Had an amazing impromptu dinner last night. On my way out of the office, I got to talking with my coworker Jim and, on the spur of the moment, suggested we go out to eat. He'd been planning on going to "Rice & Spice", a Thai restaurant a few blocks away. I was game for that; it was on my todo list for a while. We had some spicy chicken dish, and something called "Rainbow Trout Yum Yum": whole pan-fried trout with onions, apple, cucumber, lettuce, cilantro, and a light plum dressing. Unbelievably good; easily the best Thai I've found, and that's saying something in this city.
Jim is fantastically interesting. I don't have a succinct phrase to describe his personality, but it's that all-encompassing interest and drive with intellect and energy to match. His life's MO is to travel around the world, fundamentally getting shit done for companies (mostly ours). He was showing off (at my request) the best of his photo collection from China, Bali, Thailand, Australia, New Zealand, and everywhere else he's been. It was great getting his perspective on lots of the happenings at work, and what I might want to do next. I'm vaguely considering a career change; I could theoretically get a 50%+ raise and travel the world on the company dime as an SE, but there are some non-trivial downsides to that, and Jim is a great resource for getting a reality check on that sort of thing. Current status is I'm staying put but keeping my ear to the ground.
Keith is still in the picture, sort of. The reason he hadn't called was because he was away in Portland. Then, when I was in Florida, he called me twice. And now, he's away on a long camping trip. So, we'll probably hook up at some point; maybe in about two weeks. For now, I'm just going to believe it's bad timing, and will continue to hope things work out.
I'm seeing Morris on Sunday, and he has Monday off. He's already promised to "wear me out", so I'm totally looking forward to that.
Travel plans for the rest of the year are still fuzzy; I'm trying to make it to LISA, but we'll see. If I do go, I'll only have 5 vacation days left, which I'm going to try to use for another east coast see-everyone-in-my-world whirlwind tour. More as it develops...