Is all but over. Weatherwise we have had a couple of cold weeks where you had frost and frozen pipes. But is has warmed up this week and some of the almonds have bloomed. It been a mixture of sunshine together with cloud cover and light rain.
The little LE300 wind turbine has been helping keep the lights on during periods of poor insolation. I have been pruning my own trees around the property. I have been taking my time with this. Itâs going well and I am not going anywhere. I had my first avocado thus year. Of the Hass’ variety.
I have been experimenting with making cookies. The almond and lemon ones turned out decent. There werenât many olives to be had last year but I managed to pick a few for pickling from the Belgian neighboursâ trees.
I currently have 5 dogs in the house. True four are still only puppies but they are driving me insane. ð I really hope I can find good owners for them and soon.
Text to Speech
Cold January days so more time for reading, Due to my particular situation I canât read books. As you can see I can read and write quite well well on the computer using standard âAccessibilityâ tools and by improvising using different font/illumination settings.
I recently discovered Google Play books on my Android smartphone. It can use the Google text to speech engine which surprising works offline and works rather well. I âreadâ âThe War on Horrorâ which I found to be quite a good read. This is a free ebook. Brits would feel equally at home with the various themes explicitly presented or alluded to in this book. It brought back to the fore of my mind how we usually manage to achieve just mediocrity when aiming for excellence. If we started out aiming for just mediocrity the results are guaranteed to be dire.
I discovered an excellent ebook reader on the Android Download store, Google Play. The name of the application is Evie. It is a really good ebook reader! It has style and elegance and superb functionality. I am not sure who the creators/developers are but well done to them!
Evie can use various text-to-speech engines including Googleâs text-to-speech engine which surprisingly works offline. The voice of Brian (British english) is rather good. I use it to read .pdf books from my former degree courses, and technical manuals amongst other ebooks. You can change the engine. Amazon has gone the 100% cloud way. Their text-to-speech engine, Amazon Poly works only when you are connected to the internet. There are other text-to-speech engines that work offline. You can download and use these with Evie. Most of these require to be purchased but many offer a try-before-you-buy option.