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Christmas 2017 Out of Office Message:

Andrew Treloar, Journey of the Migration (to the GMail web client)

With apologies to T. S. Eliot and his Journey of the Magi.

A long migration I had of it
Just the worst time of the year
For a migration, and such a long migration:
The time short and the backlog large,
The very eve of summer.
And the servers slow, buggy, recalcitrant
Sometimes down, responses slow.
There were times I regretted
The speed of Apple Mail, the interface
And the system integration benefits.
Then the support staff cursing and grumbling
And refusing calls, and wanting their high-priced coffees
And the network flaky, and offline access unreliable
And the interface unclear and the docs impenetrable
And the helpdesk hostile and charging high prices:
A hard time I had of it.
At the end I preferred to read mail at night,
Deleting in snatches,
With the voices singing in my ears, saying
That this was all folly.

Then at dawn I came down to the last folder
Old, long forgotten, reeking of procrastination;
With senders and email lists from a previous career
And three levels of indented quotes,
And an old argument that had galloped away for ever.
Then I came to the final discussion, with delight,
Six senders in a complex thread, competing for attention
And readers ignoring the empty arguments.
But there was no information, and so I continued
And arriving at the last email, not a moment too soon
Completed the migration; it was (you might say) satisfactory.

All this feels a long time ago, I remember
And I would do it again, but set down
This set down
This: did I make all those changes for
Better or Worse? There was Better, certainly
I had evidence and no doubt. I had done better migrations (and worse),
but had thought they were different; This Webmail was
Hard and bitter agony at first, like all my migrations.
I still long for my comfort zone, in the native Mail client,
But no longer at ease there, with my mail pre-migration,
Like an old Mac user, clutching the past.
I am now just glad for a client that works.