they are selling 2006 Arran calendars in the shop! Gets earlier each year.
Saturday, 08 October 2005. Had a little prob at the dentist on Monday. Bit of bleeding, and so had to have a stitch put in. Had it taken out yesterday. Don’t know if it is nerves, but I have had a colicky pain in my guts for the past two days. Seems to be easing now.

Got a taxi back on Monday and the driver knew me from 20 years ago when I left Arran. He told me that he had bought a TV off me, and it was still working. I couldn’t remember it. My memory is all shot to pieces! We had a good chat. I HAVE to get over and see Margaret at Lagg soon. I’m feeling really guilty. I think that it is the thought of going back to traumatic memories that is holding me back. I’ll bus there and get a taxi back.

Bought me a freezer. The fridge/freezer that I have has a freezer compartment a bit too small. I plan to stock up for the winter so that I don’t have to go out if the weather is bad. After it was delivered I found that the control switch was not working. I phoned the Hydro Electric and I said that I would have a look at it. Hey presto …. The knob had been put on wrong! AOK now.

As everyone seems to be starting their Christmas shopping, I have treated myself to a DVD recorder with integral digital tuner. It is dual standard, so takes + & - discs. I bought some +RW by mistake a while ago, so they will get used.

Seems that there are no foxes on Arran. A message on asked the question. I checked and it appears so. I got a good shot of a fox at Felmore Court. See here.

The complex where I stay is ten years old. We celebrated the event yesterday with an anniversary ‘do’. As my guts were playing up I did not eat or drink much (just three halves and a couple of sandwiches! Today just uncomfortable.). I gave them “Scarlet Ribbons”. Had tears in my eyes as it was Lesley’s song, and it was the 50th anniversary of her birthday Monday. I also inflicted “Have Nagila” and “A miner’s dream of home” on them! Took some photos. This is the Scottish folk group that we had. A few of the people as well.
Saturday, 15 October 2005. I had my flue jab on Monday, and while there I had a chat with the practice nurse about my diabetes. It seems that we should have second thoughts about me giving up the medication! We see things from different viewpoints. I see that I am at the top end of normal, and therefore I do not need medication. She sees that being at the top of normal is a ‘pre-diabetes’ level. I am going to do another few tests to see which way to jump. I don’t like taking any medication. I gave up the heart medication six years ago, and I am OK. I counted the tablets that I SHOULD be on, and it is eleven/day! I have been taking only two. Aspirin in the morning, and statins at night.

The ‘Arran Banner’ did a bit about our 10th anniversary do last Friday. Here is the pic & the article. That can’t be me at the back …. he’s too fat! The text says that ‘some residents entertained’ ……. me were the only one! Plus Mary, our co-ordinator.

Getting with the latest technical gimmicks, I have ordered a satellite digital tuner from Maplin - £83. It gets over 4000 free channels from all over the world including the Freeview channels. Our terrestrial signal here is a bit unreliable. The satellite signal should be OK. We have the signal piped into every flat. Be interesting to see how in works.
Thursday, 27 October 2005. Luvverly day today, after two days of rain. Had a walk along the beach, finishing up in the café having chips and teacakes.

On Sunday at 8:15am we had a bloody fire alarm! Someone had burnt their toast. The alarm is deafening & disorientating. Being woken with the shock, and getting myself out, I did not feel too well afterwards. The other tenants were not concerned. Some just ignored the alarm! I went back to bed, but just nodded on/off until I got up at 1:15pm! What is annoying is that a minor incident triggers the fire alarms all over the scheme, not just the flat affected. I suppose that they have their own reasons for the system. At the last place, if someone burnt their toast, just their alarm went off. It did make me think of my escape plan though. I have a ‘trotting bag’ with the important documents. Now I have sorted out taking the removal back-up HD for the computer. The window seems my best emergency exit. Let’s hope that it never comes to that.

Got my worldwide digi satellite system on Tuesday. Anyone want a dish? We have a satellite feed into each flat, so I don’t need the dish, but I couldn’t get the box without the dish. Had a gr8 time getting it installed! It fires up in French! So you have to figure out how to get it into English by reading the French! As usual, the manual was obtuse. I finally got it sorted, and set up mainly on the Astra 2a satellite (with a blind search)? Luverly … only fing is that I can get Al Jazeera, but I can’t get ITV1!! Having looked at the info via Google, it appears that the only way to get the ‘Freeview’ channels on ‘Freesat’ is to get a package from BSKYB for £150. Seems that you can’t just get a box as I have and tune it in! That is a cheek! You can’t get ITV1, ITV2 CH4, CH5 etc on the satellite box that I have. I have spoken to Mary, our Co-ordinator, and she is going to see if we can get our dish tuned to the ‘Freesat’ channels.

