Something New Every Day

A record of doing a new thing every day in 2011

Saw Prince Edward (326/365) Tuesday November 22, 2011

We needed a pint and a sit down after a long day in meetings at work, so ended up wandering around a little between Victoria and St. James’s Park. We ended up in The Albert on Victoria Street, but on the way we walked past Prince Edward - the man not the pub.

No idea where he was headed, but he was very smartly dressed. We weren’t.

31 Days Of Mango (325/365) Monday November 21, 2011

Found a great website on Monday called 31 Days Of Mango, which as you’d expect from the name has one tip each day for a month on developing for Windows Phone 7.

There were lots of new things I learnt from the site (and continue to do so), and in particular it made me understand a bug I have in my Bedside Clock application in how it didn’t handle the change of power state very well. Turns out - which I should have realised - I need to make sure the UI updating code needs to be on a different thread.

If you’re doing any WP7 phone development, I definitely recommend taking a look at the site.

Trofie Pasta (324/365) Sunday November 20, 2011

I fancied some pasta for me tea, and on a quick trip down to Tesco in Hexham I found some that I hadn’t tried before called Trofie.

According to the page I linked to above, it’s a Ligurian speciality, and despite looking slightly weird (a bit like pasta twiglets) it tasted really nice with an Arriabiata sauce. Will definitely try again as I have half a bag left :-)

Homemade Jam Tarts (323/365) Saturday November 19, 2011

I hadn’t done any baking for a while, and I had a fancy for some jam tarts so I thought I’d have a go at baking some. 

I didn’t realise how easy it was going to be, otherwise I would have made them before. I just got some ready made shortcrust pastry, cut out the pieces, filled with jam then put in the oven.

Lovely with some clotted cream.

Jam Tarts

Veggie Pigs in a Blanket (322/365) Friday November 18, 2011

I’ve always loved the name of “pigs in a blanket” for a type of food. In the UK that means sausages wrapped in bacon, but it turns out there are lots of other meanings around the world. Who knew?

Obviously being a vegetarian has meant I can’t really have this delicacy, but I decided to make an innovative alternative version by wrapping some veggie sausages in some “false meat” ham - and them in a sandwich.

Quite nice without being particularly interesting, but there being no such thing as decent veggie bacon about the best I can do unfortunately.

First Class (321/365) Thursday November 17, 2011

Earlier posts have hinted about this already, but this week my usual Thursday train trip back home from London was in the First Class carriage for the first time.

Although I wasn’t expecting much it was actually great. As soon as I got on I was offered tea or coffee, and then was continually offered drinks for the whole journey - I just had a couple of bottles of water and then succumbed to a nice glass of red wine. There was also dinner on offer, and as I’m still dieting I decided against, but the vegetarian option of goat’s cheese tart sounded OK too.

I wouldn’t pay the extra money for travelling first class - it didn’t get me home any quicker - but as part of the frequent traveller program from East Coast I’ll definitely be doing it again.

Lazy Bus Home (320/365) Wednesday November 16, 2011

I was looking for something for me tea, so rather absentmindedly I went up to Tescos on Tottenham High Street, forgetting how crappy it is. It had been a long day, and by the time I left I decided to be very lazy and get the bus down the Seven Sisters Road back to the flat rather than the 15 minutes walk - first time I’ve done that.

With my dodgy knees I do try to walk the 10-15 minutes at each end of my journey every day as it does help a lot (not if I do much more) but it’s been a very busy couple of weeks away from home - which I’ll use as an excuse for my lazyness.

It’s the final weighing of my 14 week diet on Saturday, so we’ll see how a week in the US and a hectic work schedule has affected it.

Sea Salt Chocolate (319/365) Tuesday November 15, 2011

Thanks to colleagues Ward (who brought them from the US) and Paul (who convinced me to try them) I ate a sea salt chocolate from Trader Joes yesterday.

They were exactly what it sounds like they are - fancy chocolates with salt on top. A very strange taste, but actually quite nice - although the salt stopped you wanting another one.

Form Navigation (318/365) Monday November 14, 2011

I haven’t done much mobile phone development recently, but I’ve been looking at the reviews for my Bedside Clock application, and decided to make some improvements.

What I wanted to do was add a separate settings screen, but I didn’t know how you’re supposed to switch between forms. So yesterday I learnt something new, and found out about the built-in Navigation service, which treats XAML pages as URLs and then you can switch between them.

Simple enough, and meant I could make decent progress on Bedside Clock v3.

The ePassport Line (317/365) Sunday November 13, 2011

Back in the UK, and when entering via Heathrow Terminal 5 I used the ePassport line for the first time.

I’m not sure I’ve ever seen it before, but usually I’m transferring to an internal flight up to Newcastle in a different part of immigration. All I had to do was first put in my picture page into the scanner,wait while it did some facial recognition for a few seconds and then I was back in the country. No quicker than the cursory glance the passport official usually gives you, but the line was definitely shorter.

Obviously you need an ePassport, but mine was issues in 2006 so I assume they are not that rare.