Friday, October 27, 2006

Leaving Las Vegas

Hey, that's the name of a movie isn't it?  Well anyway I am leaving Las Vegas today after a slight self imposed delay.  More on that in a bit but first, what have I been up to for the past few days? Well, as you know I have been in Las Vegas for the annual Adobe MAX developers conference so I've kept myself pretty busy presenting, meeting other developers and answering questions about our products.  I found the whole experience very rewarding and hope to do it again. since the conference kept me pretty busy it did mean I didn't get out much during the day.  In fact for the most part I didn't even see outside until after the sun went down.  With my evenings pretty much free I did get out to see some other casinos and the free shows.

Moving on to Wednesday night.  This was the night of the conference party at the Palms Casino.  This was a pretty cool casino and it definately had a much funner feel to it than the upsacle Venetian where I was staying.  Te party took place outside around the pool and inside at the attached nightclub called Rain.  What an awesome club!  As is the rule in Vegas everything has to be bigger and better and this was no exception.  he place was huge, the DJ played great music and the lighting system was the best I've seen at any club anywhere.  The whole lighting truss moved uo and down and they had flame throwers!

On Thursday night the conference was finally over and the remaining Adobe employees all went to Red 8 which is an Asian restaurant at the nearby Wynn hotel and casino. The meal was great in my opinion and we even had someone from China eating with us and he said it was some of the best he had.  After dinner four of us proceeded to see Ka at the MGM Grand.  Ths is one of the many Cirque du Soleil shows in Vegas and was definately a bigger than life spectacle.  In my opinion the stage was the star of the show.  It rotated 360 degrees in all three dimensions.  At on point is goes from horizontal to completely vertical while the performers were on it.  It is probably one of those things you have to see to believe.

Today I went to Red Rock canyon and M&M world which is the beginning of the story of why my flight was delayed.  My flight is about to leave fo real now though so I will have to finish my story later.

Off to New Jersey I go...

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Monday, October 23, 2006

My first night in Vegas

Since most of my week is going to be taken up with the conference and in classic Anthony of style of do as much as possible in a short period of time I headed out on the town to do some rapid sight seeing.

I first checked out my own hotel in order to get my berrings and then head outside and took this picture.

I then walked across the street to witness its volcano eruption which lasted all of 5 minutes.

Next door at Treasure Island (or TI as it is called now) they had an extremely cheesy pirate show in front called the "Sirens of TI".  It was basically a way to draw people into their casino by using lots of hardly dressed women but still trying to keep the pirate theme.  At least it was mildly amusing if not entertaining.

Since I still have the car until tomorrow afternoon I also took the opportunity to drive downtown to Freemont Street and its huge video screen.  This LED screen covers about three blocks and produces some dazzling images.  It has definately brought the crowds back after their decline once the strip hotels started to open up.  BTW...strip hotels are hotels on the part of Las Vegas Blvd that is called "the strip" and not hotls that have strippers.  :-)

It is now almost 1:00 am local time so I should really go to bed since my plan is to get up extra early in order to see Hoover Dam in the morning.

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Sunday, October 22, 2006

I made it to Vegas

My week in Vegas for the Adobe MAX developer conference has begun.  I got to Las Vegas just in time to attend the conference staff meeting and then proceeded to check in to my hotel room.  The room is huge and beautiful (I will take pictures).

My day is Las Vegas started with getting a sweet rental car upgrade.  I reserved a compact Dodge Neon and ended up getting a fully loaded Jeep!  It is very nice and will come in handy during my trip to Hoover Dam tomorrow.  As for the rest of today I am going to check out the pool for a bit and then find a bite to eat.  This evening I'm going to go an check out Freemont Street in downtown Las Vegas if I can stay awake that long.

I have walked through three casinos so far and have not gambled yet.  It does seem like no matter where you need to go in the hotel it involves going through the casino first.  Also, everything so big so it takes forever to walk everywhere.

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Saturday, October 21, 2006

Ottawa Sightseeing Flight

Happy birthday to me!!!

Last weekend I finally made it out on my flight around Ottawa which was my 30th birthdya present from Shannon last year.  The plane was small but our pilot, Adam, provided great views of the Gatineau hills and downtown Ottawa. We even flew over where our new house is being built and on the way back I got to fly for a little bit.  Overall it was very exciting but I did get a little queezy by the end as their was some turbulance during the flight.

