Go forward in time to Mar 2001.
Picked up the slides in the morning. Need to organize them, but I need a light table for that.
Read a bunch of session management code to remind myself of how the whole thing is supposed to work. Ended up copying some code from the control center capplets so that my alarm daemon client program can register itself with the session manager. Decided with Miguel that we did not quite need a super-configurable thing, so hardcoded loading of the user's default calendar and tasks folders. Will test tomorrow.
It feels good to write code again instead of being absorbed by meetings.
Huge dinner with the hackers at the Naked Fish. One of the best seafood dinners I have ever had. Crab cakes and a truly delicious peppered tuna. Mmmmmmm.
We need to register ettoreandfedericosealofapproval.com.
Sylvia Plath is incredibly articulate.
Wow, productive day. Now that the zillion meetings are over, I can actually sit down and write code.
Vlad and I went to leave our film for development; went to the Zona photo lab right by the old office. And blah, we got a flat tire. Changing flat tires in the cold is a major pain; fortunately the Jeep is not terribly heavy and it was a quick operation.
Went to see the Doves at the Paradise Club with Diana, Sarah, and later Aaron joined us. Pretty good British band; seems like it would be worth it to get one of their albums. Unfortunately not quite the music that is fit for dancing, and I was in a dancing mood, but we had a good time. After that, Aaron and I were hungry and had no option but to go to Deli Haus. Aaah. I had almost forgotten the gritty goodness of that place.
RTotD: emacs M-q works differently for sentences that end in ":)" smileys than for ":-)" ones.
Woke up past noon. Did not feel very good, blamed the party last night (that did indeed kick butt), but it seemed all I needed was food. Showered, synchronized with Michael, went out as people were arriving at JP's house to play Dungeons and Dragons, took the T, met Michael along with Tuomas and Iain in Park Street to go for lunch in Chinatown. We went to the Chinatown eatery; I had a delicious dish of rice, tofu, and vegetables in ginger sauce. And an apple juice with chunks of lychee. Yummi.
Iain then left for the airport. Tuomas and Michael went back to the office. I went to do some book shopping.
Mark Twain, Sylvia Plath, Ernest Hemingway, Charles Bukowski, John Upton. Bookstores are dangerous.
Headed to the office because I thought I had left my laptop's power adapter there, and my laptop was at JP's house. Did not find it in the office after all. Discussed a design for EOG's icon view widget with Ettore and Jeff; we also talked about the data that needs to be stored for each image in image collections.
Headed back home on the T. Put Bill Evans on the discman, began reading Sylvia Plath's journals, and got all melancholic.
How can feeling sorry for one's own self feel so good sometimes?
Up early; somehow these days my Visor does manage to wake me up. Chris crashed at JP's place last night as well; apparently he is going with JP and Taylor to the casino (Connecticut?) for some hot poker action. Good luck, dear dudes!
The reason for waking up early was to go on a little photo expedition with Vlad, Peter, and Ettore. First, Vlad and I went to the camera store in Harvard Square because I wanted to get a couple of used lenses: 135mm f/2.8, very very nice, and a butt-kicking 28mm f/2 to replace my crappy no-name wide-angle that has a dent on the glass. So I now have the 28mm, 50mm, 135mm, and 200mm, which is a nice span of prime lenses.
Then we went to pick up Peter at his house and finally Ettore, who was taking a shower back in the Barracks. We quickly went to the office for Ettore to pick up his Smartmedia adapter for the laptop, and we grabbed some breakfast.
Vlad drove us to the Hemlock Gorge, part of the Charles River Reservation, where we shot a bunch of pictures. I shot about a roll and a half of slides. Snow, frozen river ice, leafless trees, leaves on the river, bridges, all very pretty. There are a couple of pictures that I would be really happy if they came out well. And a monopod is definitely useful when you are trying to hold your balance in the snow and ice.
It seems there are no photo labs open on weekends around here, so we'll have to wait until Monday to get the pictures developed.
Big party at Rachel's house. Zucchi brought a really good Australian red wine, a delicious Sambuca, and, of course, plenty of Cooper's. Ettore and myself took care of the Kahlúa and the vodka. We did not know the correct proportions to make a White Russian, so they came out, uh, strong. One of Rachel's friends, I don't remember who, made chocolate-covered strawberries and grapes. Sarah asked for a hug. Complied; was told I make a good hugger. *shrug* By the end of the party everyone was pretty much wasted, so people left and JP and I walked back to our place.
