Tail end of this week has been pretty different. The company I work for is a software company and well, we write computer software, more specifically to make people's lives easier, more pleasing and satisfying and generally enable people's interaction with software to obtain various goals. For all that, people buy our software. So not surprisingly software engineers make up most of the company. So this week we had a engineering conference to connect engineers from different companies and disciplines within Citrix. That happened on Thursday in London at thr Excel exhibition center. At lunch I went for walk around, found that their was the London Marathon registration there too and there wasa huge area with sponsers booths Selling and showcases various running gear. I Dithered here tremendously. I had a whiff of the Adidas clothes booth, Garmin's latest running watches and just dithered generally. Friday, the next day, I travelled to Citrix Research and Development in Cambridge for their Technology Fair. I dithered. I didn't dither as excitingly as I dithered at the Garmin stand or the vo2max treadmill but I got a fairly average dithering experience. Actually, it must have pretty average because I dithered the hell out of there after an hour or so. I'm doing research at the moment at work, researching a few new technologies that aren't released yet but may be of benefit to us if we can be ahead of ourselves when it does get released. It's strange not to be coding but is great to have free reign, non-code related deadlines and I got to do webcasts and presentations about my findings, that's been pretty cool. I went to drinks this weekend, too briefly perhaps. I was invited to a Birthday drinks and I surely thought it fitting to make at least an appearance for a Birthday is worth while. It's not that it'd be rude not to attend, this is not it, it's that it's a good thing to acknowledge. That said, I don't particularly enjoy meeting strangers really, especially a whole flock of them in the same space as me. In fact if I had my way, I do away with strangers altogether. Perhaps a bit extream However I'd know only people that I wanted to, speak to people only I wanted to. Very positively unnatural. Also rather dull. How I hope this thought perhaps in only temporary. I did it though and then escaped to here, where I am now with a coffee, my iPad and the gentle stimulating damp reverberate jazz being played through the cafe speakers. Right now, I'm reflecting on thse last 15 minutes, while watching the cars in front of this glass screen slowly amble by as I watch them between sips of my coffee. I was going to just have a coffee-to-go but as I waited, i was struck by the view of the world passing by me almost passenger view of it all from this cafe. Not only this but it then looked rather comfortable, the easy sounds and wooden decor be and appealing as I started thinking about my brief escape and the last 15 minutes before it. It wasnt really an escape but more a dilligent retreat.Perhaps it was an escape, I'm not sure. My coffee is still in the take-out cardboard/plastic container. I must say, sitting here without a cause in the world - I feel I like this about London, the fact that it looks like the whole world is there out on the street in front if you and it's ok to just look at the way of the world, traffic, fashion and faces. I guess I'd like France too for its cafe cultures but maybe not: I like the seclusion and impersonal way that you can stare out the window, and just being for a while. Sometimes I think we don't 'be' on purpose enough. Sure, if you just be and don't care, that's another thing alltogether which is an attitude that I'm not fond of. Cafes, I imagine, in Paris are like the ones in Covent Garden - little chairs out on the street. I'm not so hot on these kinds. One thing I've come to realise is how I don't really or aren't really good at is, looking for interest in other people. Sure, people are interesting but I'm not a fan of prying them open to find it - I like being surprised. There is a mysterious thing about interesting things finding you and not the other way round. The last 15 minutes I found were awkward, I remember just now the forehead of someone talking to me, and as I glanced at his moving lips, I realised I'd not really listened at all to a word he'd said nor knew what he was talking about and where he was in his account of whatever he was talking about. I listened to the silence of boredom and contempt perhaps of my being there and feeling irritable that I felt uncomfortable. There was glimpses of the hosts but they popped in and out much like a hummingbird eagerly assessing each flower it dips into of the health and of it's ripeness. The smell of beer was ever present as was the general chattering and I found myself very much alone. It was a beautifully styled pub, the kind i like to find myself in more for a quick dinner, either way I became Bored. And becoming bored is not the fault of anyone but yourself. I think it's your thoughts and attitudes that derive ones boredom so it cannot be blamed because us inherent to ones character that one becomes bored of one or the other thing which is all related to how your character percieves situations. After I had the conversation with the forehead, I had a brief chat with someone else and then realising that I wasnt particularly interested and probably wasnt interesting myself, thought that I'd do my self conscious justice and aid a hastily retreat to this quite, comfortable coffee shop. And thinking about it, I wonder if it's because I don't drink alcohol, no that's not it. It's something else. It's the general freedom to which conversation and personal time spent is considered a cheap commodity. This is what is meant by talk is cheap and I think it accurately describes this small talk, which is what I detest most about the last 15 minutes. In a word, I think such a conversation such as mine with the forehead indicates something underlying about such a gathering or perhaps indeed myself that I can only describe as soulless. Am I souless? And this is no disservice to those that attended, only that I found the format was such that it felt it without soul or character. It must be said that this may be because this is how I perceived my experience and indeed is perhaps a personal realisation and one that's unique to me. But I guess, if this is true then Im satisfied with how I interpreted it, as it's true to how I feel but I can't quite stop thinking about this uneasiness I felt. Indeed I've had to write about it to try decipher my own misgivings. I'm reading Dostoyevsky's the Idiot which I've now bought and read in earnest. I bought a awesome little bargain today, it's a linux based device that I bought for £14 which was previously being sold for £70 or so. I'm trying to now put Debian linux on it and use it as a personal development server/environment. I also bought a new ipad dock and this was allstill in my bag while i was at drinks. Maybe that's why I left early...but who am I kidding, right?
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