Archive for June, 2005

First course complete

Sunday, June 26th, 2005

OK, I’m now back in my hotel room after the third and final day of the ISEB Foundation Course in Software Testing. What a day! What a last few days!

Yesterday, Day 2, is the most challenging, not only for the delegates but also for me. Some concepts of “white box” testing such as branch and statement testing, are difficult to explain and very difficult to illustrate. I fell down a few times on the illustrations, so I’ve written in the manual the answers. But I felt like a fool up there. Fortunately, the students were all quite nice about it. Looking at the course evaluations, they all rated me either Good or Excellent.

Today was a half day of lecture, a mock test, some revision (=US “study”), and then the real exam. Remember I said in my last entry that I hoped there were 26 exams? Of course, you know what happened. There were 25. Samir, the man who’s responsible for coordinating the courses, decided that the last one to sign in on the first day would be the one who had to take the test later. I told him that I would not be the one to tell the poor guy that he couldn’t take the test. Samir did it over the phone. I felt so horrible for him. (Not Samir, the man who didn’t take the test). He and I talked about it later and I reassured him that he could take the test later without retaking the course.

After the mixup was settled, the 25 students who did take the exam all said that it was easier than the mock exam. I’m convinced that most if not all will pass (25 out of 40 correct is the passing grade).

The campus in IT City was really stupendous. It would not have disgraced Palo Alto or Mountain View. There are two buildings of 5 stories each connected by a bridge on the first floor (=US second floor). One building is meant to represent a lighthouse, the other a ship. They are extremely modern inside, all computer amenities and people amenities as well, although they are still in the “cube farm” phase, not the “open plan” phase I’m used to in London.

The cafeteria was really stunning. It was on the roof, covered by a canopy, and open to the air. The food was South Indian food, dhal, roti, lime pickle, various lentil things, vegetable stew, really lovely stuff. All the students were amazed that I liked Indian food, even up to and including lime pickle. They are convinced all Westerners and Brits and Americans in particular would not be able to eat their food. I showed them that at least one Westerner would. They asked about Indian food in London, and I repeatedly stated that London’s “Indian” food is mostly in restaurants staffed by Bangladeshis and Pakistanis. They were amazed by that as well.

As one would expect, all the students wanted to know how I liked India, and how many times I’d been here. When they found out it was my first time here, they were eager to find out how I liked it. I was in a quandary: some of my experiences here have been frightening (like at the airport), some have been tedious (dealing with logistics problems that shouldn’t be my problems but handled by the company that’s commissioned me to deliver the course. The beauty of the countryside that you drive through to get to IT City is really lovely. But the traffic is a horror, no one uses seat belts and no scooter driver uses a helmet (or few, anyway). I saw one vespa-type scooter driven by Dad, with little Sis in front of him, Mom sitting sidesaddle at the back, and big Bro between Mom and Dad. They all looked like it was the most natural thing in the world.

Cows do indeed roam the streets wherever they want to go. There are lots of stray dogs just lying on the pavement looking like roadkill. Then they get up lazily and get out of the way.

Indians are so proud of their country. They have just cause to be: India is the home of Mahatma Gandhi, the father of non-violent protest (his face is on all the currency, just as the Queen’s is on all sterling notes in England and Wales). They have rockets, satellites, a vibrant IT industry, and great centres of spirituality. As a Westerner, however, it’s hard to balance this against the squalor and dirt that many people live in. In three days of being driven to and from the site, I’ve seen two or three accidents. Their food is wonderful, and some is even healthy (I wouldn’t claim that the lime pickle is healthy). Were I to have to stay a few weeks or a month, I might be able to get used to it (but HWMBO would still be in London, so that isn’t an option).

I decided that rather than try to cope with the airport alone, I would tip the “Travel Desk Manager” downstairs 100 rupees (about GBP 1.20, or USD 2.00) to get someone to accompany me to the check-in desk at the airport. He was amazed, as it was probably close to his daily wage. However, I made an instant friend and I hope and pray that my transport tomorrow will be efficient and that I’ll be able to get out of Bangalore without being fleeced yet again. I tipped the driver 50 rupees yesterday and today, and got sterling service. It seems that the key to getting good service here is tipping well. It’s a lesson that I think will help me cope with the rest of my stay here.

