Today has been devoted to updates: trying unsuccessfully to update the GPS’s database (it turns out the cable to connect it to the computer is in the other house, and I decided I didn’t care enough to go buy a new one), updating the iPad and iPhone to the new version of IOS (I haven’t played with it enough to have much opinion either way on the changes), buying the cats a new “bird” toy (feathers dangling from a string attached to a stick; Macchiato loves them so much we need to replace them regularly). This time I spent more on the bird toy; this one is constructed so that the string is sturdier in the first place, and when it breaks there’s a nice connection point to the stick so that I’ll be able to just replace the strong.

Tomorrow is another day to look forward to (I’m saying that with sarcasm full on): I get to fly to Detroit and then drive to Toledo for work. Actually, I like traveling and I expect to enjoy the week in Ohio; I’m just still uncomfortable with highway driving. Still, I think only getting back into doing it will fix that (at least, I hope it does). It’s been four years since I began having issues while we were in Taiwan, and it’s really not feasible to live the life I want to live in the US without being comfortable driving. (Yes, I know it’s possible to live here without driving. However, it does limit your mobility and increase your reliance on others and that’s not the life I want. I’m OK with local driving and I know plenty of people who are perfectly happy doing no more than that, but I don’t want to accept that limit.) At least it’s not that long a drive – under an hour according to Google. I’m arriving at 6:40 and taking only carry-on luggage, so hopefully I can get there while it’s light.

On the way back, I’ve got a morning flight, so I booked a hotel near the airport for the last night, so can drive back the evening before instead of getting up at horrible hours to do the drive back.

I’m going to be stuck with another drive of similar duration in a few weeks, to get to Tigard for an exam. At least in the Toledo case I expect to exjoy the trip otherwise. This exam is for certification as a Certified Manager of Quality / Operational Excellence by the American Society of Quality. I had this cert once before, but didn’t bother to do the fairly intensive paperwork to get recertified, which is required every three years, because I was working in places where no one much cared if I were certified. In my current job, certifications such as AIA (architecture), PE (professional engineer) and PMP (project management) are important for the people in those fields, and this is the closest equivalent for me. Unfortunately I’m not that impressed with the handbook I’m studying, the content of the practice test questions, or the location of the test, which is terribly inconvenient from most of the parts of town where people who would need this exam would tend to work.