Linda Philip

Today, we said goodbye to my aunt Linda. A lovely service that I’m very grateful that I could attend. Bill’s words during the service choked me up; the love he and all of our family have for her is very evident.

Linda will be very much missed.

We’ll be raising a glass to her this evening.


Flowers

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2020 in pictures

As we reach the end of 2020, I continue my tradition of looking back at my year through the photos that I took as I have done every year since 2009. I have been doing a Project 365 for a good few years which acts as a diary too, so I have the opportunity to appreciate what happened this year in my life.

This has been quite a year with the pandemic hitting the UK hard in March and continuing. With the approval of two vaccines for UK use, maybe life will be more “normal” by mid-2021 though. The end of 2020 marks the end of the UK’s membership of the European Union, which, in my view, is a tragedy.

January

January started out well. We went to Bristol Zoo on the first and Worcester’s Festival of Light took place. As with 2019, I spent an afternoon taking photos in Bristol with Stu Herbert which was a lot of fun.

Looking for a lizardHalo

February

February was conference month. We started with FOSDEM, the only conference of the year that my wife and I attend together. I was also fortunate to speak at Sunshine PHP & attend ServerlessDays Cardiff. I also spoke at PHPUK, where I had a memorable evening drinking cocktails after the conference! Worcester flooded and a new local railway station Worcestershire Parkway opened too, but due to the way the year panned out, I haven’t yet caught a train from it.

FOSDEM welcome in JansonOSMI buddies

March

March was when we realised the seriousness of COVID-19 as the UK went into lockdown on 16th March. At the start of the month, I took photos at the KVWR Spring Gala. I also spoke at PHPSW’s March meeting as a short-notice replacement as company travel restrictions prevented the original speaker from attending.

Stop Look ListenDerick speaking on PHP 7

April

April was the start of Very Little Happening around here. As I’m self-employed and work from home, nothing much changed there, though my home was now filled with college and university students. My youngest’s GCSEs were cancelled, so his holiday started in April and my eldest’s Uni course essentially stopped from what I could tell. I started walking around my local part of Worcester for exercise.

This play equipment is out of use until futher noticeSign post

May

May is birthday month in our household and nothing else happened other than walking.

Eldest s 19th birthdayReading his new book

June

In June, infection rates in Worcestershire were low enough that I felt confident to go and stand in a field taking photos of trains on the Lickey Incline. I continued walking for exercise, sometimes with family.

Cross Country Voyager heads up the Lickey InclineFamily walk through the woods

July

July saw more walking. There was more gaming this month as my wife acquired a PS4 & the kids were getting desperate enough for human contact that we saw them on a few evenings too!

Wild flowers areaPlaying Switch together

August

The SVR reopened on the 1st August, so I took photos of steam trains again! On the last day of the month, my Apple Silicon DTK arrived so I could ensure that Daily Jotter works with the upcoming ARM Macs.

2857 passes Crossing CottageNew Mac

September

The SVR continued to run, so I wandered over to the SVR to see the class 50s run. Nothing much else was happening and I continued to walking for exercise.

50 007 heading to HighleySign

October

I finally replaced my 2013 MacBook Pro with an iMac Pro in October. I love how quiet it is and it runs rst2pdf‘s tests so quickly! As you can probably guess, I also took many photos of trains. It’s a very solitary activity where I’m on my own all day, so quite suited to social distancing.

New iMac Pro2857 heads up Eardington Bank

November

With cases rising, there was a second UK lockdown in November, so no SVR photo opportunities. Work continued and I walked for exercise.

Signpost in the sunshineCold morning today

December

In December, I attended a socially distanced funeral for my aunt which was a strange experience. As it was Christmas time, I baked many mince pies and with the SVR open for a short while, I took photos of trains in the snow.

Making mince piesFlowers for my Aunt Pat s funeral

2020 has been one of the strangest years of my life. This has been a year divided by the pandemic. The first two months were normal with conferences, user groups and normal life. March onwards has been isolationary. My friends and family do not live locally, so I’ve not socialised in person with friends or family since March; mid-to-late 2021 cannot come soon enough!

One thing is certain, this was the year where we really appreciated our healthcare & key workers.

Thank you all Key workers

Pat Bliben

Today was my Aunt Pat’s funeral. These are never easy & are particularly hard with the current restrictions.

The service was lovely and the genuine messages of love from Pat’s grandchildren emphasised how well she loved & cared for her family. The order of service book included many photos of her that really showcased her life. Beautiful.

I’m pleased that I was able to attend.


