A couple of weeks ago, on Monday 13 August, most of the UK was either at work or on a deck chair out back, looking forward to the Olympic closing ceremony. And me? Well, since you ask, I was crawling up a slope on the M6 at 10mph, cooking slowly in my own sweat and hoping my leaky-radiatored car didn't conk out on me (fortunately, proving that there are sometimes happy endings in real life, it survived all the way to a garage the next day to have some sealant put in it).
Aside from the painfully slow drive home, I had a very nice holiday. I was a bit dubious about spending four nights on a site for 'real campers' (cold running water and portaloos only) - but I must admit, with the good weather that we caught, and my phone switched off, it was a really nice way to get away from everything. We did a 16 mile walk on the first day, and I discovered I wasn't totally out of shape.
I'd been feeling quite burnt-out prior to my holiday - no time off since Easter, plus all the joys of moving house - but I thought it worth recording the one change I've made which has made me feel much healthier and happier, and unlike my holiday, is permanent.
I'm off the current affairs.
For the last three years, I've been a serious news junkie, even writing my own RSS aggregator to pull together all the news and blogs I follow. I'd spend most of my lunch hour reading it, and probably check it from my phone morning and evening too. Doing something I last resorted to whilst sitting finals, and turning it off, forced me to get out from behind my screens at lunchtime, and this has combined with not knowing about all the bad things happening in the world to make me feel noticeably healthier and happier. I still catch the headlines on the radio when I wake up, so I'm not totally out of touch, but five minutes a day is long enough. Also, I think trying to absorb all the different tech blogs and other things I followed was definitely causing information overload - there's only so much a man can take in during one day.