Thursday, November 19, 2009

My Shadow, Tough Talking Pups and A Droid?

Rachel met me out at my work yesterday morning to do a job shadow for a couple hours as part of a school assignment. She'd like to have shadowed somebody in the medical field, ideally our family doctor but with all the doctor/patient confidentiality requirements it wasn't going to happen. Not that she wants to be an air traffic controller but coming in and seeing where I work and watching me during a session in the sector proved interesting for her, or so she said. Some of the guys at work have read enough about her in my blog so I thought it would be fun to have her come in and meet them; and it was.

The sector was pretty quiet as we first sat down but traffic levels built nicely and she was able to get a good idea of what it is I do. We talked about what it takes to be a good controller and wondered out loud if she could imagine herself working in this sort of environment. I told her that she definitely has qualities about her that are necessary to do the job (attention to detail and an ability to multi-task) but I'd rather see her do something much different with her life. Not to say that her talents would be waisted here but I see her out in the world working with others in a way that wouldn't happen in our darkened control room. She agreed.

Rachel was here once before but that was ten years ago after Tammy and I were first married and she was only 8 years old. They spent a couple hours with me at the sector with Rachel using most of that time doodling with a pencil and paper while I explained the job to Tammy. Today's experience was quite a bit different for her.

Tammy and I brought the pups to the park yesterday afternoon. Our weather has been absolutely gorgeous the past two weeks and it's been nice to be out in it. I brought our video camera along because Tammy was telling me about how Charlie likes to make a run for a herd of llamas in a pasture adjacent to the park. They see him coming and they run toward him which sends him back in full retreat mode. I had to see this for myself.

Speaking of the pups, they're now on Facebook: Toby, Allie and Charlie.  (I believe you'll need a Facebook account and signed in to see those links)

Our cellphone plan is coming up for renewal next month. We've been with Verizon the past four years and have no complaints about their service so we plan to stay with them. The only question is, do I upgrade my phone to a smart-phone or stay with my middle of the road Envy or something similar? I'm very tempted to pull the trigger on a Motorola Droid but I'm having a difficult time justifying it. Do I need one? Nope. Would I like one? For sure.

We've already decided to get Rachel a Droid for Christmas. She's a busy kid and being able to retrieve her emails on-the-go and get online whenever she needs to is becoming more of a necessity. Yesterday for example: meet me at my work at 7:30 then back at school by 10:00. After school she had nearly three hours of Mock Trial after which she hurried home with only enough time to grab her dance clothes and a sandwich Tammy made for her to eat on her way to teach dance for 5:00 in Farmington.  In between the classes she teaches she has time to do homework and that's where the Droid and its ability to connect her to the net comes in handy. It's a changing world out there. She wouldn't get home until after 9:30 but even then her day still wasn't over as she would have more homework to do.  She's certainly getting the education I never did.  Tammy and I would rather she wasn't so busy but it's what she thrives on.

I've been getting in some nice rides the past couple weeks.  I was out Monday morning before work and came oh-so-close to taking a pass on work altogether. A bright sunshiny day and temps in the low 50's. It doesn't get any better than that this time of year.  I'd like to get out for one last longish ride tomorrow before the real cold weather takes hold; possibly 100+ miles. The forecast is calling for southwest winds and temps in the upper 40's under overcast skies. I'm thinking a Le Sueur loop. Tammy will be in the office and all my yard work is done.  I've got a stained glass project to finish but that's on Saturday's to-do list.

It appears we'll be hosting Christmas Eve at our home.  I think I'll use the 'event feature' on Facebook to send out invitations as everybody who will be invited (with the exception of my mom) uses FB.  Maybe it's tacky to send out invites this way or is it just another way our culture is evolving...or is that devolving?


Tim said...

I just received my Motorola Droid on Thursday and I have to say it's one of the coolest gadgets ever!

It was time for me to upgrade my aging Palm Treo 755p which Verizon was no longer supporting anyway.

Of course no one needs a smart phone (I had decided on either an iPhone or Droid, and since I was already a Verizon customer the Droid was the easy choice), but for essentially $1 a day for the month ($29.99 a month for the Internet access) why not?

That gives me a GPS (built into the phone) which I didn't already have and Google maps access on the road.

There aren't nearly as many apps out for the Droid as the iPhone, but I got a copy of the free Google Sky Map that uses the GPS in the phone to show constellations depending on which direction you're looking. Pretty cool!

Of course you have to turn a blind eye to the fact that I'm sure all the phone usage is a marketing bonanza for Google who can essentially track all you do with the phone...

Kevin said...

We too got our Droids on Thursday and I agree...quite cool as well as confirming my suspicions that space aliens do in fact live among us and are the reason we have all this technology as it's simply beyond human ability.

I'd heard about Sky Map and will be downloading the app. Droid may not have nearly the amount of apps as iPhone but I'm sure they'll have tons to choose from before too long.

I'm still trying to figure out how to quickly terminate a call. I can't find an 'end call' button on the phone. Maybe the protective cover I put on it is concealing it.

Kevin said...

I found the end call button. It's big and red and in the shape if a phone. Doh!