We lost a neighbour last Thursday. She was about 84, and her husband is about 87. Very nice couple. They were at the 10th anniversary get together. She died in her sleep of a heart attack. I hope that that is the way I go. I have seen two friends buggered about by the medics in their last six weeks of life. I reckon that they use us as living cadavers!
Sunday, 06 November 2005. I have decided to go back on the Metformin for my diabetes. Without it, my levels are on the high side of normal. See how it goes. Not taking the Glipizide though. That’s all with the advice of the diabetes nurse.

Wherever I go, I find the spirits! (Thought that they could just be found at the Aldersyde!) When building the new school, they came across an ancient burial site of 4000 years ago. (That’s before my first coming!) The buildings in the background are our bungalows. See here.

I cancelled my order for the Sony DVD Recorder + Freeview, and bought a similar Panasonic one, and saved about £70. They are similar, except that the Panasonic one records to fewer types of DVD, but no probs. In setting it up, I found that both remotes (my old Panasonic DVDR & the new one) had the same ID code. So, when I controlled one, I controlled both! The manual, as usual, was not very clear. Anyway, I got it sorted. It is a good unit. The EPG (Electronic Programming Guide) is excellent for recording. I can now record three digi channels while watching another ….. I’ll be getting letter-box eyes!

Still having fun with the satellite box. The manual is useless. Now got my favourites sorted. Seems that it is more useful than I at first thought, but there are no ITV channels FTA (Free To Air) other than ITV3. The Horror channel does some old B&W films. There are three film channels FTA. Now found a gr8 TV schedule service in @ £9/year. Very handy for seeing what films are scheduled, and checking the schedules for the non-Scottish TV & radio times.

Another prob has been the change on the Freeview digi channel numbers. News 24 went from 40 to 80, and for some reason the auto tune on the TV would not pick it up. I went onto Google to get the manual settings and found no info. So … left to my own superior intelligence, I worked on it. It seems that all BBC progs are on channel 41 (you can have four to six progs on one channel number!). BBC News24 is on sub-channel 6. So, the settings are, 80/DIG/C41/06/BBC NEWS24.

Been a ‘funny’ week. The only way that I can explain it, is with a Cockney saying, “Me arse woz makin’ buttons!” In other words, I was a bit hyper. Could not sit still. Had to keep getting up and doing something. Today I seem to have settled. I hope that I get back to my old relaxing routines.
Monday, 28 November 2005. Just to let you all know that I am still alive! I know that my ‘friends’ will be pleased! Things have just been quiet …… I am at peace …… The weather has been a bit changeable. Not had any snow though. This morning had a little sit on the beach. I have found a place where I can sit out of the northerly breeze. It was nice.

Got the ITV progs OK on the satellite box, but CH4 & CH5 are not there. Checked with the channel listing site and it seems that you have to get the BSkyB box for £150 to get them. I have asked our co-ordinator to see if we can get it sorted. The box is useful though, for the film channels.

They say that time heals all. I will always remember how Ivor tried to get me to lie to his wife’s daughter ten years ago this month. I don’t know if it hurts, but I still resent it & there is a lot of rancour. See here The best way to learn about the incident is via the tape recording that I made a year later for Dolly. Hear here. (It is 18 mins long. Or you can right click, and Save Target as ….)
Saturday, 10 December 2005. Last Thursday, I woke at 5am with bad colic, and had a lump of lead in my guts for a couple of days. Just ate toast, and drank milk. All OK now.

We had our Christmas party yesterday. Got a lot more to get through in the coming month! I did a video of the party. It’s worth watching for the Scottish folk music. See here.

I have been drinking more over the past week. I got some different drinks in, in case someone visited. Martini, Cointreau, Spiced Rum, Harvey’s Sherry ……. I’ll have to go out and get some more! Surprise is that I have not had a hangover.