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Friday, October 13, 2006

P1010005


P1010005
Originally uploaded by Photo Penguin.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Not much to look at yet


P1010002
Originally uploaded by Photo Penguin.

What a wonderful picture. It's not much to look at yet but what you are seeing is the future development Shannon and I will be living in. Our house should be just to the right of that hill you see and the park will be just beyond that.

The picture was taken where the future entrance road will be.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Warnockstock post mortem

My weekend as lighting designer and operator at Warnockstock is over. For four days I pretty much lived at the farm in Cantely setting up, two nights of shows and then striking it all down again. There was lots of rain but luckily none of it appeared during the performances on both nights. While I had a great time playing with all the lights I was happy to be back home on Sunday for a much needed rest in a comfortable bed. Here are some pictures from the wekeend.













Thursday, September 21, 2006

Warnockstock 2006


I will be doing all the lighting for this bi-annual music festival taking place in Cantely, Quebec.  If you are in town this wekeend be sure to check it out.


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Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Western Canada Vacation: Day 12: Vancouver

We're coming home!

After 12 days of travelling our vacation has finally come to an end.  While it is sad to see an end to our vacation it is also exciting to go back home to see our family, friends and cat.

for the past few days we've been exploring Vancouver as much as possible.  We went to the Aquarium and saw Beluga whales, sea otters and dolphins.  We also spent a good chunk of time wandering around Robson Street but didn't end up buying too much. Yesterday, we started by wandering around Granville Island and then put on our rollerblades for a trip on the sea wall including all the way around Stanley Park.  We ended up back at English Bay just in time to see the sunset and then found a cafe for a light dinner.  Why a light dinner?  Well this is because Shannon found a place that sold various teas plus had all you can eat chocolate fondue for $5.95!  Needless to say Shannon was in chocolate heaven.  Finally, we spent our last day being tourists at the Capilano Suspension bridge. Luckily it wasn't too busy which made exploring easier.

Here are a few more pictures.  None of them are from Vancouver or even British Columbia since those are still stuck in the camera.




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Friday, September 08, 2006

Western Canada Vacation: Photos #1

Here are just a couple of photos of our time in Alberta.  I'll post some more soon.


A bear in Banff!


Shannon and Anthony at Panther Falls on the Icefields Parkway.

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Western Canada Vacation: Day 9: Vancouver

We're back on the ferry heading to our final destination...Vancouver!

Two nights ago we went to SoBo for dinner in Tofino which was only a minute from our B&B.  Shannon and I had our most expensive meal of our trip here but were both thoroughly impressed. Shannon had salmon and I had halibut and both dishes were incredibly fresh and tasted great! We had the famous fish tacos to start which despite being an odd combination of flavours was good as well.

On our last full day in Tofino our only plan was to explore the numerous hiking trails in the Pacific Rim National Park. As usual we were ambitious and managed to hike about 9 km of the available trails leaving us exhausted again by the end of the day. I especially loved the rainforest hike.

On Friday morning (today) we woke up to rain in Tofino. As this was mainy a travel day it didn't bother us too much. After packing the car up and saying good-bye to our B&B hosts we did make a stop in Ucluelet for a quick hike as the rain had temporarily stopped.

Next on the agenda is finally a few relatively relaxing days in the city to end our vacation.  We do have a long list of things we'd like to do however and only three days to get them done in.  Once we check in to our hotel this evening our plan is to find some dinner and figure out what we'll be doing each day.

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Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Western Canada Vacation: Day 7: Tofino

We arrived in Tofino at 7:00 last night.  By then we had been travelling for over 24 hours since we left Jasper.  Needless to say we were quite tired as neither Shannon nor I got a lot of sleep on the train.

At 9:30 am on Tuesday we arrived at the Vancouver train station but our ultimate destination was still many hours and several modes of transportation away. First, we boarded a greyhound bus to take us on to the ferry from the train station at 11:30 am. We then took the ferry over to Nanaimo on Vancouver Island.  From there, not knowing we could get picked up, I walked for 20 minutes to pick up our rental car and then return to the ferry dock where I left Shannon with all our bags. With the both us in the car we now had a 3 hour drive to get to Tofino.  The drive itself was quite an adventure as the road twisted and turned its way through the mountains in order to get to Vancouver Island's west coast.

