Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Change Control ... Again

Ughh! Change control rolls around so quickly and it really does destroy a weekend although if I was honest, which I'm not on this particular topic, I would have to admit that I seriously helped to decimate this weekend. The weekend proceeded as follows:

Wake up at 04:30 to start cycling, it is totally pitch black at anytime before 06:00, and it is even starting to get a little chilly. After this summer, this is a very welcome relief from the heat. One of the reasons that I quite like Johannesburg is that by the end of summer, one has had quite enough of the hot weather and having some cold weather is rather appealing. By the end of winter, on the other hand, one is very glad to be leaving the cold behind and looking forward to some hot summer days. So we have the best of both worlds without either being really extreme.

Back to cycling, spent almost 3 hours on the mountain bike trying to keep up with Jason who just seems to get stronger and stronger. Very infuriating. We went through Northern farm and out the back and once again, I forgot my entrance ticket and had to borrow Jasons. Took a trip up some quite tough gravelly climbs to find the most fantastic views looking north over a valley with the Magaliesburg mountains in the distance. Absolutely fantastic views, it's hard to believe that they exist less than an hours drive from Johannesburg. I didn't take any pictures because I didn't have my camera with me since camera = weight = slow = dropped = teasing for being dropped. Therefore NO camera!

Met barry and helena for breakfast at fruits and roots and they've taken my favourite meal off the menu. I can't believe it, fortunately they still serve it if one asks for it so no big deal. Met a couple of friends of theirs whose names I now forget but one of them is a photographer/journalist/art critic which was pretty cool. She is about to leave on a photo holiday which is a novel concept for me and sounds like something I might be interested in doing at some stage in the distant future. A bunch of people who have a common interest, photography, get together and go somewhere which is photographically interesting and then spend their time touring and taking photographs, I can think of worse ways to spend a holiday. The other lady, whose name I also forget, was absolutely fascinating. She must be a psychologists dream client and I only spent an hour or two with her.

After the breakfast they were all going to a nearby gallery so I tagged along wondering what I was letting myself in for which was just as well because I got cornered by said neurotic and ended up discussing fine art with her, a topic I am most definitely not even vaguely qualified to do.

Standing looking at a painting and being asked questions like "what does this say to you?" just confounds me, it isn't saying anything, we are just thinking/assuming that the artist is actually trying to pass on a message. Who's to say he is?, maybe it's like some kind of in joke amongst artists to see what people think that they are trying to 'say' through their work. I find it a bit like wine tasting where there is the 'in' crowd and the others. The 'in' crowd talk in terms like flavours of berries for wine and angst and anger in terms of art and for those who don't speak the language, pity on them, they're missing out. It all seems a bit pretentious to me, why can't people just enjoy or appreciate wine or art because they do, why do they have to have a reason why they do? I re-iterate my ignorance of art so anyone reading this whose toes I have just stepped on, it's only my opinion not a fact.

I spent most of the afternoon adding labels to this blog and before I knew it, it was time to go to work and start the change control. Frigging long and complicated change control and we only left at 04:00 having worked for a full 7 hours upgrading the system while only actually taking it down for a period of 3 minutes during the time. I had to get up again at 05:30 which meant only an hour and a half of sleep and even this was interrupted by the mother of all cat fights directly outside my window at 05:00.

Met Michael at 06:30 and had a very pleasant 60km ride. Alison, his wife, has just found out that she is pregnant so they are both very happy that they are once again going to be proud parents. Can't quite share the enthusiasm but I try my best. Really pushed hard up Judges avenue hill near the end of the ride and made about 90 seconds on Michael which I was very pleased with. Michael, not so, he thought I was just rubbing it in which wasn't actually the intention. I have finally figured out how to stop my heart rate monitor from beeping when it goes over a predetermined level which I do fairly regularly so now everyone can cut out their jokes about flatlining and beep, beep, beep, beeeeeeeeeep.

Had lunch at kim and laurels with another couple who were very pleasant company. At one point in the conversation, samuel, who is being indoctrinated by his father, interjects and asks who goes to church. All hands stay firmly below the table much to samuels dismay, he is living in the company of heathens it turns out. He's going to have to come to terms with this because, outside of a monastery, it isn't going to change.

Started feeling really tired by the time laurel and I went to see "Notes on a scandal" which was great even though it can't be described as light entertainment by any stretch of the imagination. Judi Dench and Kate Blanchette were both fantastic and I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a thought provoking movie to go and see.

Did you catch the subtle puns?

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