Saw a ‘Cello’ DVD recorder with analogue tuner in the Co-op at £80, so I got one. Excellent value. May have a prob tho’, after recording it froze when I went to play. Seems to have cleared itself now. It says on the box and instructions that it is +R & +RW only, but it also does –R & -RW. Also, it does slide shows of jpeg pictures on CD, but the instructions do not say so. All in all, a bit of a mystery. It also plays mpeg music CDs . Nice to get more than you pay for……… if it keeps working!
Tuesday, 13 December 2005. Nuffin’ on tele, so fort I wood due this. Plus … I am enjoying a Cointreau.

Gave up on the Cello DVD recorder (above). Took it back to the Co-op, and they were very good, and gave me a replacement. But, ho-de-ho it had the same fault! I noticed that the stock had been removed from display. Conclusion is that their buyer had bought a job lot of dodgy units. Someone will pay! Me got me munny back! Then had a sit on the front. Got a bit cold after a while.

Just had a pleasant half-hour with the ‘Arran Brass Monkey Quintet’. (There were four of them!) Because it was cold, one had dropped off! See here. I’m really settling here now, after the emotion of Felmore Court. Please God that it continues.
Monday, 19 December 2005. Had our Christmas lunch today. Very good. I had the lamb, and fresh fruit salad. Sugar levels good after. I see the diabetic nurse on Thursday.

As it’s the first day of the twelve days of Christmas, I give you my simple Christmas message. (Deleted) Also as an afterthought, I thought you might like to have a bit of a giggle (naughty but funny … not for the children!) (Deleted) You need your sound on, and you will be asked to confirm that you wish to d/l. All is OK. All the best to my friends. The rest can go to hell ……………. Hohoho!!!
Tuesday, 03 January 2006. That’s the holiday season over. Now I can get back to my routine peaceful life! I have been looking at the past few entries, and they are just bloody boring. Now that I have settled down, there isn’t much to write about. Other than that, I have had a toothache since Christmas Eve. (Now … isn’t that interesting!) Been using hot salt water, and it seems to have calmed it. I expect that there will be long periods when I do not put ‘pen to paper’. So, if you see no entries, do not worry, it’s most likely that I am still alive!
Sunday, 22 January 2006. I had a nasty intruder in my bedroom about 10 days ago! A little beastie! I haven’t found it, but it left its calling card on my head. Not sure what it was, but it bit me twice on the front of my scalp, on my eyebrow and my nose. It made a bit of a mess – I may have scratched it in my sleep. At one point, I thought that I had picked up a ring- worm. AOK now. I spray the bedroom each evening. Arran is noted for its beasties!

On the medical side, I saw the diabetic nurse, and I’m doing OK. I have returned to taking my medication. Also, a nice young lady had a look at my lovely feet to see if I had developed peripheral neuropathy - AOK.

I have had a bit of a rough time sleeping since just before Christmas. My ‘mental flywheel’ will not slow down. I was thinking about everything, and nothing. Just couldn’t switch off. The good side is that I have ‘knitted’ together ‘Tedism’, ‘no free will’, and a few other bits of philosophy & religion, and came up with a good attempt at the reason for life! Yup …. That’s what I said ……. The reason for life! And, I’m not crazy. Snag is that I do not have anyone to talk it over with and test it.  I had a try at narcotherapy, (sleep). Took sleeping pills for two nights and spent most of the days in bed. It worked, but I had a ‘toss & turn’ night last night again …… ho hum! I will have to get around to collating my ideas and putting them into my ‘Ramblings’ section. (That may also help me to switch off.)

I might get a chance to discuss my ideas. A woman came here to see about starting up a discussion group. Central gov’t and the health department are financing her. She is ‘pushing’ a system of ‘Socrates Cafes’. Details can be found here At the moment, I am wary. I had a scout round Google, but could not find any criticism. My first impression, is that it is akin to ‘Moral Re-Armament’ that was around in the 70s. A couple have written a book that takes basic philosophy, and reinvents it, then tags on new words to old concepts.  I had a lot of experience with this type of creation when I was in management services.
Friday, 03 February 2006. Fifteen years ago today, I was told that if I did not have a double bypass operation, then I was unlikely to live for more than two years. Four years ago, when it was discovered that I had 70% blocked Carotid arteries, I asked the specialist’s advice. He put his hand on my shoulder and said, “Mr Aylward, go home and enjoy yourself!” An indication that he, again, thought that I was near my end. Nevertheless, I am here, and not doing too badly. (Though I did have a poor time over the New Year)

