The “Home” page is my daily blog. The remaining tabs contain previously blogged, episodic ‘stories’, which are now re-published in chronological order.
My god it been a frustrating two days!
I wrote in my last blog that I had finished the first chapter, in draft form, of my novel , some 8,00 words of carefully crafted prose, which, even though I say it myself, was a pretty good effort. It flowed really well and, I felt, set the tone of the fascinating story to come.
Last Saturday, I was tidying some of my old “blog files” and putting my blogged ‘stories’ all in a new folder so that I could easily reference them as I progress through my novel. The main part of my memoirs is contained in “Mobi’s story’ and I cleaned this up a bit and saved it in my new folder.
Then on Monday morning, I decided to get back to my novel. Not yet having decided on a title, I had also saved the draft as “Mobi’s Story”.
Horror upon horror, I suddenly realised that I had saved the old “Mobi’s Story’ in the same file as my new draft. All my work had been overwritten and had disappeared. Since then I have spent two days trying to find ways to recover the file without success. I have pretty much given up now, and it will take quite a few days before I can even think about starting all over again. It is so demoralising; I put so much creative effort into those opening 8,000 words – quite possibly some of the best stuff I have ever written.
My last plaintive cry for help was on the ‘Thai Visa’ internet forum, but I’m not holding my breath on this. Just in case there any computer buffs out there who may have a bright idea, here is what I wrote:
“Over the weekend I was tidying up some of my old ‘word files’ and I accidentally overwrote a current file I was working on with an old file which had the same name. The lost file was around 10,000 words and is irreplaceable.
I have spent the past 2 days trying to recover this file. I have painstakingly followed Microsoft’s own instructions and have also Googled extensively on this problem. Many people, much smarter than me, advise that overwritten files are nigh on impossible to recover – much more difficult than deleted files. I have searched for back up files and temporary files in “Word”, (files with ‘.wbk’, .asd., ‘~’ extensions etc etc), but to no avail.
In desperation I have downloaded several different ‘file recovery’ software packages. I think I identified the file in one piece of software but couldn’t recover anything meaningful.
The next software I tried was much better and I have located a number of files on my hard disk with the file name I am looking for. (Presumably there are a number versions of these files as they were generated at different stages of the file being written and saved).
I have managed to restore a number of these files using the recovery software. Some of them are Microsoft Word files (‘.docx’ extensions) but will not open in Microsoft word but will in ‘Wordpad’ or ‘Open Office’, but the text is all gibberish. Others have an ‘.asd.’ extension, but also open as gibberish. I have tried to open these ‘gibberish files in Microsoft word using the “recover Text from any file” facility but all that it seems to do is change the gibberish from Asian (character based) gibberish to European type gibberish.
Having spent two solid days on this I am about to give up, unless any of you geniuses out there have something new to advise. Is there any way to reconstruct the gibberish into intelligible English?
Please bear in mind I have gone through all the standard recovery methods and have so far drawn a blank.
Thanks for any expert advice.”
So I am resigned to having to make a fresh start. Maybe it was meant to be – who knows? But I doubt it will be anything like my first efforts.
Wan has been with me since Friday evening, and yesterday morning she told me that she had to return to Roi Et on Thursday as she must attend a meeting at her son’s school on Friday. I have to say that this announcement rather angered me. It’s not that I mind being alone for a few more days, but it was the very idea that she had to embark on yet another 12 hour journey. She is not the most robust of people and this unplanned trip home would exhaust her for two further days, before having to take the return trip – another 12 hours, plus recovery time, all for a 2 hour meeting at her son’s school.
She told me the school had forgotten to inform her of this meeting when she put her son in the new school a couple weeks back, but were adamant that she had to attend, or she would get a ‘warning’ letter. This angered me further. While I understand that schools need to meet with parents, (God knows I have had more than my fair share of school meeting in England when raising my two daughters), I felt that under the circumstances, some kind of accommodation should be given and surely they could meet with her in a few weeks time, when she would be making a scheduled trip anyway. She called the school but they were completely inflexible and insisted on her attendance. This only served to make me angrier. Wan is a soft, easy going person; a push –over. She won’t stand up to anyone – especially anyone in ‘authority’. I told her that the school was being fucking crazy, but the poor woman just looked sadly at me.
For those of you who may be wondering, I can tell you that everything she told me is true as I listened to her phone conversations with the school and also with her mother, which although in Issan, there was enough Thai spoken for me to get the gist of what she was saying.
I consulted with a friend and asked him if he thought I was being unreasonable. He said that I ought to be grateful that I had a lady who cared enough about her kid to make the long journey there and back. He said that many just wouldn’t go.
I thought about it and realised that his was the voice of reason and it was unfair of me to get so upset about it. I apologised to Wan, and told her that I was wrong to be angry. She will leave tomorrow, and will return sometime next week. She plans to drive her own car back, so hopefully that will not be so tiring.
So yet more opportunities for me to misbehave, but I seem to have got into a domestic routine, and I doubt if the ‘mouse’ will play very much when the ‘cat’s away’.
The latest news on my car is that it will be in the shop for one more week, assuming they don’t find anything else wrong with it as they finally put it all back together and take it for a test drive. I can’t wait to get my sober head behind the wheel again. This Mazda 3 I have been renting is slowly driving me round the bend.
I’m still sober, 11 days now, and every day it seems to get a little easier. I’m sleeping very late as I enjoy watching all my downloaded stuff in the late evenings, but am compensating by getting up quite late, so I think I am getting adequate sleep.
I wouldn’t give myself more than a 5/10 for effort since Wan has been back. Having her around seems to make me even lazier, and more inclined to procrastinate on things that need to be done. I dread to say it but I might be better off without anyone living with me, but I will keep these thoughts at the back of my mind for the time being. I am committed to giving it a real go with Wan before I come to any conclusions.
I have now had two walks with Cookie, my Golden Retriever and I reckon I am fitter than she is. On the second walk, we went a bit faster and a bit further, and when we arrived back home, poor Cookie was almost crawling and didn’t stop panting for ages. She must be very unfit so I must keep up her exercise. I missed yesterday so I must make a point of taking her out today.
Dang, my estranged wife, has opened a new hair dressing shop about 3 kilometres from where I live and I have seen her a few times. She originally tried to ‘tap me up’ for some investment money for her shop and when I refused, relations took a turn for the worst for a while. They now seem to be back on an even keel and she keeps asking to come round to my house and see the dogs when she closes her shop in the evening. Every time I tell her I am free, she fails to show and then she wants to come when it’s not convenient – like when Wan is in residence.
We have discussed sale of our house and the need to redouble our efforts. She has agreed to drop the price further so I must get my act together and start circulating some more agents; the more agents who have it listed, the better chance I have of making a sale. The house utilities and maintenance, plus a bit for her, is costing me 14K per month, so it will lift a huge burden if we can get this property sold.
Relations between us are as civilised as could be expected under the circumstances. I am completely over her, and while I suspect that she did want me to come back home a few months ago, when we first re-established contact, I now know that she too has moved on and has no desire to resurrect our marriage. Maybe it has something to do with my constant assertions to her that I have no money!!
Sorry this post has been a bit boring – certain readers would probably do well to stop reading this boring, domestic stuff.
But for the remainder of you, rest assured, I doubt my life will not stay boring for long – it never has done so before.