This is my personal blog. The views expressed on these pages are mine alone and not those of my employer.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Hello World! (Or: Paris, CopyTalk, eBay, Engelbart, and Nude Swimming in the Mediterranean)

I haven't posted on this blog much the last couple of months. My life has been tremendously full though during that time. I thought I'd share a little bit about what's been going on.

I'm actually not typing this post; instead, I'm dictating it through a Bluetooth headset into my cell phone as I drive on the highway using an amazing service named Copytalk. It's a phenomenally affordable service that gives you unlimited dictation every month, month to month. It's really opened up dictation to me. If you sign up through this link it's cheaper for you and I get a free month ;)

Here's what I've been up to the last few months, from a high level:
The big thing is I just got back from living in Paris for the month of July, where I lived with my girlfriend. I subleted a place for the month and sublet my place here in San Francisco. It was a wonderful, crazy experience. I was working remotely for Engelbart during that time. We had an apartment we rented in Montmarte in Paris. It was the first time I've ever been to France or Paris, and it was great. We went grocery shopping at the local grocery stores to save money, and just sort of lived like a Parisian. Ate stinky, ugly, beautifully tasting French cheese and bread, and lived and worked.

It's a phenomenal place. I found the French actually very nice. I found the magic words were to simply say bonjour. Just be friendly. We got a free place to stay for a couple days down on the French Riviera near the Mediterranean, and went swimming in the deep, blue, cool water. We actually went hiking over in the nooks and crannies and skinny dipped into the Mediterranean where there were no people.

The art and history in Paris are amazing. I went to the Louvre a bunch of times. They've got everything there. They have the code of Hammarabi, which is the first written set of laws in recorded history. They've got all of the great master pieces of everything, such as Venus de Milo; phenomenal works of art. I also went and fulfilled a life long dream of seeing Monet's Water Lilies, a tremendously beautiful set of paintings that he did at the end of his life. I stayed there for hours and wept and took them in. It was stunning, I could feel his spirit in the painting. It's hard to explain, but I could feel the tenderness and the sensitivity and the level of love he had for the subject that he was painting.

The cafes were amazing. I went to many cafes that were famous for great literary figures and artists, where Picasso and other great thinkers used to hang out. It was phenomenal to drink cappuccinos and espressos and work on the Engelbart project from these cafes.

I also went to Notre Dame de Chartes, which is in a medieval village. I went to Berlin for a few days, saw the Berlin Wall, Checkpoint Charlie.

It was a full month of working, thinking, creating, living, experiencing, and romance with my beautiful girlfriend Bekka.

I'm back in town now, battling a nine hour jetlag. There's been all sorts of other amazing things but I will share those in the future.

Comments:
Sounds like you had a lot of fun in Europe. :)

And yes, that Copytalk thing sounds amazing. If you are in the US and have a decent flatrate for your mobile phone, right? :)
 
as a ct scribe, i can only say that i hope you had the windows up. trying to make out what someone is saying with the windows down is miserable.

be nice to your scribes!
 
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