Failing at Vacation

Failing at Vacation

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As Microsoft employees, we're allowed to carry forward the same amount of vacation time that you would normally accrue in a single year. Since I get three weeks of vacation each year, I can carry forward no more than three weeks into the next year. So, in 2004, between actual holidays, floating holidays, and unused vacation, I find myself needing to take almost the entire month of December off so that I don't lose my "extra" vacation days. I've never had that much consecutive vacation time, and frankly, before it began, I wasn't sure that I'd be able to avoid my active routine and simply relax.

Well, after my first full week, I'm embarrassed to report that I am actually failing at vacation (how pathetic). I wouldn't have guessed it was possible. This week alone, I flew to our main campus in Redmond Tuesday morning and returned Wednesday around midnight. Then, yesterday, I spent all day helping out a couple of customers in southwest Michigan, returned home around 6:00pm, and had a conference call at 7:30pm. Of course, all of this has been my choice, and I'm not really complaining...just making an observation.

All of this has kept me from my regular blogging routine, and I've missed it. I have a backlog of about 20 things that I'd like to blog about at some time, and that doesn't include the product and technology announcements and discoveries that I try to share. So no, I haven't fallen off the face of the Earth, and yes, I'll be diligent in my vacation efforts in the upcoming week (do diligent and vacation belong in the same sentence?). I hope to find time to blog more in the coming weeks.

I have a stack of books that I'd like to get through and review. Plus, my friend Rob has coerced me into buying Lord of the Rings, The Battle for Middle-earth. I'm not a big fan of real-time strategy games, but the graphics and interactivity I've seen in the videos are too impressive to ignore. Anyone else playing this game?

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  • I've always had trouble with that vacation thing. It is wrong to code on vacation :)

    I've just started playing LOTR. So far I like it a lot. It's different that any other RTS I've played.
  • Being a huge RTS fan I'm having a very hard time not buying the new LOTR. Everything I have seen about it (gametrailers.com is an evil place) makes me desire to rush out and get it. I've avoided the urge so far but with this weekend being upon me I think I am going to fall to temptation. Does it have online multiplayer? 2v2 games?
  • Jake...yes, it has online multiplayer, although I haven't tried it yet. It also supports LAN play.
  • Not to mention, your wife has been missing you too :)
  • Believe me, I fail at vacation quite a bit. For me, that usually means I show up in jeans in the office (we're a business casual environment). Anyone gives me grief, I let them know I'm on vacation. They usually think I'm kidding =)

    Actually, the first real vacation I've ever taken in my 13 year career was this past February to Disneyworld. Felt great, and I need to make sure I do that at least once a year. The rest of my vacation days I treat as options. Maybe I exercise them, maybe I don't.

    Appreciate you coming down a couple weeks ago. Drop me an email or give me a ring and I will update you on some missing details =)
  • I rarely take regular vacations, and instead break up my days off over the course of the year as three day weekends, or mid-week excursions. It sounds loopy, but by the 4th day in Hawaii on my last trip over, I was ready to get back home.

    As for LoTR, my 10 year old is glued to the PC with Battle for Middle-Earth, which my 6 year old and I are entralled by The Third Age on our PS2 (sorry, no Xbox yet), which is a follow-up to one of my favorite games, The Return of the King. Where Battle is more of an Empire Earth style game, Third Age plays more like an RPG...like you're playing Dungeons and Dragons.
  • Great game btw. One I wored on quite a bit and the first Windows PC title to support the XPSP2 firewall allowed list natively.

    The sequel rocks even more - I'll try to get a copy to you sometime :)

    B
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