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Dr John Hawkins

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Regency Cafe and a Turning Point

Posted on 2010/06/13 19:34:43 (June 2010).

[Thursday 10th June 2010]
Since the middle of last week I had been going into overdrive at work, trying to get a major piece of my project up and running, which had proved somewhat more difficult than I had first thought. There are quite a lot of other people involved in the project now, and we were at a point where the parts I was working on were blocking other people - they needed me to be finished before they could make progress, and before the project as a whole could get to the next major milestone. I don't think I have ever cared about a project more in my career - there have been other projects which have been more stressful or involved bigger sums of money or whatever, but in terms of how much this matters to me personally it is pretty unique - this is exactly the thing I wanted to work on, and I was one of a small handful of people who started the project, which now involves about 30 people. So I had put in lots of late evenings and had been working at the weekend, every day thinking I was just a day away from getting over this current hurdle, but then every day finding some other unexpected obstacle (an obstacle, like, um, another hurdle).

Probably as a result of this I woke up very early this morning - not long after 6 - and as soon as I was awake my head was filled with thoughts of work. I couldn't get back to sleep so decided to get up, and was determined that I was really going to fix the bloody thing at work today. To set myself up for the task, I headed to the Regency Cafe for a hearty breakfast, and then was at my desk shortly after 8.

Whilst I would love to describe what happened as a sudden spark of inspiration, the reality was that I just put the finishing touches to some work I had been doing the previous day, but still, when I saw it all working, at barely even 10am, it was an ecstatic, almost religious experience. It's really hard to describe without explaining what I'm actually working on, but I'd spent the last week-and-a-bit feeling constantly stressed, and pretty much all of a sudden that burden vanished.

In the evening I headed to Southwark where I had arranged to meet up with Al. After a burrito at a Mexican fast food place called Tortilla which I rather like, I headed over to the Founders Arms to meet Al. It's not a very attractive pub in itself, but it does have a rather nice view across to St. Paul's. From there we had initially planned to wander over the river, but ended up wandering all the way to the Whisky Society instead.

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