After being back in Portland for what seemed like just a few days, we headed to Scottsdale, Arizona for JSConf. Newsflash: my skills in nerdliness have not increased that much in the few weeks since I designed my WordPress theme. I was there for the ‘significant others’ track. Say what? A cool idea, indeed. An even cooler idea on my part would have been taking a vacation along with it. But alas, here’s what I’ve been loving this week…
-Pool at FireSky Resort – If we had a do-over, we would have stayed at the conference hotel — the amazing FireSky Resort & Spa. Since the conference room block was sold out by the time we booked, we ended up staying down the road, but Arizonans are so chill that I ended up hanging out at the FireSky a bit. You know how stock photos always have pictures of a laptop at the beach — like that would ever be a good idea? Sand and sunshine and laptop screens don’t play well together. However, in the Phoenix area, it gets so hot in the summer that they have plenty of shaded areas all around the pool — great for actually being able to see your screen. Perfect office. (well for a few hours anyway).
-JSConf – Working for dot com companies for seven years, I usually feel pretty comfortable chatting about most things tech related. So it’s always a fun experience to be the little fish in a big pond of [foreign language] engineering speak. JSConf after-parties were half me thinking “ha, I actually know about this” to half “node JS, huh?”
-Cartel Coffee Lab – I needed a coffee shop to work out of while in Scottsdale, and after a bit of Yelping I discovered Cartel Coffee. It was Portland-y. I enjoyed it. And the staff were crazy friendly. So I ended up staying all day.
-Foodie tour – The only “significant others” track I ended up doing at JSConf was the Taste of Old Town Scottsdale food tour. I can’t imagine it’s as enjoyable in the summer months, but it was an awesome breezy, walkable lunch between six different Old Town establishments and tasting everything from tacos to sangria. I don’t say no to tasty eats combined with exercise. One of my favorite ways to see a city is on foot and by bike.
-a rare, warm April weekend in Oregon – spent happy hour-ing at clarklewis (one of my fav happy hours in Portland), breaking in my new knock-off Sperry Top-Sider boat shoes, sipping ginger berry smoothie from Sip Juice cart, relaxing at the park, Pyro Pizza from Cartopia, and a quick visit to the Central Oregon coast. Oh Oregon, I love you.
-Inventing on Principle – save Bret Victor’s talk for when you have an extra hour, grab a cup of coffee and scribble a furious amount of notes. “Ideas are important. Creators need an immediate connection to what they create.”