Weeks go by way too quickly lately, and
was suddenly here. So I
finally got permission from work to attend, after managing to complete our
milestone the required one week in advance.
So far, my first GUADEC has been fantastic. While I've tried to come here
with my most "just relax" mentality and it's working pretty well, I've also
tried to be around the conference for most of the day, as meeting people is,
I believe, the best way to enjoy this kind of conferences. I'm staying
with Josep and Jes s
in one of the
bungalows at the GNOME Village, which is a very nice place, althought it's
a bit too far from the GUADEC site. There's a public bus service, but some
days it's quite unreliable; luckily Fabrice is staying with us at the
bungalow and he has a car which we can use.
An unplanned attendee was mako
, who after
being around the great CDG airport for the Ubuntu Conference in Paris, had
a few spare days before returning to Boston and came down to Vilanova i la
Geltr for the warmup weekend and half of the first core day. Of course, having
him around has introduced the usual randomness to those days.
Just after arriving in Vilanova, toniher
drove us to the lighthouse area, where there were some big Sant Joan parties
going in the middle of the beach. At 4AM, and after checking our flirting
techniques are not too effective, we wandered off back to Vilanova
Park, seeking some good sleep. In the meantime, Danilo Segan, from the
Serbian team, apparently had a hard time finding a way to open his bungalow,
and ended sleeping in ours as yet another guest.
Saturday morning was spent sleeping, and while we had breakfast, I put on
my Komando CT
training t-shirt. When
mako saw it, he said "hey I have one of those!", which made me discover how
Komando t-shirt with mako during the Montr al conference. WTF! We headed back
to Vilanova to get lunch and my talk about the Catalan GNOME localisation
project. At 16:00 it's hard to get food in some places, and when we finally
managed, my talk was so close we had no time at all to prepare.
, Toni Hermoso
and I spoke about our experience to a great audience of about 12 persons.
Having decided what would each talk about two minutes before starting, I
found myself with little to say at some points, but I guess the talk ended up
being interesting, and we got a few interested people in assisting us with
After the conference we met with Bastien and several Debian UK people in one
of the bars in the beach area, where we, just after getting in, could see how
Argentina scored a fantastic goal against Mexico in extra time. A few beers
later, it was time to sleep, but we still had to go through the transportation
odyssey. I think we managed to get a taxi one and a half hours later.
Sunday has been the most intense day so far. Up at a reasonable time, mako,
danilo and I planned going to spend the day at Sitges, one of the most
famous towns in the Catalan coast which is just one train stop away. Mako was
thrilled about the idea of visiting the Gay Capital of Southern Europe, and we
set off for the train station.
Visiting Sitges was not meant to be too
funny for me, but mostly
quite emotional. My initial plan was to go alone during the week, but I
figured that mako and others would really enjoy being in such a beautiful
town as this one. Sitges is where my Catalan grandmother was born, and where
she lived for much of her life. Some will remember that wrote about how
important she was for me when she died one year ago. I hadn't been in Sitges
for years already, and I feared my emotions when I went back to her house in
the middle of the town.
We walked from the train station down to the Santiago Rusinyol street, while
I tried to show them some of the details I always enjoy about Sitges, including
the No embruteu les parets
tiles which are all over the place. We arrived at my grandparent's place and
we entered the house. Having danilo and mako with me probably helped to not
get too many memories back, and also, seeing the house so dismantled, and
empty of life made it hard to feel "at home".
Don't dirty the walls. Cleanness is a great signal of civilisation
When we went down to the Platja de Sant Sebasti and I spoke to my cousin
Bego on the phone I was unable to stop the tears when my grandma appeared in
the conversation, though. That beach was her favourite, and I remember how she
would take us to spend the day there when we were little more than babies.
I took danilo and mako around the town's center and enchanting corners, and
after having lunch, we headed to the beach going through the gay streets .
At the beach, we had our share of sunbathing and swimming, and around 18:00
I told them we should probably head back to Vilanova, as I had to be ready to
play football at 19:00.
We were lucky and the train arrived as soon as we got to the station, and
also when Fabrice gave us a lift to the stadium with his car. The
GNOME World Cup
had already started, and someone had taken the last red shirt to substitute
me, so I quickly neglected my ex-team and joined the Blue Team. We found
ourselves in the final after a dramatic penalty kickout, to play against the
mighty Black Team led by Bastien Nocera, who had *destroyed* the White Team
with 16 goals or something equally insane.
It was a very even final, though, and after 40 minutes of non-stop running,
our team scored the decisive goal just three minutes before the end.
The day would not end up there, as I had to meet my cousin Laia and her
boyfriend Marc in Barcelona, to have dinner with them. So off I went, with a
hurt calf and dressed like a tramp, to fetch yet another train. I had dinner
at a nice place near the Pla a de Catalunya, and after that we were all so
sleepy that we went straight to bed at my cousin's place, at 2AM or so. Then,
there was the fight against the mosquitos at 4AM, and an early wake up to go
back to Vilanova, in time for the grand opening of the Core GUADEC.