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I broke my promise

I decided back in 2012, sounds long ago doesn’t it; that I would start to attend to and maintain my blog at least weekly. Well, what I hadn’t done was consider the possible obstacles that could or would present themselves during my twenty twelve blog-fest. Holidays I can go along with, after all, it wouldn’t be a holiday if you had to blog everyday would it.  So, what happened? Well, I think I just took so many images, edited so many images and talked to groups of people about everything. I just didn’t have time. Moving on…

The new year started off well, and I decided to purchase a new hard drive to accommodate all last years RAW files. RAW files, for those out of the know… are Camera generated images that can only be read by particular software or computer program. They are very large files and provide great quality when printing and/or showing images. When you have taken just short of 25,000 in a year and they each weigh in at an incredible 18 to 26 megabytes each it only takes a Casio to work it out that the resulting amount is far more than the average hard drive can digest in a good meal. So I came across a great bargain from my friends at CCL Computers in Bradford ( ); a half price 2TB internal Hard Drive for just shy of £70. Bargain !!

After our lovely weekend away I spoke to a good friend of mine who agreed to install it for me. At first. I wasn’t afraid of doing it myself, until I looked inside the PC Tower and realised that the hard disk wouldn’t fit in the compartment correctly. Well it did fit, but it was quite loose and the future of the data to be stored upon it may have been compromised had I continued. So I popped over with all the bits and my mate Jason did the business.  Now, I should have known better than to ignore something. Just before Christmas my PC had decided to just turn off the monitors half way through doing something…A bit unfair isn’t it? It’s a bit like going to the theatre and suddenly half way through they turn off the stage lights and say to the audience “you will have to wait till the end of the performance before you can move, but you will have to guess when that is because you wont be able to see it”. But that’s exactly what happened….the monitors went off quite unexpectedly and the PC kept on doing what it was quite merrily. This is all well and good if you weren’t doing anything important but half way through editing a photograph and you were “FUBAR’d”. (if you have never heard that expression it means F**CKED UP BEYOND ALL RECOGNITION).

A quick “Google” brought up many possible solutions to my problem along with numerous advertisements for new computer components. There were many suggestions from overheating to dust but the one that pointed a finger at the problem was the graphics card. The graphics card or display adapter is what transfers the information from the PC to the actual screen, hence why the PC actually stayed on whilst all this was kicking off. With all those solutions I read between the lines and decided to go one stage further than cleaning up my annual images on to a new drive. I reformatted the whole machine ! BOOM. This was done in the belief that reformatting and reinstalling might actually get rid of the problem. Well, everyone has to have a dream; mine was just doomed from the start.

I took precautions before hand…everything was backed up; well, almost everything. I managed to lose my Internet Favourites but they reside on my IPAD so I’m not too concerned about them. I even remembered to deactivate my Photoshop CS5 and send the serial activation back up to Adobe’s server. That’s another story for another day…remind me. With the machine reformatted and running hyper-fast, that fast it would have obtained a gold in last years summer Olympics and even given Mr Bolt a run for his money. I was a happy bunny-wabbit, until…halfway through editing a photograph for my blog it decided to rear its ugly head and shut the monitors off again. Oh ball hooks I thought…problem not solved.

I spoke to a very good friend of mine on Friday. This was now 7 days since the first incident and he said quite calmly “I’ve got a spare one you can have”. Never look a gift horse in the mouth my knowledge of old sayings tells me…so I didn’t. Richard stated he would give it to a family member who works near where I live and I arranged to collect it from him today. You can imagine my horror when I looked out of the window and saw the snow this morning. My immediate concern was not that of anyone’s safety or wellbeing, but a quite selfish thought of ” Oh no, not another day without my PC.” There is some irony in that thought actually. It’s not as if I have loads to do, I have either tinned or lost most of the remainder of last years images, and not yet managed to take one this year using my DSLR, so it’s not like I was in any rush to need it. I suppose it’s just my personal feelings and the annoyance that something isn’t working. I’m like that, I will admit it…even to you. If something isn’t working, it will bother me, nag my head every minute until it’s sorted out, overnight, even when I’m sleeping. Ask Elaine, she will tell you with that knowing face.. you know, like nodding and shaking her head at the same time.

At 4am I woke. Looking towards the bedroom window I could sense that “glow”. A light pollution glow. The street lights were polluting the night sky with the help of snow. The white snow was amplifying the ambience and creating an almost “night sun” effect. It was strange, last time I saw an effect like this was when I was a police officer and had some assistance from the force helicopter to light up some waste land whilst pursuing a suspected car thief. My graphics card was going to be ready for collection after 9am and I just hoped that was going to be the solution. What stood in my way now was a snow fall. A snowfall that wouldn’t stop me getting to the location I had agreed; but might prevent Roy from getting over this way considering the distance involved.

In the clear light of day, the snowfall was minimal and was even starting to melt by the time I exited the back door. It was never a problem, and Roy handed over the card for which I was really grateful. After a morning rushing round involving the current Mrs W getting her eyes tested, my lovely mother-in-law dispatched on a shopping expedition and a few odd jobs I have finally found time to sit down and install it in my machine.

All up and working, and PC and owner’s happiness mutually restored. Maybe I will sleep better tonight, I know the PC will.

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