Flowers for my aunt Pat's funeral

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2019 in pictures

As we reach the end of 2019, I again get the opportunity to look back at my year through the photos that I took as I have done every year since 2009. I have been doing a Project 365 for a good few years which acts as a diary too, so I have the opportunity to appreciate what happened this year in my life.

January

Early in January, I spent an afternoon taking photos with Stu Herbert and took my car-mad son to the Autosport International show at the NEC. We didn’t get much snow this year in Worcester, but the little we did was mid-January. At the very end of the month, I spoke at Serverless Days Cardiff on OpenWhisk.

LeMans e-sports series race carNetworking at Serverless Days Cardiff

February

Immediately after Serverless Days Cardiff we went to FOSDEM. We had a day to ourselves and went to the Atomium which was fun. A week later, I spoke at Sunshine PHP. Both are great conferences! Unfortunately, I missed PHPUK as my wife had a horse-riding accident and broke her ribs.
I also got in my first trip to a railway, spending the morning at the SVR in some lovely light!

Jenny made an excellent bouncerLate night conversations

March

March saw a trip the SVR’s Spring Gala and then with the passing of my aunt, a funeral. I don’t see that side of the family often, so although it was a sad reason, it was good to meet up with everyone. I also popped over to LA to see a client at the end of the month and caught up with Evan.

4144 takes on water at BrignorthRKA 20190321 141811 2011

April

In April, I attended PHP Yorkshire which meant a quick trip to the NRM as I was in the city! I also visited various user groups and walked in the woods.

The hallway track at  phpyorkshireWalking in Worcester woods

May

I spent a couple of days “up north” in Yorkshire visiting the the KWVR and NYMR railways while visiting friends overnight. I also went the SVR’s Diesel Gala where I had a tour of the inside of 50 044. It was a good photographic month for me! We also went to the polls this month and would go again in December.

5428 departs PickeringMike shows me 50 044 s engine

June

June saw a trip to Amsterdam to speak at DPC and then I attended LeadDev in London. I also played my Switch more this month and by the end of the month it was warm enough to be regularly eating ice cream! All my Project 365 photos have been in black and white this year, and I also chose to publish my LeadDev phots in black and white too.

Jenny and James co present slideshare karaokeA drink after the first day

July

In June my youngest was on a float for the Worcester Carnival and I got a new camera: a Fuji X-T3! I’m really happy with the new camera and lenses and expect to take even more photos next year! Towards the end of the month we headed to Spain for a holiday in the sun where I struggled to take a good sunrise photo, but did eat lots of ice cream! We also celebrated our wedding anniversary.

X T3 with 2 lensesSun rising behind the clouds

August

We continued our holiday into August and it was a quiet month upon arriving home. I popped over to the SVR and also took some photos in Worcester.

Enjoying my morning cup of tea while on holidayWorcester Cathedral

September

The most momentous even in September is that my eldest left for University and we had to adjust to being a family of 3. We also had our annual family gathering of my mum & her sisters’ families. I went to the SVR for the unveiling of 50 033 after restoration . The group working on it have done an amazing job. As my wife was away, I took my youngest to his horse riding lesson at the end of the month and took a few pics with my long lens which was fun.

Sis with dadLine up of  some of the Glorious restoration team

October

September and October are traditionally conference months for me, but this year I only attended one conference: OggCamp. I’ve been trying to attend for a few years now, but it kept clashing. This year that didn’t happen and as it’s an uncon, I spoke about photography! Lorna also managed to nab one of the key SnapCraft people and we got some help on how to package rst2pdf as a snap which was very useful. Worcester was flooded in October too which was inconvenient.

Alan Lorna  KevinFlooding in Worcester

November

I attended Bristech and spoke at Cardiff DevFest in November. As I had some spare time in Bristol, I had another attempt to photograph the Clifton suspension bridge and did a better job than in January! This was the month that I bought a new MacBook Pro 16″, but struggled with software issues and returned it. I’ll try again to replace my laptop next year. It was also my sister’s boyfriend’s 50th, so I took a trip up to see him and we drunk rather a lot of whisky! Guess what? As I was up that way, I popped into the ELR to take a few photos!

