Saturday, April 29

ramblings on a life of trends

I ... wake up; I shower, cook and eat (or not), drink coffee (or not), shoe my skates and go to office;

I attend meetings, complete tasks, browse, read and write email, then I have lunch and drink coffee (or not), maybe touching zen for a moment or practicing reiki and then, again, I attend meetings, complete tasks et caetera, et caetera ...

I come home, sometimes stop and rest on the way or buy something to eat sometimes, cook and eat (or not), then read until I fall asleep.

I wake up; I shower, dring a coffee (or not) ...


Same, ALL OVER AGAIN.


In all this, I can see ... trends; tensions, general dirrections and activities spanning over weeks or months, illusions I make and choose and get over ...
... like my restlessness over getting my new camera, for a week now;
... or my crush on someone that lasted for close to five months, which passed when I let it pass;
... or my enthusiasm with my new skates, my broken finger for three weeks, or diving and meeting people over the weekends.


Life is routine by now: I stil wake up, shower, drink coffee (or not) and generally go the whole nine yards before going to sleep, every day.


What I focus in my ramblings today on though, is that I don't remember most of it; There will come a time in three months or so, where my new skate wheels will be old (and my enthusiasm over them, all but forgotten); there will come a time when my not-yet-here-camera will be old, forgotten, a banality or broken through some accident, or simply in someone else's hand (and I know very clearly that it doesn't really matter).



When I came to Cyprus, I had been keeping a logbook, writing minute details of an afternoon one day, ideas on another, dreams, scares and small annoyances on the next;

I became bored with it - it was just another illusion in this regard - but I've been looking through it a few days back and all those small details bring back a whole bunch of richness I didn't expect.


Anyway, after all these ramblings, this is my idea: I go through every day, but my attention is not there; My everyday coffee doesn't really give me anything to remember, and neither do my status reports on the project, renting a book from someone or stopping on a bench on the sea-front to rest on my way home.

Instead, my life is one of trends; I remember giving a massage almost every day because I like giving massages, and skating to office or home (in general); I remember "major" events in my life, like sinking my camera, last years holydays, a lunch with friends over last easter, and the first party we threw when coming to cyprus (and the fact that I left it when the guys started getting drunk).

I remember that at some point in the last two to four months I decided that I will cut down on coffee, and that I became a vegetarian in the summer of last year (but only because people asked and I kept picking my brain for the answer); I remember my previous two work places in Romania and some of the coleagues (the ones I interracted more - or on a deeper level - with) and so on;

yup; a life of trends;

I've ... seen things you people couldn't belive ...
Attackships on fire near the shoulder of Orion ...
I've watched C-beams glitter in the darkness ...

All those ... moments ... lost ... like tears ... in the rain

"Tears in the Rain" - Vangelis (from BladeRunner, the soundtrack)

Friday, April 28

microbearings

I changed my set of wheels for the skates; the old bearings were getting rusty (and apparently I was supposed to oil them weekly or so).


Well ... At least I switched to micro-bearings.

Thursday, April 27

sheeps get their grooves on

sheeps get their grooves on

breathtaking

sometimes there are things i'd rather not know about, details of a world i'd rather pretend it's not there.

for example, here are some interesting pictures.

red poppy


red poppy, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

One of the shots I took a few weeks ago, on the biking trip to Kurion.

fixing Firefox' "memory leak"

here is a good description of setting a max. value for the cache firefox is allowed to use.

By setting this you prevent those situations where you have -like- 15 tabs opened and the application becomes unresponsive.

The Zamplizer

here is a small websie allowing you to run on-the-fly code tests in html, jsp, bash, c#, c++, java, perl, python, ruby and vb.net.

neat :)

Sunday, April 23

and here I was ...

... thinking I will spend my easter hollydays indoors!

friday's been ... relaxing; I really stayed indoors on friday, and rested;

on Saturday - yesterday that is - I went with some of the guys at Dasudi on the beach and played some beach-volley. It seems I'm not really awfull at beach-volley ... more like ... horrible.
but it was fun.

And today ... well ... I visited S today for an easter meal - well ... an ester vegetarian meal of sorts - and a movie.
It's been good, clean, GA approved family fun; well ... mostly; and we were no family;

Anyway!

Tomorrow we're probably going to repeat the volley performance somewhere around Agia Napa; that's the plan at least - I still haven't got over the muscle-fever from yesterday.

... And who knows what Tuesday might bring?