Well that's enough about our journey to Tofino.  What have we done since getting here?

Today was our whale watching and trip to an all natural hot springs. The boat ride was about 1.5 hours but on the way out the morning fog Tofino regularly gets had not lifted yet so there wasn't much to see. The hot springs however were amazing and even the 2km hike to get to them was breathtaking as it winded through old growth rainforest. On the way back to Tofino we did get to see a humpback whale in a distance plus some sea lions and harbour seals. In the end it was a pretty enjoyable day.

Shannon and I are now sitting in a coffee shop in Tofino.  We are looking forward to a nice dinner out by the water and having some fresh seafood... maybe we will see another whale!


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Western Canada Vacation: Day 5: On the train

It is now 8:45 pm Pacific Time.  We left Jasper a few hours ago and are due to arrive in Vancouver tomorrow morning around 9:00 am.

During our first full day in Jasper we ventured out to Maligne Canyon for some hiking and then on further to Maligne Lake. We spent about 2 hours exploring the trails around Maligne Canyon. The canyon itself is amazing reaching over 50 meters deep in points due to years and years of erosion and glacier melting. It really is amazing to see what nature can do when left on its own. Maligne Lake is the largest glacial lake in the Rockies. It is another beautiful spot and has a really good hiking trail that Shannon and I went on. The trail follows the shore of the lake for a while and then loops back around through some wonderful forests.  Even though this trail is a mere few kilometers from the busy end of the lake we found ourselves completely alone duriing portions of the hike which added to the experience.

After several days of non-stop activity this fairly low activity day still managed to wear us out by 6:00 pm. Once we arrived back in Jasper we had a quick meal at the Jasper Brewing Company, found some ice cream for Shannon and then went back to our B&B to call it a night.

A good nights sleep was well needed since we had to get up early on Monday in order to squeeze in one more hike before catching the train to Vancouver. As it turned out the train was running late which gave us more time for exploration.  Our destination today was the summit of Whistler's mountain a few kilometers south of Jasper. We took a tramway almost to the top and the hiked the remaining 2km to the summit and beyond. Being over 2400 meters above sea level meant that we were above the treeline in the alpine tundra and it also meant the air was much thinner.  While breathing was alittle harder we still managed to complete the mostly uphill climb but were rewarded with magnificent views of the valley.

We got back down to Jasper just in time to pick up some food for our train journey before boarding the train about 2 hours behind schedule.

Once getting on the train Shannon and I head straight for the dome car and stayed there until it got dark. The views were amazing with the highlight being able to see and get some pictures of Mount Robson. Now that it is dark we are back at our seats about to attempt to get a few hours of sleep.

Depending on when the train decides to arrive in Vancouver tomorrow our big adventure is going to be getting ousevles from the train station to the ferry and then over to Nanaimo where we pick up another car for the next portion of our trip.

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Western Canada Vacation: Day 3: Jasper

Day 3 of our vacation has now come to a close.

Yesterday we spent our time hiking to the Banff Springs Hotel and the Bow River falls.  After doing some shopping we then left Banff for Johnston Canyon.  Johnston Canyon is a popular hike in the area and rightly so.  The limestone canyon has been formed over thousands of years by the water rushing through it.  At some points the trail consists of a boardwalk that is literally attached to the side of the canyon.  The return hike to the upper falls of the canyon was 5.4 km so by the time we completed it we were quite tired. To end our day we went to a great brew pub in Canmore called the Grizzly Paw. I had an awesome amber ale.

Now on to today. Continuing the momentum from the day before we packed in another full day as we travelled from Banff to Jasper.  While only a distance of 300 km the entire journey took about 10 hours. Our first stop was going to be the famous Lake Louise but we had an unscheduled stop on our way to the Bow Valley parkway when a grizzly bear decided to walk in front of our car.  This awesome site was not enough for Shannon who proceeded to get out of the car to get closer pictures. The bear didn't care at all and as a result we got some good pictures.

