OOW16: Day 0 – Something Wicked This Way Comes


I’m calling today “Day 0”, as it’s the day before OOW and nothing is really planned for Saturday. Exhibitor booths get built, conference goers check in, and OOW begins to really descend upon the city. It’s the 1-day buffer before the formal conference starts.

I’m grateful for “buffer” days. I don’t travel well anymore so I’m exhausted from lack of sleep and jet lag (even 2 hours affects me greatly). After waking up way too early and giving up on sleep, I started to catch up on work. Then I got tired of being in my hotel room and decided to trek to a nearby breakfast place, not realizing that I was about step into OOW Central.


The signs are up everywhere. The town is officially painted red. I even found a small shoutout to EPM Cloud against the Moscone building, hiding behind a pillar.

The construction is still in progress and I can’t wait to see the end result tomorrow. These are all very exciting things to this newcomer.


Eventually, I had to ask security how to get to my breakfast destination: Samovar Tea & Food. It’s in the Yerba Buena Gardens.

I’d highly recommend this place. The food is healthy, flavorful, and interesting, and there are vegetarian and vegan options. In addition, if you’re like me and inspired by beautiful design, the views of the city and surrounding gardens from this place are exquisite. No reservation is required for breakfast. I chose the white truffle eggs and avocado with a masala chai. Yum. I caught up on blog posts while I ate.


After running some errands on the way back to the hotel, I caught up with my buddy Danny. We had previously planned to check out this well-known, TV-famous oyster bar called Swan Oyster Depot. However, that turned into an adventure that was part disaster, part awesome. 

First, we got to the Depot and calculated that it was a 2-3 hour wait. We were disappointed but also hungry so we switched to Scoma’s on the Fisherman’s Wharf. However, being the savvy navigator that I am, I got us completely lost on our trek there (yes, we decided to hoof it). 

Note: never follow Opal. I get lost very easily, even when I have Google Maps to rely on. 

We also forgot about the hills on the way from OOW Central to the Fisherman’s Wharf. I hate to admit this, but I was out of breath multiple times. My calves still hurt.

Luckily, we had some amazing oysters waiting for us, as well as wonderfully good sourdough bread and other tasty seafood.

We also managed to take this awesome pic commemorating our crazy lunch journey oysters.

For the return trip we had a bout of amnesia and decided to walk back. After 5 rounds of straight upward walking, we took a break and took pictures of the scenery (as well as caught our breath). This is Danny’s “triumph pose” for us surviving the hills.

Note that Danny got several comments on his hilarious T-shirt. 

Then we walked to the Hilton, checked in, got our bag and schwag, and said hello to a few friends. Then I had to rush to get ready for an ODTUG Board dinner with the Kscope17 conference committee. (Unfortunately, no one remembered to take a picture of that dinner.)

Natalie, Danny, Cameron and I cut out early to catch the last part of the SQL Developer Meet and Greet, hosted by Jeff Smith.

Translation: three EPM folks crashed that party. 

Luckily, we were invited. It was a blast and it was great to meet up with the fantastic SQL Developer community. I finally got to meet some Twitter friends in person.

One of my favorite discussions from the night was with Tim Gorman regarding Ray Bradbury and the art of writing concisely. This is exactly why I love these Oracle communities – you’re constantly meeting cool people, having inspirational conversations, and learning something new every day.

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