I also asked whether he could send someone out to buy me a new luggage tag, as mine disappeared between Mumbai and Bangalore, although it has safely travelled to the US three times, Singapore once, and Ireland once. He told me that the driver would take me to a shop this afternoon that would have one. The shop he took me to had luxury goods, textiles, but no luggage tags and no leather goods such as sandals or bags, which HWMBO would like me to buy but which I haven’t tried to get here. Samir better know where some of these things can be bought in Pune and bring me there. I found a relatively sturdy cardboard one, and will use that for now.

So tonight I eat and pack, and get ready for course two in Pune. I’ll try to keep in touch. I really enjoy the wi-fi in the hotel and being able to read email and update my live journal live, rather than taped.

In Bangalore

Thursday, June 23rd, 2005

Well, I finally got here. Lots of trauma, especially around getting to and from airports. The number of people who want to “help” you with your luggage is amazing. I do not want to go through that again but don’t know how I can avoid it, as I have to fly to Pune on Monday and then fly home from Mumbai in a week.

I’ve had two days to get accustomed to India. It’s so different from anything I was prepared for that I’m dumbfounded, really. It’s a strange mixture of Third and First World countries. I’m connected via Wi-Fi from my hotel room (after trying to get connected for a whole day), but on the streets outside tuk-tuks ply for trade, horsedrawn carts and cows vie for street space with modern cars and people without helmets on scooters and motorcycles.

There is no public gay scene here, as it’s illegal. I am going to be a nun for the next 8 days.

I decided not to go out today, which is just as well. I have found the food edible, but have been somewhat parched as I’m hesitant even to try the bottled water. However, I’ve brought some British water which I’m brushing my teeth with and I suppose I’ll just have to use the local bottled water shortly. Breakfast was a bit odd, with toast advertised but only plain bread on offer. There was watermelon, which was good, and I was so desperate for carbohydrates I had a small glass of pineapple juice which did not appear to have had ice dissolved in it. No problems so far, knock on wood.

The guy who’s commissioned the course is due soon so we will have a chat and maybe dinner. Then, I have to relax for tomorrow. The course is “on-site” rather than at the hotel. I hope this is not a harbinger of things to come, as almost everything they’ve told me hasn’t been carried out (different hotel in Mumbai, 26 students rather than 25 (I wonder if there will be 26 exam papers at the end of the course?), and God only knows what else. So, save me a thought over here as I start trying to get 26 people to pass the software testing exam.

A birthday meme

Monday, June 20th, 2005

No, it’s not my birthday. However, people who were born on my birth date (November 8) include:

35 – Nerva, Roman emperor
1622 – Charles X Gustav, king of Sweden
1656 – Edmond Halley, British astronomer, mathematician (birthday according to the Gregorian calendar)
1836 – Milton Bradley, manufacturer, lithographer, game maker (d. 1911)
1847 – Bram Stoker, Irish novelist (Dracula) (d. 1912)
1848 – Gottlob Frege, German mathematician and logician
1866 – Herbert Austin, automobile pioneer (Austin-Healey)
1868 – Felix Hausdorff, German mathematician (d. 1942)
1883 – Arnold Bax, composer
1884 – Hermann Rorschach, psychiatrist
1893 – Clarence Williams, American jazz pianist and composer (d. 1965)
1896 – Bucky Harris, Baseball Hall of Famer (d. 1977)
1898 – Marie Prevost, actress (d. 1937)
1900 – Margaret Mitchell, American author (d. 1949)
1900 – Charlie Paddock, American athlete
1904 – Cedric Belfrage writer, socialist
1907 – Katharine Hepburn actress (d. 2003)
1908 – Martha Gellhorn, American writer and journalist (d. 1998)
1914 – Norman Lloyd, actor
1918 – Hermann Zapf, German designer
1919 – P.L. Deshpande, Indian author
1920 – Esther Rolle, actress (d. 1998)
1922 – Christiaan Barnard, South African heart surgeon
1927 – Patti Page, singer
1927 – Nguyen Khanh, Prime Minister of South Vietnam
1927/1929 – Lal Krishna Advani, Indian politician
1931 – Morley Safer, journalist
1931 – Darla Hood, actress (d. 1979)
1935 – Alain Delon, actor
1942 – Angel Cordero Jr., horse racing jockey
1949 – Bonnie Raitt, American singer
1953 – Alfre Woodard, actress
1954 – Jeanette McGruder, musician (P Funk)
1954 – Rickie Lee Jones, singer, composer
1967 – Courtney Thorne-Smith, actress
1968 – Parker Posey, actress
1968 – Zara Whites, Dutch porn actress
1975 – Tara Reid, American actress
1981 – Joe Cole, English footballer
2000 – Madison Poer, actress
2000 – Marissa Poer, actress
2003 – Lady Louise Windsor, daughter of Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex

Anyone else for listing people born on their own birthdates? I don’t tag, but feel free.