Clifton Suspension BridgeFanstastic talk on accessibility by Svetlana

December

Sadly I attended another funeral in December. My wife’s grandmother died at the ripe old age of 99. We haven’t seen that family in a good few year, so it was interesting to see how grown up all the kids are now! This month also saw the end of InterCity 125 HSTs on the Great Eastern main line. The LNER train company ran a special train painted in the 1970s livery that the HSTs were launched with, so I drove 2 hours to take a photo in 30 seconds and then drove home again! My son came back from Uni for Christmas too. It’s great to see him, but he’s shocked at how slow our Internet is compared to what he’s used to 😂

LNER HST Farewell Tour at Conington


As usual, I forget what happened during the year which is why I take so many photos! This year in particular I made an effort to get away from my desk and take photos outside and indulge my enjoyment of taking photos of heritage railways. Next year, I would like to see if I can widen my repertoire and take more photos of landscapes too.

On the whole, it was a great year though!

Doris Lunnon

We celebrated Georgina’s grandmother’s life yesterday. She reached 99 years.

It was a lovely, simple service at the crematorium that fitted well and I particularly liked the music chosen to finish on – it’s great when we can leave a funeral service with a smile when thinking about the life of the one we have said goodbye to.

We don’t see that side of the family often and I have to say that the next generation are lovely, articulate young people and it was a pleasure to see them. Gillian & Steve and Stuart & Cath must be very proud.


Flowers

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I wonder

I wonder if the UK will have fewer people in prison in 5 years time.
I wonder if the UK will have smaller class sizes in 5 years time.
I wonder if the UK will have fewer people sleeping on the streets in 5 years time.
I wonder if the UK will have fewer children growing up in poverty in 5 years time.
I wonder if the UK will be healing more people more quicklly in 5 years time.

Jill Higgitt

Bittersweet day yesterday at Aunt Jill’s funeral. Caught up with family that I haven’t seen in well over a decade which was wonderful, even though the reason we were together wasn’t.


Photos from Jill's funeral

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2018 in pictures

As 2018 draws to a close, I take the time to look at the past year. As usual, I look at the photos that I’ve taken and frame my thoughts around them.

January

I started the year with ongoing efforts to reduce the pain in my joints and then visited America for CodeMash in Ohio. This was my second consecutive year speaking at CodeMash and I really enjoyed it. As I was in the US, I popped in to see my family in South Carolina which experienced really cold weather for the few days that I was there! I also spoke at LeedsPHP user group and got my first set of reading glasses as I’m no longer as young as I once was…

Steroid injection in my ankleUncle Harry & Cousin Jeff


February

February was a conference-heavy month. We had our annual trip to FOSDEM and then I spoke at Sunshine PHP where I also spent a day at Miami Beach with Michael. I also spoke at PHPUK in London.

Satnos: Open Source satellite ground stationsPodcasting at Sunshine PHP


March

It snowed in March, so I took photos of trains in the snow! I also attended Seiden Group’s CIO Summit in Dallas & GrumpyCon in Canada. While in Canada, I popped in and saw my family who live nearby in London, ON.

1501 is ready to departDinner

April

In April, I spoke at PHP Yorkshire and popped into the NRM while I was up in York. My youngest practiced for his Duke Of Edinburgh Bronze trip & in contrast to the snow in March, we ate ice cream in April. I also attended Tech Edge in Leeds where Kevin was speaking – not a common event!

Hallway trackKevin Bowman speaking about handling incidents


May

I started thinking about a product idea with Stuart Herbert in May. I also received a Lineside Photographic pass for the SVR and took my favourite railway photo of the year. It even won approval from my wife as it has horses in it!

Meeting with Stuart at DeskLodgeMare with her foal


June

In June, I spoke at Laravel Live UK and Romania PHP in Cluj. I particularly enjoyed the tour of Cluj the day after the conference . I also got out my old Minolta X-300 film camera and put a roll of black and white film in it. Didn’t get the pictures back until December though!

Worcester Beers & CamerasA conversation between Arne & Stefan


July

JeffConf was renamed Serverless Days and I spoke at the London event where I met a couple of the OpenWhisk contributors. I was also in London for Coed:Ethics: a conference on ethics for developers and technologists. On the last day of July, I was delighted to speak at the inaugural PHP South Wales. July was also the month of the family get-together which is always fun, though the younger generation spent more time watching the World Cup!

Carlos & MarkusCousins watching the football


August

This year, we went to Disney World, Florida and also visited Kennedy Space Centre! Fantastic holiday, although I needed another holiday to get over it… We also followed the Worcester Giraffe Trail, a temporary art installation in our home town which was lots of fun.

That holiday feeling!Cousins with Granddad at KSC


September

We visited the South Coast and saw the pebble beaches when visiting our family in September. I also took photos of big engines at the SVR Autumn Gala and tried my hand at action photography.

