I'm starting this post on the plane. There's about an hour left in the flight and my PSP battery is toast. 17" laptops are not fun to use on a plane =/ (Really wish I had a 10" netbook for this trip)
Paris is an amazing city! Probably my favorite city that I've been to yet. Tons of history, culture, architecture, good food, and friendly people. It seemed like the entire city was accessible by foot or with a quick metro or bus trip. Contrast to Atlanta which is the least pedestrian-friendly city EVER and it's no surprise that I enjoyed Paris so much. I can't wait to go back with more than a day of free time =)
That's how busy work was while in the Metaboli offices. I was in the office until 9pm or so every day. This didn't ruin the trip however. I had a blast! All of my new trans-Atlantic colleagues were a pleasure to meet and work with. One thing that was odd - six of them distinctly reminded me of other people. Who? Westley from The Princess Bride, Jeff Daniels, Rachel Dratch, a future version of my brother Kyle, a young John Cusack, and Marco from Titanic (more so because his name is Marco than in appearance). I would have lost it if the Westley look-alike started reciting lines from The Princess Bride ("if only we had a holocaust cloak and a wheelbarrow, we'd be SOMEwhere!"); same for Jeff Daniels with Dumb & Dumber lines.
Anyway, they are a good lot and I look forward to working with them from now on. The week was productive -- learning all of the systems we are migrating to, understanding their existing processes, planning for the big launch of the new GameTap website next week -- noses were right on the grindstone. I love the feeling I get when working hard and getting a lot done. I even made some progress towards one of my 2009 goals: to quit slacking in the programming department and write some code. In the limited downtime, I was able to setup a new table on our local SQL database and put together a small Perl script that reads in a text file of TapIDs and numbers to update our Prize Arcade point standings. We are currently spending way too much time doing that stuff by hand and this is the start of getting all that automated. It's not a complex script by any standards, but it was a good refresher for Perl.
Yesterday was my big tourist day. I had a list of sites I wanted to see and a couple specific items to buy. By the end of the day, I had walked 20km in about ten hours! I started my first loop around 11am - click here to see the path in Google Maps. Once I got back to the hotel, I took an hour break to give my feet some rest and to let it get dark before I went to the Eiffel Tower. Click here to see the second loop. Aaaand click on this third link to see my Picasa Web Album from my trip.
My favorite site, the one I had been looking forward to the whole week, was the Eiffel Tower. I love how it looks at night. My path took me along the river as I approached it so I had good visibility as I closed in. I probably spent an hour just enjoying the walk up to it and gazing at it from the base. I got some good video of the tower as it sparkled... but I captured it sideways forgetting that I would need some software to transpose it. It is in the Picasa album. If I get it transposed, I'll upload it to YouTube.
Tl;dr - Paris is awesome. I can't wait to go back. Check out some pics I took.