It's good to be alive
utnapistim

Thursday, April 20

zen

one sees people coming and going ...
and one gets happy or sad.

but in truth one sees not the people ... but their reflections on the mind ... coming and going ...

thus, it's not the people but the mind that is coming and going ...



there is no spoon
utnapistim (after having a strongbow)

no fun

this post is about grounding;

I don't mean the go to your room, you're grounded! stuff, but about grounding yourself when working with your own energy, or close to your own energy.

So ... what is grounding? It is the process of 'anchoring' your own energy; of making your energy structure stable, while you are doing some activity.

It's like this: if you're doing a meditation/yoga/massage therapy/whatever session, you begin with opening your chakras and letting the energy flow (more or less) freely.

Once you achieve what you want to achieve, you ground the energy in place.

It is also, what I didn't do today: I'm not sure why but I left my chakras open while giving massage;

It took all of 20 minutes for me to become exhausted;

yup! no fun!
(but a usefull experience nonetheless)


tiredly yours,
utnapistim

Meine neue Kamera

So, I received an email this morning, stating that
mein Nikon D50 KIT schwarz
inkl. AF-S DX 18-55 Objektiv, 6.1 Mpixel
420-Pixel-RGB Belichtungsmesssensor,
optimiertes AF-System, USB2.0, Serien-
bild mit 2.5 Bilder/Sek., inkl. DX 18-55
Objektiv, Li-Ion Akku EN-EL3,
Schnelllader MH-18a
has been sent to shipping.

Although I only wanted a black Nikon, I guess Nikon D50 KIT schwarz will work nicely.


G! g! g! g! g!


utnapistim on a sugar high

Wednesday, April 19

fascinated

for some reason, recordings like this[swf] have allways fascinated me.

Monday, April 17

the official red button appreciation page

hmmmmm[flash]

pressure points

so ... yesterday I slept a lot (reading and sleeping on and off for the whole day, swapping between two different books); then, I went to sleep relatively early (around 12 o'clock methinks).

as such, I woke up around 4 am and again around 5 am and started reading again ...

Conclusion? I ended up having no muscular tension at all, for most of the morning (I felt so exhaused that I had to stop when skating to office in order to avoid sickness from the effort). in short, I felt like a zombie all morning and through lunch.

Then, for a short coffee break after launch I decided I had had enough and started on some pressure points.

It took me all of four minutes to forget all about my sleepiness.

Damn, I'm good :D
utnapistim

grasp

it is easy to get rid of evil; what is infinitely harder is getting rid of good.
zen koan

I am finally grasping this; I finally start to see how this applies to me.

and I still know that nothing will be achieved by this. nothing at all.

utnapistim, online.

Friday, April 14

Thursday, April 13

Goliath Expedition

It is possible to journey by foot from the southern most point of South America back to England and leave behind you an unbroken trail of footprints!

This site will carry full detailed history of Karl Bushby's record breaking attempt to walk around the world.

It will take over twelve years to complete, It will cover over 36,000 Miles. It will test one man's ability to go it alone and walk around the world, in one non-stop journey. It is under way now and will provide one of the most interesting and captivating stories to be told.

Karl Bushby, a 36 year old ex paratrooper, is chasing that very dream to become the first person to complete an unbroken round the world walk.

He set off on 1st November 1998, he has completed over 17000 miles. With over 19000 more miles to walk, maintaining his current speed, he should return home to Hull in 2009. All the adventures, trials, tribulations and magical moments are illustrated in his personal journals. Karl has already walked through South and Central and North America.


At the moment the guy is being held in a Russian prison for tresspassing the border through Alaska.


strange that!
utnapistim

my option for now

after combing the net some more, I have settled for this; I'll still take some days to decide though ...

Wednesday, April 12

decisions, decisions decisions ...

so ... since I wrecked my camera and I'm stil photography obsessed (well ... almost), I've been combing some websites to help me decide on a new camera.

I decided I wanted to go dSLR, and I was preety sure I wanted a Canon Digital Rebel. Then I found out it's not the latest in it's class but I'm not sure if the difference in features justifies the difference in price (usually it doesn't for the latest model out there), and then I spoke to my brother who recommended me the Nikon d50: the price for Nikon is apparently better - at least for the camera body (I haven't checked the lenses options out there yet) - and the Nikon is - according to my brother at least - sturdyer.


So .. what do I do? what do I do?


