My journey from here to there (1st Jan-4th Jan 2019).

My journey from here to there.

Tuesday 1st January, 2019.

Hopefully at least a bakers dozen of you will know that I started a blog at the beginning of 2018.

During the year I wrote posts on all sorts of things, some serious and many more that were way across the border in a land known as frivolous.

Although the blog had a measure of success and was a good learning experience in an area I’d previously known diddly squat about, I’ve felt for a while that the format had served its purpose. I’m also prepared to admit that some of the content was beginning to have a ‘jumped the shark’ feel to it.

Change is needed so New Year, new broom and all that type of malarkey. The blog this year will be written in diary format which, I hope, will give a different kind of something or other to it without losing the something or other its predecessor had in its locker.

The intention is still to write about things I’ve explored previously but within a diary update as opposed to a specific blog post. There’ll also be additional subjects to investigate as 2019 is a New Year and I’m in a different place. I’ll also be able to include more photographs that I’ve actually taken rather than thieving from that there Internet.

I suspect it will be a challenge to achieve and maintain a decent number of readers. This after all is a diary written by an ordinary Joe. I’m not Adrian Mole, Samual Pepys, Anne Frank or even a Wimpy Kid (most of the time).

It will be up to me to try and make it worth any investment of time a reader makes worth it. In part, I’ll need to be more engaging. I’ll have to do more stuff. As much as lying on the sofa watching television fascinates me I get that reading about me doing that everyday might not float everyone’s boat. Some people are just plain weird after all.

To my advantage there’s a big world out there and we live in interesting times. If I can provide a semi engaging perspective to material that’s right there in front of all of us then I’m on the way.

Having written all that, I’ve started as I really don’t mean to go on. All I’ve done today is wake up with a hangover, eat crisps and watch television. In the words of Yazz and her Plastic Population, “The Only Way is Up”.

The Only Way is Up.

Happy New Year.

Wednesday 2nd January, 2019.

Spent the morning protesting against the 3.1% rail fare increases that come into force across the UK today.

The nature of my protest involved not buying any tickets to ride on any trains today, mainly because I have nowhere I need to be requiring rail travel.

I also contacted Ringo Starr to ask him to inform the Fat Controller that it hasn’t escaped my attention that the price of a vanilla slice available at stations throughout the Island of Sodor have also risen by a ‘coincidental’ 3.1%. I made it clear in my message that I will not be financing his march towards diabetes any longer.

It’s probably worth mentioning at this point that although this diary will, in the main, be a true reflection of what I’m up to, I reserve the right to indulge in the occasional bit of artistic licence in order to appear more interesting. I’ll attempt to keep this to a minimum by actually being more interesting.

Buddy dog and I managed a few kilometres this afternoon. I’ll be straight with you and say I was against the idea of bringing a puppy into the house. Things are not always the most stable round at my joint and I was worried his arrival would threaten the fragile habitat that exists here.

As it’s turned out, he’s generally proven to be a positive addition to the household. Up there with my electric blanket, a little below Sky Q and marginally above the children (joke).

I especially like it when just him and me go for our walks. I talk to him about stuff I wouldn’t share with one of those human types and he does the decent thing and ignores me completely.

In the evening I purchased a rail ticket for a business trip I need to make to London next week. In the end I managed to ‘stick it to the man’ for about eight hours. I wonder if he noticed…

Thursday 3rd January, 2019.

You might need to sit down before you look at my diary update for today. I believe I have a duty of care towards anyone making the effort to read this and I wouldn’t want the impending excitement to overwhelm you.

This morning I got up.

For breakfast I had organic bitesize shredded wheat with added sultanas.

Assumed the recovery position on the sofa and watched television.

For lunch I had a fish finger sandwich.

During the afternoon I visited my mother to return the slow cooker I’d borrowed. I also went to the shops and purchased spreadable butter.

For tea I had soup and some French bread. The bread had spreadable butter on it.

It’s days like this that will make or break this online diary experiment. Hopefully the internet is awash with slow cooker, soup loving, mother visiting and butter spreading enthusiasts eagerly searching for a site that has all their favourites in one place.

Some of you may be aware that there’s also a football match tonight but more of that tomorrow.

Soup has been something of a speciality in my family for generations. The recipe has been a closely guarded secret but I’m comfortable sharing it with you as a thanks for seeing today’s update through to the end. Give it a try…


One can of soup.


1. Open can of soup.

2. Empty contents into an appropriately sized saucepan.

3. Heat soup.

4. Serve.

5. Complain that there aren’t as many vegetables in the soup as there used to be.

Friday 4th January, 2019.

