Day 8

November 24, 2005 – 7:00 pm

I’ve been stuck into work, and it’s interesting how the cycle of
the day is different here. I only overlap the West Coast of America’s
work day for five hours–by 2pm my time, they’re all heading home. So
I email furiously in the morning, and get replies, and spend the
afternoon clearing out the inbox so that it can all begin again the
next day. I really love the afternoon when every message I send
doesn’t generate two in response, and I can feel like I’m getting
through them. Of course, email is a sorry excuse for actual work.

I found a conference
to go to. It seems like a bit of a marketing affair, but hopefully
there’ll be someone interesting beneath the “buy my shit!” pitches.
It’s interesting, and somewhat worrying, that there’s no fee
associated with the conference. Still, it’ll be good to see what’s
coming in the handset and mobile spaces here and to judge the climate
for developers.

I created the New
Zealand 2.0 Mailing List
, for open source hackers, Web 2.0
developers, and general emerging technology interesting people to get
together on. It’s a closed list (requires approval to join) purely to
prevent spam–I’ve seen a ton of spam go by on other Google groups.
I’ll change it to unmoderated/open if there turn out to be so many Web
2.0 people in New Zealand that running the list is a burden; that
sounds like the end of my job at that point 🙂

We’ve found the good and bad of rural life. Good: we went to a
hangi (traditional Maori cooking where food is roasted in the ground)
that the school organized for the kids, and got to see forty or fifty
kids playing “ring around the rosie” and clapping games in the field
behind the pub. Bare feet a lot of them, it took me right back to
when I was a kid, only nobody was smacking me around today. I found
William’s friends and he’s already easy-going and joking with them.

Bad: we have rats. Raley: “Daddy, look on the deck, it’s a mouse.”
“That’s too big for a mouse, love, that’s a rat.” Then Jenine found a
family scuttling along the rafters in the basement. She bought traps,
which proved ineffectual, so I’ve laid baits. I should have laid
cyanide–they’ve eaten the bait but haven’t yet died. When you have
rats in your house, you can’t wait for a humane solution. We can’t go
into our hot water cupboard (where we hang our trash bags) because
there’s a fucking rat in there. This is the downside of rural

The kids are taking the rats in stride. William’s asking questions
about the plague, because we read a “Horrible History” book about
“Loathsome London” that talked about the plague. He was trying to
remember the sequence of symptoms and was checking his tongue in the
mirror for white spots. Raley was just out for blood. “Yes, lay down
poison Daddy, then it’ll eat the poison and it’ll be dead dead dead
dead and it’ll die and its body will shrivel up and it’ll be DEAD!”
(in a happy squeaky little girl voice). I guess they’re getting a
good country upbringing.

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