Author Archives: Aaron

On Anticipation

I started writing this a little over a year ago and don’t know why I never finished it, but now seems like a good time. I’ll italicize the original.

I watched the Season 7 finale of How I Met Your Mother today. I discovered the show years after it started, but it’s one of my absolute favorites of all time. I referenced it to Val last week and she shared with me that she stopped following it a few years back after having watched closely for some time. I didn’t understand what would cause her to stop. She explained that she has several friends that started watching the show at different times and the result was the same with each. You see, the plot is set up by a first-person narrator telling his children the story of, well, how he met their mother. Val and her friends watched for a season or two, but eventually they grew weary of not knowing who was going to end up as the wife. The has a great premise, but they lose a lot of viewers because everyone knows the ending; they know that Ted gets married, but also realize that they won’t learn who he marries until the show ends. And it could run for a very long time. The execs are now letting on that there’s probably only a season or two left. With all the twists and developments, it’s hard for some to watch a show where you know the ending, but are made to wait for it.

I’ve been back from Bike Out Hunger for 2 weeks now. As you can imagine, when I returned, there was a mountain of work waiting for me. I found myself asking, “Was the week off really worth the stress of coming back after having been gone for so long?” I’ve shared before on fb and G+ a study that basically says that the majority of benefits at a vacation actually come before you leave. It turns out that the physiological response to a vacation builds long before it comes and often peaks before what may be the climax of a trip. [For the record I certainly enjoyed my time away and it was totally worth the extra work]. You see, the body responds to the planning process, the building of anticipation for what’s coming, more even than an actual destination or culmination of the plans. Fascinating, isn’t it?

Now, a year later, if you’ve seen the HIMYM Season 8 finale, you know that we finally get our first glimpse of the mother! Fans already know where it happens, but now we have a face.

And I think I know now why I stopped where I did. There are so many directions to go…

First — because it’s on my heart right now — as a long time single dude, it’s really hard not to put a lot of my heart into a relationship before it’s ready. When you’re getting to know someone, it can be a killer to put too many expectations on a person (see Fairy Tale Love). I’d be willing to bet that applies to you engaged folks and newlyweds, too :-)

Second, looking forward isn’t a bad thing. There are benefits to that planning time for a vacation and, likewise, there are definitely benefits to planning for the future. The prep time before a promotion, future relationship, trip, or whatever, can make all the difference in actually getting there. It’s not to be wasted. How would your vacation turn out without booking a flight or hotel? Would you go into an interview without knowing about the company you’re applying with? Of course not.

 So whatever you’re waiting on or hoping for, get to it. Train, plan, study, save, read, exercise discipline, and be ready.

Thirdly, I am so thankful that no amount of anticipation and no hype is more than the joys of eternity with my God. No matter how wonderful I think Heaven will be or how much I try to brace myself for true awe and the experience of meeting the Creator face-to-face, I will not be let down. What great anticipation! Now excuse me, I need to go prepare.

Blessings, Shalom,

Happy Thanksgiving 2012

Happy Thanksgiving from Novorossiysk, Russia! I've been here for a week and a half now and should be flying back early, some time next week, because there's still a lot of construction and installation to be done here before I'm needed. My guess is that I'll be returning to Novo in January, but nothing is certain. Most of my time has been spent in Chevron's office here, but I finally got to see the control room, where I'll be be working when I come back, yesterday. I did get a few pictures, but the sun was in the background, so they're all washed out. I do, however, have a few photos from the hotel and some meals on facebook.

All the Americans in the office shared Thanksgiving wishes today and one of the natives brought in a turkey, so at least one of the guys will have a Thanksgiving dinner this weekend. All the Russians asked about the day, as well as a British guy. I did get to enjoy a traditional dinner today, lasagna, salad, and beer :-) AND I've got "A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving" loading on Youtube as we speak. Charlie Brown is kinda my fav part of, well, any time of year that has an associated episode.

Today I'm most thankful for life through Christ, then family — especially my little niece who turns 4 today — and friends that hold me together. I'm thankful that I'll be home at Christmas, for which I had been scheduled to be over here.

Please accept my blessings and best wishes for life as God intends it,

Novorossiysk Picture

I just received an email with a few pictures of where my work is about to take me. This is a view of the port in Novorossiysk, Russia, from the site where I'll be working. My visa is in the works  and it looks like I'll be going this fall.


IMG_1485-400x300If you've been wondering if I've dropped my blog forever, I'm glad to say that you're wrong! I have, however, been super busy. For 3 weeks I was staying in Houston working at ENGlobal's fabrication facility while the control cabinets and my code for the pipeline control project that I've been working on were being tested. After finishing testing of my part last week, I've been commuting in as support. Through all of this, I've been working 12+ hour days, but the end is in sight for this phase!

The good news is that as things have slowed down, I've been able to visit with a lot of friends, and even meet some new ones.

I may get to talking about some of my dinners with friends in another post, but first let me describe what the work environment has been like around here. The client is a pipeline consortium, a group of several companies using and operating a single pipeline. Here at our FAT, Factory Acceptance Test, we've had representatives from the consortium as well as a separate group from the biggest player in the consortium who have been the driving force. 8 panels, mine and another pump station's, have been powered up and repeatedly inspected by members of the two clients groups, ENGlobal employees, third party inspectors, as well as, well, myself.


The environment has ranged from pressured to heated, but things are stable now and about wrapped on my end. After an almost 4 week hiatus from cycling, I got to ride 50mi with the group on Saturday (before driving back to Houston to work in the afternoon) and 86 on Labor day.

More later.