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the year 2004
- first half -

Created 17 January 2004 ... Updated 27 June 2004

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My life in Vienna

Engel •  19 January 2004
Let's start the new year with a poem...

Kein Festes nirgends! Droben nur die Wolken,
Dazwischen, ewig wechselnd, weiche Buchten
Mit unruhvollen Sternen angefüllt...
Und hier die Erde, angefüllt mit Rauschen
Der Flüsse, die nichts hält: des Lebens Kronen
Wie Kugeln rollend, bis ein Mutiger drauf
Mit beiden Füßen springt; Gelegenheit,
Das große Wort; Wir selber nur der Raum
Drin Tausende von Träumen buntes Spiel
So treiben wie im Springbrunn Myriaden
Von immer neuen, immer fremden Tropfen;
All unsre Einheit nur ein bunter Schein,
Ich selbst mit meinem eignen Selbst von früher
Von meiner Stunde früher, grad so nah,
Vielmehr so fern verwandt, als mit dem Vogel,
Der dort hinflattert.

        Aus: Hugo von Hofmannsthal - Weißen Fächer

•  13 April 2004
After a year of sportive laziness this year appears to have started well. After the two times 80 kilometers Wien - Maiersdorf - Wien, I cycled to Purgstall/Erlauf. First the short direct way (112 km) and then the 160 km Erlauf/Donauradweg. Well ok, to be honest, I did only 100 km of the 160 km, did not feel like doing to much and risking my muscles. All in all, it felt great: moving, fresh air, doing something, breathing, living!

Lizard This year seems to become better than last in other respects too. 6 months looking for a job seems to have finally paid off: suddenly I got 3 offers within a week. Took the best offer, money- and assignment-wise nad am now waiting for my contract so that I will know when to starts, either in two days from now of in May. Haven't been working in a real office for over 3 years now, first 2 years for Concert, working from home and then for ESM and musik-theater, also from home. Very exciting!

On the webdesign front we got a nice order:, a company selling "speaking pillars", a advertising board which talks back. And as my website got very dusty I have made a full redesign, check it out. And then I've found a lot of time developing a Content Management System for musik-theater.

And ofcourse the result of all these novelties is that I have bought more books than I have read, well, that's not a new thing itself, been reading a lot and on many different topics but been buying even more and often on entirely different topics as well. Five years ago my possesions were: a suitcase, a backpack and a sleeping bag. Now: an apartment filled up with furniture, 3 bookshelves, a pile of books a large as a bookshelve and a lot of very nice old (and new) things. Live's become very full and very cosy. Maybe I should stay a little longer in Wien (ok, that decision is not so new) :o).

A little note for Steph: thank for having thought about me, it did work! Hope my good wishes for you will work out soon as well.

I will tell you more about my first weeks in a real office soon, take care!

•  15 May 2004
The last few weeks of my time as a "free man" were very busy, first working hard to complete my programming work at musik-theater and then a few days working in the forrest, cutting a few trees, clean the branches off, cutting the tree trunks in 3 meter parts and move them down to the road. I really enjoy being outside in the woods, working hard and feeling all muscles in your body the day after... Something entirely different from working on musik-theaters content management system that I've built from scratch. Also a very interesting project that took me a long time to complete, but it was nice to do some extensive programming again. Spent many nights on getting the bugs out, and I know that there are still some, and there is more work to be done but it works and the colleagues can now use it to update the website themselves.

Penguins The first weeks in the new company have been great. The first few days were spent learning all the systems, tools and products. I just looked around, asked around and got to know people and what they are doing. Of course it also helped that I already knew many of them from a few years back and that I'm familiar with a great number of BT products but of course, in the new company, things work a little different. The second week was already spent working on real orders and of course, as things go, my days are full trying to get things done. A different life again but I like it. Getting up in the morning and getting out is hard but walking through the parks nearby is very nice, especially early in the morning when it's still fresh, people still slow and the sunlight still not too bright. Well, that should end soon: summer will start soon and it's time to start cycling instead of walking but there hasn't been enough time to get my "city" bike fixed, it has not been used for over a year so will need some oil and some air and some dusting.

