Brain Fried

There is the thing where you are focussing on several different tasks on the same day and so you seperate them off into distinct groups and if you are clever you write a list and prioritise that list and then you might also put them in order of hard task, soft task, want to do task, want to avoid task, and then use different colour pens and statusses and work out the rewards for doing the tasks also if you are really needy you might use a program to check the time that you are spending so that it encourages breaks which you naturally avoid and then you work for too much on the wrong thing and all the while there are a group of thoughts jostling in your head for dominance about other tasks you haven’t written down or the shopping, weather, film, music, lifestyle element that takes precedence in your life that is trying to be at the forefront of your attention and I bet you forgot something important you had to do this morning and at that point your brain solves something you hadn’t thought about in ages and you get completely distracted from what you were doing, enjoy a smug moment, go back to your tasks and within seconds have forgotten what you were so smug about and realise that your brain ditched it because it had processed but not stored your wonderful insight…

Fuck I hate it when I take a break from one set of busy stuff for another set of busy stuff and have to do all the stuff that I usually do again because all I can do is sit in the headlights of my backlog and scream like a puppy on meths.

</rant>

Granada On

About Granada, Spain: tips and tricks for the urban explorer, extended visitor or people simply living in one of the most beautiful cities in the world.

(This is a review I posted to Amazon Kindle about this book, I liked it enough that I thought it also belonged here – go buy the book)

A confession, I bought this particular book on Granada because I had visited the city previously and attended a conference hosted by the author to whom I struck up a relationship. Since I knew he had written a guide I purchased that when I returned here on a holiday. There is a natural bias towards someone we know as a friend which I feel is now mitigated by this confession.

Granada On is not a guidebook in the traditional sense of the word. There is no index of places to eat and no direct listing of places to visit with accompanying scaled down aged stock artwork. If you are looking for a book to tell you exactly what you should look at and where, then Lonely Planet et al. have a guidebook for you.

Granada On is so much more than that. It is a history, a passion, a conversation. Juan takes us on a journey flicking between the history of the city, region and country and his own experiences. We meet him as a child and share his early understandings and return with him as an adult to re-visit those memories.

We wander, we meander, we stroll around the city not as a tourist looking for the trappings of some common experience, but as friends, as lovers sharing a passion for this beautiful location.

In his fluid writing style Juan encourages us to meander as much through the book as we would the city. Jump in and around its sections as you prepare to visit and while you are here. This guidebook will help you appreciate the reasons for why the city is as we see it today.

Unlike other books Juan will also take you on a personal, and reflective, stroll along streets literally laced with art. He discusses the graffiti (of which he is a huge fan) and the mindset of the people who created the magnificent city you are in.

To an English ear the prose is clearly from someone whose first language is not English. In this book that is a genuine plus. The writing is clear and fluid, Juan is an accomplished writer in English, but its structure and word choices are not standard they come from a more musical tongue and the rhythm and metre of the sentences match a pseudo-romance tongue.

This lyrical use of English adds to the books genuine authenticity, its conversational tone from a local, you could be walking down a cobbled road awaiting the next reveal of architecture, or a personal anecdote, or a cultural trinket. Juan helped me to picture the places, to feel and experience them, without even being there.

But Granada On, it is a ridiculously low price, and read it, dip into it, and use it to guide you around Granada. It will prepare you for the attitude best taken on visiting this region, reveal trinkets and details only a local would know (and even some details that they are oblivious to). Then, when you return or move on, return to it again and relive being here.

(Visited Granada in 2015 and 2017)

Note Bene: While visiting Granada this year we had the luxury of spending some time with Juan and his wife (and if my memory wasn’t a sieve I would recall her name). It was then that we discovered the real source of Granada history as he was corrected about his local knowledge from a real expert :).*

  • He got one small fact about a fountain incorrect when talking to us and was swiftly corrected :).

Running Socks (Review)

The History

If you have read this blog before you will know that this year I decided to change my lifestyle. Part of that change was to exercise regularly. These days I run every day, I go at least 8Km and sometimes I do 15-20Km in a day.

Not being the youngest person in the world I do suffer from small strains and injuries. Two that were particularly troubling were blisters caused by shoes (new trainers in one case) and a pain in the arch and ankle of my left foot.

In a bid to try and move away from an ankle support I decided to try a running sock. I chose the More Mile Mens London sock as it had good recommendations of Amazon. I would like to share some of my experience.

The Review

This review can be broken into 6 distinct parts:

  • Fit: The socks are snug and tight, they fit well and do not shrink as long as you keep the wash cool and use colour setting. They also are suited to left/right division and as such are labelled.
  • Support: As promised they support the arch and most of my pain has disappeared. The compression on the toes and ankle are also good.
  • Sweat: The sock works well at getting sweat away from the skin and my feet can be dry after running (or at least they feel dry).
  • Padding: Toes and ankle are nicely padded and as such they have eliminated blisters, another big plus is the padding on the ball of the foot which helps to cushion and protect the side of the foot.
  • Comfort: They feel great, like standing on clouds, snug clouds though.
  • Wear: I have had them for a few weeks and they are only just showing wear, I estimate a lifespan of 20-30 wears for each sock, which is about 10p a run. This might seem high but I think it is a bargain for the level of comfort I have noticed.

Overall I am going to give a thumbs up to these socks. Please note that I haven’t tried their other socks, nor have I tried many other brands that are similar so cannot give a side-by-side comparison.

However I think they are worth the cost and the comfort and reduction in strain and blisters alone is worth double the daily cost.

If you are going to purchase some of these socks please consider using my affiliate link below.

[Note: I was not asked, sponsored, or otherwise tempted to write this review. I made a purchase and this is a response to the usage (personal) of the product I bought. I was not offered any compensation or gain]