Tuesday, September 29, 2015


September 29, 2015. The scale of the city - and therefore the devastation - is astonishing. There are stadia, amplitheatres, shops, homes, streets on streets on streets - and people, still caught in the moment their last breath was choked with ash. This is just one minor part of Pompeii, with Vesuvius in the background. It has been an incredible day, but a difficult one - one of my bad teeth has made my life miserable all day. Not as miserable as that day in A.D. 79 - but you know, everthing is perspective. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1h85EfJ


September 28, 2015. Spent the morning with Ruth Kerr from the EMMA project - she showed me some underground Roman and Greek ruins, and the uplifting cult of the dead at the ossuary of Santa Maria delle Anime del Purgatorio ad Arco. We had lunch on the marina and then I spent the afternoon exploring the nooks and crannies of Naples's narrow streets and alleyways. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1KPlqnA

Goodbye Capri

September 27, 2015. A morning ferry ride back to the mainlamnd, and it was goodbye Capri. I took a much-needed nap and went for a short evening walk. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1FB19X2

Blue Grotto

September 26, 2015. More conferencing and interesting discussions until 2, and then I went exploring, first to the top of the mountain, then all the way down to the Blue Grotto. This is just above the cave and basin, looking the other way, into the waning light. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1P3e5a5


September 25, 2015. Spent the day at the MOOC conference at Anacapri, which is the bigger and less populated half of the Isle of Capri. It's hard to describe, beyond saying it is stereotypically Italian (in a good way). I wandered around a bit after the day's session through busy pedestrian-only streets that wound up and down and around the hills. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1YLzfxE

Saturday, September 26, 2015


September 24, 2015. Flew from Frankfurt to Naples this morning, toox a taxi to the hotel, made it on time for the conference opening, and then we all headed across the bay to the Isle of Capri, which greeted us with warm weather and a glorious sunset. Well - warm to me. The locals were in jackets and scarves. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1OzN2Uq

Still in Frankfurt

September 23, 2015. As mentioned, arrived in early morning Frankfurt time, and had a 14 hour layover, so I spent the entire day in the city watching the different phases of the day unfold, from the morning breakfast rush to noon-hour relaxation to mid-afternoon strolls and evening meals. Unfortunately, what I did not do is sleep, and as a result I missed my connection and had From Flickr http://ift.tt/1WpvBat


September 22, 2015. Drove into Ottawa for an all-day meeting, then hopped on a plane and flew to Frankfurt. Early morning there, still late night for me. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1KJgPnQ

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Fleuve d'Argent

September 20, 2015. View from the nice little model cabin where we stayed in Riviere du Loup on the way to Casselman. A bright brilliant day filled with hope and sunshine. We caught the Motel Fleuve d'Argent on its last day of the season. But yes, I'd stay here again. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1QBxsoX

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Goofbye Moncton

September 19, 2015. One last look at the house before we move (this image makes me very sad and I won't linger long with it). And actually, I'll see the house again, as I still own it, and need to do some work to get it sold. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1Lyf2Gl

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Moving Day

September 19, 2015. Today is the day the movers are here to clear out the Moncton house and send everything packing to Casselman. It's busy, chaotic, and finally happening. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1iEGsiO

Voting Day

September 18, 2015. The election is still a month away, but I took time to vote at the elections office because I knew I wouldn't be able to get to the polls otherwise. The office is in the Co-op building on Halifax street, and this is an old feed mill from that building - it made something like three tons of feed a day. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1iEGtmC


September 16, 2015. Another all-day meeting (after the breakfast meeting) at the former CISTI building in Ottawa. This is some artwork from the building. After that, a night flight back to Moncton. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1iXLNRY


September 15, 2015. In Ottawa for an all day project planning meeting, which I thought went quite well. Half way through we took a brealk to join other NRC staff at the United Way fundraising barbeque. This is NRC president John McDougall cutting the cake. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1iXLNBB

Back in the Airport Again

September 14, 2015. A day filled with meetings (four of them, back-to-back) and then off to the airport for a night flight to Ottawa. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1iXLPJy


September 13, 2015. About a half hour west of Fredericton. Driving, day 2. Finish my laundry, ate brunch at the Four Points, trhen arrived back in Moncton at a decent hour. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1Pcsm1W

Four Points

September 12, 2015. Better day today. Overnight at the house, then drove all day to Edmunston, where I stayed at this nice Four Points hotel. I was even able to do my laundry for free! From Flickr http://ift.tt/1Pcsj6h

Thursday, September 10, 2015


September 10, 2015. Toured the Scottish highlands today, including Glencoe, Loch Ness, and a bunch of other places including the valley where they filmed the closing scenes of Skyfall. Just about the coolest place ever (yes I know this isn't the actual building but it's in the right place and is still pretty cool). From Flickr http://ift.tt/1NssI7j

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Doune Castle

September 9, 2015. Took a tour up to see Loch Lomond, Doune Castle, Stirling Castle, and some other sights in and around the Glasgow area. This is the inside of Doune Castle, maybe the highlight of the trip. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1KazADD


September 8, 2015. Andrea suggested I buy a new sweater so I took a taxi to the city centre to my new favourite store, High and Mighty, and bought a comfy wool sweater and informal jacket I can wear on days like today - conference days, but days when I'm not giving a talk. Here I am wearing it. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1EVTZMv

Behind the Scenes

September 7, 2015. This is the scene behind the scenes in the hall where I gave my talk (it's called the Armadillo - here's the outside). You can see the podium where I stood through the door. The talk was webcast around the world as well as to a very large crowd here in Glasgow. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1hYtFGW

Hall 2

September 6, 2015. This is Hall 2, where I gave the first (and smaller) of my talks here in Glasgow, The MOOC Ecosystem. It was full when I gave my talk, but I forgot to take a photo during the talk, so this is a little after. I spent the rest of the day in said hall watching other talks. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1OduFDG


September 5, 2015. This is the walkway that connects the railway station and streets north of the highway to the conference centre in Glasgow. It was striking enough to become the cover slide for one of my talks. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1hYtFqk

Saturday, September 5, 2015


September 4, 2015. An uncomfortable airplane ride (and ridiculous layers of immigration security at Heathrow (you know, just in case I'm Syrian or something)) and I have arrived in Glasgow. Minus my luggage. British Airways for the #fail. My first impression was that it looks like Cardiff - not that I've even been to Cardiff, but I've seen Torchwood. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1Xva4i5

Backyard / Morning Mist

September 3, 2015. A misty morning looking into the sunrise to the east in my new backyard in Casselman. I won't be back to the house for a week. Yeah - one day, that's what I got. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1Xva41J

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Home, Casselman

September 2, 2015. We closed on our new house in Casselman (45 km southeast of Ottawa) today, and I'm typing these words from behind the two wiondows on the left. It will be a few weeks before we're in and settled, but it's real, I'm here, and it's our house. Next up: moving all our stuff, and selling the house in Moncton. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1NOeddQ

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Osgoode Trail

September 1, 2015. Spent the day in the hotel room today getting caught up on office work, but at 4:30 on the dot I was on my bicycle down a really nice trail from the Airport Hilton to Osgoode, a small town 25 km to the south. Back a million years ago I once bicycled to Osgoode - this was when I was in high school in Metcalfe and I had a sometime girlfriend in Osgoode - I cycled there to see if I could run into her there, but I was too shy to tell her I was actually doing this (and I wasn't sure I could, it was a whole ten miles). Anyhow, I never saw her and so I cycled there and back to no purpose. This time I had a better reward - poutine. From Flickr http://ift.tt/1O6FGoc