I cannot believe for a second it's almost November. It's almost the 11th month out of a 12 month year, it's almost the festive period, just this week the clocks have reset to GMT (30th Oct.).
This week has been another...interesting one - but one I'm sure I can wrap up in a rather quick summary blog.
The 24th October saw a few important anniversaries - ironically enough, both of them the 10th Anniversary!
In 2012, The Ocean Clean-Up was founded - probably one of the first organisations in the world to actually GO OUT to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and start collecting rubbish from it. It's so inspirational to see how far they've come in 10 Years and see how much they've achieved.
2012 also saw me create my Facebook account - I've created accounts on other social medias, but have never come back to them on a daily basis.
On the 25th, it was the 13th anniversary since Adele's second song "Chasing Pavements" was released.
With all these anniversaries, you can sort of see the day I was having - it wasn't very action packed at all.
My week livened up slightly on the 26th October as I went to a Jobs Fair at local college although it was vastly different to any previous times I had been.
At the moment, I'm just a shell of a body, floating through time and space. (Don't worry, I'm fine...I think) - seriously, it's not that bad, I have hobbies and interests.
Back to the point, on previous visits to jobs/careers fairs, I knew roughly what I was looking for - at secondary school, it was a University or career/company that interested me, at Uni, it was a masters or even further education, or something in the Journalism sphere, but being unemployed - I didn't quite know WHAT I was looking for - and I didn't want to find a "mildly interesting" University Course and for the same thing to happen - attend two years, fail, end up lost.
I found a select handful of stalls, but I suppose I was grasping at straws - one helped with a CV, the other had a van I could drive on a car licence, the other was a hovercraft - and the last was an advice leaflet.
It's hard when you come home and you surprise your parents at how quick you've been - but it was the first careers fair I've been to on the Isle Of Wight - so I didn't know what to expect.
Following the Careers Fair, I did a race as it was my race-day.
For the second time in a season, the race didn't split - This season of GT4 Challenge has been absolutely abhorrent for participation - the middle-of-the-day sessions only getting enough participants for two splits - although this is my first time properly racing in Season 4, 2022 (been Uni beforehand) - so with most either sleeping or at work, I guess it's an unfortunate reality.
I started 14th and finished 17th - although I did gain a little bit of iRating, pushing me up to 1311 iRating - matching my highest of the year and returning me to where I was after the Sebring GT4 Challenge race and before the Wild Week Of the SCCA Run-Offs
27/10/2022 (Week 2/4 of Consecutive Trips To The Mainland)
I don't know why, but I have this weird coincidence where every time I'm about to have a big day, I always stay up stupidly late and don't go to sleep - and get my required hours of sleep.
The last time this happened was the SCCA week - I stayed up until 02:00/03:00am to try and secure a spot in the Top 40.
Later the same day, I saw two friends, had about 3 hours of sleep before spending the day in London.
A lot of context is required, but in order to qualify for the Winter Nurburgring 24 Hours, you have to do 4 clean laps in a dedicated session - In the 10pm, I did 3 clean laps (ruined my first lap).
I then woke up at 4am and started an absolutely insane day.
4:00am - Wake up, pack bag, breakfast, powernap.
5:00am - Wake up, leave house/Isle Of Wight, wait for 6:20am ferry.
6am - 9am - Drive to Brighton to pick up Waxoyl (rust-proof spray)
9:30am - 10am: Drive to The Car Clinic.
10am - 1pm - Car in service (major service & cambelt changed & oil-change)
It was a surprisingly productive day for all parties involved - I wrote/published my most recent blog (before this one) - finished when iRacing went down when I was trying to get stats
Timon - the Octavia got a major service and shouldn't need a new cambelt/major service in the next 6 years (hopefully!) and I saw my mate Will.
