Well, I'm back. I was in Toronto with a coworker for a few days to add to my geek training and learn CSS. I know, I know, CSS is easy, anyone can learn it any way, blah blah blah... Well, I don't always learn from a book in that way. I prefer a combination of instruction and some print material. If there's hands-on work to be done along the way, even better.

This has been a ridiculously long week. Sunday night I spent at my parents' place in preparation for borrowing my dad's car on Monday. Monday we had a work retreat that was being held a half-hour out of town in a location far removed from any bus route known to man, so my dad was kind enough to lend me his. The location was nice, but remote and rather cold; we all spent our time snuggled under jackets and blankets and those who like coffee drank several cups -- that were all lukewarm. But, the team I was on kicked the asses of the other team (including my boss) at pictionary, our 'team-building' exercise. That team had a bunch of sore losers on it, too. :)

That evening I hung out with the Pompous Ass for awhile and packed. The poor guy must be getting tired of me passing out on him and then not wanting to let him leave 'cause I'm comfy or unconscious.

Tuesday was a part day at work, since we were set to leave on the train around lunch... which of course meant that there were emergency postings to be made that meant we got to the train station about 10 minutes before it was actually due to leave. Things started looking up when we discovered we'd been booked into first class (which is actually a government standard when it comes to train travel), and we were going to be fed and everything. Of course, a slight pall was cast over the day when at one of the stops a guy got on and opened the bin above us to see if there was room to put his luggage in -- and my coworker's bag, containing a pair of fairly-solid shoes -- fell down on her head, cutting and bruising her nose, and sending her wine everywhere. Yeah, in first class they bring you free booze. She wasn't too badly hurt overall, but the asshole never apologized, never checked to make sure she was okay -- he just kept trying to find a bin that would accommodate his stuff. He was seated directly behind us, so I think he got to hear us complaining about him for some time after that.

Otherwise, the trip went fairly smoothly. The only real problem is that all the food and booze comes out during the first half of the ride; after that, you only get more beverages (even just water or something) if you ask for it, which we didn't realize, so we were fairly parched -- Toronto was very warm everywhere we were, it seemed.

We were booked into the Marriott, which is attached to the Eaton Centre, which we found very convenient. The pathway connecting the two was closed until 10 a.m., when the Eaton Centre and Sears opened, so we had to go outside for a few minutes to get there. That was the longest we spent outside the entire trip -- oh yeah, I'm not sad in the least.

On the whole, the course was excellent, and the instructor was great. It's a bit tough right now for me to try to apply the learning I've done to the site redesigns I want to make, partly because I have 0 graphic/layout ability, just technical, but I know it'll come. I actually dreamed about coding Friday night, which just goes to show how much of this stuff is currently stuck in my brain. :P

There were a pair of potatoheads in the course that were trying to dominate the instructor's attention and get us off track, but he was good at keeping them in line. All of the learning I did also meant that when I wrote the exam Saturday morning for the HTML course I was taking online, the CSS questions were quite easy, given that all the dealt with was very basic CSS. :)

As for the entertainments I did while I was there, you'll be vastly disappointed -- I'm a dull person. Tuesday we spent an inordinate amount of time trying to find the tower and how to get there through the Eaton Centre, grabbed some not-fabulous dinner at the Mr. Greenjeans, then retired to our rooms to relax and sleep. Wednesday night we did a bit of shopping, got our hair done, and had dinner. Thursday I stayed in the office to mooch their internet access for a bit, and after a nap and some reading did a bit of shopping. Friday we wrote the optional exam, then headed to the train station for our return home. I didn't get in touch with Ben, I didn't contact my godfather, nothing -- mainly because I was just wiped most of the time. :P

I'm glad I went. Now if I could only get all the learning to translate the way I want it to, I'll be a happy girl. :)

I've been having weird situations with a guy that I thought I was befriending, and after one last-ditch attempt to find out what the hell's going on, I'm giving up on it. I don't know what's up with a few of the guys I know, and I just can't be bothered to spend the energy to find out. If someone wants to be my friend or whatever, then that's great, and I will certainly make time for them within reason. But if they don't return the favour, then nuts to them. If I could get some energy up, I'd explain this better or rant about it more effectively, but ... right now, it's just an annoyance instead of something really upsetting or whatever.

I've also made a profile on facebook, and I've come to the conclusion that there may be some people on there who are spending way too much time there. I'm not yet certain, but it seems almost that way. It may also be like orkut, where people are just adding people so they'll have more friends in their group, it's hard to say yet.

I think I'm going to go kill a few brain cells by playing some video games for a bit. Then maybe I'll get some studying in. *sigh*


Jamie said...

If people won't put the effort in, they're not worth the effort themselves.

Phil said...

Well, good to know I'm only good for use as an oversized pillow!

CeltiX said...

I know I slacked off for a while, but I m putting lots more effort now ;)

Jen said...

It's okay sweetie, you're not the person to whom I refer. I sent an email to this one and got no reply, so I can only assume he's sticking to whatever decision his brain has compiled in this matter.

Carl said...

By thinking of the non-apologetic asshole as a non-apologetic asshole instead of thinking of him as an oblivious and misguided soul who can be brought back to the path of light, and by complaining about him such that he could hear your negative thoughts of him, you have initiated a karmic snowball that may cause you great harm. In fact, it may be an immediate contributor to the failed friendship overtures with the other guy you mentioned. I brought this up to my guru and after he pondered the matter for a while through his pensive distant gaze, he decided that your best course of action now is to straddle said guy, strip off your shirt and twirl it above your head while screaming "Woo! Woo! Woo!" The two of you should become fast friends.

Jen said...

Well, he deleted me off his MSN list with no explanation, and hasn't replied to my email; I figure he's neither misguided, nor oblivious. While I suspect your suggestion would net me attention, quite frankly, I don't think he deserves it. I do have fabulous breasts, after all.

Carl said...

Do you ride public transit during the busiest times? If you're still blocked for stuff to write about that seems to be the place to gain inspiration. I have been riding Metro through one of our more "colorful" parts of town lately and it's a tailor-made writing experience. Some of the people are perfect caricatures of just about any characteristic you could possibly want to find. I've been scribbling down notes like crazy and I'll very soon figure out which way a good story should go. If not, I think I'll pop.

Jen said...

I'm on public transit during all times of the day, but yes, frequently during rush hour (sleeping in is fun!). I've thought of bringing the laptop on the train and just writing as it goes back and forth (since there's no need to get off), but not yet. The trip is fairly short though, so there isn't always much chance to observe people -- at least unless they stand out for some annoyance or another. I'm a crabby old lady at the best of times.

Carl said...

People seem much more likely to do interesting things when they're riding buses or trains that are jam packed. Just this morning, I bumped a guy with my rolled up yoga rug and he gave me a surly reproach and short lecture on attentiveness and respect. Then he turned and continued to share his never-ending political opinions with the lady sitting next to him, where she was pressed against the window and completely incapable of escape. Precious irony!

I'll try your idea out and just ride back and forth sometime.

Jen said...

Oh, there have been more than a few times I've wanted to lecture people on the buses or the train, but I've refrained. Instead, I just vent in the lj community designed for that purpose. ;)

Of course, I'm sure one of these days there's going to be a post about me talking about my or my friends' sex life... *grin* I have no idea of proper boundaries, and I like it.