2015.04.16 – Catching Up

We all got up and went to get some breakfast. The hotel provides it as part of the stay so that was really nice and convenient. Josh showed up shortly after we were done and we were once again on our way home. The trip was uneventful thank goodness! It was nice to be at their house with the kids. I hadn’t seen Felix and Kayden for nearly two years and they were so much bigger! Josh and Michael also have their 5 month old foster baby back who they brought home from the hospital when she was just 4 days old. They are hoping to adopt her but she has gone back to her mom twice already. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for them all!

Today I learned that Andrew is not feeling well 🙁

2015.04.15 – Trip Interrupted

Today we headed south to Albany where our friend Michael would pick us up from the train station. The train ride was totally uneventful and really pleasant except for one pretty unacceptable issue. Seems Amtrak no longer has any sort of feminine products on their trains even for purchase. Granted I should have been better prepared but I wasn’t and we were at least 6 hours from our destination. By sheer luck the cafe car attendant was a woman and she happened to have something. I gave her $5 and thanked her SO much. Amtrak you have to do better than that!

Anyway, that aside we made it to Albany with not any other trouble. We even brought our own food this time so lunch was really good. I made smoked tofu, sprout and tomato sandwiches with this yummy tarragon mustard I found. The scenery was beautiful.

We arrived on time and were happy to see Michael and Felix waiting for us! We loaded up our stuff and got on our way but before we made it very far we got in an accident! The other car took off so that was extra fun. The car was a bit banged up and had a flat front tire but it looked like that was the only issue. Andrew and Michael put on the spare tire and we limped our way to the closest place to get a new tire which was unfortunately Wal-mart. They put on two new tires in the front and we wandered around the store while we waited. I do not miss shopping in that place.

Once the car was ready we attempted to hit the road again but something was definitely not right with the car so we pulled into the parking lot of a Holiday Inn Express and I called AAA. I am so thankful I have their service! Things took a while but a tow truck finally showed up and got it loaded to tow all the way back to Springfield where they bought it. We, on the other hand were stuck. We couldn’t get a rental car that late so we grabbed some dinner at a sports bar that was in the same parking lot and then went to the hotel for a room. They were sold out! The front desk person was great though and called us a cab who then took us to a Comfort Inn. We got a room and went straight to bed. Felix who is three was just amazing through all of this mess. Josh would come and get us in the morning.

Today I learned that a bent tie rod is bad.

2015.04.12 – Pycon Day Three

Yep, slept too long again. I’m just doing a terrible job of getting moving in the morning. We missed every keynote of this conference but at least all talks are recorded and are already appearing on Youtube. These Pycon people really know what they are doing. The conference has been spectacular again.

Anyway, I did get up and dressed in time for the job fair. We went in and I had no idea what to do. I suck at this! But Andrew said to just go up to booths where I’m not interested in working and talk to people to get over the nervousness. I did that and of course was blown away by the company and what they do. It would be working with scientists who do genetic research! Gah, that would be amazing! But they are in San Francisco and they don’t do remote. Dangit. I wandered around to a few more booths and then saw Michael, a Mozilla employee I chatted with often at the office. It was really nice to see him so we stood and talked for a long time! Jonathan from Dreamhost walked by and confirmed our lunch. I was still sure he’d find a way to cancel because I suck at self confidence.

Turns out he was waiting for me! Woo hoo! Andrew came with us and we went to a nearby noodle house we had eaten at last time we were here. We even got seated at the same table. We had a really great talk, he was very nice, had a very interesting back story, was interested in mine. All in all it felt great and felt like a better meeting than it would have been over the phone. I’m trying not to get my hopes up too much but maybe it all worked out for the best. I would love to work there.

We headed back to the conference for more talks, one about serialization which was really interesting and one about something really boring. After those it was time for Guido to give a final talk, then someone gave the final keynote and another person gave final statements and thanked the many, many, many volunteers who made the amazing conference possible. They also announced where Pycon would be in 2016 and 2017. It’s in Portland which wasn’t a secret but they played a really nice promotional commercial. The only thing missing from it was the Unipiper. I was kind of surprised about that. Next the people running sprints came up and talked about their projects. So many sound so interesting. We are staying so I can participate in a couple of days of sprints but now I have no idea what I want to work on!

