Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Day 104 - 06/04/2007

A colleague and I went to a customer site to install the latest version of our software. They're migrating from one product to another so they're running our migration utility (which I'm responsible for supporting). They were having problems with performance issues with a previous version; the version we were installing rectified them.

We got down there a little late due to traffic on 66. Who knew rush hour continued until almost 10a?!? We ended up jumping off and taking 50 in from the Beltway. I love taking that drive as it's like a trip down memory lane. When we moved back from Germany in '77, we continued to go to church in Falls Church and would take 50 from the Beltway. It's been neat to see it change over the years.

After a quick stop at Starbucks for coffee, we headed up to the customer's offices and installed the latest version. After logging in, we experienced...no performance increases. Great. After an hour or so of troubleshooting, we kicked off the compute statistics operation and headed out to lunch.

We walked north on 14th Street up to O Street and ate lunch at Thai Tanic. The food was pretty good, as was the atmosphere. Much better than the last time we had Thai downtown, that's for sure. After lunch, we walked back to the office, with a quick detour to the Renwick Gallery to check out some culture. There's a piece there that I wanted to show my colleague as I was sure he'd appreciate it. As it turns out, he did, so the trip was worth it.

If you're ever in DC, stop at the Renwick and take a peek at the Ghost Clock. You won't be disappointed.

It was I who was disappointed after returning to the office and finding that the compute statistics operation didn't do anything for performance. We were still experiencing a delay in execution, so I continued my investigation. Minutes turned into hours and the next thing you know it was quitting time. We headed back to the office with a list of action items and a sense of frustration. Not only did we not get the job done, but the customer with whom we were supposed to meet blew us off. He knew we were coming down, yet was no where to be found.

I dropped my colleague off at the office and headed home. D's cousin Aaron is coming for dinner on Tuesday and I needed to mow the lawn. Halfway through the front yard, N came out and asked if he could help.

"Sorry, N, you're not old enough."

M then came out and told me to just have him walk with me. The light bulb went off and I stepped outside the box I had surrounded myself with.

"Sure, N," I told him, "you can help me once I get to the back."

He beamed with excitement and waited patiently while I finished up the front.

As it turned out, both N and M helped me. N held the handle while I walked beside him and, after doing the same with M for a few strips, she took complete control and mowed a dozen or so strips by herself. She grew tired of it though, so I finished up for them. Maybe she'll be able to mow the yard on her own this summer after all (vs. next summer like I was suspecting).

After eating dinner, showering and putting the kids to bed, I settled in for Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals. Ottawa needs to win this one to avoid going down 3-1 against Anaheim. They were unable to get any momentum going and played lackluster hockey for the better part of two periods. It was only in the 3rd period when either team started showing signs of life, but it looks like Ottawa doesn't want it as bad as Anaheim, as they ended up in the position they don't want to be in: down 3-1.

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