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Missing you my friend. Hard to believe it’s been 2 years today.


Chuck's 55 Blue BelAir

Chuck's 55 Blue BelAir

I’ve been driving Chucks 55 Chevy wagon the last week. Well this morning he asked if I would take the BelAir instead. Also a 55. Wants both driven on occassion. So being the good guy I am I agreed to drive his 55. It’s a rough life, but someone has to live it. (-;

I was somewhat sad today because I spent Thanksgiving away from my wife and girls. I’m still in Monterey working and looking for a house while they are up in Montana staying with Roberta’s mom and visiting her family. Having a holiday alone, without my wife and kids, is a bit rough.

I’ve been staying with our good friends Lynn and Chuck and went with them to Thanksgiving dinner over at Lynn’s folk’s house. A big family get together. It was nice being invited and being allowed into their group. Lynn and Chuck are really good folk.

We headed back to their house at around 4pm and as we pulled up we saw an Ambulance in front of Alan and Monica’s house. Alans folks are here visiting from Kentucky. Our hearts dropped. Then as we pulled around the corner onto our road we saw 3 police cars and a couple of very well armed policemen, oh crap, what happended? Well, as it turned out Alan’s folks were okay which was a great relief. It turns out that the neighbor across the street had a psychotic episode, he’s a freak to begin with. Got drunk, really drunk, threatened the wife and kid, then when the cops arrived he told them they could have 2 of his guns but that they would never find the third. He then proceeded to run into the house and barracade himself into one of the rooms. He then set off a grenade style simulator which everyone, including his 9 year old daughter, assumed was a bullet to his own head. Needless to say, when we drove up, the shit had truly hit the fan.

We ended up with the daughter in Lynn and Chucks house where we fed her some left over Turkey, stuffing and goodies and then played the WII for an hour or so while they loaded up dumbshit and took him to the hospital for evaluation. Not sure if he’s getting out any time soon or not. Personally I hope not. What a crappy thing to do to a family, ignoring the fact that it was Thanksgiving. Some people are just unfit to be human, let alone parents.

So, I’m very glad that my wife and girls are with family up in Montana. I may not be with them, but at least I know they are safe and with people that care about them. Like I said, I was feeling a bit sorry for myself because I wasn’t with my girls, but in the grand scheme of things. I’m an extremely lucky person. I have a family that is safe and wonderful friends that are here with me and willing to share their Thanksgiving.

While driving to work this morning I came up on a taxi with 831.ASS.TAXI on the back. WHAT?!?! I had to do a double take. Seems the taxi company is called Associated Taxi. Hmmmm… Ya have to admit it’s an easy number to remember. (-;

Well, I’ve been running around the last two and a half days trying to find a house in Pacific Grove, Carmel, Carmel Valley, or Pebble Beach. Problem with looking for a house in Paradise is that no one wants to leave once they are here. There are a few 3 bedroom places, not cheap, but I’ll find the right one soon. It’s out there, I know it is.

I start work at Fleet this morning. Back to the old 9 to 5 again. Poor me, I have to go work on my computers. No digging ditches, working in the rain and cold, washing mud off heavy equipment, etc etc. All of which I have done in the past. I go sit in a warm office with a view of Monterey Bay and play on computers, drink coffee, chat with other computer geeks, etc. It’s a rough life. (-:

I still cannot put up any pictures due to the fact, being a certified genius (or was that a certified idiot? I get them confused. Oh wait, maybe it’s I’m just certifiable. hmmm), anyhow I left my camera cable in with Roberta’s things in Montana. Oh well. I will get my new company laptop today, so I can quit hogging Lynn’s computer. Maybe I can duct tape a solution together and get the pictures off the camera. That is until the battery goes dead, the charger is in Montana also.  )-:

Well. It’s work time so I’m off for some fun in the sun.

From the “Married too long” file.

This morning I unplugged my pre-pay phone (no address yet) from the charger and discover it is turned off so I turn it on and grab some coffee. I wait about 10 minutes, get Roberta’s number off the phone and use the house phone to give her a call to touch base and instead my phone starts to make noise. So I quickly hang up thinking I’ve dialed my number by mistake. Nope, it’s Roberta sending me a text message at the exact same time as I’m trying to call her. We’re only 1100 miles and a time zone apart.