So, for what has the ‘Big Yin’ up there saved me? For a good while, I have been thinking about God and freewill. At last, I have put pen to paper, and I am setting out my thoughts. I have set up a new web site to promulgate my hypotheses. It is There have been a few probs with the accessing of the site. If you get probs click here. I am looking forward to the feedback. I have tried my thoughts on some people, and have had just disbelief, but sometimes, partial acceptance.
Thursday, 09 February 2006. I had a present from Italy yesterday. About three years ago, I had an email from a woman with a publishing house in Italy. She asked if she could use one of the photos on my web site for inclusion in an Italian computer-training book. The book is to teach Italians English, together with computing. The photo was of my neighbour at Felmore Court, in Essex, where I last lived. See the page here. You will see that the students are asked to associate each picture with a web site addy. The one associated with Flo, she is in the centre, is so I registered this and they can get me via that addy!

I thought that Chloe had hung up her pistols in exasperation at not being able to annoy me. It gives me the opportunity to point newcomers to her web site at She visited my new site and in a cowardly manner, left me this anonymous form message :-
You really are a nasty man arn't you? Why didn't you die 15yrs ago you asked, because God doesn't want you up there.  There is no place in heaven for such as you.Your place is being warmed up.
You will note the poor grammar & spelling. She is of low intelligence (tested @ 75 IQ on the Otis Test – Cretin level), and poor schooling! She is such a Christian person. Her compassion does shine through. (Just to get her dander up! I feel a lot better now!)
Though I do have the last laugh …… I am still living …. So I am sure that God loves me!
Monday, 20 February 2006. We had our first discussion group last Thursday. There was only five of us there, plus our co-ordinator, the moderator & her friend. I kept quiet for a while, but things did not get moving. Somehow, we got onto free will! I could not stay quiet then. There were two reactions. One was of misunderstanding of the subject, the other a (blank?) refusal to consider the hypotheses. The discussion dropped a few notches; well it fell into the basement!
We finished by talking like a group of senile pensioners, of how good it was in the old days! The moderator did not moderate, but our co-ordinator filled in for her at propitious times. Apropos how things have changed over the past fifty years …. My thoughts are here.

Seeing that the Lamlash Improvements web site has ‘bitten the dust’, (am I being bitter?), I thought that I would have a piss on it! See here! To do the same to any web site …… including this one, go to ! You may see the original outline Lamlash web site that I designed here.
Tuesday, 28 February 2006. At the top of the page, and at the bottom, you will see that I have replaced the hyperlinks with a drop down menu. It seems to work OK. I got the code from Bravenet. Try it. Come back with your back button. If any probs, let me know.
Friday, 17 March 2006. I have never been one for ‘arty farty’ web design. But, I got a freebie prog – MotionArtist - with the PCW mag that does Flash pages. To keep my brain active, I have had a go at using it in re-designing my home page. It has some nice music, so have your sound on. You will have seen my efforts as you logged on. I’m still not too happy with it, and I may have another few goes. So, you may see a variety of home pages over the next few weeks.

We were lucky with the weather. The mainland had a lot of snow, but we just got 2” for 24 hours last Sat/Sun. Prob was that I had to go the chemist for some pills on Monday, and it was bloody cold!
Saturday, 18 March 2006. On Saturdays, I access my four dial-up connections, to keep them active. Just tried the Flash home page, as above, and it took two minutes to load! That’s why I am reluctant to use these ‘arty farty’ pages. There are many people in the UK and the world who do not have access to broadband. I want to everyone to see my pages, so, I have reverted to my old index page, and put the Flash version here for interest. (Use your back button to return here.) I have also pointed to it from my Technical section.

