Category Archives: Life

So Long, Big City

I’m moving to Cornwall in two weeks time. It’ll mark the end of a turbulent 10 years here in Birmingham, including nearly three years in Kings Heath. In my time here I’ve set up two businesses, put on gigs, discovered new music and made life-long friends. It’s not much on (virtual) paper, but it’s my life and although there have been some really low-times, there have been some equally brilliant ones. A year ago my daughter moved down there and at the time I was apprehensive about what that meant. I’d been a constant in her life since she was born so knowing I’d only see her when time (and money) allowed was hard for me to take.

The end of the month marks a new chapter in my life, a fresh start with my first love and the chance to live somewhere that’s truly inspiring. I’ll be back in Birmingham every few months and I hope I can hold on to those friendships I’ve built. Being involved in Rhubarb Radio again will keep that link with the city I’ve grown up in, but I’m going to miss all of this.

 

[Audio] Four Years On

On the 6th October four years ago, my Dad passed away. He lost his 18 month battle with cancer and was at home surrounded by his friends and family. It’s a day I’ll remember for the rest of my life, from phoning work to my God Mother seeing a lady in the room with his (we think it was my Nan) him making sure the hedge had been cut minutes before he took his final breath, to me rallying round and making the tea for everyone.

Music was a massive part of my Dads life. Sinatra, The Beatles, Jools Holland, Shirley Bassey – the list goes on. The header at the top of this very blog is a photo I took of his record collection when I was sorting through his things.  Whenever I listen to tracks by his favourite artists, I think of him. This is why I love music so much, I grew up around it and now I’m hoping that my kids will follow in his footsteps.

Frank Sinatra – Summer Wind
The Beatles – Blackbird
Rolling Stones – Miss You

Fixing an iPod touch screen…

When Aimee moved to Cornwall I wanted a way of staying in touch with her. Phoning her Mum everytime I wanted to speak with her was one option, Skype another, but then I had the idea of buying her an iPod and allowing her to contact me when she wanted to. Using iMessage meant we could really keep in touch, with FaceTime the option when we wanted to talk to each other.

She loved it, taking photos of anything she can, sending me updates on her day, recording videos and even using it to set reminders for herself. This isn’t an advert for how great the iPods are, Apple lovers will already know this, it’s the fact that without it, I wouldn’t have been able to keep that connection that we’ve had since she was born.

A few weeks ago, we’d gone to the Eden Project and she was loving every minute of it. She’d realised that she could do what I was doing – taking photos to share with people who weren’t there. Through a bit of over excitement, she’d dropped it a couple of time. I took a look and it was fine. Then, the third drop proved to be the worst. The screen was smashed, almost completely.Anyone who has a child will know the face that come from her next, she was distraught. A little reassurance that it wasn’t the end of the world (and an ice cream) was enough to calm her down, and we all forgot about it.

Last week I ordered a new screen and the tools from eBay. I’d seen a few places online that would do it for between £40 and £60, but this involved sending it all away and trusting them to send it back. Not something I was that keen on myself. Being the geek that I am, I found the full kit – LCD, digitiser and tools – for £15, including P+P. I’ve always had an interest in how things work, so I went for it.

This morning the screen and tools arrived, so I took the plunge and had a go. I didn’t do it on my own, however. The very detailed video from Gadget Menders (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7HSK7kS1c9w) was very helpful. Unfortunately, some of the tools that were included weren’t the best to get the screen off due to the state it was in, so I improvised by using a craft knife *carefully*.

Three hours and a few choice words later, the new screen is installed and everything works. Although frustrating at times, it was actually a quite enjoyable way to spend a few hours of my Saturday morning. I’ve also applied one of those extra strong screen protectors, just to be on the safe side.