I’m now going to stop surfing and start packing.

Stuff sometimes happens

Saturday, June 18th, 2005

I began swotting up on the course I’m going to be delivering last night. To my surprise, and horror, I discovered that my boss had sent me lots of bumpf (including the printed-out delegate manual pages with the slides on them), but had not sent me the actual powerpoint presentation itself! My blood ran cold at the thought that if I’d just put it all on my laptop and blithely went off to Bangalore, I might have been extremely embarrassed. I sent my boss an email and text message, and heard from him at around 11, very apologetic.

This morning I found not one, not two, but three copies of the slides in my inbox. He is an amateur actor, just finishing a play’s run last night, so perhaps the cast party was a success.

A lovely moment yesterday

Saturday, June 18th, 2005

I decided to take an afternoon constitutional up Waterloo Road, and bought my Guardian on the way. I was wearing jean shorts cut just below my knees, and my favourite flip-flops. At the bus stop across from Elephant and Castle station, a complete stranger (male) walked up to me, shook my hand, and said, “Those are the finest pair of legs I’ve seen on a man in a long time.” and continued on his way.

Now I’ve been told things like this before (the owner of my gym said to me once, “You know, people would pay money for your calves.”) but for someone with a pretty horrible body image, it felt really good.

Short postscript

Friday, June 17th, 2005

Had I looked at my lj instead of my PDA, I would have noticed that in my last entry I correctly entered the time of the travel clinic appointment as 11 am rather than noon.

My bad.

Closer to Bangalore

Friday, June 17th, 2005

It’s been a very hectic two days, folks. I got on the train at London Bridge destined for Gatwick Airport and the Atlas Health Clinic. It’s fiendish to find (go behind the Costa Coffee at the International Arrivals area, down a flight of stairs unmarked except for “Emergency Exit”, then walk along the pathway until you see the brown building…) and I entered noon into my PDA rather than 11 am. Thus, when I arrived, I was 3/4 hour late. Luckily for me, they took me anyway (after profuse apologies), and I got vaccinated (three shots, GBP 100) and malaria pills (24 pills, GBP 84), and got back on the train home. This was Wednesday, the day I normally would be at the consulting job. I thought I didn’t have any meetings scheduled for that day.

Thursday I went to the Indian High Commission to get my visa. I arrived around 7am, and there were two ahead of me. An Indian older gentleman seemed to be “in charge”, and he assigned us numbers, and then shepherded us into line at around 7:30. I brought John Allen’s biography of Benedict XVI (originally published as a bio of Cardinal Ratzinger, hurriedly updated with one chapter and a new picture on the cover) to read, and got through quite a bit before the place formally opened at 8:30. By that time the line consisted of about 70 or 80 people snaking around India Place (which is what the plaza next to India House is known as).

?When the window handing out queue tix finally opened, I was number 2 rather than number 3, as the first-in-line person turned out to have an Indian passport, and they go to a different line, to a different window, and that window doesn’t open until 9:30.

We scrambled through the door, through a metal detector (which beeped slightly when I went through but I was told not to worry; I presume that people with large amounts of metal in them or on them might make a louder noise), and up to the hall. A bank of metal chairs faced the clerks’ windows. As number 2, I got right up to a window and got my application accepted. I got a 6-month multiple entry visa, GBP 30 please. I was told that I could return at lunch to pick up my passport from Window #1.

So I went into work, and got called over by one manager, “Where were you yesterday? We waited for 1/2 hour for you.” Oh dear. I forgot to enter one meeting into my PDA, and thus ended up missing it. I had emailed the office admin and my company supervisor to explain that I was changing days, but neither of them happened to be in so the information didn’t get out. Luckily Jeff likes me, so we rescheduled after very profuse apoogies.

Back to India House at 11:30. I again scrambled up the stairs, through the faintly-squealing metal detector, to find a gaggle of people in front of Window #1. They crowded in, right in front of the little slot through which (we hoped) passports would soon be slithered. There was no room for someone in back to step forward and claim a passport. No clerk was visible at the window. Ten minutes later the clerk emerged with a handful of passports. He started calling out numbers beginning with D (as in D85). Those at the back had to hand their receipts to someone right in front of the window, and had their receipt and passport handed back the same way. Those at the window seemed nailed to the floor. My heart sank. Obviously, he’d called out “Number 2!” many hours ago, and I was at work rather than waiting for my visa. One by one those who were nailed to the floor in front of the window got their passports and left. After twenty minutes of waiting, and a further reinforcement of passports from another clerk, he finally ran out and my turn came, and I got my passport back. There went my lunch hour. I now know what being in the middle of a human feeding frenzy feels like.