I'll look into more reviews before deciding I guess.

undecidedly yours,
utnapistim.

Tuesday, April 11

sand dune


sand dune, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

the sand was very fine grained and impossible to pass over with the bikes; we had to unmount them.

scouting the road


scouting the road, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

we had stopped to scout the road ahead; It was rocky slopes; and besides, we needed the rest.

blossom


blossom, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

I have no idea what plant this is :|

at Lady's Mile


at Lady's Mile, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

this was the first stop down the road; We had tried crossing over the dried lake at Lady's Mile, but unfortunately at this time of the year it's not really dry.

By the time we got out of the mud (and the mud out of us) we desperately needed to catch our breaths (riding a bike through sand and mud is preety hard).

having a break


having a break, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

no kitekat.

A catching up


"A" catching up, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

red poppy


red poppy, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

I took this on the road to Kurion; We had stopped to wait for some of the guys and I figured the red would look great against the background.

It does :D

making friends with my bag


making friends with my bag, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

I took the backpack for the first aid kit, water, two oranges and my camera. Apparently it had other uses;

beer break


beer break, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

the guys;

We were five romanians and two polish guys (I'm behind the camera on this one).

We parked the bikes and stopped to eat some stuff.

no waves at Kurion


no waves at Kurion, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

Strangely, this is the first (or second) time I see this beach with no waves.

heading home


heading home, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

heading home from Kurion; The road there took us close to four hours (~30 Km), and we decided to head back on the road since we were all tired and some of us (namely I) needed to be home by six.

Sunday, April 9

international flooding day

underwater electric and electronic equipment is usually normal equipment, encased in a protective casing, and isolated with natural latex o-rings (which are usually coated in silicone grease themselves).

to flood underwater equipment, you will have - depending on your inventivity - multiple options;

for one, you could just get the equipment out of the casing and throw it into the lake/sea/ocean/quarry/kitchen sink; but that's too easy.

for another, you could ignore the silicone grease, and pretend you're actually protecting the equipment;

then, there are the more ellaborate ways, like go through all the right moves in the handling manual, but do it a bit carelessly, like I did :)

The moves are like this:
first, you wipe all himidity from the casing and arround it; if you trap a small drop of water on the o-ring when closing the casing, it will leak;

second, get out the o-ring and wipe out any dust from it; then coat it in a thin, uniform layer of silicone grease; If you add too much coating, water will push it in and the casing will flood in; If you don't add enough or not in an uniforma coating, water will push through, and it will (again) leak in.

third, put the oring back, being careful not to stretch it at all; O-rings are sensitive to stretching and if you do, it's sealing capabilities lessen some more;

fourth, place camera inside the casing, and close it carefully; Afterwards, inspect visually the o-ring again, making sure it makes a continuous contact with the casing, both on the lid and the actual case.

fun? Yeah ... all ten minutes of it :|


Now, if you really want to be inventive about flooding your camera unit (for example) you will go through all the steps above, but you will not wash (and dry) your hands before starting; and in case you're handling SCUBA gear (or something else having sand particles on it) before that, you might actually get somewhere.

I know I did: When I finished the first dive I had about 1cm of brown, muddy water in the casing, and the camera had been blocked open; batterries had shortcircuited in the first few seconds and I'm not sure I'll be able to use them again (they were rechargable).

I was able to save the memory though, but the four shots I took before the great flood are nothing spectacular in themselves :(.


Anyway, since it's international flooding day, I figured a small camera is not enough; thus, for the second dive I decided I'd flood my torch as well;

I'm not sure how that happened, but I guess you can't have all the knowledge all the time.


So, in conclusion, I'm thinking seriously about getting a Canon Rebel, with another underwater casing.



Happy flooding day to all of you :)
utnapistim

Friday, April 7

office window in the rain


office window in the rain, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

It's been raining this week and Wednesday I decided to snap some pictures; this is one of them.

finally!

It was like this:
First I made the order; then, I got a paper slip asking me to go to the post office and pick up my package; I went and they toold me it had been sent to the company;

after four days of asking daily at the front desk some variation of
Hi, has any package arrived for me?
, i got to the post-office again, and asked for my package.

... and here it is, in all it's glory:

books, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

Thursday, April 6

sad

now this[flash] is really really sad!

well ... funny actually ... or sad, in a funny kind of way.

(poor bunny!)