I am getting sick of long meetings with lots of important stuff to discuss. They make you really tired.
My wireless network card arrived! Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!
Big dinner with the Evolution hackers at the Boston Beer Works. Then we went to watch Snatch, which totally kicked butt, but unfortunately I was very tired and dozed for little periods. I must watch it again.
Sometimes I wonder if I am overly impatient. Sigh.
On the happier side of life, the other day I did manage to find a digital recording of Albéniz's Iberia and the Suite Española, on the same CD set, with Alicia Delarrocha. It is absolutely amazing, beautiful, inspiring, and it makes me miss my piano so much.
More CD action. Bach's sonatas for viola da gamba and harpsichord are excellent. Bill Evans rules. But I did not quite like Leonard Bernstein's version of Shostakovich's 5th symphony. Too fast and uninspired. It does not sound big as it should. I guess it will never sound quite as big on a CD as the time I listened to it at the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City with my pianist friend Damiana.
More meetings. Little time for hacking. I guess the meetings should tell us just what to hack on, but it is still tiring.
Huge dinner with the hackers at Ginza. We wanted to go to the tapas place, but it was full and it would be a ridiculously long wait.
It started snowing tonight. Light, beautiful snow. It was nice and quiet and peaceful.
I hope it does not turn into too much sludge.
The CD that Vlad burned for me refused to be mounted. Sigh.
Big party at Jillian's with all the hackers. Played pool, ping-pong, and videogames, had beer and stuff. Had a fun time.
Afterwards we went to Vlad's house to scan some of my slides into huge images. He kindly burned me a CD with the pictures.
Woke up surprisingly early, at around 7:20. Decided it would be good to actually make use of that time, so showered and went to Harvard Square. Had a coffee and a croissant, bought a mug and some good Darjeeling tea for the office. Tried to do some early CD shopping at the HMV, but they open until 10:00...
Instead of taking the T all the way to the office from JP's house in Davis Square, I went to Central Square and took a bus instead. A twelve-minute bus ride; it actually seems faster than going all around Boston in the T. It is 75 cents more expensive, though. Read the score for Albéniz's Asturias during the ride. I want to start practicing that.
RTotD: Shostakovich's string quartet #8 quotes the cello concerto. Interesting.
Big, productive meeting with the calendar team and Ettore. Now we have a bunch of fine-grained, well-specified stuff in Bugzilla, and for once we all seem to be organized. Wheeee!
Setting the laptop's desktop background to white and tilting the screen all the way back to be horizontal makes for a reasonably bad light table. But that way I can see my slides, many at once.
Friday, conference was over. Saturday, loooong flight back, made a bit less drudgy by a nice Danish girl who was visiting Mexico City, so we chatted for a long while and I drew a couple of maps of the interesting parts of the city for her. Sunday, flew to Boston; was not amused by losing two consecutive days in airplanes. It is good to be with the monkeys again!
Network problems all day long. We are in the new office, it is big and nice, but the network is not completely happy yet. Deja-vu from the time we moved to the new building at Red Hat about a year ago.
It is so good to see the monkeys again. I think I will try to stay for one extra week, but I'll have to ask the future landlord in Mexico to give me a chance to arrange the paperwork later.
Dinner with mostly everyone, at the BBQ Wolf or however it is called. Played pool afterwards, had beer, had fun.
Finally got a decent shaving machine, a Mach III. Wow, it actually seems to be pretty good. Way better than the dingy thing they gave me in the hotel's front desk. Managed not to cut myself for once.
Sleeping schedule is still fubared. Cannot manage to wake up before noon. Sigh.
Historical evening in the Royal Armoury. We got a nice tour through it, and saw some pretty ridiculous, overdecorated, royal stuff that was very photogenic except for the low light which made it a pain to shoot.
Plenty of drinking afterwards. Aquavit is good stuff.
Finally found Jes, Andrew, Rasmus, and others at the conference. We went for dinner. Somehow we ended in the "London Bar" or something, and the food was pricey but not too great. The beer was good, though. Everyone was tired afterwards and we all headed back to our respective hotels.
