May 262005

The days have been very long, but the week has gone by quickly. Tomorrow is the last day of the workshop, followed by dinner with the big boss, in Chinatown. Two of my coworkers are leaving on the 6 a.m. flight Saturday morning, but Vince and I are staying til Sunday morning. Saturday I’m going solo to sightsee, maybe buy a couple more gifts.

The days have been full of work-talk, followed by resting up for a bit, some shopping, and then dinner, which includes even more work-talk. I know we’re here on business, but even I can only take so much computer talk in one day, regarding things I no longer care about. Last night we went to a cool restaurant in the Riverwalk area downtown that was four flat-decked boats in the river, connected by ramps to the shore. Sadly the food was only mediocre but the venue and setting more than made up for it. Besides, I didn’t pay for it. 🙂 I also forgot to take my camera with me, and there were some prime photo opportunities. Maybe I’ll get back down there before I go, but it’s unlikely. The camera is awkward to carry with me because it’s a bit bulky and has no wrist- or neckstrap, so I have to drop it in a cargo pocket or carry it in my hand everywhere.

Of course dinner conversation was almost entirely work-related, and we sat there until 11 p.m. By then, I was ready to run screaming into the night and fling myself in the river to escape it. Marty spouts more convoluted technobabble than an episode of Star Trek. He’s one of those super brilliant people who’s slightly retarded socially, but he’s such a nice guy that, although you want to tell him to shut up, you can’t really dislike him. Darren has helped keep me sane because he’s feeling the same way I am, and we commiserate and quietly poke fun at things and people to vent our frustration. Our Singapore coworkers have been the soul of help and hospitality, but I’ve had far too much togetherness. Organizing anything outside of work is like herding cats, and we spend a lot of time shuffling around aimlessly before we decide on a course of action. I begged off dinner tonight because they all wanted to get started with it at 9 p.m., and it would end up the same way as the last three nights: lots of drinking and more talk about work. Just one more day of playing the corporate zombie, then I’m free to roam for a day. I can’t wait.

Today we visited the data center at the new SingTel building and got the grand tour. It was all clean and sparkly, with state of the art server rooms, neatly laid out cables, and top-flight security and disaster-recovery systems. It also smelled like a barn.

L to R: Darren, Marty, my bathroom (the glassed-in shower stall is to the right of the tub), and my bed (which is turned down every afternoon)

A badly done panorama shot (I don’t have Photoshop with me to fix it):

Some more city shots:

Since I wasn’t hungry for dinner, I ordered dessert from room service: chocolate wontons on caramelized bananas with bourbon vanilla ice cream. I wasn’t too proud to lick the plate.

 Posted by at 8:53 am
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