A Different Kind of Vacation

I usually prefer to work through the Holidays, always have.  It’s a great time to get some extra work done.  This year was different though.  On December 15th, I officially went on vacation.

We didn’t go anywhere though because my wife was diagnosed with thyroid cancer a couple of months ago.  She had surgery on December 10th.  What was supposed to be a routine out-patient procedure turned into a nightmare of constant pain, severe nausea, and late-night trips to the emergency room.  Her health has improved, she’s back to work, and the prognosis is good.  It’s not over yet, but things look very positive.

I can’t remember the last time I took two straight weeks off of work.  Okay, I’ll admit…I answered a couple of emails, and popped in on the SolidWorks discussion forums once a day just to keep up.  But that was it.  I stayed away from all of the other forums, Twitter, and even the SolidWorks blogs.  I turned off the ringer on my work phone and left it that way.  I neglected this blog.

Instead, I did the Christmas shopping that my wife usually handles and gained a new level of admiration for the effort she puts into it every year.  I baked….that’s right, I baked scones and pumpkin and chocolate pies.  I played online poker tournaments (free ones) with my oldest boy, and we talked for hours about someday playing in the WSOP together.  My other son and I put together a Revell 1970 Mustang model car (complete with a runny paint job and some "extra" parts) and two very large Lego sets (hmmm…more "extra" parts).  We all played video games, watched movies, and hung out at Dave & Busters a lot.

It’s not the best way to learn a lesson, and it would have been much better without the cancer stuff.  But maybe, just maybe, it was a blessing in disguise.  On the way to school this morning, my son told me this was the best Christmas ever.  I had to agree with him.

So anyway, I’m back, refreshed, and raring to go.  SolidWorks World is only 33 days away, we need to get the schedule for the SWUGN Summits published, there are 21 user group meetings this month, and I’ve got more than a few emails to answer.  The SolidWorks Community had a fantastic 2008, and 2009 promises to be better than ever.  I am excited as ever to be a part of it.

But…this Saturday, instead of heading straight to the computer when I get up, my boy and I are going to tackle the Revell ’68 Corvette.  Maybe I should let him do the painting this time.  Oh, and just a heads up – next year during the holidays, I’ll be on vacation.

Richard Doyle
My official title is Senior User Advocacy & SolidWorks User Groups - but most people just call me "The User Group Guy". I've been a SolidWorks user since 1997, and was one of the founding members of the SWUGN Committee. Since starting the Central Texas SolidWorks User Group in 1999, my career path has led me to DS SolidWorks and a dream job supporting the SolidWorks User Group Network worldwide.
Richard Doyle
Richard Doyle