I recounted my experience back at the office, and was told that my life from June 21 to July 1 will be like that…at the mercy of faceless and often-absent clerks and functionaries in the Indian Subcontinent.

I just hope I can avoid the water and the mosquitoes.

Oh, and that I can swot up the course fast enough to ensure that all my students pass the exam and I then get more gigs training. Perhaps some of them might even be here, where you can drink the tap water and mosquitoes are (at present) only a slight annoyance, not a deadly danger.

India is a go

Tuesday, June 14th, 2005

I got an email when we returned from Dublin saying that BCS has approved me as a tutor for the ISEB Foundation Course in Software Testing. This means that India is on. I need to (1) go to Uxbridge today to confer with my boss, (2) go to the Indian High Commission tomorrow to try to get a visa, and (3) go to Gatwick tomorrow 11 am for travel inoculations and malaria pills. Then work on Thursday at Searchspace, and try to rest Friday. Monday Searchspace again, and Tuesday I’m off to Bangalore. I feel like Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, and Dorothy Lamour, with a bit of Deming and Beizer rolled in. (Deming is the “quality” guru beloved of the Japanese and Beizer is one of the gurus of the modern software testing industry). Later, after the course in Bangalore (25 people) I will travel to Pune, for another course with 25 people. Then, to Mumbai and home on July 1.

I hope it goes well. If it does, I may be invited to conduct courses here in the UK, as well as more courses in India. At least then I’ll not need inoculations. However, it looks like I might be on malaria pills semi-permanently.

I’m off/on the road/to Bangalore…..nope, doesn’t scan, and doesn’t sing well either.

“Heigh-ho, heigh-ho/to Bangalore I go.”

That’s better.

Michael Jackson’s acquittal

Tuesday, June 14th, 2005

This man’s life has gone from one high to another with great lows in between. He was so cute as a kid, and very talented. A great singer. Now he has been acquitted, and good luck to the jurors who acquitted him. I thought they’d not reach a verdict, but with all my information filtered through the news media, I believe that the picture we all got of what was going on at the trial was not accurate.

As for Jackson himself, where will he go? He has massive debts that can only be settled by selling Neverland (I’ll bet that whoever buys it turns it into a freak show, with tours of Jackson’s bedroom happening every hour on the hour…), selling the rights to music that he has bought, and generally trying to restart his career. In this time of rap, what will he do? How will he make any money?

Personally, he has now had two second chances. This is his opportunity to do whatever he likes, but be mindful that this kind of trial may happen again. He should consider the public relations angle of being so chummy with adolescent and pre-adolescent boys. If I were him, I’d ensure that all my bedmates (chaste or not) were well above the age of consent and could prove it in court.

I wish him all the best in his future life.

Back from Dublin

Monday, June 13th, 2005

We’re just back from Dublin today, quite exhausted. As I’ve mentioned, HWMBO has gotten a new job; thus, we had to take a short holiday before he starts. We settled on Dublin because (1) it is not in the UK, and (2) neither of us had ever been before.

We took BA from Gatwick, which airport I swore I’d never use again after my last trip to the US, where the train trip exhausted me before I actually got to the airport. However, HWMBO and I met at Victoria after I’d gotten the tickets, and we had a trouble-free ride to Gatwick, used the small people mover to get to the North Terminal, and got on the plane. As we’d expected not to be fed on such a short flight, we ate a small dinner before we emplaned. Wrong! They fed us a chicken salad sandwich and some other stuff. The operative word for this trip was food, from the very start.

After we got through immigration (they detained me not at all, and WL only for 30 seconds or so), and got our bags and got a cab, we discovered that the hotel was only about 13 euro away and relatively close. However, the hotel (name not mentioned to protect the gulity) was only 3 star, which didn’t include such luxuries as: air-conditioning (yes, it was very hot in Dublin Friday and Saturday!), noise-free nights (Sunday morning I was awoken by someone from an adjoining room shouting out the window, repeatedly), breakfast included (10 euro a pop for an OK breakfast), a tub that could easily be stepped into and out of (I kept banging my shin on the toilet), easy chairs (there was only one chair in the room, and it was a desk chair), decent beds (they were Murphy beds, fergawdssake! I suppose one has to expect such things in Dublin, but really…I haven’t seen a Murphy bed outside a lame slapstick comedy in my life.), and polite staff. When we started out on Thursday morning, we read in the hotel guidebook that bus schedules were available at the front desk. When I enquired, the polite, red-cheeked, jolly young lady moo’ed “No, we don’t have any.” and went back to her crossword puzzle or whatever. Quite annoying.

