Thursday, 5th January, 2023

[Day 1025]

Today was always going to be quite a busy day but everything worked out OK. Firstly, I needed to go and get the shopping done and whereas a few weeks ago, there only used to be one or two people waiting for the store to open, today I was eighth in the queue so the habit of early shopping seems to be catching on. Fortunately, though, a lot of the Christmas excess stock had been cleared away so this made the whole shopping process so much easier and this was what I call a ‘light’ week in any case. After I had picked up the newspaper en route, I got home and cooked the breakfast and got most of the unpacking done before it was time to get Meg to the dental hygienist in about three quarters of an hour’s time. This worked out fine as well and our friendly hygienist made some appointments for us so that Meg and I can synchronise our visits (as they had got out of sync after I had a special session just before I had a crown fitted) Then it was a case of getting home and having our elevenses before our hairdresser called around. She was slightly late but this is par for the course but it did mean that it was all rather late before we could have our lunch of quiche and some fried vegetables.

I started the reconfiguration of the audio that I have in various parts of the house when I purchased a reconditioned Polaroid BoomBox for the princely sum of £15.00 which included postage. I was very impressed by this product and I still am because the quality of the sound was superb from fairly large speakers and as well as the CD player, one could Bluetooth music over from an iphone and there was, of course, an FM radio available as well. I was idly looking through the listings of eBay to see if other Boomboxes were on offer at a similar price and then stumbled across a little technology company in Cambridge who trade under the name of OakCastle. Following some links, I discovered a firm called XSonly and they evidently specialised in selling off ‘overstocks’ as well as refurbished products. What took my eye was the fact that one could buy a model similar to the Polaroid but with a USB port that could evidently play music files stored as MPs on a pendrive (USB stick) and the model sported an aerial for the FM radio (which the Polaroid lacked) But the company also advertised a product that was advertised as ‘Opened – never used’ and this seem to indicate a unit that was not refurbished nor of the Quality A,B or C which is often used to describe goods with some cosmetic damage. This product was advertised as £19.99 and, if it were absolutely new, then it would be possible to extend the warranty of one year to a manufacturer’s warranty of three years. I have two projected uses for this Boombox. The first and most important use is that with a memory stick inserted, one has hours of music of one’s own choice available and there must be occasions when this is superior to ClassicFM to accompany one through the night. My unit arrived today and I am delighted with it. The colour is a more subtle shade of blue than the images on the web tended to convey. But most importamtly, it was supplied in the manufacturer’s box with the manufacturer’s packing and accessories. Naturally I have given it a bit of a workout and I was delightd that the USB stick was recognised immediately and started playing shortly afer it was inserted. I have only used a small fraction of an 8GB memory stick and already an experiment had indicated this has given me more than two hours of playtime. The FM and CD player work as anticipated but the Bluetooth function has not been tried out yet. As soon as I had ascertained that all of the basic functions worked, I got onto the manufacturer’s website and got an extended warranty for three years with absolutely no problems at all. So all in all, happy days and I can use this little bit of technology to give me whatever music I could like whenever I am doing a kind of job, for example in the study, when I want more than ClassicFM can provide. Just as a final piece of technology news, my computer mouse ‘died’ on me yesterday. Naturally, I thought about changing the batteries but the fault could lie in the nano-receiver which occupies one of the USB ports or in the mouse itself. I got onto Amazon and bought one of their standard wireless free mice, manaufactured by Trust and it arrived today. I am pleased to say it worked immediately (once I had removed the cellophane from the battery they had supplied with it) The laptap I am using in the lounge does have a track pad which is always useful when a mouse dies on you but after years of using a mouse, I am rather set in my ways and much prefer it if I have the choice.