Sunday to Thursday 29th Jan - 2nd Feb, 2012

The Open Group Meeting in San Francisco

Participating in The Open Group Meeting in San Francisco represented a MAJOR milestone.


Before we went to sleep on Saturday, we prayed for a good night and for some relief from the pain in my digestive system. I helped by taking quite a large dose of laxatives.

As a result, we got a good night sleep, finally getting up at around 7am, and a rather explosive event just after breakfast largely cleared the discomfort in my digestive system. So, yesterday, I felt pretty bad. Today, I felt pretty good.

I spent almost the complete day sitting comfortably in a meeting. Beware if you go to the Mark Hopkins Intercontinental Hotel on a Sunday. The only in-house option for lunch on a Sunday was the $69 brunch! Because of time constraints, room service was not an option. So lunch involved a short walk in warm sunshine to the Nob Hill Cafe.

The day finished with a business dinner at Aliotos on Fisherman's Wharf.

An important feature of the day was the genuine warmth with which I was greeted by people who I hadn't seen for six months, many of whom have been tracking this blog.


This turned out to be a very long day. In the morning, the conference plenary was a bit of an endurance test, lasting 3 hours without a break, after which I had the stream in which I was making a presentation.

Standing up in front of a group making a presentation was another recovery milestone.

The afternoon was spent sitting in a meeting.

I was very stiff, so walking around for an hour at the conference networking reception was not unwelcome. We finished the day with a rather tense business dinner at Boudins at Fisherman's wharf.


The day started fine. I spent the morning in the conference plenary and the afternoon in a working meeting.

The evening was the formal dinner event. This proved to be rather disappointing, being held in the conference hotel and with a buffer style dinner that was little different to the conference lunches. There was the promise of Chinese style entertainment to celebrate the Chinese new year, but I didn't make it that long.

While we were waiting in the queue for the buffet, I got really severe pains in my abdomen and I couldn't do anything other than go back to the room and lie down. This wasn't helped by having to wait for around 10 minutes in the buffet line because the meat and fish main course options both run out.

It was not a great night. I thought that I just had a blockage and a build up of wind, but part of me (and Sue) worried that it might be something more serious. Just after midnight, I managed to move some wind and that helped a little. Nevertheless it was a disturbed and uncomfortable night.


I was not feeling great when I got up, with still a lot of discomfort. I went out for a walk, with Sue, as far as the laundry on Taylor. This was not a vast distance, but was more than far enough for me.

I managed one conference session and then decided that getting some exercise would be a good idea. So, Sue and I went down to the waterfront on the cable car and walked along Hyde Street Pier. That helped by stimulating my digestive system.

I managed one working session in the afternoon.

In the early evening, Sue and I planned to go to the Nob Hill Cafe for dinner after we collected our laundry. That didn't work out, it was full, so we resorted to dinner in the hotel. The Mark Hopkins proved to be a very strange 5-star hotel. It did not have a "proper" restaurant, just offered "light dining" in the lounge on the top floor. That was fine for me .. just a bowl of tomato soup.


When I got up on Thursday morning, I felt better, but by the time I got downstairs, I was very uncomfortable again. We were undecided about whether I needed to consult a doctor, but were rather worried that I would be subjected to a lot of time-consuming and/expensive tests only to be told that I was just constipated.

So .. I decided on more drastic action and upped my dose of laxative to the maximum. This seemed to work and by lunchtime, I had "enjoyed" a number of events that reduced the pressure.

This was a tough day. In addition to the discomfort in my abdomen, I had aches and pains in lots of muscles in my legs. This gradually eased and we went out for a very good Chinese meal with a number of others. I felt even better when we got back.

So, the meeting was not a totally pleasant experience and brought home to me that I am still ill and a long way from being able to return to normal work.