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The summer of fun

I have had a day of clearing my head as today is my last day of being unemployed. The job I said I had lined up is starting tomorrow and after a whole summer of ‘slacking off’ (or relaxing as I think most other people call it) I’m actually looking forward to getting back into a slightly more ‘normal’ routine and office banter (and socials) again. But what have I actually been doing, and where will I be working from tomorrow?

tl;dr

  • I’m starting work at Expedia/hotels.com – I’ll be working in their offices in London (Islington to be precise)
    • having not really touched a computer in anger over the summer I’m hoping I can still remember how to code
  • I have continued losing weight – 20.8kg (45lbs/3.2 stone) lost and body fat percentage (down 11% from where I started)
  • fitbit says that I have walked over 920 miles
  • my mum has undergone rather major but what looks like very successful surgery to remove all visible cancer
  • I’m no longer feeling depressed

hotels.com

My main focus is going to be on improving their shopping experience – the search results, the main hotel pages and pretty much everything else up to the point where people decide to book a hotel. I’m looking forward to working with a few familiar faces who I hope can help ease my special brand of office banter onto everyone else and getting my hands dirty on some real code again after not really having done much technical work during my time off.

I had a few places to pick from when looking for work but after speaking with a load of people from all over the company I have to say I’ve not been more impressed with a company than I was here so fingers are very firmly crossed that I’m onto a winner! It’s likely going to be rather different than what I had at Mozilla (no 24 hour office beers, no need for meetings over Skype and the possibility of coding stuff for IE7) but I’ve done it all before so fingers crossed I can remember how to do it again :)

Weight and diabetes

Getting the one negative out of the way first I was a mere 2.2kg off meeting my target weight loss before starting my new job – this means that I won’t be able to wear any of my new epic shoes on my first day.

Other than that things are still going very well and I think I should be able to keep up the walking and gym going as I start work again – which was the main goal of the summer of fun as I looked to replace my old routines of working all day, getting grumpy, getting home as quick as possible and slouching on the sofa with new ones that allow me to be rather more active. While it remains to be seen if I can be AS active as I was while on holiday (I doubt I’ll find time to hit 15k steps per day when I can’t head out walking for a whole morning or afternoon) I can certainly try; and hopefully things might be offset with the fact that I’ll likely be heading out for less large and leisurely lunches :)

I’ve still not tried swimming again as I’m worried that another bad swim might be my last but I’ll be in there soon; I’m also toying with an idea of arranging something around football/basketball, geeks and rentable pitches in central London…

Mum

My main focus over this past month and a bit has been my mum. Things got a bit messed up when her scheduled operation got delayed a month due to a dirty ward (which needed a thorough clean) but she has since been in, had the things the doctors wanted to do done with no nasty surprises and everything has gone to plan. As of tomorrow she will have been home a week and while she gets annoyed of people saying it if you could look at her and have no idea what she has been through the past few months.

This is fantastic news and I couldn’t be more proud of her for how she has coped with everything; she’s a true inspiration.

Feelings

When I think back to late May, where I found myself in a state where I would be trying to work and instead end up staring blankly at a screen for hours telling myself I was too stupid to do the work required of me and feeling too isolated and embarrassed to tell anyone, and look at what I’m feeling today it’s like I am a different person; and in many ways I am.

Part of my suggested diabetes treatment was to undertake a series of counseling sessions and while this is something that I have done before these were focused more on the triggers that made me feel like I did and how to not have them trigger again, or at least be able to cope with them a bit better when they do and therefore felt rather good and productive.

So while it’s a ‘shame’ that my summer of fun is now over I’m looking forward to the winter of work and win. I’ve got things still to do (like investigate the new shiny front-end frameworks, write up a load of restaurants I’ve been to over on ross-eats, eat more burritos and lose those final 2.2kg) but I’m going to be able to do them all in due time.

Thanks to everyone who has shared a beer, chat, twitter conversation and laughs with me during the summer; it has been a great one.

  • http://winteroftext.ca Jonathan Lin

    Cheerio! Is that what I should say? Just thinking about you and glad things are on a good turn. Keep up the health! It’s what we have! Speaking of which. I should be more active too.

  • Morgan Roderick

    You’ve been inspiring me to do more, cheers!

  • Kieran Sedgwick

    I’m thrilled to hear about your successes. When I come to London in October, we must grab a pint :)

  • nigelbabu

    Glad to hear you’re doing better and especially about your mum! Congrats on your new job too!

    PS: A bit delayed on reading my feeds :P