(What does this have to do with software? Uh, I had to use Photoshop to clean up my photos…)
At the end of the year, all the travel starts to wear me down: I pack robotically, the flights seem longer, and the hotel food gets steadily worse. But this is my last trip of the year, and it’s a nice way to end the year. I’m doing 4 days of Acrobat training for the United Nations — I’ll bet you didn’t know that there’s a complete printing plant in the basement of the U.N.! They’re a great bunch of people, from all over the world, and they have to run 24 hours a day to keep up with the avalanche of words generated by all the diplomatic missions every day.
I’ll be working in rotating shifts to train everyone, so I’ll be a bit crispy around the edges by the end of the week. But that’s offset by the fun of being in New York City near Christmas. No snow yet, but it’s quite cold. That hasn’t deterred the tourists and locals crowding the streets to ooh and aah at the decorations, the imaginative store windows, and — of course — The Tree at Rockefeller Center.
Rockefeller Center Christmas tree, 2008
It odd when you see something that you’ve seen countless times on television or in movies — it’s a sort of artificial déjà vu. It somehow seems “realer” in person because it’s already familiar. The tree is huge, but the surrounding buildings dwarf it, and you sort of lose your sense of scale. Suddenly, the skaters on the rink below seem miniature.
On another note, I don’t understand the jokes about “rude New Yorkers” — I’ve never had that experience. If anything, I find it a very comfortable city, and never more so than at this time of year. The decorations sort of soften everyone up, and the kids’ excitement is contagious.
Angel decoration (left); giant drummer (right)
Hope that seasonal feeling is starting to take hold where you are, too. We all need a little winter cheer to warm us against the cold (well, not so much in Miami…) and to act as an antidote for the increasingly bitter economic weather.
Onward to Spring.