There some seriousl intense security here in places.

They weird thing it is applied entirely inconsistantly. I guess that could be an advantage as you have no idea when certain measures will be applied but it really doesn't feel that way. There are some places with cameras installed to see under every car that enters the gates. Some times people check badges. Sometimes people check for different badges. Sometimes people check for special holographic stickers on those badges. Sometimes they want to check the trunk of the car, except it seems that isn't actually all that important if there is a line of cars waiting. Sometimes you need a visitor's pass if you're with someone with a special badge. Sometimes people don't care about any of that.

Two more days. I like it here and I've made a really good friend (who keeps protesting that we can't possibly do /anything/ because I'm only here for a week, that's so ridiculous) but I want to be home.
So, a few more things and notices.

My lungs hate me. It was slow to creep up on me but I've noticed it. I gave an impromptu presentation and Q&A and noticed I was having trouble breathing every once in awhile at times when... well, I should have a lot more lung power than that. So, there is that. I didn't notice last time but, then again, there are a lot of differences.

Let me tell you a little about the building we're working in. This building is not finished. And by not finished, I mean, there are places in the building where there are no floors, where the walls are not finished, where there are still construction people actively working on putting the building together. I knew that they were still working on the outside and the parking garage some but I hadn't realized that there were parts of floors like that. We went down to the first floor today and had to wind through a maze of half finished corriors and blocked off hallways - places where people were putting up walls and preparing to put down flooring. Places where it was hotter than it is outside as there was no air flow.

I'm somewhat astonished by this, though I guess I shouldn't be. I've certainly seen cases of where they will happily use unfinished roads, so why not this too? I guess there is some sense to using it as soon sa you finish it...

It is almost 5pm. I will likely be here for another hour or so.

Another good day, though they fly by so fast here. I wish work at home went so quickly. I really like being able to explain the rest of the company to them. I can give context to all of the hard work they do and that's awesome.
It never ceases to amaze me how fluidly these people weave languages together. It is very odd to be able to understand about half of a conversation because that half of the words are in a language you understand and the other half isn't. Getting along fine with everyone here. I guess I shouldn't be surprised with how many of these people come with close ties to the US.

Akshaya and I get along really well. It has been a long time since I've liked someone so much so quickly. I wish I could facilitate more face to face interaction between the people here and the people at home. It is much harder to ignore an e-mail from someone you know, I find, when they're asking you to do work. Especially someone who jokes around the office place like you do.

That said, there is a lot more talking and conversation here on the average day than there is at home. I was told that today was a quiet day, too. I think that might drive me batty but then again, there seems to be a greater sense of work community and knowledge sharing here.

Unrelated note: I have heard both the Scooby Doo theme and the Popeye theme as cell phone rings today.

I also have a present (of doom) for Holly. Not sari related. (But doom related, yes, yes.)
For the most part, the jet lag doesn't get to me here too much. What does trigger it, though is the fact that the sun is well and truly down before 7. (Official sunset time was 6:29pm today.) That truly kicks my butt.

That said, I don't think I've ever been a place where there are so many people up and around and doing any number of things as there are here at night. I didn't get into the hotel until 2am last night. There was still traffic on the roads, work being done, people at playgrounds and seemingly just hanging out. It /is/ cooler at night, which I can see being a factor in the whole thing.

I went outside for a bit today and then I came back in and hid in my hotel room. I do not like the sun much.

Right now I am eating tasty, tasty foods. NOM NOM. It is always true that the food you love of a culture is always better at home. (Unless it doesn't exist there.) Murgh Tikka Makhani with garlic naan. Mmmmmmmmm.

Holly, the pickles here tried to kill me. I wouldn't have known to try them with that lunch with you and Ariel but damn. They really tried to kill me with flavor.

Hallo all!

May. 23rd, 2010 12:35 am
I am here! I was nowhere near Mangalore for that plane crash. I saw news of that just before I got on the plane in Frankfurt. Ending up here, there are a lot of news stories about it, of course. Apparently, according to The Hindu Times, one of the survivors was noticed when he showed up at immigration and customs looking to process his paperwork.

Anyway... the trip so far: Got to SeaTac with no problems at all. I jumped on the plane and ended up being seated next to a two year old who seemed to think I was the greatest thing ever. She was also squirmy as all get out, so I got a few indicental punches and kicks but it wasn't really a big deal. I got to catch up on some movies I hadn't seen, which was rather nice. The North Atlantic is still a horrible place to fly over full of turbulence.

The Last Station: This is fascinating stuff and I see why Helen Mirren and Christopher Plummer both got acting nominations. These are two people who are very much in love and have reached a point, after 40+ years of mariage, where they're no longer compatible. It was very moving and enjoyable. And now I want to learn more about Tolstoy and his wife.

Up in the Air: I enjoyed the movie. I enjoyed it a lot but at the same time, it just has an ending that sort of peters off into nothing. It isn't unpleasant but it doesn't give much sense of resolution if you the sort that needs one. It did make me wonder how many miles I've flown, though. Hard to come up with a number, all in all. I hit 100K easily, especially considering that I did almost 10K yesterday alone.

Princess and the Frog: I enjoyed it but it won't be one of my favorites, I don't think. Naveen distracted me as was pretty much Prince Eric with a different skin color in the looks department.

Frankfurt airport is still under construction. It seems to be the way of most of the European airports. Schipol is still my favorite without question, though the Germans are pretty intense about their security. I was there long enough to see news on the crash in Mangalore and to see what things I'm going to try to pick up on my way back through if I get a chance. Anyone want any alcohol? There are some pretty impressive botles of wine and Scotch available in the Duty Free.

The flight from Frankfurt to Chennai was not as pleasant. The man in front of me had his seat all the way back almost instantly and for the entire flight. It was so close to me that I had my best sleep by leaning forward and putting my forehead on the seat. So, that was lovely. I was running out of movie options at this point, so I watched The Blind Side, which was much better than I thought it would be. I don't know as it was Oscar worthy but it certainly wasn't bad. I tried to sleep some rather than watch Avatar again.

Getting off of the plane.... hrmmm. Well, getting off the plane here is somewhat like getting off the plane in New Orleans. Except hotter. And more humid. And it smells more... swampy and earthy. There were brief moments of repreive as you'd walk beneath under an air conditioner. And once I got outside, I realized that as warm as /that/ was, it was actually air conditioned inside. Outside my clothing was stuck to me almost instantly.

I realize I have no idea, at all, of the layout of this city and even if I did, I would have no idea how to get anywhere. If I felt safe driving here, which I wouldn't. There are lines on the road but they're vague guidelines in that people kind of pay attention to them but only sort of. You honk when you pass, you honk when you want to pass, you honk pretty much any time you might feel like it.

I've sent an e-mail to my coworkers here, hoping that she'll get back to me with when I'm expected to be in the office. I know that they have tasks that start at 8, so if I don't hear from her, I'll be planning to be there by then - I hope.

So, I'm here, m'dears. I'm safe. I'm staying out of the trillion degree temperatures outside - for the most part. It can't be entirely avoided.

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lithera

June 2011

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