We were going to grab Carl and go to dinner with Michael and some others but they were going to a steakhouse so we hopped on a bus and went to some interesting vegan raw food place. It was my first experience with raw food. I had always avoided it because it seemed really boring. Our food was pretty good though. Even Carl, who is most definitely not vegan, enjoyed it. Dinner was long and leisurely and then we ordered dessert. They do a fantastic job of raw dessert. We walked back to the bus stop and waited for a while while talking about this and that. A bus showed up but it was not the same one we took to get there so I asked the driver if he was going downtown. He waved me on and said, “It’s free. Come on.” so we all boarded. His machine was broken apparently but we had no idea if it would really take us where we were going. Whatever, it was a beautiful night so we would figure it out. We did make it downtown though and the driver was nice enough to tell us where to exit. We walked Carl back to his room and then headed back to ours. I sent Jonathan an email thanking him for making some time to go to lunch in the midst of conference chaos and then it was time for bed.

This has been a wonderful conference again! I got to see Sumana, Asheesh, Honza, Elana, Shauna, and Carl. I got to see friends from Portland. I met tons of new people, some in unexpected places and had a great time.

Today I learned that Montreal seems to have a LOT more hippies than Portland. It’s a wonderful, diverse, beautiful city. I hope we can come back just because.

2015.04.11 – Pycon Day Two

Once again I couldn’t get out of bed. Made it across the street in time for the talks to begin though. Listened to some great talks about diversity and getting started as a new contributor. I then went on my own to a test driven development talk that was pretty boring for me unfortunately. It was lunchtime so I met up with Andrew and Amanda and we headed to the Open Hatch booth. We talked with a group of really nice women, one who is a vegan. We started talking about the lack of vegan dessert and I remembered a friend had suggested a vegan bakery to try. I looked it up and it was a fairly decent walk away but Andrew and I decided to go for it anyway. It seemed pretty nice out but as we were walking it was getting more cloudy, cold and windy. We were already far enough to be kind of invested in the walk though so we kept going. We finally made it to Sophie Sucree and it was totally worth it. We had a great talk with the girl who was working while I had tea and cheesecake. Andrew had carrot cake. We got several cupcakes and a pecan tart to go and by the time we were all done the weather had cleared up and warmed up so we decided to walk back. It was wonderful.

We made it back to the event and dropped off a cupcake to Liz who was ever thankful and then wandered around the booths some more. We were collecting stuff to take to Josh and Michael’s boys Felix and Kayden. We would be seeing them in just a few days and what better to bring them than conference swag. We dropped everything off at our place and then headed back for the last of the talks, techniques for debugging and a talk about avoiding burnout.

Our friend Carl was here and somehow I didn’t know that until the end of the day when Andrew mentioned that Carl had gone back to his hotel. It took me several seconds to process that he was here in Montreal. Well we just had to see him! Luckily he was willing to go out to dinner with us so we walked up to his hotel. We took the underground path that is a lot longer but an interesting labyrinth to traverse. We took this walk many, many times last year since we stayed at the hotel last time.

We got to Carl’s hotel room and visited for a bit before deciding to go get pizza nearby. Once we walked up to the place, I recognized it from last year. It was where we ate our first meal in Montreal and it wasn’t that great. This time it was wonderful! We also had the pleasure of making friends with the older couple sitting next to us. The wife was so outgoing and funny! When she mentioned that she has been to Paris 17 times and knows it like the back of her hand I said I wanted to go with her. She immediately gave me her contact info! She also seemed to think Andrew was a minor and also my son. Wow, that just never gets old…..unlike me! She said if I didn’t like the woman he decided to date that I needed to “flick her away like a bad burrito” as she made a flicking motion. The three of us had several good laughs about the whole thing but man I feel old. Shaking my fist at Andrew’s youthful looks is doing nothing to age that baby face of his though. We had a nice walk back to Carl’s room and visited for a while before heading back so we could go to bed.

