If you were to ask me what I liked about The Apprentice, I’d struggle to answer. It’s a show that I’ve been watching on and off for years now, starting with the US version before a certain Mr Sugar took the helm of the UK equivalent.
Recently I bought a 3rd generation Moto G to replace my ageing iPhone 4 (I subsequently lost it and bought another but that’s a different story). Having been an iPhone user for the past 4-5 years or so it was always going to be a pretty big jump to Android. I decided to go against an iPhone this time pretty much purely on cost. A new iPhone costs around £500 and I’ve already mentioned on this blog that I didn’t want another phone contract (I’m on GiffGaff now) so whichever phone I went for I’d be paying for it up front.
A couple of weeks back shortly after arriving at Orlando Airport I lost my Motorola Moto G mobile phone. I didn’t realise until I was half way to the hotel and with the phone still in flight mode I couldn’t use any location services to track it. Even more frustrating was the fact that the phone had everything I immediately needed on it – a US sat nav and the hotel address. Finding the hotel was pretty difficult after that, particularly as i was driving in the US for the first time.
I remember having the phone as I went to pick up the rental car from Alamo. Unfortunately the first car I selected had a problem with the rear seat belt so I had to unload all the cases from the boot and choose a different car. I’m pretty sure this is where I lost it.
I contacted Alamo and the Airport and hoped for the best. If I’m honest, I kind of thought that I might get lucky and someone would return it to me. I figured the kind of people picking up a large rental car wouldn’t be opportunists and if anyone spotted the phone they would make efforts to return it. It didn’t pan out like I’d hoped. I checked in with the airport and Alamo a few times over the next couple of weeks but there was no news.
The Moto G isn’t an expensive phone by any stretch.I deliberately went for a cheaper phone this time and part of that reason was replacement cost. It was more the hassle of changing passwords and attempting to chase it down that was a pain in the backside. I’d also planned on using it as a backup camera for the holiday
I attempted to locate the phone using Android Device Manager a number of times before eventually admitting defeat and organising a remote wipe from Motorola. This was partly due to the smudge security issue with a locking pattern. In the course of my life owning mobile phones, it’s the 3rd I’ve lost and not found, and perhaps the only one that I thought I would eventually locate.
Even now I’m still a bit gutted about it. I would have paid a reward to the value of the phone had it found it’s way back to me.
Who knows what happened to the phone. Maybe it was never found. Maybe it’s still sat in that rental car in flight mode with a flat battery. Or maybe it was found and a factory reset was performed and it’s now being used by someone else.
Over the past week we’ve been staying in a cabin between Windermere and Ambleside at the Lake District. With us heading to Florida later in the year I wanted to get the kids away during the school holidays so we could all spend some time together before the next term begins.
We stayed at the pretty fantastic 11 Skiptory Lodge on Whitecross Bay which is between Ambleside and Windermere. The accommodation was really great – we like our own space when we’re on holiday and the lodge proved to be a massive hit with all the family. The space was just brilliant – 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, living room, kitchen and a large decked area with a barbeque and table and chairs. Everything seemed so new in the lodge – it’s kept to such a good standard that we felt like the first visitors. The other thing that really impressed us about the accommodation was that it felt like everything had been thought of; fishing nets for the kids, DVDs about the local area, guides/maps/flyers, umbrellas, kids games, there was even an acoustic guitar to play.
With it being on the grounds of Whitecross Bay holiday park you get access to the pool, marina, shops and park for the kids.
Out And About
After we’d got to grips with the area we managed to fit quite a few things in without it ever seeming like we were rushing around too much. We hired a motor boat and checked out Lake Windermere, walked to the top of Kirkstone Pass, went swimming, climbed at Treetop Trek, went to a waterfall and took a look around the local towns. There were plenty of things to do and we still had enough time to chill out back at the cabin and fire up the barbecue – I’m now a fully fledged grand master of barbecuing in the rain.
Speaking of the weather we seemed to get incredibly lucky, throughout the day it was dry but by night the downpours were torrential. Fortunately we were already back at the cabin by the time the rain kicked in and the skies were clear by the time were up and about in the mornings. That said, if you don’t get lucky like we did you’ve kind of just got to go for it and not let it stop you.
We spent a lot of time around Ambleside and it’s surrounding villages, only heading in to the much busier Windermere town centre once during our stay. I’ve got a lot of time for the Lake District, I’ve only been a few times but there always seems to be something to do or see that I wasn’t aware of before. The kids like it because it’s usually pretty activity packed for them and they get to spend a lot of time outdoors. Hugely recommended if you’ve got kids that like a bit of the outdoor life!
I’ve talked about my addiction to the Serial podcast before, I’ve listened to it twice through now so I was really happy when I heard that Rabia Chaudry was making her own podcast focusing on the case. Continue reading
I told a friend the other day that I’d recently bought an Amazon Fire TV Stick and he replied “a what?”, “it’s the thing that you buy from Amazon so they can sell you more stuff”.
It was Ben’s 10th birthday recently so I got the pens out and knocked him up a Walking Dead birthday card.
I should point out that Ben has never seen The Walking Dead before (that would be pretty poor parenting skills), but he is pretty crazy about zombies in general.
The drawing took around an hour to get down – it’s not an original, it was pretty much a straight copy from an illustration I found online. It was a quick job with a technical pencil to get it mapped out and then a couple of Sharpies to ink it up.
The card went down pretty well I’m glad to say!
Roughly once a year I realise that I’m spending way too much on things. Direct debits being the main problem, over time those sneaky businesses increment their payments and before you know it you’re paying 30-40% more for things than you need to.
I’d kind of heard of Geocaching before but it wasn’t until today that I showed it to Ben and we set out in an attempt to find our first Geocache.
When I was growing up I remember times when Frank Sidebottom appeared on TV, it was always bizarre but it was pretty funny too. I was probably too young at the time to really question what a guy was doing with a giant paper mache head and what it really meant.