Crikey, what a week!
Barring the last couple of days, this past week seems to have been quite a busy one. Whether or not it actually has been is another thing altogether, but it certainly feels that way.
The weekend was definitely a full one, with one of the worst journeys to see family I have had in a looooong time. As well as having to contend with the idiots that like to ride in my boot and the others eager for me to ride in theirs, there were also the idiots that refused to let me overtake, slowing down again when I pull in behind them. It was like every half-wit with a license was out en masse. By the time I got halfway through the journey my throat was sore from all the shouting and cursing!
To add to this, I, like all the other drivers, was also fighting with a howling gale trying to huff-and-puff everyone off the road. Now, being a bit of a control freak, I don't like feeling like I'm at the mercy of something more powerful*, so I was hanging on the to steering wheel like a road-worker trying to control a jackhammer: a white-knuckle ride for the nervous.
By the time I reached family, I had Lego hands from the intense, three-hour grip: I'd have been better off burping the worm for three hours ... at least I'd have been relaxed by the end of it.
There were three reasons for visiting family last weekend. The first of these was to join my cousin on a day trip in order to try out my new lens, and where best to experiment but down at Noah's Ark Zoo Farm.
We started off by having a little wander and checking out which animals were coming out to play ... and to give me a little time to feel less like a twat with a size issue and more like a proper photographer.
Perhaps the two most memorable areas for me were the Meercats and the Black Gibbons: the former for their cute curiousity and the latter for their blatant shamelessness!
Certainly the majority of my pics were of the Meercats, I couldn't get enough of them. Look at him ... isn't he cute?!
Chances are he'd take my leg off in an instant if I actually got near him, little bugger, looking all innocent. They're the ones you want to watch out for ...
... then again, you might want to be more careful of the Gibbons. They're not shy. Teeny 'bits' more than made up for by their huge appetite for public displays of affection. I'm not a prude and certainly animals don't have the same sensibilities that our society has evolved. However, the lady who was beckoning her 5 year old kid to come and take a look at the monkey about to swing on the rope was either completely naive or wrong in the head.
Mr Gibbon was actually grabbing the rope for a better purchase whilst Mrs Gibbon swung on his rope.
Needless to say, I refrained from the happy family portrait.
Saturday night was then filled with a rather good night out on the tiles to celebrate a friend's 30th birthday, followed by cooked breakfast for 15 and the third reason for visiting family: Mother's Day.
As is customary on these occasions, my Dad cooked dinner while the rest of us caught up on the various comings and goings of our lives. Inevitably, I became the climbing frame for the kids and ended up as a bucking bronco ... trying not to chuck them off if I could help it. Honest!
Needless to say, the moment my sis utters those immortal words "Someone's going to end up in tears!", both of them tumble backwards like a pair of ragdolls, the older landing on the younger and, lo and behold, out spurt the tears and I retain my crown of the bad uncle.
At least it meant I had a break to rest up before the next bout!
Then it was back to work and the project I have been involved in since last April/May, one which I took over the development of in August from someone else who left the company and who had been working on it since the previous year: it has been one of those projects that leaves you totally drained and questioning your sanity.
It has also left me with a strong desire to leave IT altogether and find another vocation that is far more rewarding. Can't see that happening any time soon though...
This week, we finally released the project for the customer's staff to review prior to a public launch. I was absolutely terrified of how the internal launches were going to go, but it turns out that the initial reaction from staff was hugely positive. Then again, lets face it, it couldn't really be any worse than what was there before!!!
So, it seems we are finally there, launching to the public next week. I still can't shake the feeling that something is going to crop up, but that could just be because of how this project has run so far.
* Probably why I'm still single!