I found out that a friend passed away today. Maybe not a friend by the standard definition. We did not hang out together. I never knew the name of his daughter. I don’t think I ever spent a minute with him that was not in one of our respective offices. He was a colleague and a customer.
Yet I find myself very saddened by the news. I enjoyed every moment I spent with him. If ever there was a man with joy in his heart it was him. Always a big smile. Always a joke to end the meeting. Even when he was grinding me on a price it was always with a “do it for the kids, Mel” and a twinkle in his eye.
He was a small island of sanity in a sea of conflicting priorities, lack of resources, and over-stressed coworkers all trying to meet seemingly unrealistic expectations. I always admired and appreciated his ability to make a quick decision and his tendency for expediency over politics.
So even though I am what others might consider to be only an acquaintance, I feel as though I lost a friend. Maybe everyone who ever met him feels the same.
If I were to look back over the last few years it seems that October is gadget month for me. I’m not sure why. Maybe it is that summer and all the yard work and running back and forth to the lake is done so I have extra time (and money) to find and buy stuff. Maybe it is that payroll taxes like CPP and EI premiums are maxed on and I have extra cash. Whatever the reason this year is no different.
Tonight I finished installing my swanky new Nest thermostat. It would have been last night except for the need to replace the old wiring. I ordered this prerelease a couple of months ago and it has been sitting on my dining room table for two weeks waiting for me to install it.
Self learning programming, motion sensing, Internet connected for remote management, it is the perfect gadget for me. I can’t wait to see how much it tells me I saved by having a night and away lower temperature program that actually works with our erratic bedtime schedule. Adjustable from an app on my iPad I can sit comfortably back on the couch and control the heat without getting up, leaving me more time to play with my other new gadget, the Harmony Touch remote, but that’s a story for another day.