San Francisco, House!!!

I had a trip to San Francisco, with the usual week in Phoenix afterward. It was a nice trip.

The flight out connected through Dallas. Apparently it was the first Pittsburgh-to-Dallas direct flight (after the Wright Amendment expired and let Southwest fly the route direct), so Southwest did their usual awesomeness and decorated the gate, and handed out Texas-shaped cookies to everyone:

The trip itself involved the usual meeting up with people, and also an unusually high number of meetings. I was going from meeting to meeting to meeting most days, with a small break for lunch (with team members). But I think we got a lot of planning done, which was the entire point of the trip, so that was great.

Also there were randomly puppies at work one day, so that was cute.

The San Francisco to Phoenix leg of the flight hit a snag though. Apparently Las Vegas was having lots of rain and flooding and unhappiness, so the flight was delayed more than 5 hours. So that was fun. Vegas seems to always cause problems… the delay brought back unhappy memories of being stuck in Vegas for 12 hours.

More photos of the trip are here and here.

In any case, the big happy news is that we probably have a house! Our offer was accepted this evening on an awesome 5-bedroom house a couple blocks from where we live now, so assuming the inspection doesn’t turn up terribleness… we have a house!

This makes two houses that we’ve made offers on while I was not in Pittsburgh. At least this one didn’t involve trying to sign legal paperwork while boarding a plane and while on the BART from the airport…

Life things

Life goes. I’m flying to San Francisco tomorrow for work (followed by the usual week in Phoenix with my parents), so that’ll be interesting. Traveling across the country is such a pain.

Work itself has been significantly better this week, now that the craziness of feature freeze has passed. I spent the week fixing tests and cleaning up bugs, which I can do straightforwardly, and doesn’t involve arguing with people on other teams, so I think that helped a lot.

Greg’s softball season came to an end last Tuesday after losing to one of the top teams in the league, in the second game of a double-header that had them win the first game handily. And all of that came after a Monday game that saw heavy rain that grew heavier by the end. I had the interesting experience of taking (actiony, quick-shutter-speed-y) telephoto photos in dark and rainy conditions while trying to hold an umbrella in my shutter-button-hand. So that was a new thing.

Here’s a bunch of softball photos:

Yay photos.

Life things

I’m probably overdue for an update, especially if I want to make sure I don’t skip a month completely.

Life goes. Work has been ridiculously stressful lately, for a variety of reasons. Needless to say, it’s extremely fortunate that feature freeze is this week… hopefully next month (and next release) will bring somewhat less craziness in terms of sheer workload, cross-team coordination, internal infastructure problems, and conflict. (So much conflict. D:)

I’ve been worse than usual at physical activity. I stopped climbing because my fingers were seriously not liking it (I think I rely too much on my middle fingers, and am pulling the joints apart or something when I put my whole weight on them), and stopped ITG for reasons that I’m not entirely sure of. At some point I should start getting a regular schedule of activity again, but it’s so hard to get motivated to do it when it’s always so hot outside (and inside) and all you want is to sit in front of the fan and be lazy. Blah.

Greg’s been playing softball lately, and I’ve been taking pictures, so here’s some softball pictures.

Jurassic World, People Wars

Greg is away in Seattle for the week, so the apartment is quiet and lonely this week. Max and Yubin rescued me from isolation last night by inviting me along to dinner and a movie, and it was a nice experience.

We saw Jurassic World in 3D IMAX. The latter two parts were probably unnecessary, but the movie itself was surprisingly well done. I was expecting one of those terrible sequels, but they did a good job introducing just enough nostalgic things (yay Jurassic Park music clips in the soundtrack!) while still having a story that could stand on its own. I don’t think most of the characters were really well-developed or consistent, but it didn’t end up mattering anyway because dinosaurs. :D
(Also, as per Jurassic Park, the terrible people get what they deserve, along with a few innocent ones. And you think they’d have learned a few things from the first time, but apparently not…)

I think this is something like the third movie I’ve seen in theatres in something like a decade. (Previously was Frozen and the Lego Movie.) I’m not sure it’s worth the price anyway… the $15 ticket pays for 1/3 of a nice board game, and board games give a lot more enjoyment, and more social interaction besides. But it was still a nice experience.

Owen paid us a visit this past weekend on his way to Harrisburg for family things, and it was nice. We played board games, hit up Dobra Tea, had food, and made a trip to the pool after he and Greg failed at kayaking downtown due to rough waters.
Mars and Dan are supposed to be visiting Pittsburgh starting Wednesday, so that’ll be nice too. Yay for people.

I also got off my butt and finally finished the latest People Wars expansion: Interruptions. I don’t think I really fleshed out Interrupt events as much as I needed to, but meh. Now there’s a new event type that can be played during other things (much like abilities and powers, but with an aspect of surprise), and card effects that let you play them during other players’ turns. So that’s fun.

Hooray for things.

House and car adventures

We saw two other houses this past week. One was a rather old-style house in Shadyside that had dark wood paneling everywhere, a weird kitchen, a bathroom in the landing of the basement stairs (?!?), and a $500k price tag. So yeah, not so great.

Saw another today (that I talked about last time; between two other houses that recently sold), and we actually liked it. Other than the seller being silly about the price tag, the house was comfortable. No “modern” updates to the house, which we both think is a bonus. 6 bedrooms (!), 2.5 bathrooms, nice wood floors on the ground floor, carpet in the bedrooms, and a reasonably-sized backyard. The downside is the lack of garage or off-street parking, and the basement, which has mold and will need some drying out.

It’s actually amusing because, while the place is listed at around $407k, the house next to it sold for $330k, and the other house next to it is currently under agreement with a $395k price tag, so I was thinking this house was probably around $350k. (It’s both literally and figuratively in between the other two houses.) Went in with our agent today, and she thought it might actually be worth around $375k, until she was able to get in contact with the seller of the other house. Apparently it only sold for between $355k and $375k (we’ll know for sure on Thursday), and it had upgrades such as central heating and cooling, and a remodeled kitchen and bathrooms. So this seller is crazy, and we’ll just hold off until he comes to his senses and is more amenable to a reasonable offer.

But the excitement of today came after seeing the house. Austin is leaving Pittsburgh for a few months, so we’re watching his car and place while he’s gone, and had planned on using it today to drive to Ohio. But we got to the car, and quickly discovered that his front tire was very, very flat.
Cue efforts to try and reach him. He usually leaves his phone on silent overnight, and we don’t have smartphones and so couldn’t ping him on chat, and it wasn’t even guaranteed he was awake yet. In the end, we went up to his door to knock and discovered him rounding the corner of the hallway while moving clothing for laundry.

Our attempts to replace the tire with a spare to drive it somewhere failed when none of us had the strength to loosen the bolts holding the tire in place.

In the end, he ended up calling a tow truck (which took almost 90 minutes to arrive), and we ended up in Qdoba for a late 4 PM lunch while his car got a new tire. Arrived in Ohio a few hours after our original plan (and after driving through an extremely heavy rainstorm while leaving Pittsburgh), but with no real problems. It was actually kind of a fun experience.

And it turns out it was for the better anyway… Austin had forgotten his climbing shoes in the car, and his phone had apparently also fallen out of his pocket and ended up under the driver’s seat. Given that he leaves for Seattle tomorrow, it was extremely fortuitous that circumstances forced us to sync up with him before leaving for the weekend.