October 1, 2006

We slept in this morning and got up to a grey, raining day in Newark. We were only up for a little while when I had to start working. This project that I am on is really under a lot of pressure and I have been working really long hours and over the weekends. I worked for five hours today. Not much of a weekend. I am really looking forward to a break. I was so busy today that we didn’t get a chance to go out for brunch like we had wanted to and Dominica just ran down to Subway and grabbed some subs quickly so that I would at least get something to eat.

Around six this evening I was finally able to leave the apartment and Dominica, Oreo and I drove up to Nutley to do a little shopping. We haven’t been out shopping since we moved to Newark. Living in a city discourages that, I think. In fact, this is the first time that I have had the car brought around except to take it to work. We went up to the big shopping plaza on Route 3 in Nutley and went to the Target there.

Min and I decided that since I was putting in all of this over time that we would take the overtime money from today and put it into rewarding ourselves with Nintendo DS Lite video game handheld consoles. Dominica got a pink one and I got the black onyx one. And we got three games. One that she wanted – Zoo Tycoon, one that I wanted – Lost Magic and one that we could play against each other – Mario Kart DS. We also picked up a couple of basics like a new waste basket that will fit under the kitchen sink and some miscellaneous supplies.

I would have had to return to work but someone from the office was able to cover some stuff for me so Dominica and I were able to go to Chevy’s in Nutley for dinner. We have only managed to go out for Mexican twice since we have been down in New Jersey. They don’t have anything good like Garcia’s in Cortland. At least not that we have found.

We came home and just relaxed a little bit. It was getting late in the day. Dominica worked on her Java homework and that took her an hour or more. Then we played Mario Kart against each other for about an hour before going to bed. We have decided that we really like the new Nintendo DS Lites (NDSLs.) They are attractive, much more portable than earlier Nintendo handhelds, the screens are awesome and the built in wireless is really cool (although it doesn’t support some standard security features and that is a big pain.) Because they are backlit we are able to play them in the dark which is a major advantage over the older Game Boys (the GBA SP’s are backlit but they were too little, too late after all the serious portable players had owned GBA’s for years.) There were so few situations when you could really play the GameBoy’s that it made them not very useful. Not so with the NDSL.

I tried out some older GBA titles on the NDSL and discovered that they look incredible. I had no idea that these games were supposed to look this good. It is hard to believe that they are from an older system. There is a lot of life left in some pretty old games it would seem. I am really looking forward to having a chance to really get some good use out of my GBA game collection. The only caveat on the NDSL is that it does not have a Zilog Z-80 processor so it is not able to play the older GB/GBC titles from the original GameBoy series. Not that we are very likely to play those old games anymore but it would be nice to have one unit that can play everything. The GBA and the GBA SP were backward compatible all the way back to the very first Nintendo handheld. The Nintendo DS is the first Nintendo handheld to not be able to play the original titles. That is a bit disappointing.

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