Cheryl’s pregnant

Pregnant 3+

I was sitting on the sofa playing Rocket League when I heard Cheryl shout “OH MY GOD!” from the bathroom.

I quit the game, went over to the bathroom, and Cheryl said “it says I’m pregnant!” Then she said “Oh wait…” Then she said “yes, it says I’m pregnant.” I took the pregnancy test from her because I wanted to see it. Cheryl’s pregnant. I picked up the leaflet that comes with the test and it says the pregnant or not pregnant report is more than 99% accurate by this point. Cheryl’s pregnant. Almost definitely pregnant.

Cheryl began crying, not because she’s upset, but because she’s scared. I hugged her. I backed away not knowing what to say or do, then I hugged her again.

We plated up dinner from the oven and sat down to watch Independence Day Resurrection. We got just over 13 minutes through before giving up on both eating and watching a film.

I grabbed my laptop, logged into the VPN, and went to my medical insurance portal to look up a doctor.

Right now we’re just planning to use the other two pregnancy tests to confirm things tomorrow, and book an appointment with a doctor nearby at UCSF.

We spent time working out that the baby is probably due around mid-June.

Our lives are about to change drastically.

Court date

Cheryl got a letter yesterday setting the court date for the hearing for her visa application appeal. It’s set for August 28th, which is a pretty long time into the future.

We’re going to look at hiring a solicitor to represent us in this because if it’s not insanely expensive we think it would help our case quite a lot. We have a bit of paperwork to prepare before that date, but it’s probably not really anything that we haven’t already got together for the original application.

Kind of all seems a bit silly since by the time we go to the hearing we will have been living together for over 3 years, and all we have to prove is 2. The UK Border Agency already accepted our evidence from March 2011, so it’s been well over 2 years at this point. This could all be avoided if common sense ruled.

Thinking of moving

Over the last few months while Cheryl has been applying for her visa we’ve spoken several times about the possibility of moving to Singapore together.

I enjoyed Singapore a lot when I visited last year, and I could definitely see me living there for a while. It opens up the possibility of Cheryl taking over her parents’ company, which would definitely help set her up for the future. I don’t know how much she’d enjoy the work, but with any luck she could take the business far enough that she didn’t have to run it day-to-day. That’s all speculation for another day though.

Since we spoke about it I’ve actually mentioned it to my boss at work. I’ve looked at Amazon jobs in Singapore to see if it would be possible to move internally and have a guaranteed job when I get there. The main issue with that option is that I don’t really know if I’m well-suited for, or interested in, the jobs on offer there at the moment.

I have also added my CV to JobStreet and have applied for a couple of interesting positions that I am confident I could do. I’m not convinced that I’ll get shortlisted for any though, as I’m not a citizen, or a permanent resident. Lots of the job advertisements specify that you have to be one of those two things before you can even apply.

It’s quite frustrating, but certainly not the end of the world.

We’ve been looking into the various visas on offer for me. It seems like I have several main options for an employment pass, which would be helpful, and then there’s also the option of getting married to open up other options.

I’d ideally like to stick out my current job for a while, get some experience in Java, more experience with Amazon on my CV, and save up some money so that I can afford to move to Singapore and find a job while I’m there, rather than finding one from here. I think it would be a lot easier, but obviously a lot more expensive.

So yeah, exciting times.

First post from my Transformer Prime

Cheryl bought me a Transformer Prime for my birthday. It arrived yesterday and I went home during my lunch hour to plug it in so I could use it sooner.

It feels really nice to hold, and the keyboard makes a big difference when I have a lot of text to input like this. I would probably have finished writing stuff if I was using a virtual keyboard.

Android still lacks many good apps designed to work on such a big screen, bit I’m sure there will be more than enough over time. I’m happy with using the phone-style interfaces for most stuff and then taking advantage of the big screen for pictures, videos, web browsing and stuff like that.

So yeah, my first impressions are good, and I’m sure the experience will get better and better.

Doing the tourist thing, Les Miserables

Ricky came down to visit Rik and me last night. We all went for some dinner (with Cheryl and Nicole too) at Smollensky’s in Canary Wharf. It was really nice in there, and not massively expensive considering where it is.

We came back to the apartment and had some more drinks and put Jarheads on (muted) to keep Ricky entertained. After several hours of deep conversations about why nobody else thinks how we do, and how we could make the world better the three non-residents caught a taxi back to Riks and Cheryl and I went to bed.

This morning I got up and went out to meet Nicole, Ricky, and Rik again at Teapod. I took a quick walk there and it started to turn nice and sunny on the way. We ate some brunch and then headed off along the south bank towards Westminster so Ricky could take lots of tourist pictures. The rest of us did the same. 🙂

Just past the London Eye we heard some screaming. I looked ahead and saw a whole bunch of purple balloons and a troop of people marching. The crowd parted to let them through and it turned out to be a march of Justin Bieber fans chanting about how much they love him and then screaming. It was mental.

We had to get to St. Pancras so that Ricky could get his train home, but we stopped by Starbucks first for a quick farewell drink. After we watched Ricky board the train we decided to go along to Stratford because Rik and Nicole needed some stuff. I picked up some sushi for me and Cheryl and headed back home.

