Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Friday, June 25, 2010
Thursday, June 24, 2010
Texts. From Last Night. Luke Style.
"Nice... Where are you??"
"Checking out your future home?"
"I didn't know I had a hangover until just now. Feels like sorrow."
"Don't hurt your wrist."
"Ur grs lks good."
"Dont be a hoarder!"
"korean guy is a pot smoker and a christian"
"Um... fuck yeah"
"emmy and i miss ya!!"
"Fill the bathtub and ARM yourself!"
"the thriller video is on and i'm missing youuuuuu!"
"jill got me drunk"
"Miss you. When will you be back?"
"come on up when you get here. :)"
"I won't judge you tho. I am the embodiment of mistakes."
Photo by Max.
I am tired. I am busy. This week has been insane. We're in the midst of a huge end-of-year push to get as many reports ready for a retreat as possible. This has meant while out on disability, I was working. It meant while at my work conference last week, I worked. It also has meant that I'm on track to hit 60 hours this week. I'm tired. I was up really late last night working on spreadsheets. I felt bad, because I was working in the middle of Schlock Night, and ended up working through the entire movie, getting home, and working until after midnight. I finally said enough was enough, I had to sleep... so I could get up and do it all again. I hope this ends, soon. I'm tired.
Combined with my new regimen. I have redoubled my effort to eat well and exercise every day. My trip to D.C. was a little bit of a stray from my usual, and it hurt me a little. I over indulged, and found I have some serious issues with a couple of my habits. So I'm back to running on a treadmill every week day, I'm avoiding salt as best I can again in all my food, and I'm trying to stay away from all soda and flavored drinks. I'm also avoiding nuts and nut butters. Enough is enough. I need to fix my health before it goes too far. I know sometimes I talk big, but even if I low carb it, I should also balance it with eating the right mixes of fresh vegies and whatnot. I haven't, enough.
Yesterday, a tiny Earthquake hit Rochester. It was centered in Canada, but we felt it all the way here in Rochester. It had felt like someone hit the building with a vehicle, but I never heard a sound. Items in my office swayed, including my plants, and I just cocked my head and thought... "What was that? Wait. That was something!" and got up and validated my findings with others. I jumped on twitter immediately and saw hundreds of other people started tweeting about a northeast U.S. earthquake. VERY COOL. One of my coworkers went to the Geology department to look at our Seismograph. But all returned to normal. It was my first quake! Cool.
The other night, Seth, Kelly, Scott & I got together to watch True Blood. We're re-watching season 2 (well, they're watching for the 1st time), and it's great. We even hooked up our bluray player to the net, so it could interact with my Facebook & Twitter account. As we watched the show, it would update my statuses and picture. Hilarious. Plus, I love hanging out with this crew... well, minus Josh. He decided not to join us for this show... too vampirey. Ha.
I have to decide if I'll rent a room again to someone. I'm in the midst of some major life decisions, so not sure if it's a good idea. But I could use the extra income, especially as I start making moves to... well, move. My house mate got a job in PA, and is moving out. I can't believe it's been 13 months since she moved in. Time flies so very very fast. And she's been an excellent house mate. I can't complain. Part of me wants to have the run of the house to myself again, but then again, I don't really care. It doesn't matter much to me right now if I live with someone, or not. It's just nice knowing that I'm not responsible for anyone else in any way. Blah.
I leave for camping in 3 weeks, then Baltimore right after, and then to California to visit Cindy for a week in August. This summer is flying by, but I'm enjoying it to the MAX. I have to balance things though. I anticipate some "trips" to "DC" in the "near" future. Fingers crossed.
Posted by Luke at 3:24 PM
Monday, June 21, 2010
Sunday, June 20, 2010
It was a long haul.. but I made it. I left D.C. around 11:45a after a quick stop at Ben's Chili Bowl for lunch with Linda. The drive back was pretty uneventful... long... not entirely interesting. I enjoyed seeing the whole thing in the daylight. I usually drive back in the dark since I stay so long.. but my goal was to get back with enough time so I could get some stuff done, unpack and clean up. GOAL ACHIEVED.
I got home, unpacked everything, including all the containers I'd collected all throughout the last 10 days, all the gifts, all the foodstuffs, and got everything put away. I even went through all the mail, papers and junk that has accumulated in the past week. With everything away, I cleaned, did laundry, and even went for a FAST run this evening to a gorgeous sunset. The evening air was perfect. It's been a long day, but it feels not completely a blur. A great end to 10 days of fun.
