2003-08-24

Slow day in preparation for the night shift in NOC. Small discussion with Hazard over phone about the wishlist and the staff to order from Amazon.co.uk. Finally I’ve decided to get both some books and some DVDs. :)


Hazard also sent me a useful link to the page on Cyprus government’s site about the procedure of getting the citizenship via naturalization :) . Check it out here.


Hunger as always at the middle of the day, so Olga and I decide to check out this new place called “Shrimpy” which is supposed to be good with shrimps and other sea creatures. We, of course, picked up Hazard on the way, since he is the always-hungry type of a guy. :) And he had a map. And he is a nice guy…anyway :)


Shrimpy turned out to be ugly and depressing. They never change their oil, so the food smells bad and has the black staff all over it. Even on the french fries. Portions are small and rather expensive. Carlsberg, as usual, saved the day. And they serve draught too! First time is our last time here, I guess.


Depressing sea food pushed us for some compensation so we go to Kanika to enjoy some Sophie’s ice cream. Deliceous, as usual. :)


Since I have a lot of time until the NOC shift starts, we go back to Hazard’s place again and watch “Donnie Darko“. Nice movie, but a big long and slow at times.

2003-08-23

Beach and traveling day. For some reason we couldn’t wake up Lev, so only three of us went to the trip. This time we headed for Pissouri Bay Beach. Nice place, excellent views, warm water, green grassy fields around Columbia hotel. Wooden sun umblrellas on the beach. Watersports with yachts and all the other staff. Sandy beach. Mostly. Lots of stones though on the beach and on the bottom of the sea. But still rather enjoyable. :)


Some Russian food thereafter. Lev finally woke up too, so we picked him up. Olga felt dizzy (or couldn’t stand us anymore.:) ) and stayed home. But we continued with “Lost Highway” at Hazard’s place. Then we went for some hotdogs on the beach and long discussions about everything and anything. Then Hazard dropped home and we had the final pint with Lev.


After all of that I am getting firm on the idea of getting Cyprus citizenship. Russian one doesn’t give me much, so I have nothing to lose anyway. :)

2003-08-21

Apart from the regular staff in the office, I managed to find some time to play with the KDE from Red Hat Linux 9. It’s been a while since I devoted some time to introduce myself to the progress of window/desktop managers.

This time I am even more impressed then the last time. Huge progress has been made in terms of stability and usability. Everything looks tightly integrated. Everything just works. Fonts are nice. I am not usually very picky about fonts, but I cannot leave fonts unnoticed this time. Aliasing looks good even on my crapy monitor.

Another impressing thing is the “Other” menu, which contains staff from education KDE package and some ‘other’ programs. A bunch of useful enough programs, which you will never spend the time on looking for, include KStars for stars database with nice interface and lots of data. KTouch – touch-typing training program. Few programs aimed at helping the user to learn the foreign language: flash cards (like their paper grandma’s used in high school), correct word spelling game, Spanish verbs training program and few others. Those, who are not keen on languages, can “play” mathematics. Like a program, which trains you to calculate percentages fast. More, more, and more.

Bravo goes to the KDE team!

2003-08-20

Today I’ve upgraded my workstation (the one in the office) to Red Hat Linux 9. It had 8.0 until now. The process itself was mostly painless until, for some strange reason, /etc/fstab was modified by installation to use partition LABELs instead of device names. I’ve seen it before and it was rather easy to fix.

First impressions are rather positive. Machine is somewhat more responsive at times under load then it used to. Not always though, but still an improvement. A bunch of new mouse cursors look good in X. Fonts are really nice. Cyrillic settings got broken with the upgrade, but were easy to fix.

I’ve also switched from AfterStep to KDE for the time being. KDE is getting better by each time I try it. It is a well done, flexible, properly integrated and self-contained desktop manager. I’d guess tomorrow will be the themes day, though. :)

2003-08-19

Rather long and lazy day at work. Lots of people came from vacations, lots of people left for vacations. Plenty of discussions about our motherlang (Russia) and the state it finds itself being in. Rather depressing I must say.


Fast journey to Hazard’s place with Lev and Olga to redo yesterday’s attempt of “A Beautiful Mind” watching. This time it was successful. No wonder – DVDs don’t usually stop working in the middle. :)


Ice cream and somewhat strange movie about Cosa Nostra on TV in the evening…

2003-08-18

New fridge arrived. No pictures yet. :)


Trip to the mountains in hope of finding and visiting Gabriella’s Check restaurant. We found it, but unfortunately it was closed and we were hungry enough to wait until it would open in about 4 hours. Fast trip to Kakopetria village for the Old Mill restaurant. Everyone enjoyed it. I did less of all, I suppose. I defaulted to eating pork chop which was way overdone, dry, and crispy.


Hazard had to depart from our company due to some unknown business of his own. We, though, continued the day with shopping, staffing the new fridge, defrosting the old one. Lots of beer, whisky, and talking.


Then we decided to watch “A Beautiful Mind“. The greates dissapointment came when we found out that the DivX we had was only one out of two. The guy who did the ripping didn’t noticed it and put no marking upon it. So, not to get completely depressed, we signed it off as watching a long trailer. :) I’ll rent the DVDs tomorrow and we’ll watch the whole thing. It’s worth it. Olga and me have seen it in the movie long time ago.


A somewhat interesting discussion of Japanese and Chinese cultures followed which culminated by watching Jet Li’s Tai ji zhang san feng” (aka “The Tai-Chi Master”). Olga couldn’t stand the idea, so she went to bed. Lev and me though enjoyed the movie, which was way better then we expected. Actually, we didn’t mean to see the whole thing, but rather a five minute fight or something. :)


Gave Lev a lift home, picked up a hot dog on the way and went to bed. Holidays are over. :)

2003-08-16

Discovery day. We started of with the visit to the new beach, which Hazard read about in the Internet. It was kind of OK, but the water was freezing. Noone agreed with me on this though, so it might have been something wrong with me. :)


In the evening we decided to find a new food point. Limassol eating and drinking guide suggested a couple of places. Italian restaurant in Akrotiri was all booked and they couldn’t find a talbe earlier then in one hour. Taurus steak ang grill house looked and smelled ugly, so we decided not to stay there for more then two minutes. Some more driving around and we end up in “Old Vienne” restaraunt. Overall it was OK. Mussles were kind of nice. Grilled mushrooms were ugly since they were in bread crunches which dried them out. Meat was no good too, and I suspect again because of the crunches. It was also a bit crowded which explains the slow service.