Later on ….. Did a change to the home page … did a mouse rollover on my pic to enter … and it loads quickly!
Monday, 20 March 2006. Following on from the above entries, I have gone the whole hog and written my home page manually in Notepad ….. not an inch of compiler used!! It is how I learnt to do HTML six years ago. My brain must still be quite good!
You can it page here. If you look at the number of lines of code, you will see the difference in size.
Tuesday, 21 March 2006. Sorry if you got a bit confused with the changes in the home page yesterday. I was trying all three versions. I have now decided not to use the Home page which wot I writ in text, as the actual home page, as you will have seen. I am using the page written with Word2000.
Some statistics. The Flash page is 427K, and took two minutes to load with dial-up. The page compiled with Word2000 (as used at present) is 10K, and the ‘hand crafted’ page is just 3k. The only snag that I have found is that Mozilla does not recognise the ‘bgsound’ statement, but no big loss.
The links on these pages will not work, but try them to see the effects. Use your back button to return here.
Saturday, 25 March 2006. Never thought that I would ever let a woman keep me awake for a complete night! At least, not at my age! My nice neighbour, Josie, got a Freeview box and it was not working so I had a go. Could I succeed …. not bloody likely! We decided that the box was ‘caput’, and decided to get a new one, which I ordered, there and then. Went to bed, and could not sleep, and the prob kept going round in my head. Then, eureka!!!!! The answer came to me. On Arran, we can get a signal from two masts, one at Shotts, and one at Darvel. The box had been set up on Darvel, whereas our communal aerial is on Shotts. At 3:30 in the morning, I sent an email to cancel the new box. Snag was that I could not get to sleep, for thinking of why I was such a bloody fool not to think of it earlier. Today I set up the box, and it’s working gr8.
So ………. I will never again allow a woman to keep me awake for a complete night. Well …… not until the next time …. Hehe!
Tuesday, 04 April 2006. Glorious weather today. So did my shopping. I miss getting it on the web from Tesco. I haven’t been out much at all over the past two weeks. Not been feeling great. Not sleeping well. I have decided to take a sleeping pill for five nights running, (not done that ever before!), and see how I go. Had one each of the two past nights, and feeling OK.
Got a new neighbour, 92yo, and she seems younger that I am! Hehe! We have two other ladies over 90 …. But no men!!

Following on from my not feeling comfortable at our monthly church services, and doing my ‘Tedism’ site, I have taken an interest in checking up on ideas that I have had over the past 50 years about Christianity. I have been most surprised at what I have found. I used Google to find articles on the subjects that I have discussed with many people for those 50 years. You can see them by going to and clicking on ‘What about Jesus’.

Poor old Carl! A few months ago, he asked me to send an email to a girl singer. There was a misunderstanding, and he had a’ bit of a go’ at me. I phoned him to see if things had settled, and he hung-up on me. It’s all so sad. That’s twice we have had a bit of a fracas over an email. He just seems to go off, and no talking does any good. I hope that he does come around, and see how much I care for him. His brother, Kevin, does not seem to have any sense of family, being devoid of emotional feelings. Kevin is having some success with his Blondie Tribute band, with two gigs as at now. See his site at 
Wednesday, 05 April 2006. To help people read my ‘Tedism’ ideas, I have done a ‘Word’ file to read or download. See
Tuesday, 11 April 2006. That’s me and Carl talking again. We had a ‘heart to heart’ and I think that he is going to talk to me if I upset him again.

I have added a bit to my ‘Tedism’ site. I have developed my thoughts about ‘Crime & Punishment’.
Monday, 17 April 2006. This site was seven years old on the 13th. You may like to browse the early diary pages to see how it has developed.
Long winter here. Not too cold, but not inviting to go out.

Don’t know why, but I have been drawn to more investigation of the historical validation of the existence of Jesus. I feel uneasy that it is possible that two billion people, or so, are the subject of a big con of 1900 years ago. I’ll still investigate and see where it all goes. I have added a bit to my previous writings. See here.
Thursday, 04 May 2006. I had a bit of a fright for 4/5 days a week ago. Kept being giddy, and seeing double (quadruple!!). My first thought was that it was my carotids blocking up. But, AOK, must have been an infection. Several of the people here have been feeling poorly. Must be the late spring!

My legs have been playing me up. Especially when I get my shopping. It’s uphill on the way back, and with a full wheelie, it’s tough going. I went on Google to look for “motorised shopping trolley” and could not find one. I found a couple of sites that had the idea, and were looking for financial backing to make them. Then, I got the Radio Times, and a catalogue in it showed a golf trolley. Hey ho! I thought. I can use it to carry my shopping. I have bought one - £150. See here. I will put my wheelie shopping bag where the golf bag is. (As at now, waiting for delivery.) The way that my legs are going, I’ll soon be looking for an electric buggy!

