I always tread into Air Canada-land with trepidation. I am always convinced that they are going to manage to pull off a stunt in direct contradiction to their supposed mandate to be the best. Air Canada is so pleased with itself for excellence in customer service. Sometimes they manage to live up to that self-proclaimed image, but not often. Well they did not pull off one stunt – there were a handful. I am always amazed at how these carriers find so much to brag about when they just cannot get the necessary attention to detail down pat.
I scored row 16 on the 767 on the way over which is right beside the you-know-what. I visited with @pythiansimmons who shared the row with me, slept, and watched some Seinfeld. The ride from LHR to Birmingham was a sleeper (literally), and I dozed for less than 3 hours as we navigated the Atlantic. Heathrow was busy, but unlike I have seen it later in the day.
The Jury’s Inn (I call it Yuri’s after our own Y. Velikanov) has been upgraded since the last time we were here, and the lobby is very nicely sparkling new. The festivities start tonight with a Pythian catch-up in the lobby followed by a reception at a bar close to the ICC (the center where the UKOUG is being held). I did not make it to Oaktable Sunday choosing to stroll the neighborhood with none other than @pythiansimmons. Funny how once I get started, I seem to use people’s Twitter handles more than their real names (I thought all names started with the “@”sign, no?).
I spent some more time with the agenda and mapped out a handful of things I must attend throughout these 3 action-packed conference days. I hope the attendance at RAC Attack is high since there are so many techs out there looking for a chance to get their hands dirty with this technology. I cannot think of many better ways than doing the cluster database at home. The mix of presentations at the UKOUG this year offers a plethora of education opportunities for a variety of attendees’ areas of concentration and I, being primarily a CORE database person, will easily find food for thought and sessions to attend when not tied up elsewhere.