Nov 17, 2019: Finished

Last Christmas, Carole got me a puzzle book – Journal 29 – that I have dabbled in and out of over the last eleven months.

Tonight, I finally finished it. I put every last puzzle to bed. I solved it all. It’s done.

But bloody hell some of it was hard and I had to resort to the book’s official hints and tips to get even a starting point on a few of them. Although a lot of it was learning that, actually, Google can be your friend when it comes to some things – definitions and the orbit lengths of planets, for example. And some of it was going from “huh” to “oh!” in minutes or hours.

It’s one of those puzzle books – which is to say, the good kind – which lets you solve a few things really easily and then goes “oh, hi, I know you were getting on really well with that but here’s this one and it’s an absolute shitter. Anyway, byeeeee!” I mean, a flip-book? Really? Who even saw that coming?

I’ve taken scissors to it – eventually, realising that several months after we first looked at the puzzle, coloured stuff in to make abstract old school game art, discovered I’m more cultured than I thought, dabbled in foreign languages and drawn round the DVD of Space Camp. All in the name of puzzle solving.

And all in time for Christmas.

Because there’s the second book in the series, which is available now. And would be a lovely run up to November 2020 I think. And it feeds the old creative brain that’s coming up with ideas for new rooms being built at the start of next year.

Really, what I’m saying is that a thoughtful Christmas present is helping future-proof my job.

And that’s surely the best present you can give.

Unless you give it to someone who hates their job. But I don’t. Which is an usual and out of character feeling for me.

Anyway. Journal 29 is really good. I’m sure the sequel is amazing. Hopefully I’ll find out.