Feb 27, 2020: Thursday

Carole was tipped off about an app that we can use to store all of our board/tabletop game plays in one handy, dandy place. The app means, as well, that I never had to build that spreadsheet – which was really nice, because hiding all the layers and stuff behind the scenes was a nightmare I wasn’t looking forward to having!

On the app you can set yourselves challenges. And because Carole likes lists and challenges, she’s all over that.

We’re partaking in the “play everything we own at least once this year” challenge. Which is made trickier by Board Game Crate (or was supposed to be at least) adding some each month. Well, just next month now. But hey ho. And, of course, any that we might buy along the way.

We’re doing quite well, so far. But Thursday night’s games night helps as well as we can take a few from the shelves to the table and play them with others.

Today, we’ve barely managed to play anything “new” in terms of the challenge. In fact our only unplayed game that we played was a couple of rounds of Dungeon Mayhem, bringing in the characters from the Baldur’s Gate expansion who had previously not seen the light of day outside the box. Excitingly, there’s a further expansion which should arrive tomorrow with six new characters (including an evil chair, a slime and a dragon) so we’ll have lots of opportunity for play. And the box has lovely dividers in it, so I’ll be transferring everything across post haste!

I won one of those. I was quite pleased with that. The first game of the night under my belt.

And then it went downhill. Losing another round of Dungeon Mayhem and two games of Tsuro in quick succession. Not to mention the two games of Santorini Carole and I had played prior to anyone else arriving at the games place.

Kingdom Builder though.

Oh, my app practice is paying off. I have strategies and things now. I have techniques. I have a new found love of the special move tokens.

I was like a savant or something.

Okay, that’s pushing it. I won. But more because everyone else was terrible and I was less terrible than by any real skill.

But hey, a win’s a win – digital practice or not. And it’s on the tracking app.

So it absolutely counts.


And no-one remembers any games that came before the last one. So everyone will just remember me winning.

Which is how it should be.



Feb 26, 2020: Bank

When I got my new phone, and lined up some swirling patterns on the screen of the old one with the camera of the new one, it told me everything transferred across.

And it certainly appeared that way. I opened the web browser and tabs I’d had open on my old phone were there on my new. All the contacts were there although – I’ve since discovered – it didn’t know any of my email addresses were my email addresses. Which was both interesting and odd.

And the best one of all, my online banking went, “Hey, we need you to – you know – enter bits of your pin and password. If that’s not too much trouble. Anyway, ok thank you byeeee!”

And lo, the nightmare of being a customer rather than someone who can nip onto a webchat at work became flesh.

I don’t know any of my online banking details. Since it’s been on my phone for the last however long, I have used a passcode and that passcode is all I’ve needed. I’ve not logged onto it on a computer in forever because I am modern and move with the times.

What was even better, I thought, is when I did try and log on – maybe hoping I could remember a password or at least take an educated guess – I was presented with an option to add the tenth letter/digit of said code.

Very few of my passwords are that long – at least from the time when I set my online banking up. I had no idea what it could be.

So I asked to reset everything. I asked for an activation code to be text to me.

Approximately seven times.

That never came.

In the end, despite my mobile number being correct, I told it my mobile number was incorrect thinking it would ask me to do something else.

Nah, it booted me out and I had to wait for a posted activation code to arrive.

Which it did.

And then that didn’t work. And then I had to get a new one.

Which does work. But because I have “changed” my phone number from the one it knew was my number to the same number, I now I have to wait a further three days before I can use my mobile app for online banking.

Holy shit sticks. We don’t make these things easy, do we. This, combined with the new security initiative for contactless cards – i.e. use them contactless by all means, but every now and again and with alarming frequency, we’ll make you have to enter the pin for security. Even though months ago contactless was the best thing ever, yeah sorry about that…” and I’m glad I’ve escaped the whole banking rat race thing.

Apart from the ability to just hop on to a different system and sort things out really easily… that I miss!



Feb 25, 2020: Twist

I’ve done something to myself.

I don’t know what I’ve done, or how I’ve done it. But I know the consequences are that it’s fine if I’m sitting still but I have to draw breath in through my teeth if I choose to go upstairs.

I’ve, somehow, twisted in a really strange and bizarre way which means that sometimes – and that is the key word – I suffer a very painful spasm on my right-hand side.

And then sometimes I don’t.

And when I don’t, I sort of forget that I do. And then I do. And I remember. Oh I remember.

And the breath comes in through the teeth.

I don’t even know when I did it, to be honest. I know that I went to go downstairs and collect a team at work yesterday and it hurt a lot. So much that I probably answered the door with tears in my eyes and a very sad expression. But today, it didn’t do that.

Last night I feel asleep on the couch, by accident, and when I woke up I had to painfully drag myself up the stairs, to the loo, and then to bed. It was so painful getting into bed and rolling into position that at one point that I’m surprised I didn’t wake the street up with my stage-whispered expletives.

I woke up this morning, though, and everything seemed fine.

I came downstairs, I put washing in, I straightened up a bit, I sat, I drank coffee. Nothing. I went for a shower, still good. I went to work. Fine. I was all fine.

And then I made that noise that sounds like it has a lot of gs in it. You know the one.


That one.

But then I came home from work and made pancakes and ate pancakes. And all was fine.

And now I’m just sitting on the couch and if I turn to look to my right…


Bloody thing.



Feb 24, 2020: Over

I told you that Board Game Crate was cursed.

It’s been due this week and I’ve never been at work so much. I’ve had to leave the recycling bin in the front garden for it to be dropped in because no-one’s home.

And then on the day our February crate arrives we get an email, a Facebook post and a Twitter message saying that March will be the last crate and they’ll be closing.


We were looking forward to many months of random games and things we wouldn’t normally buy, but instead we’re going to have to stick to the tried and tested method of just impulse-buying games we’ve seen on Game The Gane or drooled over as people at Games Night play pretty looking things.

It’s a bit of a shame because of the randomness, but I was in two minds sbout continuing anyway because the late delivery of January’s crate suffered some terrible customer service.

But then, if they were already considering shutting down maybe that’s why. It’s a complex situation, I’m sure.

It’s even worse as we’ve set up a Kilner jar to hold all the lovely dice they throw in as a free gift every month.

It’s just got about six dice in it.

I’ll have to find the ridiculous number of dice i got free with our dice tray, I guess.



Feb 23, 2020: Games

Okay, maybe the games of Kingdom Builder I’ve been playing on my phone have imparted a little bit of experience to my gaming fingers.

I had Carole on the ropes in a couple of impromptu games of Kingdom Builder tonight. In one game I completely destroyed her. And the other was neck and neck and ended with her winning by one point, spurred on – I think – by the masterful way I played my small wooden houses.

Or it could have just been a fluke. A fluctuation in the universe which allowed me to get good, for just those briefest of moments.

And that carried over into a quick round of Azul which I won brilliantly. But which, Carole maintains, may had some errors in my opponents scoring which, she feels, may have not represented her true performance.

But whatever, I was scaling dizzying heights of points scoring. Laying tiles like there’s no tomorrow.

According to the stats on the app Carole’s tracking everything on, I’m the best Azul player in the group with a 75% win ratio.

There’s not even an app for playing it. That’s just all me. Pure skill.

Well pure skill and some duff tile collecting from my opponents…

I wish we were playing for monthly cups again…