Monday mornings

It’s Monday. Your alarm sounds at 5:30am. Ugh.

The last seven days have been the coldest and wettest (yay!) of the year so far. It’s been one of those weeks that Cape Town housing really isn’t set up for. The ambient temperature of the water in the shower is noticeably lower than usual. It’s going to be a battle to emerge from beneath the heavy winter duvet. The beagle has written a surprisingly good motivation for the immediate construction of an indoor dog loo. We’re all in this together.

The sun rose this morning at a lazy 7:45, by which time the kids were at school and I was negotiating the tricky Claremont rush hour. We’re fewer than three weeks away from June 21st – Cape Town’s shortest day of the year:

Sunrise: 07:51 Sunset: 17:44
Day length:9:53:32

…but because of the tilt of the earth’s axis and the unchanging nature of the solar day, sunrise will continue to be later and later until July 1st, at which point we will only begin daylight at a seemingly ridiculous 7:52am.

What’s more, the boy is in the middle of his first real set of exams (first set of real exams?), and we’re knee deep in revision timetables and the associated stress. No-one wants to even be awake, let alone going to school. I had to employ some pretty radical parenting skills to get the family moving this morning.

I’ve still got nothing on this guy though:

The sun is out today, slowly wandering across the pale blue, cloudless sky. But all I can think about is an early return to the warmth of my bed.

Ready to do it all again tomorrow.

A cold

I’ve got a cold.

It’s not Ebola, it’s not “man-flu”: it’s just a cold. But it is making me feel a bit crap, and thus – especially with commitments (very) early tomorrow morning – I’m missing a braai I’d like to be at, and taking to my bed, rather than writing anything hugely meaningful here today.

In Paracetamol we trust.

Dead Pod

Worrying times here at Chez 6000. I took Colin to the vet yesterday evening, and when I got back into the car at the surgery, we were (Colin was) so busy chatting about how good it was to be out of the vet with everything apparently still intact that I quite forgot to restart the soothing music which had accompanied our journey there. And then when we got back to the house, we were (Colin was) so excited to be back home with all four legs and a tail that I quite forgot to take my iPod out of my car.

This morning, when I came to play some music on the way to work, I no longer had an iPod.
I had a Dead Pod. RIP SnoopyToo.

My first thought was that I had left it playing through the extensive collection of tunes and that the battery had given up. I have done that before, but it usually saves just enough battery power to tell me that it has no battery power. This time it was completely dead.

My second thought was that I was going to have to listen to 5fm.

I shed a tear, which immediately froze on my cheek. I may have mentioned that the current climatic conditions in Cape Town are somewhat chilly.
“Hmm,” I thought. “I wonder if that has something to do with it?”

Once at work, I plugged the iPod in, but there was still no sign of life. And so, while I left it plugged in, I did some extensive research (I googled), and apparently, chilly iPod problems are a thing:

When I got in my car on Saturday morning there was still ice all over my car and the iPod was dead, as if the battery was zilch. I put it near a heater vent to warm up while I drove, and still nothing when hooked up to the charger adapter.

I should point out here that my iPod was in a car, in a garage, on a night that only really got down to about 4.5ºC, so we were some distance off the “ice all over my car” scenario. But the symptoms were exactly the same.

Apple says that the operating temperature range of its iPod Classic is -20°C to 45°C. At no point is Cape Town going to trouble the lower end of that scale, although summer will easily top the high end. However, last night did neither.

The good news is that my iPod now seems to be fine. It wasn’t a battery issue (it’s come back to life with a near full battery), so I’m guessing that it was temperature related, despite Apple’s claims.

There’s some good advice on that thread I linked to:

Think back to those warnings you used to see on the back of 5.25″ floppy disks. “If it’s comfortable enough for you, then it’s good enough for your disk,” or something like that. Your iPod just needs to warm up, most likely.

And no. I wouldn’t have wanted to have spent last night in my car.

Welcome back, Snoopy Too.