Tuesday, April 4

a shift in focus is needed

first I would like to say that by focus I mean the way - and target - you focus to achieve a certain goal.
In less dry terms, it's like this: if you want 'peacefull coexistence with others' (however you might define that) and your focus is changing others to be more peacefull you will only create resistance, simple becausepeace comes from within;
If you want to solve a major problem, the first step is to no longer support and maintain it, at the deepest levels, not to start fighting it;

Stil too dry for an explanation?

Let's take my company, where things don't work well; ok, things move forward, but slow; you see good examples of hit and run management in the upper layers, and can play BSBingo in most meeting's projects.

As Antione de Saint Exupery said in The Citadel when you want to build a ship, you don't gather a team of ship enthusiasts and have them work on it: it will NEVER be built. Instead, you make a team of nail-crafters, and wood choppers, and a good designer, and tailors that would love to just make sails.
Then, in their love of crafting nails and chopping wood and making sails, the ship takes shape in their hearts.

It's the same here: I want to write code; some of us love designing; others, want to play with the application, or just have the satisfaction at night that they helped correct it today.

However, that is not good enough for the management. Some manager at the top decided we had to be customer focused, and thus decided that we should all (including spuses, the security guys, and the cat at home) should know and fulfill our mission:
we should focus on key market segments ...
... and through a combined offering of software products and services, backed by a deep knowledge of our customers' business ...
... and ...

FOR HEAVEN'S SAKE!

Let's say the build crashes, and I'm looking into it; how?
well ... first, I'll focus on the key market segments while I check the build logs; then I'll grep for errors using a deep knowledge of the customer's business ...

In short, we received yesterday something similar to the security batches we all love to wear (since they open our doors), that should be worn along with it;

what does it do?
Nothing; well ... it's blue and white and states our mission statements, our strategy and everything else.

our strategy, originally uploaded by utnapistim.



It's also too soft to butter your bread with it, but big enough that you either glue it to your batch or it keeps in your way.

In short, USELESS.
(but hey, now I can read the mission statement in the bathroom).


BIIIIINGOOOOO!


hypocritically yours,
utnapistim

Monday, April 3

inside a cabin


inside a cabin, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

well ... this one is a bit fuzzy, since the lighting inside was low.

Anyway, I wanted to show it since it was so interesting inside :)

In this picture you see two sleeping mats, electricity cables, plumbing pipes and the exit somewhere in front.

It was really spectacular.

going to the divesite


going to the divesite, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

looking over the edge


looking over the edge, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

antenna (or is it a crane?) of the Zenobia

P by a propeller


P by a propeller, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

perspective


perspective, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

truck, leaning on the deck of the Zenobia

diver passing by the chimney


passing by the chimney, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

technical divers


technical divers, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

looking up


looking up, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

bubbles


bubbles, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

divers down below


divers down below, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

safety stop


safety stop, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

divers afar


divers afar, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

divers conferrence at the Zen


divers conferrence at the Zen, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

zen perspective


perspective, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

deck of the Zen


deck of the Zen, originally uploaded by utnapistim.

Saturday, April 1

post-dive syndrome

I did two dives today, at the Zenobia. As before, I had to wake up at six, shower, grab something to eat and put together the diving gear.

Then I met P. at 7:30 and by 8:20 we were in Larnaca, in the bay.

At 9:40 I was at 2 metres under sea-level, and descending :)


so, what is post-dive syndrome?

Nothing.

Infact I doubt the term exists ...

But after the dives last time I spoke with P on the way back and I figured if there was a 'post-dive syndrome' then this is what we talked about ...

It's like this:
you come out of the water after the last dive of the day, maybe half frozen, a bit tired or needing to use the bathroom. After that, and after getting dry, and eating and maybe getting a shower or something to eat, calmness fills you.

I thought I was the only one going through that, but after talking about it with P I figure it's a syndrome.


I am home now, in my (recently cleaned) room and my wet gear is laying behind me on the floor, still unpacked.

And. I. Am. Calm.
At peace.


But enough about that; now that you know what some weird guy on the net calls the post dive syndrome, go do something usefull with your life.
Dive for example ...

... or, if you're not a diver, plan to become one ...
... or go swimming and then plan learning to dive ...
... or plan to learn to swim so you can go swimming, then slowly learn to dive ...

... or light a cigarette ... (but my personal oppinion is you're better off diving then smoking, if anyone gives a damn about my personal oppinion).


Anyway!

enjoy your weekend as will I!
utnapistim
(suffering in silence through the post dive syndrome since September 2004)