85) My Bad Ass Oceanside Contract

Welcome to my autobiography!

Here is what you learned in my last post. The year was 2003 in a very sour U.S. economy, and I had just secured a 3-month mask design contract with Sun Microsystems, headquartered in Sunnyvale, California. In this post, I’ll share with you my experience selecting a place to live in northern California during my assignment. 

There is nothing particularly unusual about going to the beach for a day. Or if you have the means, to buy a home near or on the beach.

But it goes against common sense to rent a place on the beach if your commute to work is one-hour and fifteen minutes. This is exactly what I did, and it was the most bad ass 3 month contract of my mask design career!

Pacifica, (Fog City) California

pacificaI rented a one-bedroom apartment at 77 Paloma Avenue in  Pacifica, California. If I recall, the rent was $1850 per month and there was nothing particularly remarkable about it – except for the location – one half block from the Pacific ocean. On the left is one of my favorite, and rare sunny day images of the pier at Pacifica. Image courtesy of http://cbssanfran.files.wordpress.com/2012/02/bigsurfpacfeb8-011.jpg?w=620

I enjoyed the location so much I sent for Nadine and the family who joined me on my walks on the beach during Christmas of 2003, when the wind was so blustery, we could see the whitecaps from my apartment parking lot.  We didn’t care and walked for hours.

The work at Sun was extremely stressful. I was conducting some final layout verification checks on a chip five years in the making, Millennium (UltraSparc), now very old technology.  Because of the urgency of the schedule and my beach side apartment location, it was a contract I’ll never forget. Near the end, the great folks at Sun offered me a position (or more accurately, dropped BIG hints they were hiring), but since we were settled in Fort Collins, Colorado, things just didn’t work out for me to take the next step.

I remain appreciative to the company for hiring me, even if only for 3-months. If there was such a thing as a bucket list for mask design contracting, this assignment would be near the top of that list.

Did you ever live near the beach?

Next: Oliver and Stanley

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