Lake Louise was beautiful as expected but after going on a short hike we left since it was so crowded.  Instead we ventured on to the Icefields Parkway that would eventually take us to Jasper.  Our first stop came soon after at the Bow Lake Trail.  We spent about an hour here exploring the area around this glacier lake.  After a quick stop at Peyto Lake for a few pictures our next hike was at the Panther and Bridal Veil falls.  This hike was fun and exhilerating as we managed to find a trail that got us right behind the thunderous falls.  This stop was also particularly worthwhile as it got us away from the crowds for a while.

After a bunch more driving we finally entered Jasper National Park and soon after stopped at the Icefields Centre.  Here we decided to join all the other tourists and take the Sno-Coach right on the the Athabasca Glacier.  This was quite the experience to be standing on a glacier even if they were charging $30 for it.

Once we were finished exploring the Athabasca glacier it was 7:00 pm already and we were still at least an hour from Jasper.  Needless to say our journey from there had much less stops but we did manage to find some goats for Shannon and another waterfall for me.

Our long day finally ended just after 9:00 pm when we safely arrived in
Jasper and found our B&B for the next few days.

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Friday, September 01, 2006

Western Canada Vacation: Day 1: Banff

Our trip to Western Canada is finally underway We have been in Alberta for only about 12 hours but have been keeping ourselves busy.  Upon arriving in Calgary we picked up our rental car and drove through downtown and past the Canada Olympic Park on our way to Canmore.  We got to Canmore around 2:00 pm which is where we'll be staying for the next couple of nights.  After a quick hour and a half power nap we headed out again for the final 20 km drive to Banff National Park.

The views around here are absolutely amazing!  Even the drive from Calgary was great!  Shannon and I are loving being surrounded by all the mountains and every new turn brings even more breathtaking scenery.

With only a few hours left in our day once we arrived in Banff Town we immediately set out for our first hike, tunnel mountain.  Tunnel mountain is relatively small but the 2.4km hike to the summit still produced amazing views of the surrounding valley. I will post some pictures soon.

After our hike we had worked up an appetite so we headed back to Banff Avenue to do some shopping before going to Earl's for dinner.

Finally, we headed back to our hotel for some much needed rest.  Lots more hiking and sightseeing to do tomorrow!

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Sunday, August 20, 2006

Our new house...update

Our move in date of November 1, 2007 still feels like a long way off which is good because work has only just begun on preparing the site that our eventual house will sit. I did stop by the site a few days ago and took a few "before" pictures.  I hope to back every month or so and take a few more pictures in order to document our home's progress from day one.

So, here are my first few pictures.

The sign is up!

Aproximate location of our lot.

The beginnings of a road

Jarret and Jen got married!

That's right. On August 19th, 2006 my friend Jarret and Jennifer got married in Ottawa! Check out some of the pictures I took at the party afterwards.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Big cat

It was Emma's birthday yesterday but our now 8-year old cat still thinks she can fit into a basket that is clearly too small now. I took this picture while she was faking to be asleep the day before her birthday which also happened to be the hottest day of the year. I was working from home on Monday and the temperature insid ethe house got up to 32 degrees celsius!! Part of the reason for this was that the power went out in the afternoon due to our provincial government's inability to adequately plan for our future energy requirements as well as society's general inability to try to conserve even a little bit of energy. It does cost tons of money to build new generating plants so I can see why the province has been reluctant to do so. What I really don't get is why people don't try to conserve more. It is better for the environment plus it saves you money by lowering your energy bills. Replacing light bulbs is such a simple task yet barely anyone does it. Running your air conditioner a few degrees warmer is easy but no one does it. Our houses don't have to be 22 degrees all the time! If every houehold made a few small changes it would make a difference but the biggest culprit I think is business and especially the retail sector. Why to stores have to be so bright and cold? I was at the Loblaws Superstore the other day and it could have easily been a few degrees warmer and every single light was on! Conversely, Wal-Mart, a place I generally enjoy to loath has turned off half of the lights in their store. It's amazing! Even with half of the lights off the store was still plenty bright and even less harsh on the eyes as usual? Especially during the day why don't more stores opt to turns some of their lights off? Do they really think no one will shop if a few lights aren't on?


How can a society be forced to curb its over indulgence? I think it comes down to one thing...MONEY. If people really want to use huge amounts of energy they should have to pay for it. This will give the neccessary incentive to those who choose to conserve.




