Early bird gets the worm (and hopefully some coffee)

June 16, 2013

We had our company summer party this week’s Friday. We spent the evening at Prins Bertils Boulehall. During the day there were a lot of rain and thunder, but as we started to head out to Djurgården the weather brightened up. After a small walk through the main park on Djurgården we reached the place, we were asked if wanted to play a few rounds of boules before we ate, or if wanted to risk bad weather and eat first. I was starving at this point, so I was really happy that we came to the joint decision to eat first. We were served a variety if different meats and side dishes, that I suspect, were traditional Swedish summer courses.

I had already decided that I wasn’t going to drink anything so while the other enjoyed red wine to the food, I felt somewhat like a child when I ordered a Coca Cola. Anyway, once we had finished eating, Our game instructor led us to where we were going to play, “the playing area”, which is a bit of stretch calling it. Because the playing area was actually a bicycle path, and the terrain was anything but flat, but it did have gravel.

Our instructor asked us to raise our hands if we had ever played boules before, almost everybody raised their hands, except me and a few others. So she proceeded with presenting the type of boules that we were going to learn how to play, I believe it was called Pétanque, she explained the rules and then she picked out 8 teams from our group, every team consisting of 3 people.

I was actually a bit nervous, when it comes to physical ball games, I’m universally bad, I really don’t think there’s one ball game out there that I’ve ever really enjoyed. And because this was a team game, I didn’t want to be the one to let down my team. After our first match, we scored 8 to 1, so we actually won, probably because of my teammates, but I was happy nonetheless. The second match, playing on the same course as we did the first one, started really well, until somewhere in the middle, it started raining, it started raining really bad, and then there was some thunder and lightning as well, we decided to put the game on hold and wait, though some teams didn’t even stop. Anyway, as the weather cleared again, we started where we left off, and won again, netted a 14-0 win (technically 13-0). This meant that we were the leading team, and got to play against the second best team in the finals.


We played the final game inside in the actual “hall”-part in Prins Bertils Boulehall, it was decided that there were only going to be one round, a kind of sudden-death mode in a gentlemen’s game. The playing field inside was completely different, probably because it was an actual real boules course unlike the bicycle path earlier. The terrain was completely level, and as I threw my Boules I instinctively offsetted the throw to compensate for a non-leveled ground, which meant I missed, both times, and so did my teammates, and we lost. Though the other team managed only to score two or three points.

As we walked back to the bus stop, the sun was in full swing, and the weather was great. But because of my earlier decision to stay sober, I didn’t really feel like going out to an after-party, but decided instead to go home early.

And boy was I right in doing that. I went to bed sometime around midnight, slept like a child, until 6 AM, someone was calling me, as I answered, only half awake, and a bit frightened (usual when you get a call this time of day, something bad has happened), the person who was calling me spoke quite fast, and I didn’t have a chance to pick up anything that he was saying (probably because I’m still not really used to hearing Swedish-Swedish accent, opposed to Finnish-Swedish accents). As I got up, still on the phone, I started to understand what was going on.

Earlier this year I wrote about how I was going to be temporarily taking care of the servers and infrastructure as the CTO is on paternity leave until August. So the person who was calling me was an on-call technician at the data center. I can’t really go in on what had happened, but I did spend a good couple of hours on Saturday morning working with a lot of SSH tunnels and remote desktop connections going through logs. (DNS was the culprit)

So as I said, boy was I lucky I didn’t drink anything!