**Disclaimer: I’m writing this post after a not so successful day in the office. I’m also feeling slightly more stressed than normal as I’m still trying to get used to working in a busy office. Apologies if this selection of rants and raves are more moany than usual. As always, all moans and groans and rants and raves represent my own views. Dozens of far less negative running blogs are available, I’m always happy to recommend a few**
Rave: Being back at home
While I think it’s safe to say that I grew to love living and working in Wallingford, I’m enjoying being back at home in Four Oaks. I’m saving a fortune on train tickets and rent, and with my side hustles am managing to transfer a fair amount of money into my savings account each month. It’s just a shame it took me 40 years to start making the effort to save money.
One of the few downsides of living back in Four Oaks and working in Solihull is the commute. My commute into the Wallingford office comprised of a 20 minute walk along a route which included crossing Wallingford Bridge. I loved stopping off at the River Thames each morning.
My new commute takes over an hour as I have to catch a train into Birmingham New Street, walk to Birmingham Moor Street and then catch a train to Solihull. After enduring a couple of overcrowded trains, I’ve decided that although getting up at 05:30 is challenging, missing both the morning and evening rush hours makes it worthwhile.
I’m looking forward to the day the office moves into the centre of Birmingham.
Rave: My Wallingford colleagues
My colleagues in Wallingford gave me the most amazing send-off. My final week was a nonstop marathon of after work meals and drinks. By the final day I was shattered and felt like a beached whale.
The comments in my leaving card made me a little teary and my leaving presents were incredibly thoughtful. I’m keeping an eye on the internal jobs board for permanent jobs in the Wallingford office.
Rant: Hot desking
Another reason I’m missing working in the Wallingford office is what I’m going to call the joy of hot desking. In the Wallingford office, I was allocated my own desk and as long as it was kept reasonably clear, I was allowed to leave my cup, work etc on my desk when I went home. It definitely made life easier as I knew I had somewhere to sit. It also meant that my chair and monitor etc were set up correctly.
My new office operates a strict hot desking policy. I’m finding having to sit at a different desk every day quite hard to get used to. There is a lot less conversation in the new office. I can see why a lot of people work from home.
Rave: Skid Row Marathon
I watched the Skid Row Marathon documentary last May and wrote the following:
“I don’t want to give too much away, but if you get the opportunity please, please go and watch Skid Row Marathon. I was in tears before it even started. ..”
For less than the cost of a pint in my local pub, Skid Row Marathon is now available to stream via this link.
Rant: Social Media
I’ve been avoiding social media recently as I find the utter crap that some people write incredibly frustrating. I know that I can just scroll past and ignore the crap, but it’s now so widespread it’s getting difficult.
And as for the people who hide behind anonymous social media accounts to dish out snarky comments; please don’t. I didn’t appreciate being called a fat and worthless lazy f**ker, and doubt that you’d have the balls to say it to my face.
Rave: Plogging Sutton Coldfield
I recently ranted about people who litter; I’m now going to rave about a group I spotted on Farcebook.
Since moving back to Four Oaks, I’ve been searching the internet for local running groups. I spotted a page called Plogging Sutton Coldfield and got in contact with James, the local runner who set up the Farcebook page. I’m going to see if I can drum up a bit of local support.
Rant: Your parkrun needs you posts
I’m not sure if it’s due to the weather or time of year, but I’ve noticed a lot of ‘Your parkrun needs you’ posts on social media recently.
The Farcebook page for my local parkrun – Sutton Park parkrun – has almost 1300 likes. Unfortunately, despite several shout outs for help, it was almost cancelled last weekend due to a lack of marshals.
I tried to promote volunteering in the run report I produced a few weeks ago. I guess the whole point of volunteering is that people don’t have to volunteer unless they want to.
Rave: My new blog header
Now that I have a bit more free time on a Sunday evening, I’m aiming to improve the layout of this blog. I spent far too long debating the pros and cons of changing the name of my blog. I eventually decided to stick with the PhD Runner and invested in a new blog header. I just need to invest in a new theme.
I was about to invest in the blog migration service offered by Pipdig when it all got a bit heated online. However, as I’ve had enough of the irritating advert at the top of the page I’m now researching alternatives. If anyone can recommend an alternative to Pipdig then please get in touch 🙂
If you’ve got to the end of this random selection of rants and raves, then I’d like to say a massive “thank-you”. As always, I hope that you think my rants were reasonable. I feel a little better now that I’ve shared my moans and groans.
Does your office operate a hot desking policy? I’m aware that hot desking is quite popular, I’d love to hear some positive stories.
Have you watched Skid Row Marathon? If you haven’t please consider paying to watch it on Vimeo. I’m not on commission, I just think it’s an amazing running documentary.