I can see the sea!Jumping


October

In the autumn, I visited various universities around the country with my eldest. The SVR held the Fiftis at Fifty event to celebrate 50 years of the introduction of the Class 50 diesel locomotive onto the UK railways, I took this opportunity to attend my first private railway photoshoot and intend to do more. The Hackference conference was up the road in Birmingham this month and my eldest passed his driving test, which drastically increased the cost of our car insurance!

50007 (as 50006) crosses Victoria BridgeHe passed!


November

My memories of Bonfire Night this year revolve around very sticky marshmallow covered hands! It was a busy month for travel as the following day, I flew to California to work with a client with Roave. Upon landing back in the UK, I spoke at Serverless Computing London and then a week later at TopConf in Tallinn. While in Tallinn, we took the opportunity to catch up with friends.

Roave collaborationChatting over lunch


December

December saw the PHPSW Christmas social where there were Lego robots. We also met up with our online gaming friends in Croydon as usual and Christmas was notable for some rather awesome jumpers. At the very end of the year, I borrowed a Fujifilm X-T10 camera from a friend to see how I get on with its ergonomics. Of course, I took some more railway pictures!

Building Lego robotsRight Away Driver!


It’s very easy for me to forget what happened during the year, which is why I take photos. Here’s to 2019!

Fractured

This comment by Philip Hammond shows the problem the UK has:

All of the other options have disadvantages and we have to look not only at the economy but also the need to heal a fractured nation. We will not be successful if we remain fundamentally divided and fractured on this issue.

With a 52/48 split, we are going to factured for many decades to come.

2017 in pictures

Another year has passed which gives me an excuse to to reflect on what’s happened. As usual, I look at the photos that I’ve taken and frame my thoughts around them.

January

I started the year with one of my favourite pictures of the kids. I also spoke at CodeMash in Ohio. This was a new conference to me and I knew no-one there. Fortunately, I was introduced to Mo, so had at least one person to talk to! She also introduced me to more people :)

Brotherly loveGirl Develop It organisers


February

We had our annual trip to FOSDEM in February. It was also quite windy.

Community room at FOSDEMIt's a bit windy…


March

My Nintendo Switch arrived in March! Great console, I’m still loving it. I also visited the North Yorkshire Moors Railway to see Royal Scott.

Breath of the Wild on Switch46100 Royal Scot


April

In April, we celebrated my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary & my sister ran the London Marathon! Conference-wise, I spoke at the inaugural PHP Yorkshire conference and also spoke at Craft conference; both great events.

My mum & dad are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary today!She got the medal!


May

May is the month of birthdays in our household. I went to Turkey for PHPKonf and then to Serbia for PHPSerbia.

Discussion a potential PHP anomalyEnjoying ice cream

June

I was really happy to speak at the Lead Developer conference in June and then immediately afterwards spoke at PHP South Coast, filling in for a speaker that couldn’t make it.

Randall KoutnikStarting the conference with a cup of tea


July

July started with DPC and I also attended the inaugural JeffConf.

ChrisJames Governor moderated a panel on serverless adoption


August

We were on holiday in August and I also saw a Land Rover on wheels at the Severn Valley Railway.

ReflectionsLand Rover on rails


September

As is becoming a tradition, we started September with a family gathering where we discovered that my youngest cousins once removed have gained personalities! I reorganised my office so my desk was no longer in the afternoon sunshine. At the end of the month, conference season started up again when I spoke at APIDays in Zurich and then CodeTalks in Hamburg.

My youngest with his cousinStefan & Anna


October

We visited our friends in Tallinn, Estonia in October; it’s cold there, but a lovely city! I photographed steam trains twice in October, visting the KVWR in Yorkshire and taking my favourite railway photos of the year in Worcestershire: Royal Scot on the mainline.

Visiting TallinnRoyal Scott on The Cotswold Venturer excursion today


November

November is Fireworks Night in the UK which we celebrated with friends. Again, we contributed wood for the bonfire and also delivered wood from Kevin as I visited with my car a few weeks earlier. I spoke at muCon in London and attended CodeMotion in Milan.

Toasting marshmallowsKeynote space


December

December saw me geeking out about cameras at the local Beers & Cameras meetup. My friend Alex visited the UK from New Zealand, so I was especially happy to get to see her too. We also found time to get down to the annual get together with our online gaming friends in a pub in Croydon which is now into its 17th year.

Worcester Beer & Cameras meetupBL Christmas meetup


All in all, a great year and I’m looking forward to 2018.