Today marks the first time I’ve caught the new train service from Farnham to Guildford actually from Farnham. I’m a bit sad that I’ll not see the lady who makes my coffee every Wednesday at Aldershot Station (though the woman at Farnham is just as good) but, basically, it was very smooth, very convenient and the way I’ll be going to work from now on…or until they stop the direct Farnham to Guildford service.
Mind you, there was a problem with the trains going into and out of London (signal issues at Wimbledon apparently) but that didn’t affect me for the first bit of my trip. Then I arrived at Guildford and was presented with a crowd on the platform. This NEVER happens.
Generally, at the time I get the train to Portsmouth, there’s about four of us waiting. Because of the delays this morning, however, there was a crowd. Okay, not all of them were heading south (most were waiting for a re-platformed London train) but there was still more than usual.
Then a stopping service came into the platform and a whole bunch of passengers vanished. Then the London train, then a Gatwick train. By the time my train came, there were about six people left at the front end of the train. Perfect.
Not that I was late. The timing of the trains these days means I have a wait at Guildford anyway so I wound up actually catching an earlier train that was half an hour late. So all was fine.
At work Heather gave me something different to do this week.
Once books have been identified as being disposed of, lists go out to organisations likely to want them. These lists then come back with a Y or an N next to the titles. Based on some sort of hierarchy that I’m not privy to, Heather then decides who gets what.
The lists are returned in all manner of file types and they have to be amalgamated onto a Master Spreadsheet which contains all the books on offer. And that was my job for today.
First up was a txt document. I can’t remember the last time I worked with a txt document! Probably back when I was coding websites. I was struck by the simplicity and ease with which one can work with them. It was an excellent choice and it made it very easy to use.
It was a long list but I managed to whizz through it, deleting entries as I went. A previous volunteer (or perhaps Heather herself) had not deleted the entries as they went so I kept finding ones that had already been marked off in the spreadsheet but this was the minorist of problems and I finished in a couple of hours.
The second list was in a table in a Word document. They had included a second column with either ? (with a query), Y (they want it) or N (they don’t). Before starting with the transfer I had to remove the Ns. I started at the top then realised the document was 98 pages long and the ?, Y and Ns were scattered throughout it.
The good thing about a table is the ability to sort the contents of the columns. So, naturally, I sorted the ?, Y and N column then just deleted all the Ns. It took about two minutes. I then started working through the list.
The only weird thing was having to add ‘C-‘ to the beginning of each title to indicate that it was complete. I then had to highlight the row in yellow. Okay, it was a bit fiddlier than the txt document but, still, not particularly onerous.
Needless to say, I didn’t finish the Word list, leaving it for the next volunteer to continue from where I left off.
During the day, Heather told me that in a few weeks workmen would be taking over the building and no-one would be working there. She told me I could work remotely on some digital stuff if I liked. I definitely want. She’ll take me through it all in the next couple of weeks.
I must admit that it was a bit of a struggle staying awake this week. Staring at a screen mousing information back and forth is not particularly exciting or noted for keeping one alert.
There wasn’t anything to take photos of this week so I include the ad below, taken from a book a few weeks ago. It shows how advertising can convince you that really bad things can be good for you.