Posted by Luke at 10:02 PM
I told Linda we would be running this weekend. I run every day. I must. I have fitness goals. I have bad indulgence eating habits I must run off! And she's a runner, too. Except not as fast. Not as far. But we got out, started running, and ran for TWO HOURS. Holy good God! But we found our way into places I've actually been to with Jake a few years ago, and I really liked the parks/paths/areas we ran. We ran all the way over to Georgetown University and back. Actually, I ran back, and she walked, so I ran, found my car, moved it, drank some breakfast (diet dew) and ran back to her somewhere on P street. It was getting HOT, but the run felt amazing.
But after we got back, we got ready and headed toward The Mall in DC. I've been urged to visit the International Spy Museum more than once, so I took this opportunity to see it with her. We got there (via red velvet cupcake shop), and visited the museum for about THREE HOURS. It was a lot of fun... a lot of reading. I definitely would recommend it. It's got a lot of neat information. My only complaint is how many kids were there. But it is a Saturday.
We ended up visiting the Botanical Garden, too. Eating a late lunch at Chipotle. Finding a street vendor for water. It hit over 100 degrees today. (PS.. tan looks good.) Tried to visit the National Archives. Took some silly photos around some statues. Explored a couple of the festivals going on at the Mall (Mississippi festival... OK?)
It was a very long day of walking in the sun. It was very enjoyable. I liked being able to walk every where we went, have the option of taking the metro or cab, but choosing to walk instead. The streets of DC are laid out with a lot of sense.. the order of the city just seems manageable. And it's a big city, but not hugely so. And enjoy places have parking available that I could see myself living here with my car.
We found ourselves at a lovely fountain with a couple dozen people just enjoying the afternoon, kids playing in the water, everyone's feet dangling in the warm pool. It was very nice. My feet hurt though, and so did Linda's. It was definitely more walking in flip-flops than I certainly was used to.
Even though Linda had very little interest, she humored my desire to see the "Real World DC" house that the castmates all lived in last summer. The show aired this past Winter, and I watched this season specifically because I've had a thing for DC for awhile. I knew the address, and we ended up walking to it up through Dupont. We stopped at a Starbucks and had some iced tea, and then found our way to the very large red house on the corner of S Street. Cool seeing it up close!
But as all things had to end, we were tired.. exhausted. Hungry. So we headed back to her place, blistered feet and all. We hung out for a couple hours, nibbled on food.... Linda is funny. She asked me a dozen questions about the way I eat... questioned it.. and then kept asking to have some of my stuff. Apparently, what I eat is pretty darn delicious. I'd have to agree. But she still doesn't agree with my avoidance of fruit.
I told Linda earlier in the week that I'd like to go out to a bar in DC, and she of course agreed to tag along. It's not her thing. She told me as much. She would normally be at home, occasionally going out with friends. But she works a lot, and doesn't really explore her neighborhood much. But I came with a plan (one I kept pushing off all week), and we hit up a really cool bar around midnight... It got really packed after midnight, and after a few drinks, we danced to a wide mix of great songs. One of my favorites finally played, and that got the night in full swing. I liked it a lot... and it validated what I had hoped.
I leave on Sunday. Still figuring out the time. Part of me wants to stay a few more days and part of me just wants to get home and unpack and get ready for a very very hectic week ahead. My wrist feels 100% better, and I see my doctor Monday morning... but I know for a fact my workweek is going to be crazy. Wish me luck.
Posted by Luke at 8:48 AM
Saturday, June 19, 2010
It was kind of bittersweet. Today's the day I move out of the hotel, back into my car, dirty clothes and all, and figure out the rest of my weekend. But the good news was.. I'm staying with my college friend Linda for the weekend. The bad news was I had to work all day remotely from the hotel lobby. But I got a great workout in first, I ate the rest of my cold foods for breakfast and lunch, packed up the entire room, and packed in the car as best I could. And before I knew it, I was checked out and typing up a storm from a really.... really comfortable leather chair in the lobby. I worked all day long before I had to get going to meet Linda at her job at 5pm.
But I made a quick 30 minute stop at whole foods for some late lunch/early dinner, and enjoyed a little time on my own. Traffic was insane... this seems to be a trend here, but I'm really starting to understand the area really well and can actually make adjustments on the fly. So I found Linda, we headed into DC, and arrived at her condo and found decent parking right away.
She bought her condo about a year ago... and it's amazing. Simply amazing. I'm starting to realize I made a really big mistake by staying in Rochester all these years. I have friends that have really cool, amazing and exciting lives in terrific cities and have achieved things that I really have always wanted to do. I think it's come down to complacency for myself.. and sheer laziness if you want to label it another way. Maybe it's going to be by motivating factor.
