Saturday 31 July 2010

Weeknote, 31/7

This week, I have been mostly.....

Nothing. Shameful, I know. I carried the sparkly hat around with me but realised it was too narrow for what I had intended so had to frog it....Artyarns Beaded Mohair and Sequins does not like to be frogged, please note. I have started over, now fear it is too wide. But I have figured out how to get round that.
I also realised I was not going to finish Celia Cruz in time for my holiday, after I had to frog the first inch and a half because my gauge was way, way off, in spite of swatching it. So I am in two minds about that now; I want to put the yarn away and get it out again next summer. I don't want it to languish, though. I have a plan for it, I might make it a between-holidays project and take it to Prague.

Going to:
London. I went to the Grace Kelly exhibition at the V&A, which was a beautiful collection of dresses; I especially appreciated the information cards that went with each one, many of which showed the dresses in the wild, on Grace Kelly.

Then of course, there was the Google thingie.

It was just amazing. I have been so enthused by it. There was a lot of techie stuff, of course, much of which blew my mind: we were looking at it for 12 hours or so, and I was still unable to sleep when I got home for thinking about implementing participant tweeted the next day, "is it wrong that I woke up at 6am this morning, shaking with excitement about how I can integrate the Spreadsheets into my lessons?" - to which the answer is no, because we were all in the same boat. It was particularly amazing to spend the day looking at 50 of the least cynical educators in the world, none of whom said, "It would never work in my school" or "Our kids would just never do it" or any of the other stock phrases I am fed up to the back teeth of hearing.

The other thing I liked about Google was their ethics. They give their employees 20% of their time to work on their own projects; they have little kitchenettes all over the place fully stocked with good snacks for their staff; everyone shares an office, and it's very open plan and full of toys; there are laptop hook ups everywhere, and deck chairs; the toilet stalls have information cards in them for "Learning on the loo". It is inspiring to see a company treat people well, and now a lot more obvious why they are so successful.

We also discovered that Google is spelled that way and not Googol because an early investor wrote a £100k cheque for them but spelled it -le. So, they changed the name to fit the cheque. It was originally called Backrub: can you imagine it, "Miss, can you just Backrub that for me?!"

Enough geeky Googley stuff, I could really go on forever, but it's not really the time/place.

I also went shopping a lot, the results of which are pictured there in part: new wrap dress from Hobbs. Uberflattering and so comfy. See how the print is bigger in the central column than on the edges? Clever. And I finally found a new denim skirt that is not indecent/Mormon in length.

And on Saturday, I rushed off to Sheffield for Jen's barbecue, where I am as this post is published.


I made pesto this week out of the billions of basil leaves in the garden. It went something like this...

50g basil leaves
1 tbsp pine nuts
6 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 oz finely grated parmesan/pecorino romano

Blend all the ingredients together, except the cheese. Blend until very smooth. Take care not to get any of this vibrant green paste on your clothes, it will stain (guess how I know....). Then stir in the cheese. Use roughly a third of the quantity of shop bought pesto, it's very strong.

Typically, the basil plant has positively flourished since I pillaged most of its leaves for this recipe. I now have at least the same quantity of basil back, and two other plants, and several small pots of it. I hope it freezes.

Obsessed with:
Google, and Twitter. I am having to actively put my phone to one side, I'm starting to become quite anti-social.

Entertained by:
Stories from one of the Google lead learners about his phone antics. This man has got through more mobile phones than anybody else I know. He once threw one out of his car window on a motorway, then had "phone chucker's remorse", went back and picked up the pieces and put it back together and it worked for another year. Then there was the iphone he dropped in the ocean, and the one he left in the gym....funny. Some of us went to the pub after the first day of Google and the lead learners from the US were very entertaining. It was such a good time. I wasn't kidding when I said obsessed. Completely obsessed.

Fed up with:
Not getting enough sleep. I went to bed much too late and on Wednesday night I couldn't sleep, so I have been awake on borrowed time most of the week. At least it's the holidays and I have lots of time for plane napping next week.

So enthused and excited about my job! Weird, to feel like this in the holidays, but nice nevertheless. I almost don't want to go to Malaysia next week because I want to stay home and work on projects.
Almost, but not quite ;)

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