I am very puzzled about the things that I have been finding out while doing my Tedism site. For 50 years, I have discussed religion for 100s of hours with many people, and have always assumed that it was an historical fact that a fella named Jesus had existed. In researching Tedism, I have come to a full stop in the effort to show any evidence for the historical existence of Jesus. My idea has always been that he existed, but was just an intelligent philosopher like what I is! I cannot come to terms with the fact that at no time in my life has this been put to me by anyone.
If you g
o to Google, and type in “Jesus never existed” you will find a wealth of references. Many are from religious bodies, and they refer to historical references dated 70+ years after Jesus’ supposed death, or to the gospels. However, not one, that I have found, gives any contemporary references to his existence. Try this site as a start :-
I am crying out for someone to give me the names of contemporary chroniclers or diarists who mention Jesus.
Have you ever known a person who has been a devout Christian for fifty years, and then, over a few months lost his/her faith? That’s devastating. That is how I feel. After fifty years of arguing on the basis that Jesus did exist, and was just a fella like me …. before his time, intelligent, loquacious, charismatic, I find that he did not even exist. Whom do I now model myself on -------- Buddha!?
Sunday, 07 May 2006. Got the trolley yesterday. Took ten days! We usually get parcels in three days. I have spent a lot of time, and a bloody great deal of sweat, setting it up. I’m too old for this lark! My aim was to get the whole trolley including the frame & wheels onto the golf trolley, but no good. I ended up just putting the bag part onto the trolley. Final arrangement not too bad. See how it works in the next day or two. Wonder if it will coup over!!?? See here.
Friday, 12 May 2006. OK …… OK ……..! Who is the smart arse who is trying to tell me that I have a big mouth!? I received a present of a motorised toothbrush. Snag is I can’t get it into me mouth! See it here.

The trolley did try to coup over. I have now fixed straps to the trolley and stitched the other ends to the bag. Seems to have stabilised the lateral prob. Second try-out next Tuesday.


(I got the brush as a freebie with some Fairy Liquid hehe!)
Wednesday, 17 May 2006. What a to do! Last night I was taken into hospital after suffering a terrifying bout of sickness and diarrhoea. It was like two volcanoes erupting simultaneously from both ends! They kept me in overnight for observation. Didn’t sleep a wink, and so I am fairly knackered. Had a nap, and thought that I would do the diary. The Para-medic team, the doctor, and the hospital staff were superb. At first, I did not want to go into hospital, but the Para-medics edged me towards making ‘my own’ decision to go in. It was the right decision, because I felt secure, and thus not stressed. Not sure of the cause. There is a 24 hour bug doing the rounds. It also may have been my own fault in contaminating the cooked meat for my dinner while I was putting away some pork cutlets. I suppose I’ll never know.

The motorised shopping trolley, MKII, performed well. The basic design of the trolley is poor, in that the small front wheel is fixed instead of being able to swivel. This makes steering a problem.
Saturday, 27 May 2006. I don’t think that I am as clever as I think that I am! Had three days buggering about with bad instruction books.


First, I bought an mp3 player. I wanted to have a look at the technology. Got it from Maplin - £40. The manual is written in ‘pigeon English’. E.g. “Large button press long does switch on.” Added to that, the player is about the size of three Oxo cubes. See here. The viewing window is about 1” X 1/3”, which strains the eyes a bit when following the menus. Anyhow, I managed to sort it out. It is a Karaoke player, voice recorder and does something with phone numbers. (Haven’t sorted that out yet!) It has a 1gig memory, and can be used as a standard storage device. It holds about 2000 tracks of music. I played it thro’ my console organ and the quality is good.


The second trial was that I got the router for my upgraded broadband. I’m used to doing this kind of thing. The instruction CD was excellent. It used animation, voice and text to explain the procedure. Then …….. a big snag!! It did not fire up. It said to run the trouble shooting software. This I tried to do, and was told that an updated version was available, but it did not allow me to use the current version. So, I had to download it via my dial-up line, and it took over two bloody hours!! With BB it would have taken three minutes. And, it did not end there. After loading the software, it did not recognise the router, and gave me instructions for my old modem! Finally, I had to change some settings, and got it running. Then, as it did when I switched to BB, BT-Yahoo grabbed my resources and re-set all my defaults! I had to go onto Google and find a registry fix to enable my IE browser to be the default.

Before I got the router, my d/l speed was a maximum of 5.9meg. With the router, it is 6.0meg. the maximum is supposed to be 6.5meg. Was it worth it?! The d/l speeds are variable, and sometimes go down to 2.0meg. Anyhow, it gave my brain an outing!


