Day 268 – Essential Preparations

98 – 100 Tips to Prepare for a RTW Adventure

There was a lot of preparation involved before I was ready to travel to Melbourne for work. Luckily I had a handy advice-page to help me through the rougher parts.

Get rid of your belongings

Check! … Sold my trusty 20kg PC and my handy touch-screen tablaptop and converted them into an XPS15. Now I have everything handy in a single package that is convenient to carry around.

Find a way to earn extra money

Check! … I write a blog that literally has multiple readers. I haven’t put any ads up, but I plan to make up for that in volume. I’m sure my check will be in the mail any day now.

I also strategically got a management job 19 months ago, which helps.

Decide on Travel style

Check! … I’m no good at camping, so I’ve opted for hotels. I also decided on flying to my destination; I’m sure it is a little more expensive, but the hours I save translate into at least another 3-4 blog posts, so that’s practically money in the bank.

I considered walking, but someone told me it’s far.

Exercise and get in shape

Check! … I know there’s always more I could have done, but I’m in good shape and more than ready for the long treks to and from the office. Even the longer slogs for dinner should barely be an obstacle. I probably can fit in a few desserts as well.

The unusual essentials

Check … I travel with my bluetooth headset for entertainment. I’m not sure that’s too unusual, but it’s definitely essential. I guess I could live without the mouse for the laptop, but it’s too much of a hassle operating this thing without.

Is a razor unusual? Is my medication? I think I’ve thought of everything that’s worth thinking about.

Do you have enough blank pages in your passport?

Check? … I … I think I can get there without my passport. But I checked, and there is room… I guess?

Sell house or notify landlord

… Pardon?

Get cash for each country you know you will be visiting

Melbourne isn’t a country.
What the hell are you talking about?

What does RTW stand for?

*click*

Uhm.

Guys…

Forget I posted this, okay?

Day 92 – Makes J a Dull Boy

Red has swallowed my calendar. I colour code meetings based on their nature and importance, and red is pretty much the top of the pile. Nothing moves them.

I think this is the first time my calendar was booked solid before I even arrived in Melbourne. And that’s taking into account spending an extra day down here.

I’m not sure exactly what happened.

And today is not over yet. The office-portion of my workday ran from 9am till 5pm with a quick break for lunch. Now, the hotel-portion of my workday is still ongoing; I even had my dinner in my room. I think around 9pm I’m going to call it a day and move on to the Jerry-needs-to-relax-now portion of the day.

I am blaming the Development Department Planning Day for taking over my calendar. Basically I managed to pick up a charter that includes responsibility for the planning day. And I don’t like half measures. So I learned about SWOT analysis, and a process for planning out from Objectives down to Projects.

And tonight I am preparing my input into all this analysis so I can lead by example tomorrow. Maybe somebody else in the group will know how planning days work, but I’d rather not gamble on it.

Which means, I must make sure the only person I have direct control over (myself) is across this stuff.

And then second half of tomorrow and first half of Friday will be dedicated to a split-day-planning-day. Also done on purpose, because I imagine that about halfway through we’ll come to the conclusion that we finally understand how a planning day works, and not everything we’ve done up to that point is quite right. So, the break in-between the two halves will give everyone a chance to re-group and re-think.

I try to be prepared for any eventuality.
I should have been a boyscout.
(But maybe not, because I hate their organisational politics)

Anyway. That’s my evening; how is yours?

Day 70 – Final Demo Prep

Tonight I have spent another evening doing preparation work for the demo I am presenting tomorrow. Maybe I’m a bit too much of a perfectionist, but it just doesn’t feel right to give a presentation without planning out what is important to cover, and how I make it all into a cohesive whole.

And then fit it within the allotted 20 minutes of time.

There will be other sessions that other developers may present on the detailed intricacies of parts of the material I am just going to gloss over, but I still need to make sure this presentation paints a compelling picture why our common libraries add so much value to our software development.

I’ve decided on a mix of slides to paint the broader context, and hands-on demos for the pieces where “show, don’t tell” will bear more fruit.

And I’m hoping I can get through the material in closer to 15 minutes, so that there are also 15 minutes for questions not 10.

I have a suspicion that there will be questions about features I will not show. And any attempt to comprehensively cover them all would probably result in a full day presentation not just half an hour. I’d rather have questions drive a few more ad-hoc demo segments and be sure that I’ll cover whatever interests the people attending.

But now… I feel a little hazy, and I should stop thinking about this.

I went to another cycle class after work and before this prep-work. Three classes into cycle, it feels like it is getting easier but I still have a serious case of gym-brain.

Day 28 – All Work and No Play…

I have no time for frivolity tonight… well, except for a quick bit of TV whilst having dinner and reading through some documents. Tonight I have to do some major prep-work for tomorrow.

I have a long meeting tomorrow morning with our help-desk to hear about their plans. They provided me with the documents I read earlier. I’m still not sure I approve of the noun “Learnings”, but I guess after using the words “Synergy” and “Value-add” more than occasionally myself lately, I guess I shouldn’t cast too many stones lest my beautiful glass house shatters.

Still… *grrr*

And now I’m back at my desk, facing some planning for a two short presentations I will be doing tomorrow. I have had the outline of my topics ready for some time. And I found the tools I need over the weekend.

I just need to flesh out the information that I need to get across and then time whether I can get through each of my topics within 10 minutes. I think it will be a case of ruthless cutting down to the bare-bones essentials.

Anyway; that work won’t do itself, so here I go!