The last three months

I must apologise for the lack of updates over the past while — real life suddenly got very, very busy.  I’ll sum up what I’ve been up to:

Work stuffs

I left Web Africa at the end of November 2013: several internal changes made in 2013 transformed the company from an awesome place to work to a totally hideous place to work.  (And, from general sentiment on MyBroadband, a totally hideous place to do business with as well now.)  I’m now over at Khanyisa Real Systems, which is another awesome place to work: small, everyone has fun while working hard at the same time, new technologies to play with, I’m no longer bored out of my skull… it’s how the development department at Web Africa was before upper management wrecked it.

Of course, this means that I have to update the About Me page again.  I’ll do this Soon™.

Family stuffs

Some of you reading this already know, but for those who don’t: Little Annoying Sister is expecting her first child in late June.  Tim, Kelle and Amy have already taken to calling me “Uncle Won-Won”… yeah, that title isn’t going away any time soon.

Relationship stuffs

Amy and I have been up to all kinds of awesome/crazy things lately — an awesome weekend going back in time to the Victorian era at Matjiesfontein, acting like tourists in our own city — it’s been fun.  I’ve obviously been slacking with putting write ups on here, but Amy has been posting our adventures on her own blog, so I’m just going to redirect you all there.

Location stuffs

Due to (1) new work location, (2) proximity to Little Annoying Sister and her Future Spawnling and (3) proximity to Amy, I’m relocating back to the Southern Suburbs (specifically: Rosebank) at the end of this month — though, I’m going to really miss living with Tim and Kelle.  Blog updates will probably stop dead again until Telkom wires my new place up.  Probably in a few years or so.

World of Warcraft stuffs

We had a lull since my post detailing our Kor’kron Dark Shaman kill due to people not being around due to end of year work pressures, then people not being around for December/January holidays, then people deciding not to raid any more and me having to recruit new people and gear them up.  We’ve slowly ramped back up since mid-January though, and are currently working on Siegecrafter Blackfuse.  After that’s killed, it’s just the Klaxxi Paragons (which, from my experience on the “tourist” difficulty levels, should be dispatched without too much trouble) and Garrosh (which, being the last raid boss, will be a nightmare) left until we’ve cleared Siege of Orgrimmar (on normal anyway, we’re not going to get very far on heroic, I’m afraid).

I’ve been considering setting up a separate blog for the World of Warcraft stuffs, but if I’m slacking on maintaining this one…

Miscellaneous stuffs

  • One of the PCF admins got in touch with me requesting a patch for a user-requested feature, so I wrote and submitted it.  I took a quick look around the place while I was there, and Panorama Publishing has totally ignored the place since my departure, which I had predicted.  They seem totally uninterested in having someone around to keep it going, and since my patch met with a frosty reception (evidently, some users still have the mindset of me being responsible for Panorama’s mismanagement), my feeling towards the place is now: let it burn.  Good riddance.
  • I managed to turn my mother into a planespotter when British Airways sent an A380 to Durban for crew training for around two weeks.  (There’s a video of it landing here, which is well worth watching for any aviation enthusiasts lurking here.)
  • If you ever visit the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, don’t pull a Jeremy Clarkson and run out of petrol in Pripyat.
  • A woodchuck would chuck as much wood as a woodchuck would chuck if a woodchuck would chuck wood.

Real life questing

With a public holiday yesterday, and with an old friend from Durban finally coming down to visit, I decided to take some people on a tour through the Winelands.  Also joining me were my two future housemates, and a new friend of mine: a visiting master’s student from Canada (being the only non-nerd in the group).

Of course, in true nerd style (much to our non-nerd’s bemusement), we did this in the style of a World of Warcraft quest chain:

  1. Assemble a party of fellow questers.  Your fellow party members may be found in Mowbray, Sunningdale and Gordon’s Bay.
  2. Journey to the Boschendal Wine Estate and acquire 1 Bottle of Fine Red Wine.  Completing this quest requires 50 gold.
  3. Journey to Fairview and acquire 2 Cheese Platters and 1 Loaf of Freshly-Baked Bread.  Completing this quest requires 100 gold.
  4. Prepare a Banquet of the Winelands to feed your party.  A Banquet of the Winelands may only be prepared at the Afrikaanse Taalmonument.  Party members that spend at least 10 minutes eating and drinking will be Well Fed and will receive the buff “Scribble Big Bang Theory Quotes on Ron’s Car” for 6 hours. (My fault for not washing it!)

I also took everyone to Nederburg and through the Huguenot Tunnel afterwards before the group disbanded.  Muchness of fun.

Vivid imaginings

It goes without saying that most of us geeks tend to have rather vivid imaginations.  I fell into that category — would spend my youth reading various fantasy novels (in my Grade 7 year, we had The Hobbit as a set work: I finished the book in one evening of solid reading, and then kept on re-reading it through the rest of the year).  These days, I still read books of that genre (I recently discovered around R600 of old Exclusive Books gift vouchers lying around, and promptly went out and got as many of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire books as the vouchers would let me), as well as having a sort of addiction to role playing games (explaining the occasional board game evening of Arkham Horror, as well as the fact that I’m an avid World of Warcraft gamer — and more recently, Diablo III).

That said  I’ve always been a Calvin & Hobbes fan as well.  It’s something that I’ve always been able to relate to, for two main reasons: one is that I shared his vivid imagination growing up, the other being that I was just as naughty as he was.  (None of those have changed, by the way!).

Anyway, last night, I stumbled across the following image.  The artist depicts an adult Calvin, understanding the importance and value of having an imagination growing up.  If in the future I have kids, I can imagine myself in the image as well.

Calvin as a dad...

I don’t know who the artist is, by the way.  If you know, or if the artist is you, please get in touch!

(Footnote: George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire books forms the basis from where the current Game of Thrones TV series was derived.  If you enjoy the show, but haven’t read the books, you’re doing yourself a great disservice.)

The awesomeness that is the Western Cape

As I’ve alluded to somewhere else on this website, I have the habit of simply jumping into the car and just driving wherever the road takes me.  I’ve done several such trips, and my thoughts afterwards are always the same:

The Western Cape is a simply beautiful part of the world.

I had a close friend stay with me for the weekend (she’s both female and crazy, so whether that’s a blessing or a curse is highly debatable – but that’s a whole different subject, and is not the point that I’m trying to make here) – so, I decided to show her around the place.  This consisted of a small roadtrip to Hermanus (going there via Grabouw and Botrivier and returning via Kleinmond and Betty’s Bay), and then a visit to the Paarl winelands the next day.  Cameras were forgotten about in a moment of absent-mindedness, but we both realised how amazing this part of the world is.  Probably the defining moment was when I pulled off onto a view site on the road between Pringle Bay and Gordon’s Bay.  Behind us, mountains; in front of us, False Bay and the distant mountains around Muizenberg and Fish Hoek on the other side.  It was a moment just sitting there in silence, taking in the view, contemplating life, the universe and everything.

I feel so privileged to be living here, and even more so that I was able to share this with someone who hadn’t experienced it before.