We managed to get into town, and found Dublin to be very like…London. Some of the same chain stores, most of the street furniture (the postboxes were green, but some still had George V’s or Edward VII’s cypher on them), and the left-hand driving were all the same. It’s a bustling city, with horrendous traffic jams around its central river, the Liffey, on which we saw only two boats while we were there, one a Duck tour and the other a moored barge. One chain hasn’t yet made it to central Dublin: Starbucks. However, before you Starbuck-haters rejoice, a permit was seen on a building next to the Bank of Ireland building that will allow Starbuck’s (Ireland) to build a branch there.

Trinity College and the Book of Kells were our first formal stop on Thursday. The tour is 10 euro, and was worth every euro-cent of it. Not only did we get a tour, with a young student whose wit and story-telling ability were exceptional, we got to see the Book of Kells (ancient Gospel book) for no extra charge. I gave him a 5-euro tip at the end and said, “Forget the student stuff, stick to the standup comedy and tour-guide business.” We also saw the College’s modern art museum, which had some interesting and innovative works. We then walked around and took the tram line. It doesn’t go anywhere interesting, but ran OK. We came right back, and then went to the canal.

We walked along the canal, which was very pleasant and serene with the exception of some of the characters on the banks. One tried to offer HWMBO a phone for sale, but he looked more likely to take HWMBO’s phone than to sell him one. A swan preened by the side of the canal. Goths preened on its banks, drinking some type of brew while doing so. The luxury apartments a-building along the river and the boat basin would have done London proud.

When I told people I was going to Dublin, almost everyone said, “Have a Guinness for me.” Now, I don’t really love the stuff, but we did want to go to a bar to drink in the ambiance. So we went to one right on the Liffey at O’Connell Bridge. I had a pint of Guinness and HWMBO had a latte and then a sparkling water. The air inside was breathable, thanks to the new no-smoking in pubs laws in Ireland. What a difference! I do wish they’d hurry up and get one here. The only thing we noticed was that there is a lot of smoking on the streets and outside buildings because the law forbids smoking inside. This is mildly annoying (having to walk through a cloud of smoke) but we managed.

The people were very cosmopolitan. There were many Chinese/Japanese, some of whom were not tourists, lots of people-of-colour of many other origins, and lots of bi-racial couples (beside us)! We had lunch on Thursday at a local sandwich chain and it was very good. We had dinner with a former workmate of mine at Quantime, Graham. It was at Tante Zoe’s, a Cajun restaurant on Crow Street in the middle of the Temple Bar district. It was delicious.

Friday we had breakfast at the hotel again, and discovered the charge (no one charged us for Thursday’s meal). So, we went out full but unsatisfied and made our way to the Irish Museum of Modern Art. This is housed in a Georgian building and was originally an old soldiers’ home. After Irish independence it was turned into the HQ of the national police force, the Gardai, and then abandoned. The government restored it and put a very creditable museum inside, as well as magnificant grounds and a formal garden outside. What a lovely spot! They concentrate on Irish art, but have other examples of art. Their cafe is first-rate too, and we then contentedly made our way back to Temple Bar. Here’s a picture of the bell tower over the chapel (which we didn’t get to see, unfortunately, as they only have tours in the summer, usually starting in June but this year in July…):

HWMBO in front of the steeple at the Museum of Modern Art

We did a lorra lorra walking; my feet were killing me. We had two lattes and two tiramisus at a coffee shop on the corner of Crow Street. The tiramisu were HUGE! Had we known, we’d only have ordered one. As it was, we managed. then some more shoeleather, and a picture of the “Elephant and Castle” restaurant (gay-owned, I’m told, by a couple who have the same name), of which more later. Then to The Juice, a vegetarian restaurant, where we met our friend Stephen and ate and talked until much too late. It’s so nice to know people in the places you go to as a tourist.I had tabbouleh and a canneloni, along with some very nice wine. Back to the hotel.

