Khaos

Archive for June, 2016

In Orlando

Saturday, June 18th, 2016

I’ve been in Orlando for a couple of weeks now.  Given the horrific massacre at the Pulse nightclub, it’s not been an easy time to be on holiday.  Of course, it shouldn’t be easy to forget the events and there are reminders everywhere.  The staff in the hotel are wearing Orlando United t-shirts, everywhere I go there are signs and messages about the tragedy, and this morning I was asked to take a picture of a couple going to one of the funerals.

It’s a time for sorrow.

Overheating

Thursday, June 9th, 2016

After complaining about how cold I am inside in overly air conditioned hotels in America, I’m now struggling with the heat outside.  I don’t think I’ll ever get used to being in warm summer climates.  I have lived in Japan for nearly 10 years and I still find the summer heat there unbearable.  Yesterday I spent most of the day outside wearing long flowing clothes and a large hat to try to protect my skin from the sun.  I still had to wear sunblock and having it melt on my face and neck feels disgusting.  I wonder if my friends would mind if I just wanted to go out once the sun had set?

Blogging

Friday, June 3rd, 2016

Gabor wrote an interesting post on why he blogs.  I blog in a number of different places with a different goal in mind.  This is my personal blog, and the biggest reader is probably myself.  I have been blogging here for nearly 14 years, and I periodically re-read my posts as I want to be reminded of the things that I did in the past.  I have found it to be an excellent way to journal the aspects of my life that I’m willing to make public.  Once I realised that I did post for myself I decided that each post didn’t need to be something that made a meaningful statement.  The thought of having to write meaningful things was stopping me from writing any things as I’m rather critical when it comes to my own writing.  I do write about some of the projects I’m involved with, but since those are tagged, people who are interested in those can ignore my personal posts.

At times I post simply to let my friends and family know that I’m still fine and getting on with my life.  Living so far away from many of the people I know isn’t easy, and it’s difficult to stay in touch.  I know that writing a blog post is a poor substitute for personal communication, but it’s better than no communication.  I wish that more of my friends and acquaintances with blogs posted more frequently.  I am aware that many of them don’t write because they feel they have nothing to say, but I don’t need them to be profound.

Cold in Summer

Thursday, June 2nd, 2016

I have goosebumps on my arms.  I have tried switching off the air conditioning but it’s tenacious and refuses to obey my instructions.  When I arrived at my hotel last night the air conditioner was set at 67 F (19.4 C).  It felt like a fridge in the room after the warm air outside  I had already spent a large part of my day on a plane being really cold and would have liked to be able to sit in my hotel room without getting into the bed for extra warmth.

Recently I spent quite a few evenings rehearsing in community halls in Japan.  It wasn’t easy, as I became so hot dancing, but they only use air conditioners once the temperature in the room gets above 28 C (82.4 F), and that only happened on a couple of occasions.  There is a “Cool Biz” campaign in Japan that runs from May to October to encourage businesses to set their air conditioners at 28 C (82.4 F) to limit the use of electricity.  This means that men have stopped wearing ties to work in the summer and that cooler clothes are used.  But I’m in America where the people around me are sitting in chilled rooms wearing t-shirts and shorts – something the Japanese wouldn’t really consider for work.  The are also carrying cardigans and jackets, because it’s cold inside.  The last time I went to the cinema in America, during the summer, I took a blanket!  It’s ridiculous.

I’m going to be in America for quite a few weeks so I’m going to have to come up with a way to keep warm while indoors.

YAPC::NA 2016, Orlando

Thursday, June 2nd, 2016

I’m on my way to America.  I have planned a few things to do, but my main motivator for going is to attend YAPC::NA.  The conference is running from the 19th to the 24th June in Orlando.  As I’m involved in the organisation of the conference I may not get to hear a lot of the talks.  But I am going to try to hear Ricardo Signes speak on The Ongoing Disaster that is Perl 5. I’m also looking forward to hearing Damian Conway’s keynote and I plan to attend his tutorial on Presentation Aikido.

I really liked that the conference started a New to Perl program this year. This was inspired by the Send-A-Newbie program and offered a number of low-cost ($50) scholarships to the conference covering registration, accommodation, and the Zero to Perl Tutorial.  There is also going to be a beginners’ track again, which was popular last year.

As always I am looking forward to catching up with friends.

Aircraft Food

Wednesday, June 1st, 2016

This morning I was offered a cooked breakfast on my flight from Belfast to London.  I know aircraft food can be terrible but normally I can recognise the food.  I thought I was getting scrambled eggs but I wasn’t sure when I tasted it.  It had a very smooth texture, was a very light yellow in colour, and had no real flavour.  After reading the food label I decided not to eat it because it was only 66% egg!  The rest of it was rapeseed oil, buttermilk power, cornflower, salt, white pepper, and lactic acid.  Thankfully I have been able to buy real food at the airport.