I'm back at work today, after spending a record (for me) 23 days away from the office. The last time I spent that much time off was one of those involuntary vacations that happens sometimes ("the investors decided that they aren't going to fund us any more").

Of that time, I spent a few days shopping, the week of Christmas in San Diego (beach/zoo/wild animal park/sea world/lego land/aquarium/balboa park), and then a few days skiing. Going from 65 and sunny to 20 and snowing was a bit hard, but we all have our crosses to bear.

We also bought a wii, which has been a fair bit of fun. I got mine through the services of wiialerts.com, which will send you both an email and a text message on your phone when stock shows up at one of the online retailers. You may be saying, "great, why didn't he tell me that before the holidays?", but I couldn't because a) my massive number of readers might have overloaded the site and b) my wife reads this blog, and she didn't know about the Wii (a risky move, but I got away with it). Probably more of "b" than "a". Anyway, a great site, and I'm sure I would not have gotten my Wii without it.

Back at work, my group has moved to building 113, which is one of the old MS research buildings. It's pretty nice, though it isn't as nice as the brand new research building, which is both very pretty and has lots of innovative spaces (team rooms, working lounges, etc.) Plus, instead of glass doors between the lobby and the 4-story atrium in the middle of the building (I said it was pretty, right), it has some high-tech turnstiles that are operated with your badge.