Unfortunately, the hotel has entertainment in the evenings, and on Friday night it was “Tina and Tony’s Italian Wedding”, with much feasting and booze. The music and shouting went on until the very wee hours. I wanted to shut myself up in the Murphy bed. Saturday night it was a “Christmas party” with some fake rip-off band. The drunks in the next room were shouting until 5 or 6 in the morning. Horrible.

Saturday was our quiet day. We decided to skip the 20 euro breakfasts and made our way to Bewley’s Cafe, a Dublin landmark that has fallen on hard times and been sold to new owners. I had two poached eggs and bacon on a bagel. It was delicious! We did some shopping, had lunch at Elephant and Castle (I had a Stiltonburger where the cheese was somewhat dry and under the burger, which didn’t help much. However, the fries were good. HWMBO had Buffalo-style chicken wings and couldn’t finish, there were so many.

Dinner was at the Bad Ass Cafe, still in Temple Bar. One of its claims to fame is that Sinead O’Connor once waitressed there. The food was good but I was bloated from all the eating and couldn’t finish the fajitas after a lovely vegetable soup and bread. No dessert for me.

The boys and girls of Dublin are really good looking. There was lots of skin on show all weekend, and even some bears for HWMBO. I got my fill too.

Oh, here’s a tip. Don’t use Dublin Airport on Sunday morning. It’s mobbed, why, I don’t know! We were in a queue for about 3/4 hour, with lots of families who seemed to be moving all their earthly possessions in a multitude of suitcases that weighed a ton. We did get on the plane, and got back to London and rested for the rest of Sunday.

Here’s another tip: get familiar with euro coins. I was forever scrabbling in my coin purse for the right coin or two and ended up using notes instead. We found lots of euro cents and 5-cent pieces on the ground. People actually don’t think they’re worth picking up. I will do my homework next time (if the euro is still in existence by then…)

One last thing: Dublin needs a gay and lesbian and bi and trans area. That would make it a really lovely livable and open city. We’ll definitely be back.

I gather I’ve been “book-tagged”

Saturday, June 4th, 2005

Whatever that is.

1) Total number of books I’ve owned:
The last time I moved I had about 45 cases of books. I have the equivalent of 7-1/2 floor-to-ceiling Ikea bookcases some of which have more books in them as they are two layers deep. I would guess about 1500 or so books.

2) The last book I bought:

Today, St. Augustine’s Confessions, in an abridged version (which I found out only after I bought it). I’ve been working with a group who together are translating it as a Latin exercise. It’s quite difficult later Latin but fun to translate.

3) The last book I read:

A book by my Columbia University faculty advisor and Dean of the College Peter Pouncey, “Rules for Old Men Waiting”. It’s his first novel and quite interesting.

4) Five books that mean a lot to me (in no particular order):

The American Episcopal Church’s Book of Common Prayer. My first exposure to Anglicanism and much better than either Common Worship or the Alternative Service Book.
Isaac Asimov’s biography, “In Memory Yet Green” and “In Joy Still Felt”. Interesting and voluminous 2-volume autobiography covering about 57 years. It goes to show you what keeping a diary can do for your memoirs.
The Bible. Sorry, folks, but there it is.
Hitchhiking to Heaven, by Lionel Blue. His fuller autobiography. He is an openly gay Rabbi here in the UK who is retired but often appears on Radio 4’s Thought for the Day. He is funny, poignant, and a role model in that his faith is constantly tested and he is constantly seeking transcendence in everything and everyone. He’s one of my heroes.
The Cornish Trilogy by Robertson Davies. He was a very funny Canadian author. The first book in the trilogy includes a character who reminds me very much of a friend of mine from the seminary (who is now dead). He was not the scoundrel that Davies’ character was but the character’s mannerisms and views on life remind me of Richard very much.

5) Tag five people and have them fill this out in their LJs

On second thought, let me tag one person, spwebdesign. He gets what he asked for!

We’ll be on the road…

Saturday, June 4th, 2005

or the plane, to Dublin on Wednesday night. As HWMBO is about to take up a new job, we felt we should have a short break before he has to start. So it’s off to Dublin, where we’ll be sightseeing, meeting friends, and chillin’ next week. I’m really happy about that and hope the flight and the stay are a nice break for us both.

And, at the end of the month, there’s a possibility that I might be traveling to India for a week to deliver ISEB Foundation Courses in Software Testing, thanks to my chum Steve who is fronting my work at Searchspace. I’ve never been to either Ireland or India. More on the latter as I know it.