Today I learned that Eddie Money sang a song called Gimme Some Water. I thought I knew all of his songs!

2015.04.10 – Pycon Day One

I was too tired to get up and make it to the opening statement and keynote talks. Andrew let me sleep while he got up, made coffee, tea, showered and got dressed. We made it across the street to the conference at around 10:00 and wandered around the expo hall. We talked to a few people, ran into some old friends and scoped out the different booths. I spotted a Dreamhost booth which surprised me a lot. They are a Perl shop and this was all about Python. Andrew and I wandered over to chat with them and I talked with a really nice guy for a bit and then glanced over at the other person, looked at their nametag and noticed it said Jonathan. Huh. I was supposed to speak with a Jonathan on Monday but the call had to be rescheduled. Could this be the same person? He saw me and I saw him and then we both realized who the other person was. I didn’t know he would be there and he didn’t know I would be there either. So weird. Anyway, he said we should have lunch on Sunday and I said that would be great but I was definitely not expecting he would follow through. I figured it was just awkward for him and he was being nice.

It was time for the talks to start so I went to the first one and ran into Amanda. We stayed in the same room for the next talk as well. Andrew went to a couple of security talks and then sat with us for the last talk before lunch. The talks were all pretty good. I enjoyed the talk about PEP 8. The three of us went and stood in a really long lunch line and then ended up missing the next talk. Andrew and I headed to the Advanced Git talk. I was very curious about what constituted advanced. I ended up knowing and regularly using everything he talked about except for bisecting. I thought, “If that’s advanced Git then I’m a freakin’ genius!”

After that we watched David Beazley LIVE code for his talk. It was so impressive and very funny. He’s a great speaker. We had the pleasure of listening to his talk last year about being locked in a vault with a computer. It’s also a fantastic talk.

After all of the talks were over we were both pretty tired so we went to the local IGA and got some groceries. We made a yummy dinner in our cute little studio, caught up on some email and went to bed. Great day!

Today I learned that I know more Git than I thought. That or the talk was horribly titled.

2015.04.05 – This and That

Today was full of miscellaneous trips here and there. Andrew went running while Wayne and I took our walk in the neighborhood north of our house. We didn’t really realize that Gay Street kind of jogs east and becomes an alleyway for quite a distance. I think all the way to Rosa Parks at least. I should have known because our friend Mulysa’s house backs up to the alley and I’ve been there several times. I’m not really the most observant person though.

When we got back I wrote out TOO MANY checks for tax payments, visited with Jason for a bit when he came over then took a shower. It was soon time to pick up Dale, Miri and baby Michael from the airport but first we had to drop off Penny Loafer at their house and grab their car since it has the carseat. They landed nearly 30 minutes early! They were just getting their bags when we got there though so it was fine. They brought us back a loaf of San Francisco Sourdough bread. Yum! After we dropped them off Wayne and I stopped at this cool store that reclaims items from the landfill. The find some really sweet stuff. We found an old five panel door for $30!

Once we got back home I needed to take Jayde and Natale shopping for shoes, socks, underwear and such. That took a while because Natale is kind of picky about shoes. The pair he really liked were leather though and NOPE. He eventually found a pair he liked and lots of the stuff was on sale.

I worked more on my code/talk by looking over what I had written down yesterday and I also took some screen shots for slides. When I was done with that I worked on the test for pagination. I had to get a bit of help from Andrew and soon figured out that I was over-thinking the test for sure. I pushed it up and submitted a PR so we’ll see what might need rewriting if anything.

Today I learned about git cherry-pick. VERY handy!

2015.04.04 – Telling a Story

Wayne and I went for a long walk zig-zagging along the streets in our neighborhood while Andrew went for a long run. We have to order windows and were just kind of looking at what other houses had. We didn’t walk very fast with so much looking but we did enjoy seeing the changes people have made since we last looked this closely. It was so much fun that we decided we’ll do it again tomorrow in a different part of the neighborhood.