Something is wrong with the shower in my room. Hot water just stopped. It did the same thing yesterday, so I'll have to go and complain.
Bah, no time for hacking today. Spent a good amount of time doing my presentation. Magicpoint is such a pain in the butt.
Wheeee, managed to get up at 11:00.
Visited the Gamla Stan, the old part of the city. Took a bunch of pictures.
Made a big mistake in the afternoon: took a 1-hour nap. So my body is *really* confused now about what my sleeping schedule ought to be.
Stockholm visiting action. Jet lag sucking action. Wow, iced sidewalks are slippery action.
Found a good camera store that carried the Manfrotto quick-release heads for my monopod. Now both the F2 and the Coolpix have quick-releases. Wheeee!
Finished reading Estas ruinas que ves. One of the best little books I have read, and it is extremely funny, too.
I have not bothered to change the timezone on my machine, so it thinks it is 9:42 when in fact it is 16:31. Oh, yes, the clock is a bit fast, too.
Nerded for a few hours in the terminal room of the conference center, which was finally open. "A few hours" means that it had turned dark outside in the meantime. Still, was able to flush my mail queue, get a lot of new mail, blah blah.
I finally found Martin Wahlén and some friends of his, and we went out for dinner. Had a nice and spicy red curry. Then we wanted beer. We went to a pretty standard bar, and then on to a rather cozy jazz club, the Fasching. The drummer was kicking ass, but the pianist took a long time to warm up. We had a good time.
No conference call in the morning. Wrote the weekly status report mail but it is still on my laptop as I was not able to flush my mail queue fefore I left for Stockholm.
Went to give money to the landlord to make sure that nobody will sign a contract for the apartment I want while I am away. Felt nervous and reassured at the same time.
Last-minute preparations for the trip. Picked up the slides that I took downtown with Ricardo, marvelled at the ISO 50 film that should probably be rated at 40 because they came out consistently dark but nice. Went to Luis's office to give him some books and he offered to give me a ride ot the airport; very nice of him. We went back to my house, I put in the last random things in my suitcase, and for some reason I thought I for once had not forgotten anything. We drove out, eventually got to the airport after a lot of traffic. Luis just parked by the entrance; said good-bye. There were surprisingly very few people in line at the KLM counter. Checked luggage, went upstairs to one of the airport's food courts and had a good but expensive falafel.
The travel log is here.
Went shopping for shoes so that I can take them to snowy Stockholm and Boston. Found a pair of kick-ass boots and some very nice dressy shoes as well.
My previous pair of boots was new when I first took it to Boston; the snow/salt/sucky weather ate through half the sole. Let's see how long these new ones last.
As a miracle, found a kick-ass apartment in the neighborhood of Coyoacán. It is only six blocks from the park and all the interesting stuff! Will go tomorrow to check it out in detail and ask for information. I would be oh so happy to move there in the very near future.
This is very scary shit.
Ettore installed Debian on his box. Evidently the lack of real Italian food is messing with his brain. Poor Ettore. I hope he regains composure.
More Albéniz and Bartók practice. I'm not doing too bad these days, which makes me happy.
The middle F key on my piano seems to be dodgy. Sometimes it sticks a bit, especially when using the sustain pedal. Sigh.
And yes, Granada uses that key quite a bit, and it is annoying not to be able to play a ppp because the stupid key is stuck.
So I am not convinced that the garage did a good job in adjusting my car's clutch. It is as bouncy as it was before. I told them to replace it if it looked bad, but they always say it doesn't look bad and just needs adjusting. Why do I know it is bad? Because the other (identical, newer) car has a different, newer clutch model and it is always smooth and nice. So on Monday I may need to go and perform some butt-kicking action.
Lots of frustration discussing focus bugs, deadlines, freeze dates, and other nasties. *Lots* of frustration.
So I banged on the piano for a while, loudly at first, then in a more relaxed fasion. Aaaah. Stress levels back to normal.
More sin at the CD store, John Coltrane and Compay Segundo. It is good to have a discount card.
Maybe not so stupid after all, sigh.
Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. STUPID!
Go backward in time to Jan 2001.Federico Mena-Quintero <firstname.lastname@example.org> Mon 2001/Jun/18 17:41:36 CDT