This has been a fun week. Many years ago a friend of mine who was taking his vacation "at home" decided he would have a "adventure every day". I’ve thought about that for years, and right now since I’m not working, I’ve been wanting to do something more like "an adventure every week". Although I haven’t done great with it, I got A LOT in during the past week.
So in the last 7 days between looking for a job and doing laundry I went to the driving range, got a tour of a space ship development complex from a friend, rode the bus to downtown Seattle, starting learning about my new camera, took my friend’s kids to an outdoor backyard railroad, saw Gran Torino, did a little sight-seeing in Seattle with a friend from Disneyland, went to a model railroad show, and got a tour of the Woodland Park Zoo from friend.
I’ve started going to the Gold Creek driving range a bit more often after hitting some balls with an old boss from Microsoft. He’s an avid golfer, and was willing to go with me, and had positive feedback about how I was doing. He loaned me a few clubs to hit with, so I’m hoping to get good enough to actually play a round of golf some day.
Blue Origin is Jeff Bezos’ space ship development company. He’s hoping to develop commercial space flight in the next 20 years. Space tourism has been a big ‘buzz-topic’ for a few years now, but to actually see a company that is working on making it a reality is pretty wild. Years from now, I’ll be able to say that I saw some of the early prototypes that are taking people into space.
I commuted on the bus for years during the times when I worked in downtown Seattle. I always sit in the very back row on the curb-side of the bus. The Seattle bus system is one of the cleanest, nicest buses I’ve ever ridden on. A pleasant surprise has been the addition of free WiFi Internet ON the bus!
Model railroad show
My friend Craig has gone to a few railroad events with me, and he suggested the 18th annual model railroad show at the Evergreen State Fairgrounds. It was MUCH better than the last show we went to at the Pacific Science Center. What was funny to me, was that we were looking at a layout for a little while, when I asked the guy running the layout a question. Then Craig, talking to the guy, said "Oh, this is my friend Dave." I cracked up because I thought it was so funny that Craig would randomly introduce me to someone he didn’t even know. Well… he actually DID know the guy – he worked with him! But, he didn’t tell me that, so I thought it was odd and funny!
I bought my first digital camera in 1996 – an Olympus D-300L for $997! It wasn’t even a 1 megapixel camera! Since then, I’ve had several digitals. My most recently my Canon PowerShot A95 completely died after a long, slow, agonizing demise. Although it had the best reviews for the money at the time, it turned out to be my least favorite camera ever. Many months ago it started malfunctioning, and finally got a new camera – an Olympus E-520. I’m hoping to get some great shots for some Photosynths!
I took a couple of my friend’s kids to a backyard G-scale railroad layout nearby. I’ve been there several times, and it is AMAZING! The kids seemed to have a good time, and the owner even brought out a locomotive for them to drive! All the locomotives are remote controlled and battery powered, so there are independent trains on the line that have to worry about switches and all the other rail traffic. And the best part is, the owner created waybills with specific instructions of where to pickup and drop off cars around the layout – so it’s not just "running" the trains, it’s actually operating a railroad!
Clint Eastwood did a fantastic job on this movie. It’s a great story about an old man who served in a war, came home and built cars for his whole life, developed a family, and cared for a nice home in a working class neighborhood. After his wife dies, he finds himself living next door to foreign immigrants, who he can’t stand only because they’re different. The movie is full of racial comments and negative feelings, but in spite of his own prejudices, he becomes friends with them and shows that he isn’t really a bad person, but has been through some bad experiences in his life. 10 stars out of 10.
Woodland Park Zoo
My friend Bill recently took a position at the Woodland Park Zoo as director of IT. The zoo opened in 1899, so it has some great history. Bill took me on a tour while we talked about the animals, and all the technical and geek stuff it takes to run the zoo.
A friend who I was a Tour Guide with at Disneyland recently moved to the Seattle area with her boyfriend. We’ve been working on trying to hang out, but haven’t done a great job. Well, we finally met up in downtown Seattle and walked around Pioneer Square, the waterfront, went to Ye Olde Curiosity Shop, and had lunch at the Grand Central Bakery, We even got a few pictures at Ivars. Although we had to cut the day short, it was great to walk around and visit.
In all, it was quite a week! It would have taken MONTHS to do all this stuff if I was working, so I better get in all the fun "mini-adventures" I can before I find a new job!