When we got back I pestered Andrew into sitting down with me so that I could walk through all of my code to make sure I really understand what everything is doing. I call it “Telling a story” and it helps me SO much because he can correct me immediately if I am mistaken about how something works. I hit a lot of bumps in the road while telling this story but I definitely feel like I see what I did as a whole instead of a piece here and a piece there. Whew!

I took a break in the afternoon and made a vegan lemon meringue pie. It was much easier the second time. After dinner, Wayne and Andrew went over to Alice and Jason’s house to watch a movie but I wanted to keep working on my talk. I’m waaaaaay too tired though so early bedtime for me.

Today I learned there was a lunar eclipse. I’m so outta the loop these days.

2015.03.29 – Bye Bye Tree

Wayne, Andrew and I met our friends Roberto and Frankie for breakfast at the A.N.D Cafe. I’ve eaten there a few times and it’s really good. I was worried about having to wait a long time though because it’s Sunday, we are a group of five which is just one person too many to make it easy to seat us, and Portlanders LOVE Sunday breakfast/brunch. Luckily we got there at a great time and didn’t have to wait long at all. Our food was amazing as always and kept me full until dinner. Yikes, I don’t even want to think about how many calories I must have consumed.

After breakfast Alice and I went to two different Goodwill stores. We were gone pretty much all afternoon. When I got home I heard some noise in the back yard. I looked out the window and was quite surprised to see that our neighbor had pretty much cut down the entire huge tree that was falling over and pushing down our fence! I went out and helped him push the last giant branch over from our yard to his. It looks so weird with it gone but it was definitely a danger.

Before dinner I had a really long conversation with Natale about the experience of being a teenager, puberty, mood-swings, and so on. I definitely remember being 15-16 and it wasn’t that great so I really feel for him.

Today I learned that people are still looking at our cat video!

2015.03.28 – OMSI

Jayde, Estelle and spent the morning at OMSI where we met Dave, Alena and the kids. The museum theme right now is “Mazes” so Tiberias and I had all sorts of fun. We got lost for a while in the biggest one but each dead end had a fun musical instrument to play. We had a quick, delicious lunch together but I had to rush home in time to go with Andrew to his Dr appointment.

The appointment went well and his new doctor seems great. He suggested some things Andrew could try to stave off the headaches he sometimes gets and will do some routine blood work in about two weeks.

I spent the rest of my day reading and then watching some Dr. Who with Wayne and Andrew.

Today I learned how to complete one of those highly frustrating rope/disk/hole brain teaser puzzle things at the museum! I was determined.

2015.03.15 – Shopping

Natale wanted to go shopping for some shirts. I’ve always had pretty good luck at the Goodwill stores here in Portland so I figured we could just start there and then go to a clothing store if we struck out. Jayde and Jordan wanted to join us so the four of us went over to the Goodwill on Lombard. It was pretty busy! We all headed our separate ways and searched through the racks of stuff. Jayde hadn’t gone with us before so was a little bit snobby about it and barely event attempted to look at stuff before deciding they didn’t have a single thing she liked. Jordan and Natale on the other hand found all kinds of stuff as did I. Jordan even found a brand new pair of Vans that were ten bucks!

Once Jayde saw that we were all finding stuff she was more agreeable and went with Jordan and Natale to find stuff. She found several shirts she liked and seemed sold on Goodwill. I’m glad because they really do have some nice stuff.

We were all so excited about our good luck at that store that we decided to head over to the bigger store on Broadway. It was much less busy than our local one. Once again we all found a few things we really liked. After we were over clothes shopping we headed to the store to get stuff for dinner. We decided on mac n’ cheese and mixed vegetables. We also grabbed stuff for Monday’s dinner while we were there.

When we finally made it back home I quickly mixed up some sourdough for two loaves of bread. I plan on making lasagne for Dinner Night and I thought some homemade sourdough would be good with that.

After dinner Andrew got a message that his talk submission for YAPC::NA::2015 was accepted! I’m so excited for him! He’s been wanting to give a talk somewhere and one was finally accepted. I guess I need to figure out travel since it’s in Salt Lake City, Utah and we have to be in Ottawa two days after and then come home.

Today I learned that our trip to Pittsburgh overlaps Father’s Day. Seems odd.