Monday, February 14, 2011

The Life of a Contract Engineer: Week 3

It is so exciting to wake up and have somewhere to be. Even more exciting after getting my first paycheck! That is about the highlight of the working week, getting paid for the first time. I spent most of my time trying to do a new simulation in ANSYS (a finite element program). It is still very much a learning process for me and with any learning process there are many hurdles that need to be overcome. Fortunately, hurdles can be interesting and I am certainly learning more about ANSYS.

We had a two and a half hour long meeting about some new software that we will be using, specifically I will be using. Wow, I will not tell you the name until I get to actually use it, but the demonstration was pretty powerful. It is amazing what some software is able to do. When I think about what one software is doing I suddenly realize, why isn't everyone else doing that? Curious...

I would say more about work, but to be honest many of the things I am working on are proprietary. The end result of most of my projects will be technical publications that are available to sales people so that they can certify that according to this computer model, the structures are capable of withstanding 150 MPH winds.

By the way today is Valentines Day gentlemen. That might possibly apply to you.

I ran this week. Big surprise right? In total 100 miles because I ran about 20 the last day of the week because I was just not going to be happy with 90. It's a mental game, I know, but it does help. I ran one race, two moderate workouts and one good long run.

Speaking of running a race it was... not quite as good as I hoped. That being said I was still leading at about halfway but due to about two miles of mostly snow covered trails I went sliding around and was summarily passed and beaten. I was also hoping for a personal record and the snow plus two hills put the brakes on that plan. Overall I am happy because it was a hard effort with some lactic acid build up. I feel confident in my training, but it was not the day.

What else did I do? I wrote more on my unemployment book and I am up over 25,000 words. It is going to be good. I ate supper with two of my cousins. I have am amazing family! I went out to eat with my family and paid for the meal. That is something that I have been wanting to do for a long time. I am always getting taken out to eat by my elders or splitting the bill with my friends and most of the time I would prefer that I could pay myself. Finally, I took my family out to eat. I also spent most of the week recovering from my trip to St. Louis. It was a great trip but tiring.

The week ended by me going to the movie 127 Hours about Aaron Ralston who cut off his own arm in April 2003. I will write a review on that and post it later in the week. I think that of all the people I know I have spent as much or more time soloing in the backcountry than your average outdoorsman so I have a unique perspective on his ordeal.

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