Long time no blog again.. Well, lots happened which flipped my world again upside down and.. Ah well.. We’ll see how it goes.. blah blah blah..

Last week I was in Rochester, Minnesota, which is a central northern state in US. I flew in via Chicago and saw while landing at O’Hara Airport the Sears Tower after enjoying the beautiful great lakes. Later I flew into Minneapolis where I met up with my MySQL colleagues. Oh great fun it was! I was at the wrong hotel and my old Nokia phone didn’t work. Of course, Ray’s phone got stolen.. Anyway, we finally got together and I got in trouble with the waitress because I said the beer or glass was bad (which was also the case).

Sunday we drove direction Rochester, but first I had to buy some new pants! Dress code at IBM and I would get in trouble with my jeans! This was a perfect excuse to go to the Mall of America, the biggest mall in US and apparently also in the world. I mean, it has two indoor roller coasters and miles of shops! You got to see it! We also tried out the iPhone and it felt good. Pity the software is still crappy and no EU version yet. Most of us are waiting for v2 or next generation.
Oh yes, Ray got lost on the road and we drove through the country side. Which was great!

I guess the rest of the week was pretty common: great work, meeting great new people (at IBM) and of course lots and lots of fun with the colleagues!

Here a list of stuff I did for the first time in my life:

  • Minnesota: I think it was a much better experience than Florida.
  • i5/OS: I think I fell in love with it! This training was more an introduction and we shaped up the installation script of MySQL, but I think it was just great!
  • Automatic driving in US: first time I drove a car in US and first time using automatic transmission. Was pretty funny.
  • Food: Red Lobster, Applebee’s, Panara Bread, Quizno’s, ..
  • Aspirin: ok, I took this probably when I was a kid, and I don’t really like pain killers, but it helped with the pain in my back. Thanks to Shawn with all his pills!
  • Transformers: well, it was actually the first time I saw a movie before it got out in Belgium.

What drove me mad:

  • Plastic cutlery: I hate it.. I HATE IT! I ask for real ones at each hotel and sometimes they do have real stuff, you know, things you can use more than ones..
  • And other little things which will keep me from ever moving to the US.

Overall, a great trip and very useful learning i5/OS. And it gave me a different view on IBM, yup, better and cooler too.