On Thursday, which is late opening, a friend with a car kindly gave me a lift to the Apple Store in Bromley, since I didn't fancy getting a bus back through Catford with a grand's worth of tech in my lap. Having a young child at home, he was thrilled to be out after work enjoying such simple pleasures as a thank-you coffee at the Krispy Kreme and a browse of the Wii section in Game.
Then we did the main purchase of the evening, and I got an 8% discount because my friend works in banking, which was £65 off. Not a bad return for my investment of a latte, a doughnut and a car park ticket, although he was horrified at this evidence of rewards for fatcats.
I'm calling it an early birthday gift to myself, which makes it twenty years since my parents presented me with a Performa for my sixteenth and sent me down the Apple path.
Multiple Apple Store dudes had assured me that I could transfer all my documents, settings and programmes to the new beast using Migration Assistant. Are you sure? I said. I'm running Tiger on a PowerPC iMac, I said. It'll be fine, they all said.
It bloody wasn't, of course. Turns out you can migrate from Tiger to Lion, or from Leopard to Mountain Lion, but not from Tiger to Mountain Lion. THANKS APPLE. Long and tedious story short: I transferred everything through local filesharing, and with a little help from various Mac forums have now managed to get all my mailboxes, contacts, Keychain and those few applications which will still work on an Intel Mac into the right boxes. So that was my weekend (along with, ahem, nearly 12 hours of Professor Layton and the Curious Village, which is what I bought in Game on Thursday).
With all my data safe, I can relax and enjoy the shiny. And shiny it is: fast, quiet, with a beautiful display 4½ inches wider than my old one. Web pages work properly. I can scroll by swiping the mouse as if it was a touchpad. Little messages pop up to tell me I've been mentioned on Twitter. These are the days of miracle and wonder!
I have named it Romy, after the mountain-lion-like character in Around the World with Willy Fog. If I get nearly nine years out of this one too, I will be very pleased.