Cheryl and I ate quickly and then headed off to the tube to travel to Leicester Square. Unfortunately we got off at London Bridge instead of Waterloo for the other Northern line branch. After we walked back we had a 5 minute wait for the train. Once we got to the Northern line a train was at the platform, but there was a paramedic and someone was talking about the passenger alarm.

We walked to the other end of the platform and got on the less-busy end of the train. Apparently the alarm had been pulled in 3 carriages, somehow. Nothing happened for a long time and then we finally set off. The journey was crap, the stations were packed, and when we finally got off at Leicester Square we had 5 minutes to get to the theatre to see Les Miserables.

We ran through the square and through part of Chinatown and made it to the theatre 2 minutes before the show was due to start. We found our seats, took off our coats, sat down, and the show started seconds later. We were incredibly lucky to make it. 🙂

The performance was absolutely amazing. I’m so glad I finally went to see a full and proper production.

Rik, snow, Android

Rik moved down to London not so long ago and he’s been staying with Cheryl and me since then. It’s been kind of weird having someone else in the house again, not in a horrible way, just different. I’d forgotten what it was like. Anyway, glad to help him out in what is normally a very difficult and expensive thing to do.

It’s cool having him at work too, especially since Dan is abandoning me for Australia in a matter of weeks now.

It snowed in London for the first time this winter over the weekend. Cheryl, Charlotte, Aron, and I spent a good hour or two on the roof terrace in the middle of the night throwing snowballs and building snowmen. It was a lot of fun. I was soaking wet when I got back into the apartment, but it was enjoyable.

I’ve been working on one of my Android apps quite a bit recently. It’s really frustrating me at the moment though because things aren’t working how I’d expect them to. I think it’s just the dimension definitions that are making it look so horrible, but I can’t be sure. It also seems that there’s no font anti-aliasing on my phone. It could just be the dimensions and some horrible scaling though. Oh well.

Cutting my own hair, almost

I decided that I should shave my hair off a little while ago. I went into the bathroom with my shaver and selected the longest setting. I looked at Cheryl, turned it on, looked at myself in the mirror and pushed it through my hair right in the middle like Marshall in How I Met Your Mother.

Nothing happened.

I was confused. I checked the trimmer and it was fine, so I tried again. Still nothing happened. It seems my trimmer only cuts shorter hair.

I came into the kitchen and picked up some scissors. I held my hair up ready to cut into it and then chickened out. I looked at Cheryl, but she wouldn’t tell me what to do. After a few minutes of indecision I collected my resolve and held a bunch of hair between my fingers and closed the scissors on it.

Nothing happened.

At this point I started to think of Samson, and how much he would have wished he was me if he had been real. The trimmers and the scissors both refused to cut my hair at all. I don’t really understand the complete lack of effect, but oh well. I took it as a sign that it would probably be more effort than it was worth, so I quit.

At some point I guess I’ll just go and buy some proper clippers or pay someone with the right tools to cut it.

2011 ✓

It’s the end of another year and I find myself in yet another city this time. As it tends to from year to year everything has completely changed. It’s been pretty hectic at times, but I think things should really start to settle down this coming year.

I’ve got an awesome girlfriend, we live in an awesome apartment, I have an awesome job, and some awesome friends. 🙂

I don’t really have time to do a full retrospective of the last year because we’re going over to see our friends and have a bit of a party. It should finish with watching fireworks up on the roof terrace. I did not think I’d be typing that sentence this time last year! 😀

First post from the iMac

Cheryl and I went to Stratford this morning to go and buy an iMac. Cheryl has been saying she wants one for quite a while now, and I think that some sort of desktop computer would be preferable for writing code on because I need screen real estate.

We decided to go and buy the 27-inch one with 8GB of RAM, a 1TB SATAII hard drive, and a bunch of other cool bits. Luckily Cheryl’s student card still passed the inspection by the staff in the Apple store, so we got 12% off.

We did ask the guy to give us the keyboard with the numpad section, and he said yes, but when we got home we found he hadn’t swapped it at all. Oh well, not a huge problem.

Getting the thing home was a massive effort. I had to carry it through the Westfield shopping centre as it was getting busier and busier. Then I had to carry it down escalators and through the tube gates and then find a place to stand with it on the tube. It was quite awkward at times, but luckily the trains leaving Stratford were considerably less busy than the ones arriving there.

At the moment it’s been set up on the dining table. It’ll probably be here for a while because there’s nowhere else suitable for it. When we get rid of the Christmas tree we’ll hopefully put some sort of big desk thing in its place and the iMac can live there. Then I’ll get a nice computer chair and everything will be nice.

Since we got it back here I’ve been configuring it to work more like a Linux installation. I’ve got my terminal set up, installed git, ports, Chrome, Spotify, Xcode, and all the other crap you need to make a computer feel personalised. It’s starting to feel pretty nice. It’s basically the most well-designed Linux distribution out there.

So yeah, I now have Linux, Windows, and Mac OSX running at the same time, as well as an Xbox 360, a PS3, and a Wii. I guess I just don’t believe in brand loyalty.

