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January 1st, 2017


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05:16 pm - Looking forward on 2017

So, It's January 1st.

2016 is behind us, and while a year that's become inexorable in its death toll (ranging from People like "Alan Rickman", as well as people close to me like "JBdager" and "Larry"; as well as concepts like "common sense in democracy" and "me having a full colon", and even silly concepts like "MagSafe") falls behind us, all I can do is look forward.

Digestive Health

I'm sitting, at home, attached to a device called a Wound Vac. It's a miracle of the modern age, and is helping my body knit together a wound the size of a plum from surgery to remove a section of colon that contained a tiny hole, that made my life annoying for far too long. I won't share the whole story here, but I'll simply say that things haven't been right for about 18 months.

One of my little goals was to get most of the surgeries completed to solve this problem in 2016 -- before all the copays and deductibles reset themselves, and -- barring further complications, I'd say we've accomplished that.

I'd love to be able to start this day by going to the gym and walking for a couple miles, by going hiking, by being able to say I ate perfectly healthy, by saying I got a ton of work done, but I can't say those things. As I'm still healing, things like "diminished appetite" and "reduced motion" are still in play. Right now the prescription is still "rest with gradual increases in activity" and not "now get out there and go hiking.

Weight Loss

I've been heavy for a long time. I want to fly places and I want to learn to fly things, and I want to be comfortable doing so. I want to live a while. So yeah, whether I do it surgically or with the application of willpower and encouragement from my friends, this is on the agenda.

Travel

In a little over a month, I have tickets to fly further than I've ever flown before -- Amsterdam, Brussels, and anywhere else in Europe I care to explore. My day job is paying for this flight, and so I'll be visiting various data centers, as well as a techincal conference there.
There's a number of other trips planned as well. For the past eight years that I've been at my job, I've made the reputation for myself as the "stay at home sysadmin" while my coworkers and colleagues have rounded the globe.

Some of this has been due to body size issues: I'm a heavy person, and most of my weight is in the parts that make airline seats uncomfortable.
To demand equal-time on planes where I'm inconveniencing other customers, or making my company pay more to send me than my coworkers never did seem fair. Some changing tides at work have made it such that my current boss, who isn't nearly as much a fan of travel has taken the helm of Operations, and thus, I get to be the roaming face of F-Root operations.

I've also got a coworker who is amenable to sharing a seat with me, so it would seem that we've alleviated most of the annoyances of air travel, at least until I can rectify body shape issues.

I also really want to do more exploring of the country. I have a bucket-list of places in the terrestrial US that I'd like to get to -- some of which are simply because they're beautiful, and some because of events that happen there.

We love rail travel (and can work perfectly well from a train). I'm well-versed at doing things from the passenger seat of a car, and at some point, I've also got to make an appointment to test out an RV.

A protracted list might be: Chicago for IETF, Vegas for Defcon, Reno for BLFC, The Pacific Northwest just to see friends, and quite possibly a land-trip straight across the US, with a pickaxe-shaped itinerary on the east coast.

Relationships

I have a number of people around the country who are special to me in various ways. "Get Married" is on the agenda, but so is "get to know other amazing people even better, come what may". Cultivate good relationships. Repair weakened ones. Make things better for everyone.

I've always liked to see my friends like the aliens in the ST:TNG episode "The Nth Degree". (It's the episode where Aliens make Barclay super smart, so he will bring the ship to them and they can meet). It hasn't always made sense to travel to other places, to have to rent cars and hotels, when I've had a reasonable apartment/cars/climate/night-life/culture here in the Bay Areathat I can share with people.

I've built this so perfectly, in fact, that I've got guest rooms, spare keys, even a spare car for folks to use. But it hasn't netted me everyone I'd like to meet. Some people simply don't have the ability to detach from their lives for a week or more that it would take to make a flight make sense.

So, travel factors into this as well.

Moving

2017 may or may not be the year I finally leave the bay area, but I'm mostly of the opinion that I've done mostly everything I've set out to while I'm here. I very much enjoy my job, and appreciate that they're accomodating to the point where I can be allowed to do my job remotely.

"Home ownership" is a goal I have before too long, and I don't want it to be here in our perpetual real estate bubble. I don't think that will happen this year, but moving to the place I want to live, renting for a while, as a jumpstart -- while finding the dream house and amassing a down payment, may very much be in the cards.

Projects

I've got at least a dozen little personal projects I want to get done.
Things ranging from "get a better blogging engine up on gushi.org" to car improvement projects to learning to weld to prototyping new hardware I want around the house. Heck, "Getting my Motorcycle Running" and "Getting my Motorcycle License" are two of them. (See how this ties to Travel?).

It's only worth knowing that there's a lot of them, rather than listing them all explicitly here. It's a lot to keep me busy, that's for sure.

Conclusion

Hang on to your butts. It's going to be a good one.


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