Sometimes, in life (and, in fact, in woodwork as well), a little improvisation can go a long way to getting you out of an awkward situation.

Before I moved in to my new place, with most of my stuff either in the new place or in the van, ready to go the next morning, I wanted to check my e-mails and do a bit of surfing to keep up with the goings on in the world of the internet. My problem was that, while I had access to my laptop (and an internet connection, through Wi-Fi), I didn’t have a desk or table to work on. But, what I did have were two bedside drawer units (again, in horrible hidden chipboard, made to look like sapele – a poor man’s mahogany – as well!) and so, I was able to do this:

Not only did the stacked height make for a comfortable working position while standing (I never would’ve been able to get my legs in close enough, had I tried to sit down at one of these) but, by removing the top drawer and reinserting it upside-down, I had a convenient surface on which I could use my mouse, too! All that’s missing is the obligatory cup of tea… 😉

Don’t worry, though. In my new home, I don’t have to fret around with ‘daft’ ideas like this as I’ve got a full-size desk to work on, which had been in storage for the previous seven-years (again, I’d have to mention the C-word, here…). My problem now though, is that, equipped with a mobile broadband dongle in a very rural area, I sometimes find it difficult to maintain a signal, even when I can connect to a strong one. There were a few items that had been left in-storage and unused since 2004 and, it just so happens that another one of those was able to help me out on this occasion:

Now, I have a ‘mast‘ for my dongle which can be adjusted in height (the lighting’s pretty good in the new place so, I shouldn’t need this additional appliance any time soon). I’ve been using this setup for the past forty-eight hours now and I’ve been able to connect every time. I haven’t yet lost a connection either, thanks to the fact that the dongle is now positioned ahead of the fridge/freezer and out towards the window. Actually, that’s one of the very good points about the Huawei E367 dongle – the connector that locates in to the USB port is on a hinge, meaning that you can adjust the direction in which the dongle is pointing.

Hopefully, that’s enough nonsense for now and I’ll soon be able to get back to talking about real woodworking – timber, tools and, of course, my workshop! 🙂

Just don’t buy a flashy optical mouse if you’re on the go with your laptop… Those LEDs may look nice but, I’m sure they’re consuming most of my battery power… There’s no ‘Back’ button on this £5 model, either.

Thanks for reading. Enjoy the rest of your Bank Holiday weekend.

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