Journal tags: holiday

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Artemis rising

Two weeks ago I was on stage for two days hosting Leading Design in London.

Last week I was on stage for two days hosting Clarity in New Orleans.

It was an honour and a pleasure to MC at both events. Hard work, but very, very rewarding. And people seemed to like the cut of my jib, so that’s good.

With my obligations fulfilled, I’m now taking some time off before diving back into some exciting events-related work (he said, teasingly).

Jessica and I left New Orleans for Florida on the weekend. We’re spending a week at the beach house in Saint Augustine, doing all the usual Floridian activities: getting in the ocean, eating shrimp, sitting around doing nothing, that kind of thing.

But last night we got to experience something very unusual indeed.

We stayed up late, fighting off tiredness until strolling down to the beach sometime after 1am.

It was a mild night. I was in shorts and short sleeves, standing on the sand with the waves crashing, letting my eyes adjust to the darkness.

We were looking to the south. That’s where Cape Canaveral is, about a hundred miles away.

A hundred miles is quite a distance, and it was a cloudy night, so I wasn’t sure whether we’d be able to see anything. But when the time came, shortly before 2am, there was no mistaking it.

An orange glow appeared on the ocean, just over the horizon. Then an intense bright orange-red flame burst upwards. Even at this considerable distance, it was remarkably piercing.

It quickly travelled upwards, in an almost shaky trajectory, until entering the clouds.

And that was it. Brief, but unforgettable. We had seen the launch of Artemis 1 on the Space Launch System, the most powerful rocket ever launched.

Thai-ing the knot

I’m about to head off to Gatwick yet again for another overseas trip. For once I’m not going to a conference or other geeky gathering. This is a trip I’ve been I’ve been looking forward to for quite a while: I’m going to with Jessica for an honest-to-goodness holiday.

I aim to do two things:

  1. Experiment with the permutations of combining the following activities:
    1. Relaxing.
    2. Doing nothing.
    3. Lounging around.
    4. Eating.
    5. Drinking.
  2. Celebrate Scott and Cheryl’s wedding on Koh Tao next week.

In what promises to be the gathering in the Orient this season, Scott and Cheryl will be getting married on a beach… on an island… in Thailand. I’m honoured that they’ve invited me along. The added presence of my antipodean brothers in arms like Cam, Dan, Lachlan and Tim means that a good time is guaranteed.

I do plan on taking lots of pictures. I don’t plan on checking email at any stage. I believe I have discharged any duties that were incumbent upon me so if you still want to get hold of me, sorry; you’ll just have to wait ‘till I get back.

Now I just need to run through any last-minute checks in preparation for the culture shock that awaits me at the other end of this flight to .