So we walked around the area last night, exploring the neighborhood, finding a really great place to eat a lovely dinner, and then headed to Dupont Circle to hang out, chat up about our lives, and find us some cool yogurt refreshment.
I know I keep saying it in tweets and in person, but I'm really starting to love this place. Rochester, while cool, quaint and lovely... isn't for me. I've tried to make it work as best I can, but I think it's definitely time to move on to something bigger that will provide me with more opportunities. And Linda has already pledged to be supportive and encouraging all the while. In fact, everyone down here has been. It's really nice to have a good foundation to work on.
This weekend's plans include a lot of running, walking, exploring, sight-seeing, walking some more, eating, relaxing, nature, monuments, more eating and so much more. Her condo is in such a great area that I just don't know how I never came to visit her earlier. She said it really well last night when commenting how comfortable I had made myself in her house: "It's like no time has passed since we last hung out." Indeed. It feels good to be around good people.
Posted by Luke at 1:09 AM
Friday, June 18, 2010
Are these boring yet? I find it kind of fun to document some of the texts I get on a daily basis... so if you indulge me, I will continue to record some of them here on the blog.....
"Oh shut up. As if you'd actually eat anything besides some lettuce. Is there no grass outside to churn?"
"Its like you read my diary, if i kept one"
"Damn you and your pool!"
"i can't get the door open."
"What i need to do and what I actually will do are vastly different lists"
"My heart sinks."
"What are they feeding u"
"lol they taste horrible however :("
"I am going to bed at nine. Am I lame?"
"Dude, I think we need to go to florida"
"i made no friends"
"memories of us crawling in the woods behind the south african embassy three years ago come to mind right now"
"You at the beach yet?"
Photo by Max.
I started the day as I have the last few... waking up slightly late, running my ass off for 4 miles in 30 minutes, and then grabbing a little breakfast in the room before heading down to the conference. My mood for today.. just take what comes and make it a positive day. I'd hate to come away from it all disappointed and regretful. So I did make the best of it, and enjoyed each session I attended. I pledged to stay all day through every session and not let work back in the room interfere and to stop being so rush rush rush.
Unfortunately, after the first session, I went outside to sit in the sun and ended up getting my brand new shorts and green polo completely and utterly muddy/dirty. I hadn't realized in the EXACT spot I sat, it was wet... probably from someone throwing out their water. The rest of the grass was dry as a bone. So yikes. I had to go back to the room, hand wash some clothing, change and get back to the conference.
Sessions were good. Lunch was bad. Snacks were blah. They ran out of Diet Dew by day 2, and their snacks were popcorn and coffee... so yeah. But hey, the material was interesting. Two of my favorite sessions were today, actually! I learned a bunch from a couple other user presentations that I kinda can't wait to get back to the ranch to try out. The day went fast... VERY fast. And the closing was funny, timely, and they announced that the "heavy hors d'oeuvres" would actually be dinner with an open bar. Hey now. I'm there.
In the midst of dinner, many people left to go on a "monuments by moonlight" tour of The Mall in DC. Seeing how tickets were $100, I passed earlier in registration. But then someone came down last minute and said there was a free ticket available since someone didn't want to go anymore. Hey now. I'M THERE TOO. And slightly tipsy. I do recommend being buzzed while doing D.C. tours. My tourmates also agree.
So I found myself on a bus, shipped down to the mall, and dropped off for a lovely walking tour of the major sights. It was actually quite cool seeing everything at night. VERY BUSY too. They gave us quite a long time, and bused us between them, so there wasn't a whole lot of walking. Plus I got to see a couple ones I've never seen before. And our guide was very knowledgeable.
All in all, it turned out to be quite a nice night. I had planned to drink a little and lay by the pool in the evening sun, but this was great! And I'm OK skipping the pool. I've gotten quite a bit of sun this trip already. And if I continue to run over the weekend while staying with Linda, then I get to run down in downtown! I can't wait to see what it's like "living in metro DC" to be honest.
Having a great time!
Posted by Luke at 12:51 AM
Thursday, June 17, 2010
OK. Today is the day I decided this conference was a bit of a mistake. Not only has it been horrible food/sickness wise, but the content has been seriously lacking. They even acknowledged it! They're ending sessions half way through, the user contributions are so very very lacking, and the small population has been networking a complete joke. The few people I've talked with have been just totally... blah. I *am* attending the sessions though... and running back to the room to do work for my boss, so it's not a complete waste of time.... I suppose.
