Friday, August 10, 2007

Eighty Percent

Some say, we never appreciate what we have until we’ve lost it. It may be true. I never though time is very valuable until I got trapped into a very tight schedule. I never spent time to appreciate my sleep until I had only few for it. And I never been grateful with my dining experience until I realized that it might be the best thing that can happen in one rough day.

I have been quite sleepless since last weekend. If I calculate all my sleep that was only couple of hours everyday, the total number from Sunday until now is less than 15 hours. And that is not because of my CCIE SP lab preparation. I had to lead a 3-day network design requirement workshop from Monday for one of Cisco biggest customer in this region. It is an exciting experience to meet and have a chance to discuss with the customer directly, to try to get all information about the existing setup, to capture customer requirements and expectations, to identify the challenges during the process and to start thinking about the best way to help the customer achieving their goal. So conducting workshop in a day then making summary as well as preparing material for the next day at night. I usually started working right after dinner until 6 in the morning. And couple of hours to sleep just to regain some energy since I must stand in front of the customer for about 8 hours during the workshop.

So next time you feel like your life is so bored, just remember there are some people who can only wish they have some extra time. Every time you feel like bitching about your uncomfortable bed at home, just realize there are others who must be able to sleep anywhere with any chance they have.

Well, I’m writing this not to try to teach you how you live your life or how you should be grateful with whatever you have in hand :). And I know some of you may even have worst workload and tighter schedule.

I’m writing this just to share with you that I don’t feel tired with all the things that I must do. I never feel tired with that. In fact, I feel so excited. I really enjoy every second of my busy time since it is part of my life style. It’s the way of living that I decided to choose long time back. I can’t get tired from my own life, can I? And this kind of life style really makes me appreciate all the nice dinner with my team mate just before we start working together. I really like the quality of my sleep since with only couple of hours a day I was unable to dream at all. It was just like closing your eyes for a while and suddenly you raise up from the darkness. This life style makes me appreciate all the small things that I usually ignore in normal circumstances.

You may ask, how my body will continue to survive. Perhaps with some help from lots of caffeine and Red Bull. But to be frank, I have actually planned for this. In the next several hours I will have a long flight to Brussels through London. It’s about 16 hours in total. So most probably I will utilize the time inside the plane to sleep and recover from all those sleepless nights. Just like I always utilize my time to sleep inside the taxi that brings me from the Airport to the Hotel every time I travel. And I don’t think all my gadgets’ battery capacity, from my notebook, my Zen to my PSP, combined together can beat that 16 hours. So obviously I must go to sleep during the flight. (Unless if they have movies on demand in the plane! It can be so tempting to watch 300 or the Simpsons TV series on that small screen)

So here I am, on my way from my office in Singapore to the airport. And I’m actually writing this post inside the taxi that’s taking me to the number 4 place that I spend the most of my time, which is Changi Airport :D. Number 1 place is Shangri-La hotel. Oh, it’s just like a second home to me. In fact, I spend more time in Shangri-La compare to my own home in my country or my apartment in Singapore. Number 2 are Cisco customers office. Number 3, surprisingly, is my office in Singapore. It doesn’t mean that I spend much time in my office, but every time I’m in Singapore you can find me sitting in my partition from morning until late night.

It’s a perfect life, isn’t it?

Nevertheless, I have been trying to work on my CCIE lab in between my busy time. Even with the previous 3-day workshop and a requirement for me to submit some design documents while preparing myself for some other project with different customer, I was still able to gain some lab hours to make my number close to 200 until today.

I know with only 3 days left, minus the 16 hours flight, it’s impossible to reach the 300 lab hour target. And I’m not planning to either.

I just need to get 80% in CCIE lab to pass. Not 100%. And definitely not 79%. It doesn’t make any difference to pass the lab with 80% or 100% score.

For my previous 2 CCIE I was extremely prepared and always trying to get 100% preparation level. But I actually can still pass with only 80% preparation and 100% confident level. Well, the math here is completely crap and it doesn’t make sense. But my point is, I still have a chance to pass even the chance is slim. I feel like with all my preparation so far I can get about 80% of lab score. So with the remaining time that I have, I need to make sure I can really achieve that 80%. Instead of trying to achieve 300 hour practicing in the lab, I will do my best to get at least 240. Since 240 is 80% of 300. And it means I just need to spend another 40 hours from the moment I land in Brussels until my lab.

Enough with all that calculation.
Let’s just wait for the result on Monday night.

One thing that I know for sure, even let’s say I slip and fail on this attempt, I won’t regret anything in my life. Everything is getting better and better day by day. I learn many things from my field experience facing Cisco customers as well as from my CCIE lab preparation. So my life is quite balance in the sense of sharing my time between geeking out in the lab and meeting the customer.

Why am I writing this post? I don’t know. Perhaps I’m just a bit nervous. It’s been a while since the last time I had a long flight like this. Or perhaps I’m just bored since I can’t get sleep inside this taxi so I’m trying to kill the time by keep writing.

Oh well, this is the longest post that has no point that I have ever written in my blog. Based on my lab result on Monday I may delete this post. Or may be not.

I have reached the airport now. Will upload this nonsense once I get Internet connection and let’s see what’s going to happen on Monday.

Over and out.


Anonymous said...

You are the best

Anonymous said...

Good Luck...I believe you will pass.

keep up the good work...maybe someday i can become the cisco guru you have become.

Anonymous said...

Try your best. Nothing to regret mate!

Anonymous said...

Hey Himawan,

Just been reading your blog for a week now. Anyway, looking at how you're working, I am sure you'll pass. Even if you don't, I must say that is one hell of a great job you're doing.

I'm a few thousand miles behind, but hope to be there too in the future :)

Anonymous said...

Enjoyed your post. I head for San Jose in a few hours to take my CCIE Security lab and you helped remind me that you need 80% to pass and that I need to make sure that that 80% is correct on the test and Cisco can worry about the other 20% !