I didn’t stay in the Boy Scouts for long. It seemed to mostly be about sleeping in tents, and camping is something I’ve never wanted to do. I did learn to read maps, though. I was fascinated with spies, and I knew that I’d never be the next James Bond if I couldn’t at least navigate to the villain’s secret underground lair. My navigational skills came in useful when I first moved to the US.
In this article, I’m going to cut to the chase and provide my general tips for anyone considering a trip to Costa Rica. Navigation First of all, get a GPS. A good one, with batteries that will last all day. You’ll probably want it to be water-resistant as well. We have a Garmin eTrex Legend HCx, which fits the bill perfectly. It’s rugged, waterproof, runs for over a day on two AA cells you can buy at any store, and has a transflective LCD screen that is readable in anything from bright sunlight to pitch darkness.
In mid November, our contract with AT&T (formerly Cingular) expired. We switched to T-Mobile and got BlackBerry Curve phones. I was a BlackBerry skeptic for a long time. I didn’t think I wanted a phone with a full QWERTY keyboard. This changed when we looked at the phones available. It turned out that the Curve was only marginally wider than the average phone, perhaps a centimeter or so. It’s otherwise comparable to mid-range phones in size.
In a few years, cameras will all have single chip GPS units in them. They’ll tag their photos with the location where you took them as a matter of course, like they already tag the time and date. Some of us are unwilling to wait a few years. I’m sure you, like me, have sat down with a map and a stack of holiday photos and thought “OK, where on earth was that building?
I’ve been away in New York this week, at the IBM Palisades Executive Conference Center. Four days of team meetings with my immediate project team. Four of us are located in Austin, but senior management were in New York, so everyone traveled to New York via New Jersey. Traveling from Newark airport to Palisades isn’t exactly difficult, but it’s surprisingly easy to end up in Manhattan accidentally. There are two main traps I’ll need to remember if I go there again.
My Prius arrived! Three days ahead of the most optimistic estimate! Now it’s purchased, time to tell the whole story… I started the search on September 16th. Calling the local Massachusetts Toyota dealers quickly established that they all had ridiculous wait lists; the best wait time I was quoted was a year. However, the situation wasn’t completely hopeless—according to the online forums like priusonline.com and priuschat.com, dealers often get cars that are a color or a package that nobody on their wait list wants, or nobody on the list who wants the car can get financed at that particular moment in time.
It’s starting to look pretty empty in the house, as most of our stuff is now boxed to go. With that in mind, here’s our approximate planned route: I-90 to NY via Springfield, MA. I-90, I-87, I-84 to PA. Possible stops at New Paltz. I-84, I-380, I-81 via Scranton, PA. Possible stop at Harrisburg, PA. I-81 through MD to WV, via Hagerstown. I-81 through WV to VA. I-81, I-66, I-64, I-81 again.
As far as work goes, today was a change of pace, as I was asked to travel to Virginia to give a presentation to a bunch of sales account managers. These are the guys who handle the big customer accounts and keep the million dollar deals flowing, and the company needs to make sure they know everything there is to know about Lotus software… so I was asked to go tell them where they can find everything there is to know about Lotus software.
Wednesday we got a courtesy car pick-up from the rental company. We rented a Toyota Prius. I was intrigued by how well a hybrid gasoline/electric car would work, and this seemed a good chance to give one a thorough test drive. Or rather, for sara to give one a thorough test drive… What we hadn’t been expecting was that it was a fully tricked-out Prius, complete with GPS satellite navigation system and route finder DVD-ROM for the onboard computer.