Tag: work

The separation of life

Earlier this week, my brother spoke about how important it is to properly separate life, work and school from each other, especially in terms of mental and physical space. I will say that in theory that is a good idea. It is the same principle that should dissuade you from lying down to watch movies or study because it will make it hard to sleep even if you really tired. Your body gets confused.

However, my brother is in a situation which permits this possible separation if he desires it and is disciplined enough to pull it off. I want to respond to this, first by posing some practical questions and then by talking about some quite common real life situations. Separation is still possible, but the lines do need to blur a bit.
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February 20, 2009

The third week

It somehow feels like a lot longer but I’m only on my third week in Bermuda. I think the main reason it feels longer is because I’ve been sick. Only with the common cold mind you, but it wasn’t a pleasant experience. Now that is mostly behind me and I am starting to get settled in.

With most of my stuff unpacked and in a place, if not its place, my little cottage is starting to feel like a home. For a while I was sort of living out of boxes, thinking that maybe someone would change their mind and I would be moving somewhere else. But I’ve purchased my own helmet, and while I’m still renting a scooter, I’ve decided on buying one myself. I’m hoping to do my written test this week and then schedule my driving test as soon as possible so that I can legally drive any new scooter I get.

Work is busy and constant, which is fine as long as the weather stays cool and wet and I have no desire to get outside to take photos or otherwise. I will say that this February is not nearly as nice as it was last February. Granted anything can happen between now and this weekend, but I doubt I will be hitting up the beach like last year. But it shouldn’t be too long before those of us still acclimatized to Canada will find that it is beach weather.

I’m hoping that it will be that nice when my brothers come down to visit. If they are able to come and visit. Still need to sort out the logistics on that. But I am embracing my new island home a little more than I expected, and also reaching out and meeting people outside of work, so I think that things will turn out alright in this chapter of my life—assuming work doesn’t kill me.

February 12, 2009

My damp island home

To everyone I didn’t email directly, I wanted to say that I made it safely to Bermuda.

It is a tiring journey since the flight is overnight from Vancouver and there is a loss of four hours. The place I am staying is quite nice, albeit older. It is also bigger than my last place both in Bermuda and in Vancouver. I’m not sure what to do with that. Despite the space, seeing as how it is a cottage, there isn’t much in terms of desk space for a computer. Since I have my beautiful iMac on its way down, that is a slight concern. The lack of good desk space however, has plagued me at home for the past couple of years. It isn’t as much of a problem given that I don’t do that much work at home, but it would be nice to have a more appropriate spot to sort out my photos. Another concern here is the dampness. Everything in my cottage is wet. I’m not sure if that is a factor of it not being inhabited for a couple of weeks or just a fact of where it is. As such I am concerned for the well-being of all of my electronics. I will be keeping my camera at the office, along with my laptop, but my iMac I will have at home. I might take the advice of a coworker and get it insured—apparently Bermuda is good for that.

Anyway, after this week, which I’m sure will be quite unusual, and I get a chance to settle in a bit, I will hopefully resume posting photos.

January 26, 2009

Great last night

72, 76, 91, 106

That is the progression of me getting better at bowling throughout the night. This was ten-pin bowling mind you, which I have never played before. Those bowling balls are quite heavy. I actually learned a lot about bowling in the past couple of days in the process of planning this last event out with my coworkers and friends. Apparently the most common type of bowling in Canada is five-pin bowling which I have never played before. As the name suggests, it uses five pins and a smaller ball. There are other slight variations on the rules but otherwise it is similar to the full ten-pin which is most popular in the US and UK. While the five-pin is the most dominant form in Canada, in Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia it isn’t. In Quebec it is Duckpin bowling and in NB and NS, it is Candlepin bowling. Given that growing up, the only place that I’ve ever bowled was in either Nova Scotia or New Brunswick, you can see why I’ve never played five or ten-pin.

And the rules of Candlepin are different enough that I would have been quite confused as to the rules of ten-pin but for the training I received from the Nintendo’s Wii Sports. I’ve played that bowling, in fact I was playing it the night before, which uses the ten-pin rules. So I knew that there would only be two balls per frame. What I didn’t realize, since in the Wii version I assumed this was a function of being a video game, was that after each ball, the fallen pins are cleared. This is not the case in Candlepin where fallen wood can be quite helpful in getting awkwardly arranged pins down. Apparently Candlepin is much harder, which I might agree with because I don’t think I’ve ever broken 100 in Candlepin, and the highest sanctioned score ever was 245 out of 300.