Is it that I’m getting old and incompetent? I can’t imagine how the ‘man/woman in the street’ manages to use computers. They must pay a lot I getting ‘expert’ service engineers to help them!


My digestive system settled after about a week. Tho’ I’m still getting the ‘coli wobbles’ now and then.
Saturday, 03 June 2006. With the coming of summer, and the leaves on the trees, our TV reception is poor. Last Friday, at our coffee afternoon, some of my neighbours were bemoaning that fact. I have researched the systems available. At the moment, I have Freeview, via the terrestrial aerial, and Free to Air satellite channels, via our communal dish. I had seen that Sky were doing a ‘Freesat’ box at £150 with the Freeview channels. Looking thro’ Google I found that it was possible to get Freesat from other suppliers at about £100. I have now got a Freesat box from

In looking at the Freesat channels available on I see that several channels that are on Freeview are not on Freesat. When are these people going to get their act together!!?

I know that I am going to be asked by my neighbours which system they should get. My opinion at this time, considering the poor summer signal, has to be Freesat. With the poor terrestrial signal, Freeview is not really an option, especially if you want CH5.

The only caveat is that when the analogue signal is switched off, the digital signal will be boosted. Will this make a significant difference with CH5? We are also having a new school built near us, and this may affect the signal.

Looking at BSKYB’s site, I see that they do a basic package of the Freesat progs with the addition of Entertainment and Knowledge for £10/month. I have always been against ‘pay to view TV’, but I may have a go at it. I only pay £5/year for my TV licence anyway! I have emailed BSKYB to find out how to run two boxes together. It’s not possible to daisy chain them as the box has only got one ‘F’ connector input.

All good fun hehe!!

Wednesday, 07 June 2006. That last year flew by! I have now been on Arran for a year.


Loving to understand new technology, I ordered a 50” TV - £1050 delivered – then cancelled it! It uses a new technology – DLP – Digital Light Processing. Quaint, but it uses some of the principles developed by John Logie Baird in the 1930s. He used mechanics, rather than electronics to produce the image. His invention was abandoned when electronic scanning was developed. But, what goes around comes around, and his principles are still of use! The system uses an array of one and a quarter million hinged mirrors on a chip about one inch square. This is used with a light source and a chromatic wheel to create the image. The reason why I cancelled was that after I had researched it, I discovered that the light source – a bulb – lasted for only about 1000 to 2000 hours. This is about a year’s viewing and cost about £150. Texas claim that their bulb gives 5000 hours, but I thought better of it, and cancelled. You can see how the technology works here -  Have a look at the animated demo – fascinating.


To see a bit about Baird’s invention go here :-  (If this site does not load, put “john logie baird” into Google) You will see that he used a light source and a spinning wheel! He also invented the video recorder in 1927 – how about that then!! He did abandon the mechanical system. Now we have resurrected it.


It is interesting, the wide range of visitors that I have to this site. I only wish that they would do the courteous thing and leave a message!

My site had a visit from someone with an email account with  (American, I believe, worth a visit). I’m still hoping that someone will give me references to establish the existence of Jesus between 10BC & 40AD.   I am thinking of offering to donate £500 to a non-religious charity nominated by the person giving me three such contemporary diarists, chroniclers or scribes.


From the sublime to the ?ridiculous? even the police had a visit! (Essex Police) via my web site

On a regular basis, I get a visit from the FBI because I have references to the CIA, or as I have it, Cottage Industry Accounts.


Finally ….. someone’s nicked me safe! I ordered a safe from and it looks some tealeaf has had it away in Glasgow. First time a parcel has been lost. Very nice girls at Viking. Passed away a few pleasant minutes on the phone. Our deliveries here are great. Royal Mail delivers next day. Other carriers the day after. Not like living in the wilds!
Thursday, 22 June 2006. Got me safe, at last. Now I need some diamonds to put init!


My recliner finally gave up the ghost, had it for about ten years, and I had to buy a new one. £235 plus £15 delivery to the island. Got it from , my first buy from them. They gave me a little beer chiller as a freebie with the chair, and a digi camera for my first order. I have taken a photo of the chair with the camera – see here.


