Got up late, having watched the results from Hartlepool, followed by the US presidential debate, whilst baking bread (new, granary flour to trial) in the middle of the night.

A disappointing result from Hartlepool, given that we didn’t win, but we were still the biggest gainers on the night with nearly a 20% swing to us. Simon Hughes on News24 sparkled; the Conservatives were beaten into fourth place by UKIP. The news today seems to be centering on “Lab win, Con beaten to fourth by UKIP” with a deafening silence on the subject of who came second and how much of an achievement that was.

Some coverage, however, of Jody (who is a family law barrister) getting covered in purple flour by Fathers for Justice whilst giving her concession speech. She had to be escorted off the stage. But none of this was broadcast last night on terrestrial TV, so I had to rely on breathless reports from friends on IRC who were watching the Sky 1 coverage.

I tuned in and out of the presidential debate that followed. It struck me that Bush was often lost for words, faltering, and not answering the questions whilst Kerry did quite well, but I suppose I’d expect to favour the Democrats. It seemed a strange format, but for both candidates, timing so closely the 120 / 90 / 60 / 30 second slots they were allocated so precisely was certainly an impressive skill. I wonder if they have lights in their podium like Lib Dem conference delegates? They were certainly better than our delegates at keeping to time.

Then to bed at about 4am after the bread came out of the oven.

This morning, the kitchen was still a dreadful mess after cooking for friends yesterday evening. Paul made fabled veggie lasagne (lovely), I made apple tart (pastry too sticky for some reason). Friends got the tour of the house, sampled our grapes fresh from the vine, were handed a laptop to see the Prague photos. Spent ages taking the piss out of my website. I should really update it…

I went ringing this week for the first time in ages, back to All Saints church Radford, the tower Nottingham University’s student ringers ring at. They had completed the augmentation of the bells (now 10) just a week or two earlier. We’d been fundraising for that since I came to university, so it was fantastic to see the project finished. There were a staggering 22 ringers, including this year’s bumber crop of freshers. Cheerily told them on leaving I’d see them next week / on Sunday morning (they made 9 last week, so were just short of being able to ring them all) — and they all jeered. Well, my attendence is derisory and I’m not good at any mornings, let alone Sunday.

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