Was it worth driving 8 hours (6hrs of driving + 2hrs on Ferries) to have my car service with the Car Clinic? Absolutely. Will was the one whom informed me that my cambelt was due a change - and every garage is different - so my thinking was that if I booked it through him/his garage (where he could also overlook what was being done) - then he could help out and assist and say "the car needs XYZ".
This is only my second car, and with Kiara (Kia Venga), I just crossed my fingers and hoped everything was okay/that she stayed Golden - Will has taught me a lot - like regularly checking fluid levels, not taking the car to Halfords/The dealer - just simple money-saving tips and tricks - and I didn't want my local garage to miss something - or for me to forget to mention something that needed to be done.
Since paying for the service fee, I've not once checked my bank account, I dare not. fuel, food (Pizza & Maccies) and everything done on that day was one of those days which took a heavy toll on the wallet. But hopefully less of a toll than being stranded on the side of the motorway with a steaming car.
By 3/4pm, the car was done and I had a little car-wash as the back-roads hadn't been kind to her.
It does help Will is enthusiastic about Timon and is talking to me about big plans for them, to essentially turn Timon into Madonna: Ageless - remove both Occy and Timon's plates and you'd not have a clue they were a day older than 10!
On Friday, I was invited to a talking session about Rennsport, the newest sim-kid on the block - and the developers talked about the features (of course, as much as they COULD say, but there are good things to come - and there's another (talking) session...I can't remember when. But it was insightful and "was right up my ally" - and that's as much as I'm saying
Last Weekend (22nd - 23rd Oct.), myself and Dominik had mixed fortunes - and once again, this weekend we had mixed luck.
Both myself and Dominik started saturday by getting our Winter N24 "Permits" (by completing 4 clean laps within a range of 10 seconds of every lap). Lars (our final driver) just had to complete his permit.
With myself going from a 8:41 to and 8:22 in less than 24 hours meant that I went from last to...second to last.
No - in my first session, I was last of the GT3's and the Porsche 911 Cups, and come my most recent session, I split the Porsche 911 Cup times in half (3 in front, 3 behind).
With the Germans (Dominik and Lars) taking the first 4 hours, by that time, all I'll have to do is keep the car on track and keep pumping out 8:20's and we shouldn't make an embarrassment of ourselves - or well - lets first qualify for the race first, and then take proceedings from there.
30/10/2022 "Karma One May Say"
Sunday was not a good day. The last time I was down at 1217 iRating was July - I've had a storming summer - staying way high and clear of the 1.2K "line" - but in just a couple of laps at the IMSA Endurance race, it all came crashing down.
Admittedly, since Dominik retired at Silverstone with damage, I felt guilty, as I lost nothing and he lost a good 50 iRating - we were in the race together, and we should have lost it together.
Sunday 30th October was (unbeknownst to me at the time) going to be my turn to lose a chunk. iRating is a tightrope - and a single retirement can send you plummeting. As I did.
But first, a slice of context.
That weekend's races weren't OVERLY appealing - VRS E at Oscherslaben and IMSA Endurance at Sebring - but after finding out I was decent at Sebring, we mutually agreed to race at Sebring in the Ferrari as we were on-pace for our split.
We eventually agreed that Dominik would qualify and I would do the opening hour/double stint.
Long story short, despite my best efforts, I got mobbed and fell to the back of the field, and eventually got spun by a BMW, eventually hitting the barrier at such an awkward angle that the car was a write-off.
I lost over 100 iRating and fell to 1219 iRating - as mentioned - the last time I was here was in July.
But these things happen - and I'm truly a 1.3K driver, I'm going to have to brush off the dirt and climb the ladder again...and maybe be a little more careful once at the top.
Tomorrow (31st Oct.) is the day I started my rather interesting Google Maps Road Trip Around The World - and I'm pleased to say, at the moment, I've got enough going on in my life that I don't need to create a countdown to Christmas this early - the priority right now is getting a job, sorting my life out - sorting my iRating out - and maybe even getting a manual licence. And staying positive.
Thanks for reading, and see you...soon, maybe even November!