Monday, June 21, 2010

trip report

So let's see...went to NANOG with Will last week. It's the North American Network Operators' Group, so lots of geeks hanging out, days of talks and meetings, and nights of having fun and enjoying like company. There was an interesting talk about beaming wireless internet to the Farallon Islands [directed antennas in San Francisco sending the intertubes out to the folks on the island], some good stuff about IPv6 [heads up folks, it's coming up fast], a bunch of stuff that was outside my area but interesting to sit in on, and lots of awesome people.

The people were the best part...not just hanging out with techy types again, but getting to hang out with the people that are important to Will: Ren and Joe, Susan and Cathy, Todd, Tony, Jon, the other Jon, Nate, Dave, Colin, Mike, the other Mike, Martin, Joel, Stacy and Aaron, the other Aaron, Sylvie, Ed, Monica, Nina, Cat, Terry, and other names that are slipping my mind right now but are no less cool and awesome.

Joined the netgrrls dinner one night, good conversation and a surprising sense of community and shared experiences. Party at Ruby Skye another night, with open bar and Love Fool rocking the 80s and 90s hits. Fun sci-fi theme at the Clift Hotel another night, with a Star Wars photo op, classic SF movies playing, and [need I say it] an open bar. Lunches with Jon and Nate, another with a whole gang of geeks at the Burger Barn. Finding out that Colin not only knew what FTP Software was and what we did, it turns out he actually worked for our largest reseller, Cohesive [and we even remember some of the same folks...such a small valley]. All in all, a good time [and even better, I got asked to come to the next gathering].

Wednesday night was a BBQ at the Hugheseses, just Stacy, Aaron, John, Barbara, Will, and me, having a relaxing night, good talks, strong drinks, excellent food [rotisserie chicken, om nom]. Then Saturday evening was a return trip for Aaron's birthday, with grilled beef for fajitas, excellent aioli for the artichokes, very tasty brie and foie gras appetizers. A good crowd, more good conversation, lots of sharing geek toys and tricks. The weather was perfect, and we all went for a walk along with beach [lucky Stacy and Aaron live within walking distance...jealous]. Good times.

Before making the trek down to the Hugheses, we spent the early afternoon at Hiller Aviation Museum for the Vertical Challenge...helicopters, acrobatic stunt kite demonstrations, skydivers, flybys by a C5 transport plane [that thing is HUGE], Harriers flying overhead [amazing how something that can break the sound barrier can also stop dead, hover, and reverse] and a jaw-dropping demonstration of PG&E high-tension power line repair [two guys dangle in a chair hanging on a cable from a chopper, which maneuvers to the damaged line and hovers as still as possible while the guys below work on the line...crazy awesome work, never knew they did it that way].

That Saturday was one of the better days I've had in a while: we rambled about in the morning, woke up when the dogs told us they needed to go out, then crawled back into bed and snoozed again...took our time, went out and about, got Starbucks, went to Hiller, had a nice walk to/from the airport, then headed south for the birthday festivities. A busy day, but one that just flowed, one thing into another, no muss, no fuss, no agenda, just go and do and be.

So there's my summary of the past week. Lots that I didn't put down in bits and pixels; not for lack of interest, but rather for a bit more brevity. With luck, there's a bit of down time coming up before things get busy again...we've got concerts, conferences, air shows, Vegas, and ground school on the calendar just in the next few months, so it's going to be interesting juggling it all. But I'm not complaining...

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