It’s all a matter of timing I suppose. Either that or we’ve been married too long. (-;

Well, I have made it to Pacific Grove California, one of the most quant and beautiful towns I have ever been in. In the last 2 weeks I have gone from Edinburgh Scotland, to Inverness/Loch Ness Scotland, back to Edinburgh Scotland, Seattle Washington, Austin Texas, San Jose California and finally to Pacific Grove. It’s been a busy 2 weeks.

I’ll be staying with our good friends Lynn and Chuck and driving their 55 Wagon, biking, and walking. Work at Fleet Numerical, FNMOC, starts on Monday.

I would update the website with a picture of the wagon if I hadn’t just discovered the download cable is in Roberta’s bag in Butte Montana. Oops!

I’m now off looking for a home for the family. Will update with pictures soon, if I can chase down another cable.

Well, I made it down to Super Computing 08 here in Austin Texas. I arrived late Tuesday afternoon after a couple of boring flights with the exact same number of successful take off’s and landings. Which is how it should be. Roberta and the girls dropped me off at SeaTac airport at 6am and I headed for Texas and they headed for Montana. It was a race. They drove, I flew, I won. (-: It takes about 12 hours to drive from Seattle to Butte, MT. It took about 8 hours to fly from Seattle to San Francisco to Austin with layovers.

The conference has been good so far. I’ve seen many old coworkers and friends whom I haven’t seen in a long time. Caught up on some of the interesting things happening in the world of HPC.  Met some of the new movers and shakers and met some of the old guard. Today I’ll take the camera and play tourist. I probably won’t get a chance to update the web until after I get to Monterey this weekend. 

The two second update on Supercomputing this year is. Iterative growth in a lot of products, but very little revolutionary innovation. Smaller, faster, evolution style changes, and more clusters. If clusters are removed from Supercomputing it would be a very very small conference. That sums up about 80% of Supercomputing this year. I’ll continue to look for the revolutionary stuff, but I’m not holding my breath. Still, it’s a good conference, Austin is a nice town to hold it in. It’s amazing to think that this conference has been taking place for 25 years now. I’ve been lucky enough to attend the last 4.

Next year SC09 will be held in Portland Oregon. Should be another good venue. (FYI, Reno sucked for SC07) 

This weeks goal has been, and still is, get started with SAIC (my new company), fly to Austin, attend SC08, fly to Monterey, find house, start work. No stress, no worries, no hurries. So far so good, a few hiccups getting my time cards to work with the computerized system at SAIC, no big deal. Other than that, all is going forward as expected.

Just a quick update. We successfully made the trip to Seattle from Scotland. A long and boring flight, which means a good one. I’ll be heading for SuperComputing08 on Tuesday and the girls will be driving to Montana the same day. We’ll hook back up in Monterey California in a few weeks after I find us a house.

Will try to update more later. All is well so far.

It’s been a very interesting and learning experience watching the Presidential election from a foreign country. I’ve been continually amazed by how knowledgable the British are when it comes to US politics. At work we discussed how this was a history making election on so many levels and the conversation turned to how in the US a Jr. Senator can become president while here in the UK it takes years and years of plodding through the levels of Government.  Then my co worker started going through the last 30 years of presidents counting how many were Governers, how many were from the Senate, etc. Heck, I’m FROM America and I didn’t know a third about our presidents that he did. I was stunned by his knowledge of my countries power structure.

From my limited observations the British are quite happy with the outcome of Obama winning the presidency. A chance to clean up the image of America in foreign eyes. It wasn’t anything against McCain, it was just that he was, and would always be, stuck with the specter of President Bush, who has a very bad image here.

I’m glad Obama won, it’s going to help our image overseas. This was a toss up election for me. I wouldn’t have been saddened to see McCain win, I think he might have been better for our troops. Only the next 4 years will tell how this turns out.

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November 2008
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