Geertjan's Blog

  • June 22, 2008

Typhoon Frank

Geertjan Wielenga
Product Manager
Typhoon Frank hit Manila during the 2nd day of the NetBeans Platform Certified Engineering course, i.e, Saturday, 21 June. At some point I remember asking one of the students: "So I've been told there's a typhoon in the Philippines. Do you know where?" And he replied: "Outside that window." It was raining pretty hard but I wouldn't have ascribed that to a typhoon.

Back in the hotel, at about 2 A.M, I followed the Holland-Russia match via a Dutch Internet radio station on my laptop. Very exciting stuff, though Holland didn't get into the game at all, from what I gather. (Chuk's comment that Holland does well at the start of competitions like this one and then does badly afterwards, makes sense now, and aligns with comments that Holland peaked too soon.) One of the radio commentators, Jack van Gelder, is a really great commentator. It was almost as if I was there, his descriptions and excitement was so vivid, to the point where the other commentators on the program paled into nothingness in comparison. I'm sure Guus Hiddink's Dutch football experience played a big role in Russia's victory. I think it's great that he has another big success in his illustrious career. Is there another coach in the world that has a track record that comes even close to his? South Korea, Australia, and now Russia. He's put them on the map as footballing nations. I've heard that a museum in his honor has been set up in his birthplace in Holland and that the most frequent visitors there are from South Korea. That's kind of funny. I think he's less appreciated in Holland than he is elsewhere because he is so typically Dutch. There's nothing too special about him apart from his Dutchness and his Dutch approach to things. That's what enabled him to cut through the age hierarchies between players in South Korea, for example.

Then in the morning as I was checking out, I was told the airport was closed because of the weather. Eventually I got there, with a taxi, through flooded streets (the taxi had to stop several times to take a deep breath before plunging into yet another long stretch of ankle-deep water) accompanied by someone else from the hotel who was going there too. As I got in through security at the entrance to the airport, the power failed and everyone (thousands of waiting passengers in the check-in queue) found themselves in pitch darkness (and stifling heat, without any kind of air conditioning or the smallest breath of wind). Many hours later I managed to check in. The commercial lights of western capitalism beyond the customs control section, behind the check-in counters, were like beacons of hope in the almost inhumane situation in the check-in queue. Through an odd twist of fate I ended up sitting in the emergency row, i.e., the row with most leg room. The KLM cabin crew were exceptionally hospitable, at least partly because they'd seen the conditions in which we'd been queueing at the check-in counters.

But then my flight arrived in Amsterdam a few hours later than planned and so I missed my connecting flight. Via a small trick I managed to get into the airport lounges that Roumen had introduced me to when we flew back from JavaOne. Life is much more sane here and there are free snacks and liquor as well as wireless. I'll return to Prague first thing in the morning.

However, I hope Tim got out of Manila ok, because he left the day after me, so he must have felt the effect of the typhoon far more than I did. Also, of course, my mind is with the people in the Philippines who are undergoing these extreme weather conditions. Pretty wacky to experience a typhoon first hand for the first time, even though only a very early stage of it. But the full brunt of the storm must be another thing altogether.

Before I forget, here's a pic I received from one of the people who visited the NetBeans booth at the Manila Sun Tech Days, after I demonstrated the Shakespeare/FreeTTS demo (mentioned in previous blog entries) to this group:

More pics from the same series can be found here!

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Comments ( 23 )
  • Mazembo Eddy Monday, June 23, 2008

    Hi Wielenga

    I enjoyed reading your report on the first day of the Netbeans days in Manila. thanks

    I met you in Joburg in one of the Suntechdays. But I have a bug going on in my IDE Netbeans 6.1 everytime I try to open a project. The issue was already reported to the Netbeans team and fixed. The message after reporting the bug is : " please update your current build of Netbeans to the target milestone 6.5M1 where issue #103644 is fixed". What does this mean ? What should I do ?


  • Geertjan Monday, June 23, 2008

    Hi Eddy, nice to hear from you. Probably you need to try the latest development build or 6.5 Milestone 1 (which will be released in the next 2 weeks):


  • ken Monday, June 23, 2008

    which one of the people in the picture is you?

  • Geertjan Monday, June 23, 2008

    Second from left, wearing the green t-shirt, Ken.

  • Seapegasus Wednesday, June 25, 2008

    no, we all know the second from left is Ken

  • Michael Thursday, June 26, 2008

    Just for the note ) Russia (as former USSR) has really rich football history. USSR won European championship in 1960ies and was a finalist afterwards. It also got 4th place on World championship. Of course, the football level dropped significantly with the fall of USSR.

    By saying this, I just want to claim that Russia/USSR was on the football nations map since 1950ies. This doesn't lower the significance of Guus Hiddink's work - we're all terrified by his great job with Russia's national team.

  • busby seo test Thursday, November 6, 2008

    have you been in our country...did you enjoyed staying here in the Philippines?

  • beloed Friday, November 14, 2008

    Nice Pics. I'm From Indonesian. and Guus Hiddink's is the best coach in the world.

  • vardis Tuesday, December 2, 2008

    Guus Hiddink is an absolute magician in my opinion.

  • Wordpress Reseller Friday, December 5, 2008

    Guus Hiddink is the most interesting person that inspired me so far

  • Geertjan Saturday, December 6, 2008

    I totallt agree. Guus Hiddink is a reflection of the best of the Netherlands.

  • Busby SEO Test Sunday, December 21, 2008

    I agree!

  • busby seo test Sunday, December 21, 2008

    great coach and thanks

  • Fix Windows Registry Tuesday, February 10, 2009

    Nice shot, are some in that picture are looks like Filpino, they are? pinoy here too :)

  • Windows XP Registry Cleaners Sunday, February 15, 2009

    A typhoon was really unstoppable, but I thank you for this post.

  • the web prosperity team Sunday, February 22, 2009

    really it makes me feel sad after typhoon passes to our country and leave nothing but destruction to our homes and families. typhoon for me is a disaster that gives a big problem to us and sadly there is no solution to stop typhoons, its on our mother nature and socially accepted that its normal to this world to have typhoons.

  • UFC 96 stream Friday, February 27, 2009

    I was there in manila that time

  • Cash Gifting TV Monday, March 16, 2009

    i hate typhoons but we can do nothing about it., nature is the worst enemy to be.

  • cash4trends Saturday, April 4, 2009

    This will not happen again if we will love mother earth.

  • goodpeoplegives Saturday, April 4, 2009

    I hope this will never happen again.

  • onsuccess09 Saturday, April 4, 2009

    There are many affected person because of that.

  • barackoli Wednesday, April 22, 2009

    We hope this will never happen again.

  • Simulation pret immobilier Wednesday, May 13, 2009

    These are some really nice pictures. Thanks a lot!

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