l33tminion: (Skilled)
More travel this weekend. This time, Julie and I are traveling separately: Julie (with Erica) went to visit her parents and attend a memorial service for her grandfather, I went to Portland, Oregon to attend PyCon for work.

This hasn't been the best conference trip for me. A combination of exhaustion, confusion, and generally being under the weather led to me missing almost all of the conference on Friday (though I did get some work done). Saturday I felt great and well-rested, but last night I had a hard time sleeping and an upset stomach, so I'm exhausted again. Jet lag seems to be hitting me a lot harder than usual. Still, it's a great conference and I'm glad I went. The Saturday talks were especially interesting, and I really enjoyed talking to people at Google's booth at the expo and meeting some of my coworkers from further afield.

I'm also glad I caught one of the Portland PyCons. I do like what little of Portland I've seen. The downtown seems so nicely designed, with it's square grid of streets and the streetcar system and just the right amount of height and density. The conference changes location every two years, and I missed last. PyCon 2018 and 2019 will be in Cleveland, which is less exciting than Portland, but convenient for me.
l33tminion: (Enlightened)
Julie and I went to Portland, Maine this past weekend for a mini-vacation to play in one of the latest Ingress anomalies on Saturday. All I could've asked for: Excellent gameplay, hanging out with some of our Ingress-playing friends (especially Ian and Ben, who were kind enough to let us join their carpool), victory for the green team, wandering around in some lovely weather, and delicious things to drink and eat (more lobster roll!). We did get through the 12 (of 24) courses needed to get the badge for participation in Sunday's Ingress Mission Day event (completing 13 in all), but I'm a bit envious of our teammates who had time to do the entire set. Ah well. Plenty did the minimum who didn't have a kid in tow. Erica seemed to enjoy the excitement and crowds and the stroller tour of the city.

Was fun to see people react to the event, especially one particular kid who seemed struck by the realization that he had to start playing this Ingress thing immediately. His mom helped him download the game, and he'd worked his way through the tutorial, asked the anomaly players lots of questions about the gameplay, and was well on his way to level three before our paths diverged. Must've been an interesting experience, given that the live events have the game in its most chaotic state! I wonder if he'll stick with it, but either way, it's always fun to help a new player give the game a try.

Unfortunately, our Portland acquaintances recently decamped for a different Portland, so we didn't get the chance to see them on this trip. We'll have to visit Oregon sometime as well.

This week, my family is in town. On Friday, my sister is getting married! All the congratulations to Melissa and Elliott! The wedding and subsequent weekend with family will be at a vacation home in Newry, Maine, so that should also be a nice getaway.
l33tminion: (L33t)
Last week went by in a blur of work and/or housing stress. But did get a bit of a mini-vacation last weekend, taking the Downeaster to Portland to visit David and Kelcy (friends since my college days who we hadn't seen for a while, not since DJ and Michelle's wedding, I think). Was great to see them again, they showed us around town, and we had a very nice, low-key vacation.

Portland has some very good food and some very pretty scenery. Had some lobster roll and fancy soda, rode on the narrow-gauge rail, visited the museum at the Portland Head Light, took a boat ride around Casco Bay. A good slice of tourism.

This week is back to the grind, though. Things are coming along nicely, but I have a lot to get done and need to get more sleep.
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