2011: a tale of two cities (part 1)

Dec 30, 2011

This is my 2011 retrospective. A year that has been a life-changing one for me. In the first part of it I write about what took place in Valladolid.

Last year I didn’t write a retrospective of the ending year. I just wrote about how 2010 was the end of an era (and a job) for me. I want to change that and tell you how this year has been for me. It will be a long post (it has two parts!) so I hope it makes up for my six months disappearance of the blogosphere.

Valladolid

As I just wrote I started the year unemployed. My last job had burned me out from my head to my feet nails. I still loved the profession but I wanted to take advantage of my situation (I had no rent to pay back then) and find a company where I could do things right.

I had plenty of time so I could read and practice a lot. I kept learning Ruby and fell in love with it. That love will be the cause much of what had to come during the rest of the year.

Wise choices

Back in 2010 I started getting involved with the Spanish agile community. That brought me the chance of meeting a lot of interesting people. A few of them lived in the same city I did. They had created a local community in which I also got involved. That was the start of a few awesome friendships.

One of this awesome people had just started a new company and needed some help with the development. He offered me the chance to help them and I didn’t hesitate to take it. That’s how I started learning Groovy and Grails (and fell even more in love with Ruby).

The company was located in Madrid so I started spending more time there than I used to (my girlfriend lives in Madrid so I usually was in the city 2 or 3 weekends per month).

A week in Be Code

In February I had the chance to finally spend a week in Valencia with the awesome crew of Be Code. That week was one of the most important ones of 2011. The conversations I had there with Xavi shook my world and made me think a lot.

I wrote a series of blog posts back then telling how was each day I spent there. They went offline with my old blog but I wanted to bring them back online (in a bible-length post) as a way of saying thank you. I wrote them in Spanish and they will remain that way.

All together now, and then

In march an awesome event took place in the surroundings of Valladolid: All Together Now I took part in it and teamed up with Germán and Abel for the first time.

It was also my first kind-of-real experience with Rails which I pretty much enjoyed dragging me even more into the red-side.

A pet project was born

On April I released my home-built blog. I started it as a way of learning some Cucumber, Sinatra and Haml and ended up learning a lot more. The funny thing is that I built up some knowledge that helped me a lot with was about to come.

The chance I was waiting for

May is one of my favourite months. It’s the month I was born on. The weather starts to be awesome. Summer is coming… But this year it brought me a dreamed chance: being Enrique Comba’s apprentice.

I can remember perfectly the Sunday I switched my computer on and read the post. I was shocked and thrilled. I opened vim and started coding right away. I didn’t stop until I had it done. On Monday morning I had already submitted my solution. All I could do was waiting.