It's a good thing that last Friday was my last day at work. Timmy has had a bad cough all through Christmas. We have to nebulize him with salbutamol three times a day and sometimes at night, if his breathing is particularly bad. We need to give him medicine for his colds and lung phlegm and sometimes paracetamol if he's uncomfortable because of fever. So I wouldn't have been able to go to work yesterday or today anyway, since often we need to be up late at night taking care of him.

We're going to Cagayan de Oro. We're hoping that the air (or the huge decrease in pollution) there will help his cough. He's still very happy and cheerful (except when his body or teeth ache because of fever or teething), but I wish the noises from the phlegm in his chest would go away.

I'm sure they will. He had coughs in December last year, this is probably the same. It could go away FASTER though. It's a bit hard to listen to him breathe :-(


Timmy - Growing U.P.

Timmy is growing fast. He seems to be growing longer, rather than wider. At his doctor's (the lovely Dr Maelene Pile, highly recommended) appointment he hadn't gained weight but had gained length. He's also very active, so maybe that's why he's not gaining so much weight.

Even though he does enjoy lounging like an adult

He still enjoys pretending to be laundry

We don't go to U.P. enough. Sol and I graduated at The University of the Philippines at Diliman, although, ahhh, in different decades :-). We hope that Timmy goes to college there too, although if he doesn't, I'm sure he'll go somewhere better :-).

I'd have more pictures of U.P., except I mostly take pictures of timmy and sol

In those pictures, by the way, Sol is modeling the baby sling from Next9. It's very convenient and it looks lovely (although they have production problems, I think, so some things are out of stock).

My stepfather arrived from the U.S. and we stayed with them overnight one weekend before they flew onward to Cagayan de Oro. My stepfather had an unexpected long stay in the U.S. because he had some blood clotting related problems (in his leg, fortunately, not his brain).

Timmy spends a lot of time with my mother-in-law

We've been coughing a lot lately, Timmy and I. Fortunately, he's been taught by my mother-in-law to cover his mouth when coughing. And to pretend to cough and then to cover his mouth when he sees me coughing. Or maybe he's joking when he does that. Or suggesting I should cover my mouth. But I think he's joking, he always is, when he's crinkling his eyes like that.

He likes standing around with books, looking cute.

Something he might have not done so effortlessly if he'd known it was hair clipping day.

The first few minutes he was entertained by Barney on the TV, and his toy car barber's chair

After that he realized how unusual all these events were and the tears started flowing.

Fortunately he's very resilient. These were from a few hours later, at home, but he'd forgotten the tears just five minutes after we left the barbershop.

And a few days later he was back being cute again :-).


Last day

Yesterday was my last day at work. I'll continue to provide completely optional support, unpaid. But this is because I really want to do the work. The database there is on the order of 400GB (I thought it was 500+GB, but then I ran a few clusters and lost some bragging rights). That's the main reason I want to work with it. I have permission to continue some experimental work to enhance performance and since I don't have access to any other database that large, I'm happy to do the experimental work for free because I'll learn from it :-).

The last week or so of work I was sick a lot. Some of that was due to the weather, some of it was, perhaps, over-adventurous eating :-). But a lot of it was just fatigue. Timmy is a handful and I'm not in my prime anymore. I'm going to have to get much more fit so I can take care of him fulltime when we get to New Zealand.

That's the proximate reason for quitting a job I enjoyed thoroughly. We're migrating to New Zealand so it was convenient to quit at the end of the year and take a month and a half to get ready for the trip. Now I'm trying to figure out what I'll be doing. I need to limit reading online articles. If I don't consciously limit it, I'll do it all day. every day. I need to be much more hands on with Timmy, and I need to exercise (weights and aerobics work) so that I get more fit.

I'm planning to learn how to use git too, and oracle, and visual C#, probably. I'll work more with java (after a very long hiatus) and maybe play with SQL Server. I'm working with the developer or express editions of all that payware, so there will be some things I won't learn (e.g., how oracle works on grid hardware or how to cluster oracle or SQL server for multi-master functionality). But it should be enough to learn the basics.

