The gateway of last resort

Although it sounds like something from Princess Bride (or … what was that movie that had the Pit of Eternal Stench?), the gateway of last resort is, in fact, something I’ve learned about this week since we started spending all the hours God sends (plus a few we steal from other sources) learning how to configure routers (the sign posts and traffic lights at junctions on the information super-highway).

This entry just to say that the training goes on at its own pace, that I am setting my alarm clock for 5.30am even though its the vacation and nearly christmas and that the whole “team” of staff taking the training are turning into cabbages. Here I am cramming for exams — yup, just like my students — and retaining little — just like my students.

Think I’m going to sleep on Christmas day.


  1. Tyg Says:


    good grief – we never seem to tire of exams, do we?


  2. Mark Says:

    Today is finals day. I’ve just taken the chapter 11 exam (on Access control lists — I include this geek stuff here for people like Cph, Cad and Raj who read this somtimes). Should have done that last night but the power went off in the afternoon. But that gave me an welcome enforced break: went to the Acacia Supermarket in Tala and bought some matches (to light the candles) and milk and some stuff like that there. Then went to Katie’s house (the Peace Corps volunteer in Tala) and had dinner with her and another PCV who was visiting her then they both head out to the coast for PC Xmas party.

    After stir fry at supper I headed back home by beautiful moonlight for an early night. Set the alarm for 6.00 this morning for some reason and was in the shower at about 6.15am when the other staff turned up knocking on the door and buzzing my phone for the keys to the computer lab to get on with their studies. Apparently they spent last night in the dining hall playing table tennis in the dark waiting for the power to come back on so they could do their exams. They gave up at about 8pm and the power came on about 9. We all had an early night and they got an earlier start than me!

    So now I have Chapter 11 done its time to do the rest of the day: Practise Final Exam, Skills Evaluation test, then the final exam. Oh, and did I mention, it’s bloody hot!

  3. Movie Buff Says:

    Oh and the Pit Of Eternal Stench was in Labyrinth.

    Man! :doze: Was that *really* 1986? No wonder none of you guys can remember it!

  4. Geeky Raj Says:

    It’s no wonder you thought of "Princess Bride" – it was very similar in ilk, I thing somebody has already mentioned the rodents of unfeasable size ….

    Anyway I don’t think is quite qualify for uber-geekdom – I don’t do much much geeky stuff anymore – I only have my head filled with it :O

    Anyway isn’t chapter 11 something to do with US bankrupcy protection …. Oh well what do I know, I’t too close to xmas anyway.

    Mark, have a nice christmas , I can’t say festive because the likehood of snow in Kenya is pretty low unless you climb kilimanjaro (which I know is not actually in Kenya).

  5. Munggeek Says:

    Blimey Mark, hope you’re going to be able to have some quality down-time after all this — what a way to spend your "vacation"!!

    I’m going into an existential crisis here about my Geekdom… I’m two-thirds of the way through Cryptonomicon and not really very impressed. Is something meant to be happening? I’ve been waiting for the stuff about Qwghlmians to start becoming significant (or actually make some sense) but maybe I blinked and missed it.

    I’ve read some reviews of the Baroque cycle that could be summarised as "nice to place to visit, but no plot". Would someone like to defend NS? I’d *like* to believe…

  6. zorka Says:

    merry christmas you, all the way in africa. are you ever coming back, even for a holiday?

  7. Mark Says:

    Sorry you’re not getting the buzz that I did from Cryptonomicon. I just loved the ride. Yes, something is happening but its not high action like his earlier books. There are actually more navel battles in the Baroque Cycle (which has Pirates, and lots of references to Qwghlm, whatever the fuck that is supposed to be).

    Remember The Crow Road? The tide of character development carried me over half way through before I even started to think: "Hey, what **did** happen to uncle Rory?"

  8. Mark Says:

    Of couse Im coming back! :hehe:

Add your comment