But hey, I'm trying. I ended up skipping the first session because it had absolutely no value to me. It was basically a user forum for people to gripe about things. HA. Actualy, if it were a forum to gripe about THE CONFERENCE, I would have been there! But it's about the company and its direction... something I don't care about and neither does my job. And I ended up skipping the LAST session of the day because the "let's all get in a room and talk about a topic" session is a waste of time for me and our purposes.
So I took the opportunity to get a good workout in after sleeping in, and then leaving the hotel a bit early (4pm) to get a headstart on my evening with Laura. She invited me along with her to a happy hour with a couple of her closer friends down here. I'm really getting used to driving around this general area, and it's less and less intimidating the more I do it on my own. So I made it to the Bonefish Grille with the girls, and started in on a lovely evening.
The place had this $5 bang bang shrimp things, $2.50 wines by the glass, and a couple other great specials. HEY. I'm all about that. And work was paying for it, so I indulged a little bit. And the girls are fun! It's cool to see them again going at it with each other about their days and lives. My circles of friends are usually a little less... so.
But the happy hour ended, and I headed back to Laura's house for some chillin', shopping at a couple stores, and catching up on everything from whats been going on this week, to our fitness goals, to my moving to the area in the (very hopefully) near future. Shhhh... :)
I can see myself here. Very much so. I kept driving around areas and taking some more casual routes to and from the places I need to go. Every time I saw an apartment complex, or a duplex for rent, or a highrise being built, I kept thinking to myself how wonderful it would be... if it were today. If I had that next step right there for the taking. I have some work ahead of me. But it's work I think I'll enjoy doing.
Posted by Luke at 1:21 AM
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Not exactly an amazing day. First official day of the conference. Boring. Not a lot going on. Sessions were blah. But I made the most of it. I ended up getting up, hitting the gym hard at 7, and getting ready by the opening 8am session.
The upside, even though I'm not eating any of the conference food (read: carbs, carbs, carbs) is they serve Diet Mt. Dew at mid-session breaks... which makes me happy. And their on-grounds park is lovely to sit at while waiting for stuff to happen.
I've also been doing more and more work from down here for back home. My boss and I have been constant communication, and we're finalizing some data for next week. Doesn't help I was out of work last week, and gone this week, but we're making due. I'm doing the best I can remotely. But it also means I run back to the room at almost every break. I even skipped lunch to work on some new data request.
The afternoon's sessions were OK, and I always skip the sessions that are called "Birds of a Feather" which is basically just a "share your own topic" sessions. These are usually 4p-5p each day, and just extend my pre-dinner break. I ended up heading out into the city and did a little exploring. Even looked at a couple apartment complexes in the area. I also stopped at Trader Joes. :) I love that store.
I did come back just in time for the happy hour.. which I told myself I would indulge in. With it being open bar, I indulged in the wine. A lot. But it made for breaking the ice at dinner a whole lot easier. I'm always more chatty, loose and sociable after having a couple (5) glasses.
I'm hoping Wednesday's sessions will be better. This conference this year is small. They're saying it's because of the recession, but it's... really small. Maybe 1/4 of the people are here that are usually here. And the fun people I always have such a good time with are nowhere to be seen. Well, I'm here to learn anyway, and I'm trying my best. Back to the gym!
Posted by Luke at 11:57 PM
Monday, June 14, 2010
After sleeping off a terrible stomach ache, I slept in longer than I wanted (probably much needed tho) and missed seeing Laura before she left for work. I went for a very hot 4mile run before getting ready, packing up, and heading out shortly before noon. My hotel said they had a couple rooms ready, and I was very eager to get moving.
So I found my way to the Alexandria Hilton Mark Center, which is super easy to get to, and really close to downtown DC, and got settled into my room well before my session started at 1pm. I explored the hotel, went for a walk, and even requested a minifridge to store some of my supplies.
Starting out, the conference has been a bit of a disappointment, but that may just be the first day. I know a lot already, and they usually try to use a couple sessions to "catch people up" before getting into the heavy stuff.
After they let us out for the day, I made a quick run to Target for dinner/lunch supplies, explored the area, and came back to hang out and just relax. It's really a nice hotel, with beautiful grounds. The conference area of the bottom 2 floors is a little stark and cold, but it does the job.
The evening reception was nice, but my stomach wasn't having any of it. I caught up with some old colleagues that remembered me from a couple years ago, and enjoyed a couple hours of talking before making my way back to my room. Once I felt better, I debated either going to the gym or going out into metro DC. I figured a Monday night might not be the busiest in town, so I chose the gym. Had a nice, quiet evening, and rested my wrist. I have a lot more time left to have fun.
Posted by Luke at 11:55 PM