I finally got around to writing about my last days in Canada. This post is in English because it’s largely about my Canadian colleagues and I don’t want to talk about them behind their backs, so to speak. Particularly since they may actually find out about it – Vadim has told me that he visits my blog occasionaly, even though he understands little. He discovered it when I posted a link to his web page – apparently University of Alberta is running some software that is checking for links to its web pages. I don’t think I have written anything particularly embarassing about him, but I was still a bit shocked.
On the last day of my stay at the University, Vadim kindly invited his group, IRCL, and a few other people to dinner – to celebrate the end of the AAAI submission frenzy and the successful conclusion of my visit. Before we left for the restaurant, we played some hacky sack. We used to do that from time to time and it’s a pretty cool way to relax after long hours in front of a computer. I even became only moderately bad at it; I don’t expect to ever match Chris‘s or David’s mastery, though.
The restaurant was a rather nice Japanese place and the sushi was not only good, it was also served on neat wooden boats. Unfortunately I forgot to take any pictures before the table was empty, so you’ll have to take my word for it. After dinner I passed the camera around the table and below are the results. If anyone feels his reputation will be ruined forever by some unflattering picture, let me know and I’ll take it down. I admit, I did select the more colorful ones; I should’ve offset this by posting a picture of me doing something ridiculous, but it seems I did nothing ridiculous that evening (I know, I’m boring – should we meet again, I promise to do better).
Nathan‘s chopstick prestidigitation
Cosmin and Chris (who carries on the fight vs. noodles)
As a parting gift the hacky-sackers have given me a hacky sack with their initials. Thanks again, guys!
After dinner some of us went to the cinema and then it was finally the time to say goodbye. It was a funny feeling, something I’ve never experienced before, because I’ve never moved and neither has any of my friends. A bit sad, too. Hope to see everyone again some day.