I seem to be suffering from a sequence of expensive and depressing failures of what I (but perhaps not most people) would consider essential items.

It started before Christmas with our central heating boiler spectacularly failing and costing a scorching £440 to repair. Before the repair man had even visited this was closely followed by our shower, meaning we had no hot water and no shower… Another £80 and a lesson in how to fit an electric shower.

Next up the TV gives up. £88 to repair please. Shortly afterwards Sky+HD is installed but takes three weeks before it’s working properly. In the meantime I drop my new camera breaking it "beyond economical repair". Fortunately in this case after a brief battle with the insurance company a new one is on the way.

So when I lend my laptop to a friend to take on holiday, I should have known it would be my main PC that would break next. Naturally this happened the day after we booked a safari holiday to Kenya for later in the year. A new PC is ordered and on the way at a cost that I’d rather not share here but let’s leave it at "a lot".

The only bright side is that with a new camera and PC arriving by the weekend I’ll have that new gadget smell to enjoy for a few days.

In unrelated news for only the second time that I can remember in the past 22 years, it snowed here yesterday. Obviously it’s pretty much all melted now but it was fun whilst it lasted.

Snow Scene

Snow Scene

Photographing snow means cranking in 3 or more stops of over-exposure to avoid everything looking very grey!