26 Feb 2004 thomasvs   » (Master)

Friday

Felt daring and listened to Explosions In The Sky on the plane flight to Belgium. They were playing Barcelona that night and I was missing it so this was as close as it was going to get.

Arrived home with the living room door open and my mother sitting outside on the terrace sunbathing at five degrees Celsius. The drawbacks of living in a cold country.

Drove to police office to report loss of identity card and driver's license. Made sure the police officer didn't see me arriving or leaving in the car. Raced to the administration office to actually get my new driver's license so I could end my brief life of crime.

Took the train to Brussel to put my stuff at my friends where I would be staying for the weekend. Went to the King of Spain (hm, I thought that was me) on the Grote Markt to meet up with all of the other hackers. Good to see all of them back. Hallski provided very good picture source material; here he demonstrates the size of a certain anatomical part of his.

dolphy wanted an authentic Belgian restaurant to eat mussels and fries, so I took him, wtay, jdahlin, Matthias and Noelle to some place on the Vismarkt. Everyone was happy, though my mussels were a bit on the dry/overcooked side.

Saturday

Went to see Robert Love's talk. The place was packed. Novell cunningly sent a rock-star-like stand-in for Robert while the real Robert was probably still locked in a basement somewhere in wintery Boston hammering out code. Nevertheless the talk was very good, hope some people got motivated to pick up some of the stuff the decoy talked about.

Went to see Jonathan Corbet's kernel talk, which was really good as well. Gave me some insight in 2.6. Not sure if I'll be able to make use of it though.

Left for the wedding. Lots of atmosphere, people started dancing before desert was served. Someone finally succeeded in making a decent picture of me.

It was great to see old friends again, and I even made it onto the credit list of Tineke's movie - it showed "the winner took them all", and then a quick list of past conquests :) The list was quite a bit shorter than I remember it to be however.

All of her friends from school were complaining about how Tineke got married before them ... If you're a single guy, weddings should be your favourite place to go.

I'm having a harder time each time to restrain myself from killing DJ's that manage to do any of the following

  • download crap mp3's well below 128 kbps and use them at parties (I'll take a listening test to prove them you really can tell the difference any day)
  • download the completely wrong/crappy version of songs
  • manage to break off songs right before their best part
  • TALK between songs
  • play completely undanceable/crap/slimy slow songs
  • bring a small set of speakers, then ruin the quality completely by completely distorting the output
Seriously, it can't be that hard to make the musical part of the evening at least enjoyable.

Ended the evening with a nice dance though with the bride. The DJ managed to play Disarm right before I was leaving.

Sunday

Due to getting to bed at 4.30 I slept late and missed the DirectFB and X talks I really wanted to see. The afternoon really didn't have talks that interested me, so I had wished it was the other way around. Tried to uncover the Robert Love stand-in by pretending to fanboy him and getting my kernel book autographed, but he passed the test admirably. Gave up.

Tried to stay awake and not make too much of an ass of myself for the rest of the day. Got drawn into witnessing the formation of a new Dark Alliance between Dag and Matthias, scary.

Got the best news of the year up to now at the end of the day. We went out to celebrate by buying real Belgian fries from a real Belgian fries stand and ate them in the car.

Went back to friends, watched 24. While watching I noticed a big cardboard box that read "Aibo" on the side (Hans works for Sony, btw). I asked him if it really did contain what it said. He said yes. I asked him why it was still packed. He said he brought it home two weeks ago but never bothered to try it. The nerve of some people.

I unpacked it, but it wasn't charged. So I hooked it up, then Delphine and I played the two-player Settlers card game. Called Kristien to buy it for us too.

After that, played with the AIBO for a while. It really is pretty well done; it asked for the ball, it followed the ball, it tried to get your attention, wiggle its tail, express "emotions", and so on. But I can't imagine myself shelling out that much for it until it at least makes less noise while moving around and looks slightly less metallic.

Monday

Spent the morning waking up. Really wanted to see the Belgian movie Steve + Sky since everyone is saying how good it is and it's probably not going to be shown in Barcelona.

I went into the movie really wanting to like it but got disappointed. I'm pretty sure if this movie was in English everyone would think the dialogue and story is crap. For me the only entertaining thing was that the movie was funny because it was in my local dialect, and it contained some scenes filmed close to where I live, and I also spotted my best friend's sister in the movie.

But if the movie had been in another Belgian dialect, I'm sure I'd have hated it.

On the plane, back to Barcelona, and happy to arrive home. Then even more happy to realize I really feel it's home. Then even more happy and unable to stop smiling for two days at the good news I got on sunday.

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