Preparation is just fooling yourself into thinking you know what to expect.
Preparation is just fooling yourself into thinking you know what to expect.
Day 0: The Flight, Pre-Registration, and Long Walks
I was up at the usual time and ready and waiting for the Aeroport Limo service to arrive at 9:00 AM … the flight was at 11:45 and I wanted to ensure I would be at the airport in plenty of time. Aside from some minor turbulence, the flight itself was rather uneventful … and the California Roll Sushi for lunch in flight on Air Canada 755 was actually pretty good, too.
I rolled into the hotel right at check-in, the flight was early so this was a timely good fortune.
I got settled in, unpacked, and called my wife on FaceTime. We chatted for a little while then I headed off to the Automattic Head Quarters for pre-registrations and volunteer orientation. I was scheduled as a “Casual Runner”.
On my way into Automattic, I ran into Kim … a down-to-earth lady and very much the same person offline as on; something I noticed with almost every person I met that I had previously only known via social networking and/or various interactions on forums, mailing lists and IRC chats.
Afterwards, I walked back to the hotel and then wandered up 8th Street to the Harvest Urban Market to pick up some fresh fruit (and, as it happens, my favorite beer Stella Artois).
Saturday, first thing came early … I needed to be at the Mission Bay Conference Center by 7:00 AM. I set my alarm for 5:30 AM. Got myself organized and headed out the hotel door just after 6:30 AM. Although still before dawn, it was a beautiful walk down 7th Street with a jog over to Owen and finishing up at “Mission Bay” right at 7:00 AM.
Once I got myself organized and sorted out Andy (the volunteer organizer) asked me to help Nick with getting the Swag Store set up. With the help of Nowell, Jenny, Courtney, Marko and a few others we managed to get everything taken care of and ready to role well before the 9:00 AM “opening” time. To finish up everything, I made the first purchase at the Swag Store to ensure the “connections” were all working correctly.
During the rest of my volunteer shift I met Aaron, Andrea R, and Andrea M as well as many more. The Lipinski brothers from CyberChimps, Guillermo Rauch (who presented Socket.IO) and I had an interesting discussion related to theme review guidelines as well.
To end my shift, I helped Michael with the vegan/vegetarian/gluton-free special dietary table prior to lunch being served.
This left me with the afternoon free which I more or less spent in the upstairs presentation room. Mark Jaquith‘s talk on using Backbone.js was quite notable and left me with some ideas to consider for future projects, too.
I have met many people over the last few days and look forward to the next few days working closely with some and meeting even more … if we met and I did not happen to make note of you specifically, please feel free to remind me in the comments below.
PS: For anyone counting, I only collected seven T-shirts during this WordCamp. There were more available but I had to keep in mind the limited space I have for packing things to return home with.
I used to look at semi-acoustics when I was window shopping for a new guitar. The idea of something that sounds good unplugged but also could be plugged in and have a bit more to it always appealed to me.
The only real problem I saw with the whole idea of a semi-acoustic was it was still basically an acoustic guitar (which I own and really appreciate) that someone for all intent and purpose stuffed a microphone inside of and wired it up to a standard phono jack that plugs into an amp. The more I thought about this the more the idea just didn’t seem to fit with what I was looking for.
So, I started looking at semi-hollow and hollow body electric guitars. Now we’re getting places …
… after some hands-on trials and a lot of online research I narrowed down the possibilities to a few different models that might work:
Obviously there were some budget considerations as well as actually finding the guitar in a “local” shop so I could put it to the final, “How does it feel?” test. Fortunately I found a nice music store relatively close to home. If you’re in Oakville and want to browse a large selection of guitars (they had at least three of the models above) as well as other musical instruments and accessories, give Gear Music a look.
Gear Music are a friendly lot and were very welcoming and quick to let me pull down the model I was there to look at … it appeared to be near “out-of-the-box” condition. The Bigsby’s handle still had its rubber tip; and, the pick guard still had its plastic film in pristine condition.
It felt good. It sounded great … unplugged. I was nearly sold as is, but this is a hollow-body electric so I asked, “Where can I plugin this in at?” I was led to a fine collection of amps, and pointed to a nice tube amp to play with. It sounded great … maybe I already said that but it still needs repeating. Another store associate passed by and asked if I had any questions … “does it come with a case?”
“Not that particular model but we have a hard-case in the back made for it.”
“Great, why don’t you drag it up front for me.”
So I ended up putting this beauty into her case and taking her home.
I had thought about just sending out a tweet to say thanks but then 140 characters or less probably will not convey Telus‘ kindness or the value of their thoughtful gifts … yes, gifts! Completely unexpected, too.
Let me backtrack a bit … we pre-ordered our iPhone 6 Plus 128MB phones shortly after it was possible to do so on the Telus Mobility web site. We hemmed and hawed a bit about which model to go with an ultimately decided to just go BIG. After ordering I thought it would be nice to share this with a tweet:
— Edward Caissie (@JellyBeen) September 13, 2014
Earlier this week I received a call from FedEx asking to confirm my address for a delivery. All said and done, I asked who is the shipper? They replied with Telus … and I’m thinking cool, the iPhones are coming earlier than their original October 6th promised shipment date.
Yesterday, as arranged, the FedEx delivery arrived … Terri opened the box as I knew if I opened the box the rest of the day would be gone (I really do love to play with new tech). The iPhones were not there?! What?!! I spoke to Telus earlier in the week and they said they were just completing the order processing and the iPhones would be shipping this week. Very patient and helpful customer service associate as well. (The iPhones were shipped via Canada Post and arrived technically on Thursday … I had to go to the Post Office to pick them up on Friday).
Back to the mystery(?) FedEx shipment … inside was a quality note card with a hand-written message thanking us for pre-ordering our iPhones and sending out the tweet above, signed by “Your friends at Telus”. Thanks!
What else was in the box? Another box with a big purple ribbon tied up into a bow and inside that box was the following:
Now I can really have some more fun. Stay fit. More power. Great sound.
Thanks, again, Telus … we will enjoy these thoughtful gifts!
Why re-invent the wheel when you can borrow someone else’s.
… and I’m not even sure which dot-com account it’s for from four days ago.
It’s Monday … and that’s not a bad thing.
Technically speaking, after work today will be one year as Lead Happiness Engineer, NextGEN Gallery. It feels like just yesterday … well maybe last week sometime, I was writing a post about quitting my job. There is no way it’s been a year with the fine people at Photocrati Media, but it has; and, to tell the truth, I cannot wait for the next year … and the years after that.
It has been a bit of a tumultuous ride with all of the hard work going into NextGEN Gallery but well worth the effort; the expected, but seldom required late nights and weekends; and, the multitude of releases of the NextGEN Gallery plugin for WordPress. That’s also not to mention NextGEN Plus and NextGEN Pro (can you say eCommerce!!) releases extending the NextGEN Gallery plugin.
Everyone at Photocrati is great! The Support team is phenomenal; our developers keep working diligently at squashing bugs and adding new features; the folks behind the scenes who deserve more recognition than they get; and, our team leader … faith, hope, and charity meet your poster boy!
This past year has been a blessing and I look forward to many more in a continued bright and prosperous future …
… and just as I was about to publish this post, I took a moment to go back to my first day as Lead Happiness Engineer – NextGEN Gallery and the most amazing thing occurred to me, what I wrote that first day still applies every day.
The path of least resistance doesn’t just apply to water.
I have learned not to question why the gremlins come out to play, only to enjoy the time when they go away.
Take your smiles where you find them, the next ones may be miles away.