Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Daddy - What Do You Do At Work ?

At 8 years old, I never had a conversation with my father about his work - about what he did or how he did it. Nor at 18 years old, 28, or even now. All I new then was that he worked in an office. He had a driver pick him up to take him to office and drop him home again, and a couple of other places. Occasionally, a flag would be placed at the front of the car. And every about 3 years, maybe a little more, we'd pack up and move some place else because of his job. I grew up to know what he did, but he never told me himself. I never knew, matter of fact, I still dont know, what he loved about his job, or what he hated about it. I didn't know if what he did benefited other people and in which way if it did at all.

Tonight at bed time, my 8 year old asked me about my job, and what exactly I do and how I do it. We spent close to 2 hours talking. At the beginning the concepts of network engineering and architecture didn't make sense, but it slowly started coming together as we talked.

She wanted to start configuring routers, and have me explain Cisco configuration syntax, and how that makes the Internet work. She wanted to start tracing network cables to switches, and know more about how this firewall thingie burns naughty packets that try to cross network boundaries. And how does information fly from the laptop or iPad wirelessly to our wireless router to get to the Internet.

We had such a wonderful conversation that suddenly opened up an amazing world that she wanted to learn all about there and then. But it was way past her bed time. I'd peaked her curiosity enough for her to maybe want to take "Scripting for Kiddies" classes - we missed the last sign-up, but another class will come round again.

Before going to bed, she asked if I can take her to one of my clients so she can see all these things. To my clients, not likely, but I got plenty of colleagues who work in an enterprise environment, instead of a consulting environment, that would be happy to have me bring her around for a data center walk-through.

I can't wait.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

4.4 On the Richter Scale

At 6.05 yesterday morning my alarm went off. I hit snooze not too long after and slipped under the covers again.

A few minutes later our apartment block shook. It rumbled. A brief terrifying rumble. You ever get those cold chills that run down your spine? I felt that after I heard the lady in the apartment upstairs shout out. Although it seemed to last longer than was really comfortable, it must have been over in 5 seconds. Maybe 3. But it was more than any alarm could do to get me out of bed faster than I ever have or could.

My wife, just as terrified, jumped outta bed just as fast, heading to our 2 year old daughter's bed to grab her out of her bed, and I headed to my older daughters' room to get them outta there quick. My 8 year old was up - she'd been scared out of her mind and out of her bed too. I don't think I can remember a time when she held me so tight out of fright.

My other daughter, we've always joked could sleep through an earthquake. Its not funny, but she actually did. I dragged her out of bed and headed to our dining room, to "drop, cover and hold". I've always wondered if that's the smartest thing to do, or to run out the building onto the street. If the rumbling wasn't over so quick, I don't think I'd have kept my family in that apartment. I'd have been out on the street with them, half-naked in Spongebob Squarepants pyjama bottoms. Whether or not that would have been the correct thing to do, I don't know.

Angelenos, are not only so used to this earthquake thing, but seem to take pleasure in it when its all over (IF no one got hurt). I thought I was weird when I got onto twitter to see if that might have been what I thought it was, and sure enough hashtag #earthquake was already starting to trend. Twitter a lot of the time breaks news faster than prime time TV does, except when LA prime time TV has to "interrupt normal programming to bring us breaking news" (their words) about the highway police chasing another idiot down the freeway - we actually love those, so we don't really complain.

Tonight all the girls are in our bed. They used a perfect excuse to not want to sleep in their own beds - and tonight we didn't fight them on it.

Monday, December 2, 2013

A Venice Beach Sunset

On Saturday we  took the kids to Venice Beach to catch the sunset. What a beautiful sunset it was too.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Vlog: Turtles & An Empty Aquarium

A couple of days ago, a cousin of mine met a "traveling Chinese" lady - she kept calling her a "traveling Chinese" lady and wouldn't explain what that even meant. Like was she on a road-trip, was she visiting L.A., why did she have a store if she's traveling. Anyways, this traveling Chinese lady was selling a pair of turtles that she thought the kids would love, and would also add an "exotic" touch to my wife's aquarium !!

Kids loved them no doubt. I'll let the video tell the rest of the story ...

... so our challenge, if you've watched the video above, is should we keep the turtles, because the kids love them, and/or because and it'll give our aquarium something different than the "regular" fish I've never been too flattered about anyways, or just give them up and turn them in to the pet store that my wife gets all her fish and aquarium bits and pieces from? My wife wants no major part in looking after turtles, even though she's the self-confessed aquarium lover.

I dont really think the kids would mind their being given away that much. They'll complain a little bit, but will go back to living with the fish, which they themselves are not too flattered with. They would rather have hamsters - something I suggested to my wife and she emphatically said "NO" to.

In reality, all they really want is a dog. All I really would care about is a dog. But I gotta say no to that at this point in time, until we get a bigger place to live in. The Mrs isnt opposed to that idea, and for once, regarding pets, she agrees with me on when it'll be worth having a dog around.