Arkells at King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut

When I first heard Arkells’ song Leather Jacket back in 2014 I added it to my “Indie & Alternative” playlist due to the quirky nature of it. Fast forward a few years and that track had been joined by a couple of their others on my playlist but I hadn’t actually taken the time to listen to everything they’d done.

That changed when I was listening to their latest album one morning and, after working through their back catalogue after it, I was impressed enough that I thought I’d check if they were touring. It turned out that they were both on tour and playing at King Tut’s in Glasgow just a few weeks later. I was surprised that tickets were still available for just £10 and snapped up a pair. Even though it was on a Sunday night, I couldn’t believe my luck!

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An imperfect ten

It was this very week in 2008 that I moved into my current house, having taken a rental agreement on the property and hastily moving up belongings from the house in Liverpool.

Of course, I say “I” now, but back then it was very much “we”, with myself, Fliss and nearly 3 year old Elisha setting up home again as a family. In the six months since I’d made the decision to take a job back in Scotland, we’d been in a state of limbo making do with living part-time in the Liverpool house or cramming into the spare room at my parents’ place.

The old naval estate house in Graham Place felt spacious – bigger than our house in Liverpool, for sure. I considered it a good placeholder at the time. Something that would do to get us all back together but not somewhere I saw myself living long term before I was back on the property ladder.

Somehow, ten years have flown by and a lot of change with it. What I couldn’t have known back then was what an emotional rollercoaster it would turn out to be.

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Two decades as a web developer

In mid-August 1998 I began my first job as a web developer, happily accepting the somewhat grand position of “webmaster” at Scottish Radio Holdings. Based at the offices of Radio Clyde in Clydebank, that first rung in the career ladder was a whirlwind of on the job learning fueled by the nervous excitement that came with being a part of a nascent industry.

I hadn’t ever worked as a web developer (not many people had!), nor endured the level of pressure that came with the workload of designing, developing and maintaining over 15 separate websites. How was I to know that one person couldn’t possibly do all that? It was my dream job in an exciting profession in an era – the turn of the millennium – that seemed to brim with untapped potential for what the internet could bring to the lives of everyday people.

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