Saturday, July 30, 2022

Finally a Meet Up

It was so good catching up with this group last night.  "BC", before Covid, we used to meet up at the pub for lad's night, sometimes with Štěpánka, every four to six weeks.  I can't even remember the last time we actually all made it for a beer.  During Covid we did have a few virtual pub nights but that's just not the same. Meeting up in person just felt like being back to normal.  

Thursday, July 28, 2022

A Couple of Birthday Cards

I received a couple of birthday cards in the mail today.  My folks mailed their card from Arizona on 12 July and my aunt and uncle mailed there's from California on 14 July.  Two weeks isn't that bad.  During Covid mail was taking much longer because there were so few flights between the USA and Euroland.

Friday, July 22, 2022

3 Day Workshop

I spent the last three days at work in a workshop.  I wasn't really thrilled about spending three fulls days in a workshop because this meant that I would then need to spend at least a few hours each night working just so that I would not face a mountain of work when I returned.  I also wasn't thrilled about having to spend my birthday yesterday in this workshop.  

To top it all off, I knew the facilitator.  She and I don't see eye-to-eye on anything so spending three days with her wasn't my idea of a good time.  The saving grace is that I work with some great people and our Kyndryl Deutsche Bank team is awesome.

Friday, July 15, 2022

Keyboard Stickers

It was time to refresh my work computer and I had the choice to stay with a Mac or switch over to a Lenovo laptop using Windows.  Well, I'm such a jablečný kluk, an Apple guy, now that I didn't even consider switching back to a Windows operating system.  Kyndryl provided me with a new MacBook Air.  There's just one big problem.  They issued me a laptop with an American keyboard.  

I can't use an American keyboard.  It may seem funny to some people but my muscle memory has changed and now I touch type with a Czech keyboard.  I struggle anytime I have to use an American or German keyboard because I'm so used to Czech keyboard now.  It's not just the QWERTZ vs QWERTY thing but all of the punctuation characters are in different spots and I also type using Czech accented letters.

The fix was to order keyboard stickers.  I went into settings as set up a Czech keyboard and now I'm going to place stickers on the keys.  Even when touch typing, I occasionally glance at the keyboard to get my bearings and I want the keyboard to match my language setting.

Friday, July 8, 2022

Pre-Birthday Care Package

It's been a while since I received a care package from the USA.  I'm not complaining mind you.  The cost to mail a care parcel from the USA has increased to $77 and now there's VAT due on everything.  After more than a decade here I'm just not as dependent on getting things from back home.  If there's something that I really need I can find in locally or at least on Amazon.  Of course there are some things that I can't find.  I can't remember the last time that I had Rocky Road ice cream and it's not like I can have ice cream mailed to me.  

I was working from home today when the postman buzzed my door.  I was surprised because I hadn't ordered anything but here was a box from my sister in California.  I had to pay 120 Kč ($5.40) for VAT due which I could pay with my iPhone.  It's still two weeks until my birthday so I should wait until then to open up my presents.  I do know that there's a box of corn muffin mix and according to the custom's form there should be some socks.  I can't wait to see what all she sent me.

Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Down 33 kg

Yes!  I'm now down 33 kg (72,75 lbs).  I wrote before that it's been a long five plus years to lose this much weight.  Since it has been gradual, not many people noticed the first 35-40 lbs, especially with everyone working from home during Covid.  Everyone seems to notice the last 30ish lbs.  I've even lost so much weight that a colleague asked if my cancer was back.

I've had to order buy some new clothes because nothing fit right any more.  Just another 2 kg (4.4 lbs) still to lose. Fingers crossed.

Friday, July 1, 2022

13 Years in Czechland

Today is 13 years in Czechland.  13 years!?!   A lot has happened since my ten year party three years ago.  The last couple of years especially seems kind of blur, in no small part, due to Covid.

Coming to Czechland is still one of the best decisions that I ever made.  Although, I am starting to have a bit of an identity issue.  I was born and raised in California and,  truth be told, deep down, I'll always be a bit of a California boy.  

When I was 24, I went to Atlanta for a two-week vacation and ended up staying there for 13 years.  When I lived in Atlanta and someone asked me where I'm from, the obvious answer was that I'm from California.  

While I've been here when people have asked me where I'm from, then the answer has been that I'm from Atlanta.  As of tomorrow I will have lived in Brno longer than I lived in Atlanta so am I really still from Atlanta?  Perhaps the answer to where I'm from defaults back to California.

A friend of mine asked that "when I think of home" what pops in to my mind?  When I think of back home, then California pops into my mine.  But, honestly if I think of home, (and not of back home) then Brno is what pops into my mind which doesn't exactly help.  I can't say that I'm from Brno.  That would be weird.  Plus, people would assume that I'm either making a joke or that I actually have Czech citizenship.

Another friend mentioned that his kids were Moravian because they were born in Brno.  I've lived in Brno longer than his kids have been alive so does that make me more or less Moravian than the kids?  I don't think so.  

However, once I finally get Czech citizenship, the government will issue me a new Czech birth certificate and the place of birth will be the address where I submit my application.  So whenever I finally do become Czech, my new birth certificate will state that I was born in Moravia.  I guess when that day comes I will officially be a government-certified Brňák.  But that seems a way off because I still need to sort out my paperwork so that I can finally apply for Czech citizenship.  

Now that I've lived here for 13 years, I suppose that I'm now a Czech teenager.  Well sort of, I guess.  At the very least I can wish myself a Happy Czech-iversary!!