2021 Week 27

Greetings from a train from Stockport to London.

I’ve been up in Stockport since Thursday, seeing family. My parents are relatively old, and there’s a bunch of problems that go hand in hand with that. It’s always nice going home, but it’s also not been the easiest weekend. And yes, the paragraph is vague and open-ended: maybe I’ll write more about it soon.

What’s been good this week?

I’m the tech lead on my squad at Monzo, and I had some productive conversations about what kind of role I want to do at work, what kind of work motivates me, and where I might be able to do that. I’ve been in a bit of a rut for the past few works where the work is necessary, but unenjoyable. It felt good to start those conversations.

I had my performance review, and (as expected) I had less evidence of doing well on technical topics (systems design, architecture, etc.), but loads of evidence of doing well with communication, teamwork and some product-shaped bits. Our squad is two engineers, including me, so we don’t often come across bigger ‘architectural’ bits of work – so it’s a case of working out how I can effectively grow my technical skills in that position.

On the subject of Monzo: I got to see esteemed colleague Crispin for the first time in ages, and we went for drinks after work, just like in the Normal Times. It felt great.

I also managed to get out for a walk around my parents’ place, in the gap where it didn’t rain:

Beach huts at Southwold, Suffolk
The view north east from the path from Mellor to Mill Brow.

What’s been bad this week?

Handling parent things, and not getting to see a friend from home because he got the dreaded “you must isolate” notification. A saw a different friend have a holiday to Malta get side-swiped by the same notification. I’m looking forward to the time where being double-vaccinated (maxxinated) means you can escape that.

We put offers in on two different houses in Leytonstone: both got rejected. It’s a rite of passage, and we’ve learned lots, but it still sucks. Also, it rained a lot up north. This is not surprising.