Here I am

Well, here I am in Canada. The trip was, as expected, exhausting, and hard on my legs.

The flight out of Christchurch was on one of the old, unrefurbished 747s, which was rather annoying - the in-flight entertainment systems on the refurbished ones are really good at banishing boredom. Instead, mixed with mostly failed attempts to get some sleep, I read Jennifer Government cover-to-cover (good book), with enough time left over to watch the few remaining episodes of QI that I hadn't seen yet.

Then I transferred through LAX, where I had to pick up all my baggage to check it in at the transferring baggage desk. Thankfully, a helpful TSA(!) person told me I should take it all upstairs and get it checked in there, because the bike was too large and would have to go up there anyway. After a wait of about 1/2 an hour to get into the lift, my bag, box and bike were accepted almost immediately.

The service from Air Canada wasn't nearly as bad as I'd been led to expect - the flight attendants were friendly to a fault, and I have no complaints. Maybe it was an exception.

On arriving ...

An unexpected party

Yesterday evening, my (now ex-) flatmates came around to pick me up for a farewell drink or two at the dux. Returning home, I was somewhat, though not entirely, surprised to find the kitchen dining room filled to bursting with friends and acquaintances. I'd been expecting a family farewell dinner, with maybe some extended family around, this was rather larger.

I had a great evening, and caught up with some people I haven't seen in too long. I was given a few going-away gifts, chief amongst them the book 'Are you a geek?', given to me by a collection of friends. I'm pretty sure I know what the answer is already, but from the browse through it I've already had, the book is hilarious. I look forward to filling it out.

All in all, I couldn't have asked for a better going-away party.

Backstory

A summary of what's going on in my life, for those that don't already know.

In early December, I was contacted by a company called [redacted for paranoia]. It seems the CEO of this company was seated next to a good friend of mine, on a flight in the US. My friend was reading an extremely technical book on Software Engineering, and the CEO of this company, noticed this and struck up a conversation. One thing led to another, and (so I gather) the end result was "I met this great guy on the plane. He's already got a job, but he knows someone who's almost as good!". ;)

Two phone interviews later - one with the CEO and one with their head of engineering, and they wanted to get me up to their main office for a round of interviews in person. After some wrangling arranging (unpaid) leave with my current employers, I flew up for a few days. The first full day I spent being interviewed by half a dozen people about different aspects of my Software Engineering experience. The one that stands out in my mind most was the interview with their database guru. This ...