For about a year I decided on "no income - no presents for myself" so I hadn't bought so many antique books and other items anymore. Well, the stack of books still grew a little but at least the books I bought were not too expensive. Well, now, with an income again, I've looked around a little and just bought myself a 1840s and a 1860s encyclopedia, hmmm, beautiful but now it really is time for a new bookshelf and it probably won't fit all the books anyway, ayayay, our appartment will be stuffed soon! Also because Katrin bought me an late 1800s original Thonet rocking chair. Something we've been looking for for a long time but they are usually ridiculously expensive but we got this one for a very good price and it is beautiful, now we just need to buy a castle big enough to fit our things. Back to work... :o)

•  1 June 2004
The first month passed by very quickly. Been reading, learning, getting introduced to my new colleagues by other new colleagues and it' been very interesting. Got a couple of small projects and learnt about my "real" big projects. There is indeed plenty to do, as they'd already promissed me.

On the personal front: not a lot has happened, just all the same things as before but in less time. Yes, it's gotten busy. Really have to start planning things in, can't always do the things I want to do whenever I feel like. A whole new way of living...  :o)

After a long time of waiting for it, I've finally managed to buy some Peter Greenaway movies, one of my all time favourite film makers, or rather, my only favourite film maker. Anyway, they're great. The pictures and athmosphere in The Cook, The Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover, the story and pictures in The Pillow Book, awesome! Just read about my other favourite movies on my list of favourite films.
" I once saw a film where the main character didn't speak for the first half hour. "
" ... like us? Counting up the minutes -- have we spent half an hour together? "
" I was completely absorbed as to what would happen because anything was possible. "
" ...and then? "
" He spoilt it -- he spoke. "
" ... and? "
" ... and within five minutes I'd lost interest. "
" Now you've opened your mouth, do you expect me to lose interest? "
[smiling] " It was only a film. "

        Michael and Georgina, in Peter Greenaway's The Cook, The Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover

Big Bird •  27 June 2004
The philosophic Cowboy in the The big Lebowski already said it:
"sometimes you hit the bar, sometimes the bar hits you". Unfortunately it turned out to be a very true line for me as well. Someone I thought of as a good friend played a very unfair game with me over the past months. Organising things behind my back, not telling me about things that involve me personally and not answering any questions. Time to just drop him as quickly as possible, trying to pick up the pieces, forget about it and think of it as an important lesson. But I'm not happy about it. Just telling me about the things he did in a short eMail is not the way to treat people. Ah well, one day I'll get over it.

Back to positive things now: I really enjoy my new job! We just had a team building event where I got to know my collegues in a very different environment. It was great fun to sit together for dinner, at the bar, at the wine tasting and in workshops. With BT we always had a few boring presentations but a lot of "fun and games".
With this company we had only one presentation, many interesting workshops ("build an airplane that can safely carry and land an unboiled egg"), some games and a lot of fun. What still amazes me is the fact that most people have been in that same company for over 15 or 20 years now. Something different from my previous jobs where only a handfull of people had been working for more than 4 years for the same company! And since my tasks are interesting I might become one of the long stayers myself!

And as I'm working again and don't have a lot of spare time anymore, it's a good time to do many more things in my spare time than before, when there was plenty of time. So once after work I visited the DIY shop and bought wood panels for a bookshelf. The idea came up more than a year ago but as things go, when you have time you can still do things tomorrow. When you don't better do them straight away. I thought it would be funny to drill holes with an old hand drill, one of the things you have to turn yourself. They used to work for hundreds of years so why not now anymore. Bought a nice drill a few months ago and it's just been waiting in an old suitcase (very stylish to store old stuff in other old things, our place looks like a train station already...) ever since. Now it finally got out to do some work and it worked perfectly. Of course my finger got stuck in one of the wheels resulting in a blue finger and a lot of blood but now I can say that I built it myself, really! In the mean time I collected so many books that I'll need another bookshelf soon, then some boxes can be thrown out as well so the room should then look a little emptier again. Hhhmmm, well, that probably won't work. By the time the new shelf is there, it will be full as well already. And the new chair (yes, I'm a real chair-fetishist) will also take some space and the rocking chair already does take a lot of space and.... ah well, one day my place should be moved to a very nice castle somewhere anyway. :o)

Something funny I found in a 150 year old German encyclopedia:
Pflanzen sind lebende organische Wesen und von den Thieren wesentlich nur durch den Mangel an willkürlicher Bewegung unterschieden.

        Aus: Allgemeine deutsche Real-Encyklopädie für die gebildeten Stände
               Brockhaus Conversations-Lexikon, Zehnte auflage, 1854

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