Tuesday, May 06, 2008

The Joy of Travel, Part 1

I used to like travelling.

But now, another facet of life is losing its charm for me as I get older.

You don't need all the details, you can construct them for yourselves...but lost luggage, crowded flights, and long layovers have a way of sucking the life out of you. Throw in some unhelpful customer service employees handing out awful directions, and travel disasters ensue.

I ended up eating dinner in a Thai Karaoke bar around 10:30 PST last night...can't say I joined the singing, but the food was good. All the screens had videos of Thai music with the lyrics printed beneath (in both Thai and phoenetic English.)

Today I tackled Java One in the same clothes I had worn across the country yesterday. Luckily, I was 10 minutes too late for breakfast and only after I spent $3 for a Mountain Dew did they roll out the free drinks. The line for the opening session was out the building, down to the end of the block, and around the corner. Needless to say I did not follow the line all the way to the end, but promptly went to a local diner for some eggs. I went to my morning sessions, standing in long lines for classes I scheduled weeks ago, jostling for seats with overweight developers for the privilege to listen to an hour-long advertisement.

I returned on lunch break to find some luggage delivered to my hotel room, which unfortunately wasn't mine. A call to United confirmed that they have no idea where my luggage might be, so I went shopping. A short walk brought me to the largest Old Navy I'd ever seen, and that was before I discovered there were two more floors above the ground. Trust me...you don't realize how exciting it is to have clean underwear and socks until you're missing them.

Strangely, my walk through the shopping district of San Francisco yielded a sparse bounty of eye candy. One thing you can usually count on in a big city, especially a big California city, is an endless parade of head-turners. Apparently, all the hotties are staying home and locking their doors the week of Java One, and I can hardly blame them.

Back to the conference now, where things can only get better. Right?


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