Last night was our monthly MHVLUG meeting, and it also marked 7 years since our first meeting.
7 years… it’s kind of hard to imagine. I was also really touched, multiple times last night, by the waves of appreciation I got from folks in the room.
Last night was a perfect night, even though it started as anything but. At 4:30, Thor’s hard drive decided it was no longer a drive, and without a backup of the presentation, we were scrambling in the office to try to recover the drive, and come up with a backup plan, which meant finding another good base presentation online he could work from. I still hadn’t gotten an ack back from the library, so had to call to ensure someone would actually open the door, and we didn’t get locked out of our space. Pat called during setup, and reported that they were having a mail server meltdown at work, so he would try to get there by the end with the cake, but there were no promises. This was exceptionally more chaos than we typically have to deal with for a meeting, but it definitely meant the night was starting off off balance, and we were just working to try to get it back on track.
As the meeting was about to start, Bruce Locke interrupted and got up and said a few words about how much he and others appreciated the efforts I’ve put into the group. He then presented me with a set of gift certificates to our local beer mecca, that a number of members had gotten together and pitched in on. I was really really touched by that. While this is a labor of love, it’s very energizing to have such a tangible gesture of how much it means to others.
The talk was great. Thor worked well off the borrowed slides, and we had a lot of great questions from the audience. Sahana is a great project, and really demonstrates how much of an impact we can have on people’s lives as members of the open source community. Sahana is actively being used right now in Haiti and Chile to handle the aftermath of their recent earthquakes. We had at least one new face in the room, who had first attended our meeting last month virtually (over the live stream), and had come out for the face to face meeting. As that was exactly what I was trying to get out of the streaming, I’m really glad it seems to be working.
I was given another comment of appreciation from the floor when I let folks know about the upcoming meetings we had locked and loaded for the year. It is hard to get that far out ahead on the schedule, and it was great that everyone seemed to really be excited about our upcoming meetings.
The cake… was not a lie.
Pat showed up about 7:40 with the cake, just a few minutes after the lecture had ended. We had people hanging out and chatting until 8, then 15 folks came out of the palace afterwards. We had great conversation that went until 11.
As I was driving home, I thought to myself how perfect that all had really been. Good people, a great talk, and lots of good conversation. Really… just perfect.