A lot to do today, I wake up around 9am. I saw The Lord of The rings movie last night for the second time, and still found it good. But I have no desire to see it again soon. Twice was enough.

Claremont’s shopping district on a baking hot summer Saturday morning in the height of tourist season, only days before Christmas, can best be described as merrie hell. None the less I did all that I set out to, and left without stressing unduly. The travel agent was helpfull, but suggested that I wait untill january before buying an air ticket. Ja well no fine, but it leaves me without that feeling of I'm definitely going, my ticket is booked and paid for that I wanted, in order to solidify my conviction.

I spend R488 on groceries, which I am fairly sure is an all-time record for me, but I was having fun, because the selection of fruits and vegetables at this time of year is really great, and I felt like treating myself. The cherries were great. It really is absurd to eat midwinter stuff like Christmas cake, Christmas pudding and mince pies now even if they are traditional. I mean, think about the ingredients – they are made out of bloody dried fruit and other preserves, and are traditional because they appropriate to cook if you are snowbound and last saw fresh fruit and vegetables 3 months ago. Meanwhile I'm back home, sweating in shorts and a t-shirt, eating a slice of the christman cake that my aunt gave me (can't throw it away now can I), and a mince pie. The lawn needs watering again or it will go brown.

I like mince pies, and would eat them any time of year. The rest is just carbo-bombs covered in an inch of sugar, and the reason why I’m finding it harder to keep slim right now. But hey, for the next week this is holiday season, I’ll loosen up a little.

The boss called me whilst I was at the hardware store – my software changes on Friday had dislodged something, and there were exceptions in the log. I was expecting something like that - it was the largest software change I had done in weeks, and I knew that there would be inevitable repercussions even though I had tested the success cases and most common failure modes. Notwithstanding, being called out made me feel pissed off and stressed again.

I went out there an hour later, ready to do battle with the code for an hour or so. The company is a small one, but we are contracted to a large engineering concern, on their premises, with factory and all. The security people know my face by now, so they let me in to the complex, but our office was locked, with the key nowhere to be found. My boss must still have it, and if he is on schedule, he is most likely boarding a flight to New Zealand by now. Aargh.

I managed to contact him (in the departure lounge) a few hours later. It turns out that he had deputised a friend to drop of the key, and she had seen no urgency in this (which is fair enough, this was before the program started throwing null pointer exceptions).

After supper, around 7pm I drove out. Security had the key, and within 15 minutes I had fixed the bug. It turned out to be obvious (gotta love java exceptions giving you a complete stack trace), and not serious, just a failure mode when the upstream server was offline was not properly handled, resulting in trying to read an error code from a non-existent response packet. The upstream server had in the meanwhile come back on line, so the error was not being exhibited, and everything was ticking over, if a rather slow day for business.

After I had tested, checked in, and updated, rebuilt and restarted the live site, I stayed in the office for half an hour, watching the logs whilst reading slashdot and other stuff online, hoping that someone would log on and buy, just to put my mind at ease. But it was not to be. It was almost entirely dark when I left.

I will check the logs again when I surface tomorrow, after the party tonight and some sleep.