Back and More

My temporary maple leaf tattooI’m real­ly tired as I write this — it seems I’ve been tired a lot late­ly (lack of sleep per­haps due to the unusu­al hot nights we’ve been get­ting this week, etc.). Nev­er­the­less, I want­ed to try and update this blog before it got much more stale. And it was get­ting quite stale indeed. No crunch left at all. (See, I told you I was get­ting tired).

So what has hap­pened in the past 3 weeks or so?

  1. The rest of the trip went with­out any trans­porta­tion prob­lems (aside from a cou­ple of hours on the run­way at Laguardia, but from what I hear, that’s par for the course for most US trav­el this summer.)
  2. I got to hear my Nom­i­na­tive Pre­lude: Cas­tles in the Air played by the pianist to whom it was ded­i­cat­ed, Pat Plude, and it was a great expe­ri­ence. It’s been a long time since I’ve heard any­thing that I’ve writ­ten, and I’ve come to the con­clu­sion that I have to try to write more music. It’s just a hard thing to do, requir­ing a lot of time and ener­gy, so I think I’ll only do it, for the time being, unless I know I’ll get a per­for­mance. I have enough unper­formed music (an Orches­tral Tone Poem, a cou­ple of cham­ber works — one for Vio­lin, Vio­la and Piano, a short work for Piano, Celeste and Vibra­phone, a study for 2 pianos that I wrote in col­lege, and a half of a Cham­ber Opera — all that have nev­er been heard out­side of my mind or their notes banged out in a prac­tice room or piano some­where) to last me for quite a while, thanks.
  3. I saw a few old friends at the Walden School Reunion, but sur­pris­ing­ly, the years that I attend­ed (the late 70s) were some­what under­rep­re­sent­ed. I saw plen­ty of peo­ple who were old­er than I was by about 20 or 30 years, and also sev­er­al who were 20 years my junior, but few who were my age. It made for a unique social situation.
  4. I had a great time vis­it­ing my par­ents, and was able to enjoy some qui­et hours surf­ing the web on their back deck. Warm, breezy after­noons in the shade with hum­ming­birds and wi fi, as well as gourmet meals (both out and at home) are what I will remem­ber the most from this trip.
  5. That missed oppor­tu­ni­ty on the road was yet anoth­er of those times in life where you think you’ve missed the boat, only to find a much bet­ter ves­sel float in behind it. Yes, anoth­er oppor­tu­ni­ty pre­sent­ed itself a week and a half ago. I had an inter­view at IBM (yes, that IBM) for a 6‑month con­tract as an Infor­ma­tion Architect/UI Design­er. There was a mes­sage from them in the affir­ma­tive before I made it home from the inter­view (!). A new record, the guy at the agency plac­ing me said. So in about 11 days, my life changes sig­nif­i­cant­ly, as I say good-bye to my cur­rent part-time employ­er, and hel­lo to a new con­tract in Burn­a­by. It’s a bit of a dis­tance from here (about an hour’s com­mute on the bus­es and sky­train). Hope­ful­ly I’ll be able to use that time to catch up on pod­casts and books on tape. Too bad that I can’t com­pose on the sky­train. I think I’ll ded­i­cate my next blog post­ing to my old employ­er, who deserves some men­tion (I’ve always been real­ly care­ful about the work vs. per­son­al life vs. loud mur­mur thing.)
  6. We cel­e­brat­ed Cana­da Day this year with some (tem­po­rary) tat­toos of the Maple Leaf (see above). We’ve even had a chance to cel­e­brate my new con­tract with a love­ly din­ner at Bridges with a view of the sunset.
  7. Have I got­ten caught up? Well, a few oth­er things:

    In 4 days, we’ll have been liv­ing in British Colum­bia 2 years. We took out a 2‑year mort­gage on this con­do, so with any luck, we’ll be all paid-up in about 6 days. We haven’t thought about a mort­gage burn­ing par­ty (It sounds so won­der­ful­ly 1960-ish, does­n’t it?) but maybe we’ll do that.

    The time spent trav­el­ing tru­ly showed me that I do indeed belong here in Van­cou­ver. Despite some nice expe­ri­ences on my trip to the East­ern US, I did real­ly miss this place, and was extreme­ly hap­py to return to the beau­ti­ful city and moun­tains I now, with­out any doubt, call home.

4 Replies to “Back and More”

  1. Wel­come back and con­grat­u­la­tions on the IBM gig, David!

    About the com­mute to Burn­a­by, I think it’s time to get indi­vid­ual trans­porta­tion. One hour to get to Burn­a­by is just too crazy. Maybe a scoot­er? I can’t in good con­science rec­om­mend using a bike to get from False Creek to Burn­a­by. At least not using the main roads (Broad­way or Grand­view, then Bound­ary and then Cana­da Way).

    Oth­er­wise I pre­dict you’ll be work­ing at home most of the time if pos­si­ble. (I know IBM in Burn­a­by are big on that, but not sure how it would fit with IA/UI work)

    Again: Con­grats!

  2. David — you com­pose music? Wow. Way cool. Also, mas­sive con­grats on the new IBM con­tract. May it devel­op into some­thing long term that makes you a kabillionaire.

  3. David,
    Glad you’re back, and more glad that you have a new gig! Van­cou­ver life is good, eh?
    2‑year mort­gage … Nev­er heard of such a thing. Con­grats on get­ting to the end of it, and yes, a mort­gage burn­ing par­ty sounds in order!
    I’m up here ’til August 6 and “drf” gets in August 1 — 28. Great time to be here: fire­works, Gay Pride, etc. Looks like the Flori­da weath­er fol­lowed me up here, though!

  4. Thanks for the con­grats, all.

    Jan, I think we’ll be fol­low­ing your advice in the indi­vid­ual trans­porta­tion realm (Oh, let’s just say it: A car) pret­ty soon. When I sug­gest­ed to Pam that I could drop-off and pick-up her from work because she’s in an office park not too far from the one I’ll be in (1 sky­train stop), I think that tipped the scales. I may also do some of that telecom­mut­ing as well, when a task can be accom­plished that way.

    Nan­cy — Yes, the not-so-dirty lit­tle secret is that I come from a fam­i­ly of clas­si­cal musi­cians (father a pianist, moth­er, a sopra­no) and stud­ied com­po­si­tion, piano, and con­duct­ing through­out col­lege, as well as Tan­gle­wood and some oth­er sum­mer pro­grams (like The Walden School). While I haven’t been as active in it late­ly, except for play­ing in a Game­lan — a type of Javanese per­cus­sion orches­tra that was an influ­ence on Debussy, Stravin­sky, Poulenc, Sir Michael Tip­pett and Lou Har­ri­son, as I hint­ed, I think it’s time to revis­it writ­ing music again.

    Bob — good to hear that you are back. The 2‑year mort­gage was just because we did­n’t want to buy a con­do out­right from the pro­ceeds of our town­house back in Cam­bridge; we were afraid that we’d look like a drug deal­er or some­thing, so we took out a small mort­gage to look more respectable and build up a bit of a cred­it rat­ing, since that was nonex­is­tent when we arrived. Look­ing for­ward to meet­ing drf as well when he joins you. Are you get­ting clos­er to stay­ing here for good?

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