I took a month away from a number of things, one of which was this blog and it was a much needed rest. Anyway, I'm back in the seat and will continue to write these Sunday posts until they stop being useful to me. I hope you are all coping well with the COVID crisis and are keeping well.

1. Quote of the week

“Without great solitude, no serious work is possible.”
— Pablo Picasso

Sometimes you need to shut the door, shut out the distractions and get the work done.

2. What I've been enjoying

I've had a massive reorganisation of my office and my garage. I've put a lot of brewing equipment in the loft and cleared space in these areas. In the office, I have put up pictures that have been lying in frames on the floor. I've also put up a whiteboard (long overdue) and tidied away all work in progress into four old fashioned wire in-trays. I like these trays because they are big enough to take a full A4/Foolscap folder.

Having reorganised the space, I've reprioritised a number of projects I'm working on in my spare time. Just a bit of focus and optimisation has put things back on track. Out goes the Kombucha and the Sour Dough Bread - I don't have time for these anymore.

3. What I'm reading

For a number of reasons, I had to park my reading for a couple of weeks. In the last week, I picked up the books again. I finished Hogfather by Pratchett. I like his books and I particularly like his books where Death is the lead character, but this one didn't quite hit the spot for me. I remember Mort and Reaper Man being far funnier. It's a matter of personal taste I guess.

Then this morning I finished the Way of the Zen by Alan Watts. This was a difficult read. The first half is on the history of Zen and the second half is on the practical side of it. The second half was better for me. The book comes across as intellectual and still relevant, despite being written in 1956.

In parallel, I read a book that was written exclusively for the iPad, Aqua & Bondi by Steven Hackett, an 80-page excursion on the early iMac and Mac OS X operating system. The book is beautifully laid out and very quick to read.

4. What I'm doing in my free time

Since the lock-down regulations have been relaxed in the UK, we are getting in the car and taking our dog for a walk in the country, almost every other day. We are watching Lie to Me every night and the "extra time" of not having to commute has enabled me to study more Russian.

5. What I'm learning more about

Two things: 1. Wireless Networking in great detail, simply because I'm in the process of teaching a course on it. 2. Conservation of energy. I'm working on a brewing project and the mash strike formula is important. It is derived from the conversation of energy principle.