Saturday, 28 December 2019


Well it’s almost the end of the  year and that means a new diary.

So, why in 2020 do I still use a diary?

It’s not as if I’m technophobic, I was an early and enthusiastic adopter of the Palm pilot, so much so that around about 2000 I simply stopped using my diary as an appointment book, and then there was a gap of around seven or eight years when I simply didn’t use a diary.

And then I started using them again, simply because I started travelling for work and using a diary as a planning tool gave me visibility of what I was doing and where I would be. It also had the advantage that you could stick postit notes in it on appropriate pages with names of hotels, airport shuttle booking numbers and the rest to save wading through a loosleaf folder full of booking dockets.

I use to favour the Leuchturm planner diaries with a week on the left and a notes page on the right, and what I would do is write down a two or three line summary of any important meeting such as a meeting, and system upgrade or a system failure of some sort.

I was even geeky enough to use different coloured inks for notes relating to different projects.

And then what I would do is, at the end of the week, scan the diary and notes page - the Leuchturm books opened flat to A4 - for that week and save it in Evernote, which made compiling project progress reports and activity reports a hell of a lot easier and less of a work of fiction that they might otherwise have been.

After I retired I carried on with my Leuchturm planners for a couple of years, but this year, 2019 I used a more normal week to a page diary with any notes simply attached to a postit note.

That seemed to work reasonably well - I certainly don’t need the notes page anymore, but I found the individual day boxes a bit small and restricting, so next year (2020) I’m going to try a day-to-a-page diary which, while it’s still the A5 format is quite a bit bulkier than anything I’ve used in the last 20 years.

It’s not an expensive imported one - no Moleskines or Leuchturms this year, but one I bought in a discount store in Queensland last August for ten dollars or thereabouts.

The reason for buying one so early is that we’re planning a reasonably complicated overseas trip in 2020 and already by August we had payments for flights, deposits, and due dates for payment, and even by August this was overflowing into 2020, and I needed a diary for planning purposes.

It’s strangely difficult to buy a decent diary for the following year in August - the calendar year diaries are not yet in stock and the unsold financial year diaries (July to June) are being sold off.

We’ll see how it goes - you never know it might wean me off my taste for expensive import designer diaries ...

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