A weekend at the BBC

On Thursday I met up with Gordon and Claire outside the BBC building because we were going to see them filming Harry Hill’s TV Burp. It was really busy though, so at the last minute we decided to go and see Alan Carr’s Chatty Man. There was no info about who would be on the show as it was kept secret until the show started.

Once we’d settled in they announced that we’d be seeing Nicole Scherzinger, Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, and Matt Cardle. I was pretty well impressed with Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. Nicole Scherzinger was interesting to watch as she stumbled around on ridiculous heels in a small piece of fabric barely holding her top-heaviness in and necessitating sitting with her legs crossed at all times.

Matt Cardle was better than I expected him to be, but that’s not really giving him much credit, because I expected him to be utterly shit.

Simon Pegg was basically exactly how I thought, and Nick Frost was slightly less nice than I expected. he seemed generally uncomfortable, but then I guess everyone has their off days, and they don’t have to leave their newborn baby to go on some TV show to be questioned by someone like Alan Carr. On the other hand they do get paid a fucking shitload of money. Maybe he should just cheer the fuck up. 🙂

Towards the end of the show they announced that there would be a special guest who would be appearing on the following week’s show. It turned out to be Dermot O’Leary. So we ended up with even more talk of X-Factor. I was pretty bored of hearing about it by the end, but oh well.

We all came back to the flat and Cheryl had cooked some awesome chicken and garlic with cous cous and salad. YUM! The house smelled awesome as soon as we walked in.

We had a relatively quiet night in and then went to bed at a reasonable hour.

We got up in good time on Friday and Cheryl and I had the day booked off work so we could hang out. We went into the city centre and headed to a gallery that Gordon wanted to visit to see some work by a guy named Adam Neate. It was the last day of the exhibit, so it was quite good timing. When we got there they were doing some sort of filming about the exhibit, so Adam Neate was actually there. We looked around everything and Gordon bought a poster. Gordon asked him to sign it and he also drew a little something special on there for him. Pretty damn cool.

Cheryl had to go pick up the deeds for the apartment after that so we went and sorted that out. Afterwards we grabbed some food and sat in a place called Phoenix Park and ate it. There was a little mouse climbing around on all of the plants and pots and things. I couldn’t quite manage to take a picture of it though.

We walked through some parts of the city heading towards Camden because Gordon wanted to look at the markets and stuff. Unfortunately for that plan there are pubs in Camden before you reach the market. We went into the Camden Head where Cheryl and I went to watch JonP’s gig a few months ago. A few drinks went by and it was getting dark and we were getting hungry. We caught the tube back to Canada Water, and then went over to The Mayflower for some food.

When we got back home we decided to have more drinks and watch a film that Gordon had bought for me as a gift earlier on in the day. I now have the 2-disc special edition of Senna! 😀 Thanks Gordon!

The girls went to sleep after the film (or during) and Gordon and I decided to stay up to finish the rum and coke. We put on Werner Herzog’s Encounters At The End Of The World and both ended up falling asleep before the end. Unluckily Gordon fell asleep while holding his drink. One cushion cover was harmed during the watching of this film.

Saturday felt the most like a Sunday any other day has ever felt. It started out with me waking up on the sofa at 6:30 with no idea why I was where I was. I got up and went to the bedroom instead and then went back to sleep for a few more hours.

Once everyone was up we headed to Bond Street with the aim of going to get some food and then going to Selfridge’s so Cheryl and Claire could buy a bag each. After a bit of walking around we spotted a Carluccio’s in Fenwick’s and decided to go in there. We got some delicious food and had a chat for a while. Then it was time to hit the shop. I was dreading that bit, but luckily there wasn’t a lot of spare time and the girls literally did only want one item each. It wasn’t so bad, despite the karaoke and all the people.

At Bond Street we went our separate ways. Gordon and Claire were heading back to Nottingham and we were heading home before we went back out to watch another recording at the BBC.

This time we were watching a recording of a show called Trust Us With your Life. It’s a show based on Whose Line Is It Anyway? 60% improvisation, 40% interview. Ricky Gervais was the one being interviewed and so he was also the subject of the improv. The improvisation was done by Colin Mochrie, Wayne Brady, Greg Proops, and Jonathan Mangum. The show was hosted by Fred Willard.

I’d got 4 free tickets thinking that Dan would really like to see Ricky Gervais, so I invited him and Fran along to enjoy the show. I’m pretty sure they enjoyed it as much as Cheryl and I did. Definitely looking forward to seeing the finished product on TV one day. Despite the warnings on the ticket application page I don’t think there’s that much stuff that an English audience wouldn’t understand. Perhaps that’s just for the Ricky Gervais episode though.

Wahaca was calling us when we left the BBC building, so we went for some dinner together. I do love Mexican food!

The journey home was quite interesting because there were a lot of drunk people on the tube in fancy dress. Most of them were loud and annoying, so Cheryl and I ended up getting off at London Bridge to wait for the next train. After a while we considered walking home, but then decided to just wait for the next train instead. It was much more normal, so we got home in peace and quiet.

So yeah, now I can get to bed so that I don’t completely waste my Sunday. 🙂