P7170028.jpg

Thursday, May 25, 2006

New House


We're pretty closing on closing the deal to build a new house in Kanata Lakes. Over the next week there are just some papers to be signed and features to be picked. The home is 2000 sq ft and has a kitchen, dining room, great room and den on the main floor and three bedrooms on the second floor. The closing date is set for November 1, 2007.

Mark and Alan's Wedding

Check out the wedding website I've created for my friends Mark and Alan.

Mark and Alan's Wedding

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Flickr

This is a test post from flickr, a fancy photo sharing thing.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Happy Easter

We're off to New Jersey this evening for an extended Easter long weekend. Since we are travelling on free (almost) tickets we took whatever days were available. With no real plans we will probably just fill our days hanging out with the parents, shopping (lots of shopping no doubt) and maybe a trip to NYC.

It is hard to imagine that a few short weeks ago we were skiing the hills of Tremblant in a winter wonderland. Now the days are reaching 20 degrees and there is no more snow in sight. Just a typical Ottawa Spring that lasts for about two weeks. The tulips are also beginning to show their heads but hopefully they will take their time in order to be around for the festival in May.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Dominican Photos

A Yahoo! photo album has been created for everyone to post their pictures to. So far there are two albums available but more may be added later.

Winter Fiesta Photo Albums

Monday, February 13, 2006

Winter Fiesta video

Hey there folks!

My first attempt at making a slide show of my trip to the Dominican is available. I still want to make some changes but it is still a nice way to see some of my pictures.



For the techies out there I am using Windows Media Services to handle the streaming of the slideshow video. Depedning on your connection and how bogged down my server is the video may stutter now and then. I am working on optimizing the streaming server as well so hopefully it will improve over time.

If the streaming doesn't work you can download the entire video instead. The video is only 12MB so shouldn't take too long to download.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

We're back form the Dominican

A week has past already and we are safely back from Peurto Plata in the Dominican Republic. We played lots of great volleyball and found time as well to just relax in the sun and do nothing.



Here's a quick re-cap of our week...

1 - Friday - Arrived in the Dominican around noon and went directly to the pool. Opening night dinner for HOPE Winter Fiesta.
2 - Saturday - Looked into tours and then spent the whole day at the beach and pool.
3 - Sunday - Day 1 of the volleyball tournament. We won one of our four games. Whole day at the beach. Hot and sunny!
4 - Monday - Day 2 of the volleyball tournament. We won another game! More time spent at the beach. Great party at the resort pool before dinner with Neil Emberg and his guitar and iPod.
5 - Tuesday - Lazy day at the beach with some shopping time too.
6 - Wednesday - Anthony goes SCUBA diving. Fun! Girls are meant to go on the catermeran but it is overbooked so have to go back to the resort.
7 - Thursday - HOPE WinterFiesta Volleyball finals. We came in 7th place (out of 10)! The rain started late in the day but that didn't stop us from having a great closing night banquet. Lots of great food, music and dancing.
8 - Friday - Afte checking out we still have all day at the resort but since it is still raining we have to pretty much spend the whole time under cover playing cards or reading.
9 - Saturday - Arrive back in Ottawa at 3:00 am.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Who's there?

I'm just about to leave for dinner at the Mongolian Village and then to see a movie but wanted to share one of Emma's latest pictures. Have a great weekend.

The Big Comfy Couch

Well OK, maybe it isn't that big and it is really a love seat and not a couch. But, it is comfy! Part two of our quest to get new furniture for our living room arrived today. I think this time we got it right.



Man, that love seat is pretty white! Here's hoping it has some super power that prevents it from getting stained.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

New photos available

With Christmas, New Year's and a wedding now behind us there are lots of new pictures on planetrumsey you may be interested in viewing.



There are quite a few pictures in each album so it may take a little while to load all the thumbnails. Enjoy!

Friday, January 06, 2006

Dominican here we come




Guess what? I'm going to the HOPE Volleyball Winter FiestaWinter Fiesta in the Dominican Republic. I am going with a bunch of friends to play some volleyball, lie on the beach, scuba dive and drink. :-) We leave February 3rd for one week. I usually go south in April so am looking forward to a trip right in the middle of winter.


Let the countdown begin!!!




Here is the weather I'll get to look forward to...

Happy New Year

Happy 2006!!


Well that is really all I have to say. My Christmas holidays are over, I'm back to work and ready to tackle a new year of adventure and excitement.