Yay! I survived the first week of my training in Monterey! A few random observations:
- Training people 1:1 for 10-12 hours a day is quite demanding. I have to give my students a break every hour or so, not because they need it but because I need it. The energy and enthusiasm of the sailors I’m working with is definitely motivating, though.
- Exchange 2003 looks really old after a year of working with Exchange 2010. It’s a little scary, in fact, how old some of the hardware and software that the Navy has to use is; some of the shipboard routers our sailors depend on are so old that the manufacturer doesn’t support them any longer.
- Our lunch and dinner meals are catered by the local Whole Foods. Those folks can definitely cook, but it’s not as good as Arlene’s home cooking. Thankfully they’re not providing desserts, or I’d probably blow up.
- I had forgotten what apartment life was like. Arlene and I lived in an apartment the first year and a half of our marriage, but that was a long time ago! The apartment I’m in has noisy upstairs neighbors, plus a cat infestation that results in nightly catfights somewhere not far outside my bedroom window. On the other hand, it’s nice to not be in a hotel; I have a real kitchen.
- In Monterey, apparently caffeine-free diet Coke is illegal, because I sure can’t find it anywhere.
- The Monterey Bay Aquarium really is as good as you’ve heard. However, it wasn’t much fun going there without the kids. It’s just not the same without my family around!
Today I spent some time driving around the city (which didn’t take long, hemmed in as it is by Monterey Bay). I toured the aquarium for about two hours (photos here), dropped by the local Goodwill to pick out a couple of new shirts, found a place to do my laundry, and so on. I briefly debated going to see the new X-Men movie but opted instead for some Whole Foods organic microwave popcorn and some more of season 2 of The Wire. Tomorrow I’ll be attending the Monterey ward, then my old friend Chris Larsen and I are going to get together and do some sightseeing. It should be a nice relaxing day, which is important given that I start teaching again bright and early Monday.