The happiest day ever; the saddest day ever. Oh the juxtapositions of life!

Today sounded the death knell to my job-quitting-stress. For, as much as I didn’t care about my job, I couldn’t conscience leaving anything major undone.

And, unfortunately, just over two weeks ago I had decided to completely re-build the asset tracking database I built way back in the start of my job.

And, I had decided to re-build it in Ruby on Rails, whereas the original is in PHP. This meant that I had to learn a new programming language and system and build a new webserver to run it all, ALL IN TWO WEEKS!

Needless to say, I was having more fun at work than I’d had in a long time, because I was doing something I wanted to do, and shirking pretty much anything else I could get out of. For some reason, my new manager (I never mentioned it, but up until recently, my manager was the guy who hired me originally, and who had been my boss for about a year at a previous company. He had recruited me specifically to work for him at the new start-up due to my special skills, talents, and sparkling personality. A few months ago, though, he realized he was too busy with all his director responsibilities to personally manage two other teams so he hired two managers, one for me and one for the other team.) picked me to learn how to do two specific tasks and do them before I left.

But then, he and the other guys would have to re-learn how to do what I did in order to maintain or update the stuff.

Luckily, I never even had to do one of the tasks (post software to the internet), because the software didn’t get released, and I didn’t have to do the other one because it wasn’t physically possible, so I got to pretend like I was figuring it out but failing, only to be validated by the support team that it wasn’t possible so I couldn’t do it.

So, I was able to happily focus on developing my new website, learn new stuff, and get it all working. Fun!

The biggest hitch was building the web server to run it. Although there are plenty of websites and tutorials and books about how to build a Ruby on Rails website, documentation was pretty slim on what exactly was needed to build a Ruby on Rails webserver. A few tutorials explained how to build a webserver for Rails, but none of them had details on structure, or where the files go, or configuration, or blah blah or whatever.

So I’d try a tutorial, it wouldn’t work, and then I’d go back to developing and hoping for the best.

Finally, yesterday, I discovered a plug-in for the webserver that supposedly would make it all work great… and it didn’t work. So I googled and tweaked and did some stuff, but it didn’t work.

So I stressed, work up early, came in, and tweaked some more. I’d been praying all week to finish, and it was down to the wire.

Finally, I found where to read the log files, and a tip in the FAQ about tweaks required specifically for my operating system, and got it running! WOHOO!

So then I did all the last things I needed to do, added a bit more functionality, and called it a day. I went out to lunch with one of my former employees from when I managed a team there 4 years earlier, then went looking for my boss to turn in my laptop and badge.


Then at home, we packed and ate and then I took Ivon, Maggie, and Amy to Kendo. I asked Becky to bring a watermelon at closing time, because I figured they’d have a going-away party for us, and I wanted to pitch in but the ingredients for snickerdoodles were already packed.

It was a blast of a practice, but I had to hold back tears the entire time and try to avoid thinking about it being my last.

The dojo has a special treat they reserve for special occasions – the guest of honor fights EVERYBODY in the dojo. I was really hoping I’d get to do that, for the sheer honor of fighting everyone, and also for the pleasure of fighting with everyone, one last time.

And, HOORAY, they did it for me and Ivon! Ivon got to fight all the kids, and I fought the adults. They’d come at me one at a time, sparring for a bit, then rotating out.

And boy did I wear out quick! All the adults are well beyond black belt, and they are darn fast, and hit hard. I got through most of them before I had to call uncle because I was seeing stars.

And then we all changed back into street clothes, pulled out some tables, and had a party, complete with the delicious watermelon Becky and Veronica had brought.

Good times, but then I had to say goodbye to all those friends. Ivon and I had joined the core group of regulars, being some of the few who attend nearly every practice, over the last four years.

So, whenever we come back to the bay area to visit, we’re going to have to pack our Kendo gear in the van somehow, and visit the dojo.

And next up: Moving!

2 thoughts on “The happiest day ever; the saddest day ever. Oh the juxtapositions of life!

  1. Good post. Glad to hear your success on your project at work. I’m glad you saw stars at Kendo and got to say good-bye to everyone. I can’t remember, do are there any kendo dojo’s here?

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