Yesterday, the 13th of July was the one day that all (or at least most) of Debconf hackers were forcefully disconnected from the Net and thrown into the socializing, sun and nature. It worked pretty well.
First of all we all woke up early this morning - a lot of people even made it to the breakfast after a warning that today's lunch will be comparable to our regular breakfasts. Two boats were organized to bring all the hackers over to the Finnish Fort islands. (Some, like aj, escaped and went sightseeing to the Helsinki)
There was an interesting moment on the way as the boat passed under a bridge that was so low that you could just touch the bridge with your hand without much of a trouble. We also went throughout the jachts of the Baltic Sea regatta and were overtaken by the superseacat ship.
After arriving on the islands, we had to wait almost for half an hour for the second boat to arrive. To our surprise Holger was on top of it weaving a Jolly Rodger (more about it later).
After being divided into 6 groups, we were lead to see the Fort - walls, cannons, parks, and sand barriers were up for our inspection and admiration. In the tradition that is well known to any software developer, the project manager promised to his king to complete the fort in 4 years. It took 40. Now that is a slight delay none of us would want to experience. This project manager even managed to die in the process of construction, but the king ordered him to stay in the place anyway and designed a monument for the grave with his own hands as a compensation. You can also see our guide in one of the pictures here.
It is worth mentioning that there was an interesting guiding system in this place - every guide constructed his excursion from a set of checkpoints taken in order based on his/her preference and on what checkpoints the other guides are now.
Also you can see a couple of photographs that include me - this is a rear occurrence.
After the excursions, we had lunch in a truly Debian fashion - pieces of bread, butter, meat, cheese, cucumbers, tomatoes, apples and small drink packs. Then everyone went around and assembled his own lunch. The Debian party was occupying most part of the biggest lawn of the islands - that looked pretty strange.
In the progress I discovered that the not only shoes of Andreas Tille have a logo with a swirl, but that it is also extremely similar to the logo of Lithuaninan Open Source Association
. That is fun.
On the way back I was on the small boat that went first. Amaya and Holger were here too. The made quite a team - Holger waived the pirate flag, Amaya waved her hand. Noone could resist that - everyone waived back :).
We went a bit more quiet after the military showed their interest.
One more fun thing - that is a really bad way to choose a name for a ship :P
And here you can see my selfportrait attempt. Looks quite ok to me :)
After that great fun, some waiting for Gunnar come back on the second boat with the key to our room (doh.) and a dinner, I went off to search for the big sauna. After some asking around, I fond it and also found all Japanese people there. After about half an hour the sauna key was finally found and we could get the party started.
The place had two saunas (electrical and wood) and a big rest place with a piano. I first occupied the big sauna (which was heated up beforehand by some kind soul) and started pouring water on the stones and entertaining the constantly increasing audience. After some time the sauna was full, but thanks to my activity, some people started to go out to cool down - the logical turnaround of selfregulation started. The second sauna warmed up in an hour and fast became the most popular one, despite it being able to only fit 5-6 people at a time.
Debian is a truly unique society - were else will you see lots of naked people of both sexes listening, with a great interest, a classical piano concert or singing "Yesterday" or "Over the rainbow".
Somewhere around midnight I understood that basically almost every person in the world is a geek, but most of them are so afraid and ashamed of it that they hide it, because otherwise they would be shunned by the society. On the other hand Debian is the society that encourages geekiness and grows on our differences. I think that a geek is just a person that is not afraid to show his individuality and that is increasingly important in our globalization obsessed world.