I have been trying to lighten the load when I shop, so I thought that I would get my whisky delivered. I found But their site said that the delivery charge was £7.50.  I sent an email asking if there was a special rate for Arran. When I didn’t get a reply, I went to and ordered a case of whisky and a case of assorted spirits. (That should keep me going for a few months!! Hehe!!) Delivery - £4.25/case. Sad to say that Arran whisky replied to my email later and there was no delivery charge on the island. Never mind, I’ll use them next time.


Not too good for the past three days. Think that I had a TIA (mini stroke) Tuesday morning. After getting up, I felt a bit woozy. While washing, I had eye probs. I had my breakfast, and then went to write a list of the spirits I wanted. I could think of nothing! Couldn’t even think of the word ‘whisky’, I did the mini memory test, and could not think of the PM’s name, or any other! It all felt queer Nothing to be done about it. So, I went back to bed, and had a rest. It all cleared about an hour after. That’s about four years since the last one, when I lost the colour vision in my left eye. They say that after you have had one, it is most likely that you’ll have another within three years. It just affects a small part of the brain. I suppose I must expect more …… ho hum!


Would you bloody believe it!! Just got a phone call from Oddbins to say that one of my cases of booze has been nicked! That’s after someone nicked me safe! Where will it all end ….. and another ……. ho hum! Bye by, everybody, bye, bye! (Apologies to Sootie!)
Tuesday, 04 July 2006. I always seem to be mentioning anniversaries. Tomorrow is the 23rd anniversary of Lesley’s passing. It doesn’t get any easier.

 This bloody machine crashed on Sunday. I d/l an update from Microsoft, then got an error and a message to d/l a patch, which I did. Snag was that the computer had to do a re-start to install the patch, but the crash stopped the machine from doing a re-start!! Tried everything, but in the end had to do an HP re-install which buggered a lot of the progs. I’m still sorting it all out. My brain can’t cope with this kind of thing now! I would pack up the computer, but I do my shopping and banking with it. It is all very convenient being, on the island.

We are going out to the Golf Club on Thursday for lunch. About 17 of us. If the weather heats up too much, I’ll cry off. I have the air-conditioner going full blast now!
Wednesday, 12 July 2006. Got the computer sorted. I had to pay out for some software that was buggered. Got Norton protection & maintenance software. It was expensive, but as my MacAfee software crashed beyond repair I decided on a change.


The Golf Club lunch was modest. For £12.50 on the pricy side. Compared with the meal that I have at The Old Pier Tearoom, at a cost of about £7.50 (including a good tip!), it was poor value. Still I enjoyed getting out, and having a chat. Sitting at my table was a lady who had just joined our complex. In conversation, she told us that after a cycling accident, she ‘died’. She explained that she had ‘gone to heaven’ and seen her past life. She also saw people who were alive. She had the common experience of leaving her body and rising up. I am looking forward to talking with her in detail one day. Isn’t life interesting?


It’s nice to get good news sometimes. I was at the opticians (optometrists!) Tuesday, and had a camera scan of my eyes. Their practice is in Brodick – McAlister, the only practice on the island. Last time I had a camera scan was 15 months ago, and an aneurism was found. This time …. it had gone! I thought that it would have been worse. Looks like my eyes are pretty good. Yes ….. I know that they are pretty! The optometrist, a young lady, was exceptional. Professionally competent with a warming personal manner. I was a bit nervous, and as usual was a bit of a gas-bag, but she carried on in a calming and understanding way.
The selling side of the business was not pushy. I was told that I did not need new distance glasses, and that I could have a pair for reading, and a pair for the computer with my NHS vouchers. I was shown a selection, and decided to spend an extra £20 and get two pairs in a better range. All in all, it was a pleasant afternoon.
I had looked on the web for eshopping for glasses and found a site that did them on being given the prescription and frame size. I may try them just for fun one day.   One is at May make an interesting visit. Businesses have to take eshopping into consideration when planning their future. SpecSavers are making an effort to establish themselves on the island. If there’s a profit ……. there’s competition!


My nephew David has launched an introduction service on the web for people in Essex. The site was designed by his son Mark. It’s a cracking good design. He could have a future in the game. The site is here - I think that his pricing is very low at £50/year. With the personal visiting, I would estimate that a one off £350 would be more commercial. With this kind of business, Professional Indemnity Insurance is essential. One action by a disgruntled, or assaulted (real or otherwise) client could lead to financial ruin. This ‘No claim – no fee’ facility is a welcome mat to the ‘compo’ artist.


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