I'm fresh back in London from the Orkneys, the Edinburgh Festival, and a quick sweep of northern Britain (earning some plaudits for a green 'holiday at home' but for the 2,000 miles added to the car's clock). Time of course to post a flurry of messages with all those pictures I have taken along the way. Only Blogger is playing up and it ain't possible!
So the return to computers and their miserable hold over the working day proceeds with its usual stumbles.
I made it out onto West End Lane here in West Hampstead his morning, for a pleasingly face-to-face interview with David Crozier of the Ham & High (for a feature on my Haldane book to be run on August 30th). David was pleased to get out of the office for no work could be done there at all this morning - their computers were down!
I dropped into West End Lane books while out there, to sign whatever copies they had got in. It's a fine little store but sometimes I suspect the 'support your local bookstore' angle is overplayed. I've been buying there regularly for a more than a year now, have told them about my book and taken in copies, yet still I appeared as a stranger and my book was not stocked.
Better news elsewhere on that front ... all Waterstones stores have copies in (surprisingly shelved as 'popular science') so I've been signing away on visits there. Even the North Yorkshire seaside town of Scarborough had a couple of copies in, so the random visit test of availability worked well.
Maybe the lack is simply in West End Lane. I chose the cafe 'Bagels' as a quiet venue for today's interview, then learned why it might be so quiet. They were all of out of water.
Perhaps even the water supply's linked to computers nowadays.
Later the same day ... Seems it wasn't Blogger after all but my own hosting package. Sorry if you've found it hard to get in of late.
In the meantime I've just carried the holiday spirit into the cinema, racing along with The Bourne Ultimatum. I love that Robert Ludlum trick of getting characters into impossibly tight situations, then somehow getting them out again. This film has one of those scarce memorable lines from films too ... 'He drove off the roof.'
And after the film Books etc managed my 'do they stock it?' question for my Suffer & Survive, pulling five copies out of the window display for me to sign.
(The picture, finally, of Scarborough beach, and the ever-faithful donkeys, rides for kids only at two quid a piece)