I THOUGHT I’d made some headway with Joe’s laptop before turning in last night (erm, this morning!), but the screen is black and it won’t start up when I get up 🙁

By coincidence, Betty drops by for a coffee in the garden with Margaret and I update her on progress then arrange a call-back with Apple Support. The call comes within minutes.

I explain the situation and we try a few things but the laptop refuses to start. Sadly, that means nothing can be done over the phone – Apple stores are all closed during lockdown so Genius Bar isn’t an option meaning the laptop would need to go to Apple or one of three authorised third party repair partners. The quote for the pickup/return and possible repair is over £400…and could be more if the repair requires significant new parts.

It’s not really worth it, but I keep the option open and will discuss with Betty later. Despite the problem being unresolved, yet again I’m impressed with the level of support offered by Apple.

Saturday’s slide guitar masterclass is now sold out. Phew! I create some appropriate graphics and post them along with a note saying that if folks missed out this time round they can get in touch and I’ll organise another.

I call Betty and explain the laptop situation. I’ve often felt an iPad would be much better for Joe but in the past he’s not really been interested. I suggest it again – but rather than Betty’s iPad, which she uses constantly, I offer my old iPad 2. it’s pretty out of date, but Joe really only needs a web browser, so it might work fine.

I charge it up and set things up so the Internet and bookmarks are the only things visible on the home screen.

By the time I’ve freed up some time to get some fresh air it’s a bit damp for a bike ride and there’s not really enough daylight left for a decent ride. It’s good to mix up the walking and cycling anyway. I take the iPad to Betty and Joe then go for a walk up the lochside for an hour or so and, sure enough, it’s dark by the time I get home.

In the studio I do a little work recording some backing vocals for a track someone’s sent me. Not really my key and I struggle with the pitching. I don’t know if what I’m doing is any good but get it in the bag then mess with the guitar in case I can add some other interesting contributions to the song. After some rough ideas I notice it’s after 8pm and tonight’s Bo Kho (a Vietnamese beef stew) takes a good hour and a half top make. Oops. Late dinner again!