Review of August 2018 : Padawan coder, family holidays and the art of letting go

I am awfully late, but here is the August update !

First coding sessions : I have decided to start to learn to code in Python. So much of my job depends on developers that it is essential that I start understanding their jobs a bit better… I did 3 evening sessions with Lion who is also learning, and then a massive project hit me at work and I haven’t been able to do more yet. Looking to resume in October when the huge deadline is behind me. Please keep me honest so I can follow through !

Summer holidays : In August, we went away for 2 weeks.  Every other year we spend our holidays with our extended family.  It is so much better for fostering relationships to spend more than a couple of days together. The girls got to play with their cousins and we were fortunate to have 2 new nieces born during our holidays so we could meet them. After a very rough 3 months at work, I did my best to cultivate the little pleasures in life: eating an ice cream, having a laugh, going for a run, taking a nap with Peanut in my arms. I recently read an article on the happiness u-curve and what we can do to maximize it in our 30s and 40s. Turns out hedonism and gratefulness is the magic recipe. Now, I just need to remember to do that when things are tough…

Two updates on my bullet journal :

  • I have now put all 7 days of the week on 1 page to have a better view
  • I have finally created a “perfect suitcase” page, with little dots to fill in to keep track when I pack. Picture below, don’t hesitate to steal the list if you find it helpful !
  • image1 (4)

Books that I have read :

  • The Bank that lived a little, by Philip Augar : An account based on insider stories, testimonies and probably a hint of fiction of the journey of the bank Barclays in the last 30 years. Lion found it a bit light on finance market mechanisms. I agree, but I also think that is what made that book quite accessible. I devoured this book in 5 days as I found it entertaining and captivating, a proper corporate thriller. In the first few pages, I had to check several times that the book actually starts in the late 1980s as the corporate decorum it describes could very well belongs to a Mad Men episode set in the 1950s. But no, just a gentlemen’s bank in the City. Then, as the book developed, I was baffled by the harshness of this world : executives come and go, get fired, demoted, transfered in the blink of an eye. The account of the 2008 crisis from the inside is fascinating, and I couldn’t help but feel a bit uneasy at the remuneration of some of these executives. And it’s not just the top guys : you could pretty much be anonymous in the eyes of the public and still be making  millions. Maybe I picked the wrong career !

The wonders of why :

Apple : “Mummy, why must you go to work”

  • Me : “Because it’s monday”

Apple : “But why ?”

Me : “Because with work I can contribute to making the world better”

Apple :  “Why ?”

Me : “Because that’s what I want to do ?”

Apple : “Why ?

Me :  “Because that’s humans do”

Apple : “OK”

Me : Phewww