Sunday, June 15, 2008

Europe Part 1: Germany

I landed in Dusseldorf yesterday, connecting through Frankfurt on a redeye. The trip was made much easier, because I was able to use my upgrade certificate to get into Executive First (cool interactive flash anim with Celine Dion shilling). Wow - what a difference that makes - from the food and adjustable seat (even into a bed), to help minimize jet lag! I managed to have 3 hours sleep, which made Saturday much easier.

There was a 5 hour layover in Frankfurt, so I used the shower at the lounge to "start the day". I needed to stay awake all day, to at least 10pm or so, so I went to the train station and arranged the next leg in my journey - Budapest! I'm taking an overnight train to Wein (Vienna) first, then up to Budapest until Tuesday. Back to Vienna for work until Friday, then who knows. The EuroCup finals are happening that weekend (June 29th) in Vienna, so that will be a crazy party. However, all the hotels are overpriced, if available at all. I am booked in through the Friday by the customer, but after that ├Čt's on me. So I might go somewhere else. Currently I am considering a train up to Prague, or maybe a cheap flight somewhere else. There are some super-cheap flights - including one for $50 euro's (return) to Venice.. We shall see!

Today I toured Alstadt in Dusseldorf - been quite a few times now, but it's still quite nice and a great place to have a coffee and sandwich. The image on the left is in the middle of Konigsallee, the major shopping street. All the tents are filled with (only) books for sale. The other photo is a square in Alstadt (old town).

I am now at a hotel outside of Dusseldorf, preparing for the training over the next few days. I always prefer training Europeans for some reason - I think they respect the training process much more, where North Americans tend to need the "Why" always answered. This might be somehow tied to the North American attitude of "get it done, anyway you can!" (aka the 80% rule). This leads to employees not trusting that decisions were all that well-thought out. Europeans tend to actually consider all options before making a decision, so the employees actually trust that a correct decision was likely made (though it may have taken much longer).

Back on topic, Budapest friday!!

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