My partner has been telling me about Chaos Communication Congress since we met. This year, we were finally able to go. Some other friends from KDE also managed to get tickets so we put an assembly together.

We (collectively) thought it would be fun to have a low-key performance art project so we packed up our maigical feedback collection box we happened to have on hand and brought it with us. It was a hit! I’m really happy about how much people appreciated being able to write their feelings about random protocols I know nothing about and hear the gods shre..er…digest… their feedback.

A picture of the magical feedback box with lights.. It says "Wayland Feedback Collection Bin" on the front and is decorated with KDE stickers and sticky notes in English and German saying "write a comment"

The last time I was at a conference even close to that scale was at PAX in like 2015. I had a great time at the House of Tea and wound up running it the first morning, as one does in a doocracy when you want tea. I had great conversations there, and even got some mail (because that’s also a thing)!

I enjoyed walking the venue and taking pictures of the art people made and shared some of my own.

Overall I had fun, but wound up dealing with a Fibro flare after the first day which greatly limited my energy and ability to enjoy the event itself. Interesting sessions and discos started at midnight and went into the wee hours of the morning and I just physically could not keep up with that. It was rough to come to that realization and spend the nights alone at the hotel resting so I could try to people again the next day, only for the flare to intensify. CCC tried to be accessible — they had free masks & COVID tests available, quiet rooms, and a napping area. But outside the tea lounge washing station, I didn’t really feel like I belonged there, so I went out instead.

I’m an artist, not a hacker.

Hamburg though. Hamburg feels like Seattle (and Seattle feels like home). Every time I go there I wish I didn’t have to leave. The vibe of Hamburg calls to me the way Seattle did when I visited and then moved there. I just click there in a way that’s difficult to describe with words. It’s nice to have a place in Germany that feels familiar and home-like even though I don’t live there (yet).

I don’t know if I’ll go back to Congress but I will definitely go back to Hamburg whenever the chance presents itself.

Neither of us got COVID and I attribute that to getting updated COVID boosters before going, I was definitely exposed to it but RAT came back negative. I spent the last week recovering from the Fibro flare and a mild head cold instead. Get your shots folks!


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