(Written mostly for my family since hundreds of others are probably writing their take on the same for Planet Debian.)
So glad tonight wasn't another slow dinner for 300 geeks, but instead a masterpiece that couldn't have been orchestrated better on purpose.
Sitting in the center of a Debian "swirl" of tables in a big echoing metal-roofed meeting hall with two rough stone walls. At the "DPL table", which means we get to eat last. A mariachi band comes in in a bit of a hurry, horns playing way too loud but still fun. And quickly after there's a sound like a thousand tapping drums underneath the music as rain starts coming down, drumming on the roof.
A couple of songs, a couple of burts of rain. One time the band is up on the stage, reach the climax of their music perfectly timed with a torrent of rain that concludes it, washes it away and drowns it out.
Just to add to the flavor, a scene develops in front of the stage. If you ignore what's really going on (which I won't go into), it's right out of a Mexican telenovela: One tall guy with multicolored hair and some others remonstrating a guy who subtly reminds me of the Mexican clown that would be characterised as the "tramp". And then they push him right across the room to the door, with him gesticulating broadly all the way, but seeming beneath it all to be going along, miming out the scene.
A croud develops over there, and for a minute the croud dynamics seem about to get ugly, but the band does their best to drown it out and soon there's a bunch of people dancing in line to the buffet. And the weather does its best too, as a whole side of the wall begins to fountain water down inside the building, pouring down, exciting and beautiful and completly unexpected.
And then we sit down to eat. And then the power goes out. Pitch blackness for seconds, then it's a strobe show with one camera flash after another, the odd laptop or PDA or laser pointer breifly lighting up the scene.
The lights come back on slowly, in stages, like theater lights at the end of a show. By now I'm so hyped up on Mexico and drama and disaster and life that I get up and go all over the room, chatting with lots of folks about how amazing that was, how it couldn't have been scripted better, how it's like the Debian release process, what the pictures from the blackout will look like, and just reacting to the catharsis.
And outside it's a cool and gorgeous night in the street washed clean, I'm really happy right now to be in Mexico.