Sunday, 2 October 2011

What a long month!

Little did I realise how eventful September would become...

When the month started, it was more a case of the lads bouncing back from the Bank Holiday defeat at Nantwich, and what a good start was made to that, but who would have envisaged that for the rest of the month Chester FC would go on to score 23 goals without reply, with 7 wins on the bounce, one of those a very very satisfying win over Chorley at the Exacta.

The whole month for me though was destined to become linked to working on the launch of the new website, although I don't think even I realised how much time it would require!

London looked good in the blue sky!
In mid September myself & Chris Pilsbury visited Perform, the group who supply all the help and expertise of running the websites across the league, those Football League websites that you see. Before we got there though we took a breather and had a look at the London eye before getting the train on to our final destination!

Seeing their premises was impressive, and seeing how they pull things together was even more eye-opening. We were given a tour of the buildings, and shown how they receive streams of live sport from across the world, and how they then transfer that in to websites around the world.

During that visit, we learned a lot, and also found out that the anticipated go-live date would be just 10 days after our visit - that frightened the shit out of me if I'm being perfectly honest!

So, the task would be to bring together content for the whole site, which at this starting point was a shell, so much work would be needed to get it to where it needed to be.

The next 10 days and nights then would be full of work at home for me, so everything else had to be forgotten about for the time being, sadly that included the Hyde away game, and the match at Stafford too, as I would simply have run out of time.

Unfortunately this also meant pretty much being in my own world for 10 days & nights too, so ended up probably becoming a stranger to my own wife, so now it's live there is plenty of making up to be done!

Yes please!
Last weekend was quite stressful in the way that I knew everything had to be bang on, but some things weren't working or appearing as I'd expected it too on the test site, whilst there were other items that would be part of the package that I hadn't even got around to looking at just yet. By 10pm I'd had enough of staring at the screen though, so power off and time for sleep!

So, the Monday morning, as ever, up at 5.30am and opened up the PC prior to going to work, and doing some last minute tests - everything was ready at my end, now it would be over to Perform to test and hopefully launch on the Monday.

There were a few issues which still needing ironing out as there were a few references to Chester City FC which we obviously needed to remedy, and with the testing of the website, it appeared that it would take longer for the launch to happen, and on Monday afternoon it was decided that the site would be launched on the Tuesday, as some testing still had to be done on the Tuesday morning.

It was almost a case of what else could I do on the Monday night, so I had a quick read of CoveritLive, the live text commentary, but my head was so panned from the weekend where I'd sat on the couch with the laptop on for 12 hours each day, that I just called it quits and chilled out!

So, to Tuesday morning, and here we go again, waiting for the nod, which finally came in the afternoon, as it took a few hours for everything to be put in to production, and finally at around 6pm the website went live, so the next few hours were spent dealing with any issues that had arisen on the site, or things that weren't showing correctly.

I think I fell flat asleep on the Tuesday night, but pleased it was finally launched, and just in time too before the big Chorley game on the Wednesday.

So, Wednesday night it was back to the Exacta and I think everyone was feeling up for it during the day, and couldn't wait for the action to start - there was plenty to do pre match too, with plenty of press coming along, plus the setting up of the half time penalty shoot out which involved some running round to organise, but we got there!

The match itself was a great occasion, the first half was edgy, but as soon as Brownie let rip with that thunderbolt of a shot, there was only one winner, and when Matty McNeil headed in for number 2, I nearly gave myself a broken neck when I went running down the steps to celebrate, thankfully the wall in front halted the charge forward!

Well beaten!
That third goal was a peach too, with Wes curling it home from 25 yards, and that was that - I was in the tunnel when the players were coming in, and just gave Mr Flitcroft a wink, with one word, "Unlucky" - and then back out to help sort out the exit of the Chorley media, and back to quickly get a drink in what was a hot bar!

What a night, and a great way to see out September!

Plenty more to come in October, and let's hope that our great run continues, and that we get Chorley back off the top of the table!


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