Wednesday was a day of more sessions (I attended six!) and I managed to abstain from going to the pub at night. I’m quite liking my wee routine, but one thing I still find strange is having sweet things for breakfast. The fancy cakes make my guilt go through the roof every morning, it just feels reckless to be having thick cinnamon buns smothered with buttercream along with my coffee first thing, but hey, when in Rome and all that, eh?
Yet more interesting sessions on the Thursday, but things were starting to feel like they were winding down even then, probably because that was the day of the “Big Bash”, which is the outdoor party that Apple put on for all attendees every year. It was held in a large park/garden across from Moscone West.
I went across to where I thought the entrance was only to be set on a wild goose chase through a plaza, with a few other developers, around to a street I’d passed earlier when I was walking there. Then it was “line” time again. We were herded into a queue that went down the street, turned the corner and doubled back on itself. I was a bit bemused by this, but you know what? Nobody was complaining. Everyone in the comedy parade had a smile on their face and just accepted the situation with good grace. I couldn’t help but wonder what the reaction would be if something like this had happened at home. I reckon smiles would be the last thing you were encountering.
There were tables dotted at strategic places around the wee park, with bit balloon-like paper lanterns displaying the words “EAT” and “DRINK”. After a while I must admit I was looking in vain for the one marked “PISS”. I needed a pee.
I asked a bartender where the “bathrooms” were (still seems wrong; I’d had a shower that morning already.).
“Uh, Sir, if you go over there behind the stage and follow the wall to the right, you’ll see the restrooms.”
I duly did this and noticed a queue just in front of the wall he’d indicated. I recognised a developer in a black kilt I’d seen earlier, so after ascertaining that he was also waiting for the “restrooms”, I asked him if he was from Scotland.
“Uh nah, I lived there once, but I come from Albuquerque.”
I then engaged him in the obvious conversation about Breaking Bad amongst other things and after what must have been fifteen to twenty minutes later I remarked that the queue hadn’t shortened any since we joined it. I smelled a rat and went over to ask a guy in a white chef’s jacket if we were indeed in the line for the restrooms, only to be told that we weren’t. The queue we were in was the one to meet the band once they came off the stage. He pointed out the proper line for the toilets at the far side from where we were standing. I was mighty glad that the real queue subsided in less than two minutes, almost as relieved as my bladder was.
The band played (it was Bastille from the UK, one of those easily forgotten bland poppy bands that are rife at the moment), finished and as I expected, the beer ran out pretty quickly, which was most probably a deliberate ploy by Apple. It would do their public image no good whatsoever to have a few thousand belligerent drunk nerds roaming one of the city’s beautiful gardens.
I made my way to the exit then decided to go to an Irish pub called “The Chieftain” I’d heard about. Once there I had three pints of Murphy’s. The stout was seven dollars a pint (around £4.17), with a tip on top of that, explaining why I didn’t go crazy throwing it down my neck. I had an interesting conversation with a local at the bar before retiring back to the hotel. Thinking about it now, getting back is a bit vague. I blame the mix of beers and time-zone fatigue for that.
Or maybe I’m just a lightweight.