I'd love to learn more about postgresql, maybe even enough to be able to submit some patches. But that's just a wish, not something I'll be pushing extremely hard to do.



I've been sick since about Thursday. It's something like the flu, with the aches, runny nose and chills. Lately I'm coughing up a lot of phlegm and have a stuffy head (with some dizziness). It'll go away, it always does. It's miserable though. I hope I'm well enough to go to work tomorrow.


the smell of idiots

Sol and I were at Kimono Ken today. That's our new favorite japanese restaurant. I've been disappointed at Sushi-ya the last few times we've been there because while they've kept the prices the same, they've reconfigured the menu so that cost is lower (i.e., they provide smaller portions).

At the low end, the other alternative is saisaki. But that's like the Delifrance at St Lukes for me now. I will never eat there again. In fact, it's possibly worse than the Delifrance at St Lukes because I will never eat at saisaki again even if someone else pays for the buffet.

The food is reasonable, but saisaki is part of a group of restaurants that includes Dad's and Kamayan. Unfortunately, Dad's (or Kamayan, but now the whole group of restaurants) has a singing group at each combined restaurant. They're cute, I suppose, for people new to the Philippines, but they're extremely annoying to anyone who just wants to enjoy their meal. So we're never going there.

But back to that title there. We were at Kimono Ken. It's our new favorite japanese restaurant (Sugi in Makati would be an easy favorite, but we can't afford to go there more than once or twice a year). We've had a few great meals there. Today though, the waiter was wearing some cologne that smelled like ammonia. Seriously, what non-idiot would spend a fortune on a scent that makes them smell like a toilet? I have never thought it was a good thing for anyone (particularly men) to wear any sort of scent. But when I can smell someone from 6 meters away, I start to estimate how dumb that person must be, and the further away I can smell them, the dumber they must be.

I wouldn't mind if they were just dumb, but, like smokers, they force their stupidity into my consciousness just by being there and stinking. Next time, we might go to another Kimono Ken branch. Or if not, I'm certainly going to request another waiter.

The salmon sashimi, yaki-soba, yaki-udon ang uni were wonderful though. The spicy maguro sushi wasn't any good. don't go there. the juice shakes were too sweet, but after I'd cut my shake with about a glass and a half of water I could finally stand it.

Too sweet is a problem in this country, but it's not something i fight too hard. Some wars are not worth fighting (and this one is unwinnable). I would have ordered beer, but we had gone to the Podium by motorcycle, and I won't have a single beer if I'm going to be driving within the next twelve hours :-).


Timmy's Birthday

It was Timmy's first birthday last Friday, Nov 2, 2006. Fortunately, that's a holiday due to All Soul's and All Saint's day. We're going to miss Nov 1, Nov 2 being holidays when we're in New Zealand.

We decided to go to a hotel, take a suite and have the party there instead of at home. Home is a bit small and parking is impossible, so having the party in a hotel works *much* better. We liked that enough that we'll probably be at the same hotel (at the same floor) for New Year's too.

The preparations started at home. The suite at Richmonde hotel has a kitchen (and two bedrooms and a living room area) but not enough pots, pans and other gear for everything sol and her mom wanted to prepare. So most of the food was prepared at home.

There were the shrimps for the pesto

That shredded bacon is for the carbonara that's left of the pesto there

Timmy met his cake early on.

The cake was home made, by Sol. Carrot cake with lovely lemon zest and a picture of Timmy on top.

Timmy was very happy while waiting for the guests to arrive.

His mother was very proud.

Sol thought the candles and the whole celebration would be better with the lights out. I think she was right. The video comes out a bit dark though.

The pump had to be primed a bit
But Timmy got the idea and started to do some damage

A whole bunch of celebrities wanted their pictures taken with Timmy

That's my mother-in-lawPats
ArdieBobot and Keith
my brothers-in-law, Jay on the left, Bobot on the right

Timmy's cake was a work of art when he was done

The pasta was great, missing from the picture was the most incredible clam chowder
The cake barely survived :-). So Sol had to make more when we got back home

Timmy met Julia, Sol's godchild, daughter of Rhoda, Sol's best friend, and one of mine now, too

The exhausted birthday boy