The world certainly doesn’t seem well, but my little part of it got significantly better last night. I was finally able to drive my car in Germany. Yesterday, after weeks of trying, I got the person helping me to understand what I needed for insurance. So as soon as I got home, I gassed up the car.
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After months of stress (and weeks more of it to come), I’ve finally arrived in Germany for a two-year assignment. This is my third time living in Germany, and the first with children.
Living out of suitcases for weeks, sleeping on the floor of an empty apartment, getting sick because I seem to be always outside in the cold, dreary German winter, it’s going about as well I had expected. The kids, who are attending German public school, haven’t even mentioned “red rum” in days, which is a relief, considering the trauma we put them through of changing homes, schools, countries, and languages.
Wired recently published a report about hackers who took over a car, making the radio, climate control, brakes, engine, and steering unresponsive. Now, this isn’t necessarily new. My dad’s 1975 Mercury Monarch had these same issues all the time as well. The difference is that the hackers meant to do this, and weren’t even near the car when it happened.
One of the world’s most successful company right now is Apple. With yearly profits of around $30 billion, it is the most profitable company, earning more money than even oil companies like ExxonMobile.
A big reason for its success is the iPhone, generating more than half of its revenues. The iPhone is a technological marvel, full of magic and made from the tears of rainbow unicorns. With seemingly an App for everything, there’s almost nothing that it can’t do. It spawned a revolution in smart phones. Billions of iPhones and Android smart phones have been sold in the last few years.
Things escalated recently. Technical jargons were thrown, tests conducted, graphs plotted, and favorite measurement units disparaged (“MPG or die!” “Viva le liters/100km!”). Yes, things can get ugly with engineers during lunch-time discussions, especially if one of them can speak French.
I lost one of my heroes last week. Denise McCluggage died on May 6th. She was 88. Through Autoweek, I’ve gotten to know her as a writer and racer. But the more I learned about her, the more she became my inspiration for following one’s passion in life. She was “just doing it” long before sneaker companies made that their mantra. I don’t always follow her lesson, but the fault is strictly my own.