The football match was lost so less about that than there otherwise might have been. Onwards and upwards.

Very important day in the Slater household. The bins are being emptied and my youngest son turns twelve years old.

As is the way of the world these days I marked my sons birthday by posting on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. I held off on celebrating the refuse collection in the same way but I was sorely tempted.

I’m as guilty as anyone of portraying a slightly skewed reality on social media. Everything I posted today about the wonder of Max is true but there is another dimension to it.

Like all parents I worry about my children. There’s a selfishness to it in that I fear for myself should anything bad happen to them, there’s also guilt as I observe the personality traits they’ve inherited from me that may bring difficulties for them down the line.

I think Max is already learning that he finds the world easier if he shuts himself away from it. Most of the time, when he’s at home, he retreats to his bedroom. I know that’s fairly typical behaviour for a nearly teenager but I suspect there’s more to it than that.

This world should change for him, not the other way round. It would be a much better place.

Some men with proper jobs are currently doing some jiggery pokery outside the house which means there’s been no electricity for about two hours. No electricity means no kettle, no microwave, no television and no WiFi. Fortunately some boffin invented the 4G cellular network so I can still sit and stare at my phone from the comfort of the sofa. Not everything about the modern world is a shambles.


Out for tea to celebrate the birthday boy. He chose the local Frankie & Benny’s which would have been acceptable if it wasn’t for the lack of discount vouchers available to help pay for the food with.

Charlie (my other son) beat Max 9-8 at noughts and crosses while we were waiting for our meals to arrive. On the way home in the car he remarked that people don’t realise what an intellectual game noughts and crosses is. Myself and the other passengers in the car remained quiet so he could savour his moment.


Just now, lying in bed, reading back the diary updates for this week so far. I was thinking about how I feel when I write. The place I inhabit when I do is free from the anxieties of my reality and it could also be what this happiness I hear a lot about is like. As I was mulling this over the tears came so maybe not.

35 thoughts on “My journey from here to there (1st Jan-4th Jan 2019).

  1. Like the new format Phil – as funny and, at times, as poignant as usual. Thanks for the soup recipe – I’ll give that a go.🤣

  2. what a great idea to do diary type entries. I think you will find many to find this interesting because its different. And I really understood you when you said to try and use your own photos. This is something id like to do also. It makes it so much more personal and something I wonder if would make a difference too. Keep going your blog is awesome!

  3. I love your writing style. And this blog keeps me fascinated as I love diaries. Be careful with your son, and take him out so he don’t shut himself of the outside world. Life is hard no doubt, but there’s only one way to grow and survive it. And that’s by attacking it. It’s so easy to shut yourself off, but it’s also quite hard to recover from that.

  4. I like reading personal diary of other persons though I don’t write one for myself. Your puppy looks like what I have here. A puppy who keeps getting bigger everyday but still thinks she is a baby.

  5. Olá P! I just got to know your blog and the way you write is very good, congratulations wish you a lot of success and that this year of 2019 will be even more incredible, hugs from Brazil.

    Xoxo S 🌻

  6. I like reading diaries especially when they contain soup recipes. You’re right when you say that soup holds an important place in our family history and the next time you visit you Mother I suggest that you ask her to share some of her soup recipes with you !! xx

  7. I really like it Phil, Insiteful, well written ,and Honest , , thing is constantly playing my on my small mind, , , , Did you receive a reply from Ringo??…. ..

    1. I don’t think he’s back at work, after his Christmas break, until Monday. I’m expecting that he’ll prioritise replying to me over emails he also got from Paul McCartney and the Octopus in his garden.

  8. “In the evening I purchased a rail ticket for a business trip I need to make to London next week. In the end I managed to ‘stick it to the man’ for about eight hours. I wonder if he noticed…” It’s funny how that works. I’ll often get worked up over some ridiculous parking ticket, increase in laundry fee, etc., but finally end up paying the damn thing because what choice do I have. I think we all have that desire to stick it to the man but also recognize the ultimate futility of it.

  9. I like the diary format. It’s different. Btw, that section about your son is really sweet. That part about being a parent (with the worry, guilt, and fear that come with it) really speaks to me, because it is so true. Thanks for sharing.

  10. I like the diary entry format! I think my house would feel so empty without my dog, they become such a huge of the family so quickly. I hope your son had a wonderful birthday!


  11. This diary format is a great change. I sometimes enjoy watching them as vlogs on youtube, so a written format is definitely an interesting idea!

  12. Hello Phillip. First of all thank you for your feedback. I really enjoyed reading your blog post, it’s funny and I like the idea of having this kind of diary. Keep it up like this! 😀

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