Enough about bowling though. It was a great afternoon and evening with way too much food had by me anyway. Pizza in the office—way more than we needed—and then the need to by food with our drinks at the bowling alley. Of coursed being stressed out about my move, I consumed more than might be considered wise. However, the evening was amazing. Good friends, good times. I will miss the Vancouver office so much. I feel that part of my being is in those… cubicle dividers… :). I watched it grow, and along with it, the number of great people I am happy to call friends. Jordan, Reza, Ken, and Pero, I will miss our weekend excursions and lunches. At least now you will be able to add more seafood and sushi into your rotation. Of course, I will still be in close contact electronically, but it isn’t the same. All the best.

January 23, 2009

On the move, again

It has been nine months in the making, but I’m actually leaving Vancouver. I am returning to Bermuda to continue work on a project I am currently involved with. A year in Bermuda, there could be worse things that is for sure. The weather this winter in Vancouver has been nothing short of awful (for Vancouver anyway) and so warmer shores are not unwelcome. I will likely have a flight arranged by the time I get to work tomorrow. I am leaving the night of the 24th, overnighting to Toronto and then heading to Bermuda early on the 25th. That gets me there in time for my immigration medical exam on the 26th.

Much needs to be done in the next eleven days to get my affairs in order. I need to squeeze all of my belongings back into suitcases, donating and selling those items which don’t make sense to bring with me. Backing up files, organizing papers and let’s not forget saying good-bye. No one wants to leave good friends behind, but it is a grim part of reality for someone nomadic like myself. Not to say some last minute memories can’t be made.

I’m sure there will be more updates and more photos as the relocation process continues, stay tuned.

January 13, 2009

Eye on the prize

This is not meant to be a full exposé on my company Christmas dinner, as I don’t plan to be someone who airs dirty laundry, if you know what I mean. ;)

However I will post this photo of me receiving one of the random drawn door prizes. Despite the random draw, 4 out of 5 of the prizes went to IT guys. Almost suspicious. I also won the “Patience in the face of ever changing business direction” award which for those who know me, know that I have tolerated for far too long.

I’m just waiting for my cab to the airport now, so with that, I will wish you all a happy holiday season again. Cheers!

December 17, 2008

So very busy

Things have been quite busy at work lately, with 14 or 15 hour days not being uncommon. I have finished up one particular project which was causing a lot of that, and I am now focusing my energy on another project which I find if not more interesting at the moment, certainly more enjoyable.

And there is a light—I’m not going to say at the end of the tunnel, but perhaps a crack in the side of the tunnel. I have booked a trip to Edmonton for a few days in November. I’m really looking forward both to the break from work, but more importantly visiting Mike, my friend from Dalhousie. I was also born in Edmonton and the only time that I’ve been back since I was less than a year old was for a week in 1991. Yea, I was nine and I certainly didn’t appreciate it as much as I could have. So this is my chance to soak it in. That soaking may well take place through a camera lens, but so be it. It may well take place in a series of restaurants and pubs as well, and so be that too. :)

So if I don’t post anything before I venture into the heart of coldness that is Edmonton, know that I’m still kicking, but also working away diligently.

October 27, 2008

Welty celebration

First, I’m going to start this off right with best wishes to my friend Jordan on his birthday. He likely won’t read this for a while, and I have already wished him well in person, but there is nothing quite like immortalizing it on the Internet. :)

That is the celebration part. The welts are a result of a game of paintball today with my coworkers. Nine of us in IT plus one computer-savvy business user today went down to Tsawwassan Paintball where we had booked a private course for a couple hours. It was a lot of fun, and our good work dynamic made it all the more enjoyable. How often do you get to shoot at your boss? I will say that while I always enjoy playing, I’m not all that good at it. I guess my lack of first person video gaming combat became very apparent as I was often quickly dispatched by some of my more adept colleagues. And now I have a couple of relatively painless welts from some of my more devastating eliminations. Fortunately not anywhere that shows whilst wearing office clothes. While I did get shot in the mouth once, I managed to avoid catching one in my neck which happened to at least two my teammates.

All said and done, a very successful and enjoyable outing. I hope that we get a chance to do it again some time.

July 22, 2008

Weather

Bermuda: 15°C
Halifax: 0.3°C

Backpack: Get Organized and Collaborate
You would see an amazing transformation of enterprise software if you tied the annual bonus of the buyer to the level of user satisfaction of the software. #