Another churchyard railing with another waterfall of blooms – this time delving back in history to the early years of this century and the magnificent Wisteria at St Giles Church. This church was a regular sight to me as it was on the route between my old flat and the city centre. Now, however, I rarely go to that part of town and I must content myself with lovely river views on my treks into the city.

Last week I ambled off the true path of the Filofax and tried out a bound diary, with a different weekly layout to boot. With all seven days of the week on the left-hand page and a simple lined page on the right-hand side, I had visions of listing my timed appointments plus my “habits” on the diary page and using the lined sheet for a quote, tasks and notes. I feel that in my usual layout I tend to write tasks down on the day when I think of them, even if they are better suited to a different day. I’ve been considering this revised layout for a fair while and, as portability is about to become more of a consideration than it’s been for eighteen months, this seemed like a good moment to make the move.

I had started to fill details in over the preceding couple of weeks then began the experiment for real last Monday. I moved back into my A5 Filofax on Sunday.

So, why didn’t this work? I think it’s all down to the way my brain (or my training?) likes to group things together by date. I like to see the things that happen – or that I intended to happen – on a particular day in one block and splitting out the timed appointments didn’t gel with me. That makes a lot of sense when I consider the reason I ultimately abandoned technological diaries was because of the hoops I had to jump through if I wanted to show my tasks, notes and appointments grouped together on one date.

I did like the portability of the bound diary, and there were a few lined notes pages at the back of the book which would have made toting a separate notebook less pressing. I still don’t entirely believe the Filofax is the perfect system, but I haven’t found anything which comes closer. I will admit experimentation is set to continue, but for now it will be confined to rings.

Having very quickly determined that the Week to Page Plus Notes layout didn’t work, I set about finding a use for the diary in a spirit of waste not, want not. It occurred to me that this would be the ideal format for a pen and ink journal. I could note which pens I filled and emptied on the diary pages and then list my currently inked pens each week on the facing page. The note pages at the rear of the diary would be great for longer passages to try out new pens, or inks, or fresh combinations of my existing scriberly toys. This now sits happily with my current journal and horoscope book inside my Cold War Map Case, the purpose of which has settled on being my journal case.

And thus peace has returned to my planning landscape and will doubtless reign for days and days before I get the urge to once again go off the rails.