Saturday, May 31, 2008

Double Dutch

For client confidentiality reasons, I can't write about the client I'm working on here in London. Nor do I particularly wish to go into detail about where I work, etc, for similar reasons. But I can talk about work, and the fact that my client is Dutch, and that I flew to Amsterdam (well, technically, a suburb of Amsterdam) yesterday to meet them for the first time and help run a workshop.

I flew for work a lot when I was in New York, but mostly my clients were within driving distance of the office so I had cars take me to and from their offices. In London the majority of my office's clients are based in other countries, making business travel less of "commuter trips" and more time spent waiting in line in check-in, customs, and immigration. Yesterday, a car picked me up at 4:45AM to get me to Terminal 4 at Heathrow for the 6:30AM (read: first flight out) flight to Amsterdam. I was at my client's by 10AM, and spent the next six hours (in addition to the previous 5) in heels, in a restaurant, looking over a picturesque canal, trying to follow a powerpoint presentation given in Dutch (and getting a lot of it!), and making small talk with a group of 15 Dutch people I've never met before. The meeting was a success, hurrah, and my boss and I celebrated with McDonalds and Heineken in Schipol.

The wacky thing about it all was that in one day, I used 2 ATMs for 2 types of currency, spoke three languages (2 in random words), and was back where I started in 14 hours. It's amazing to think that Europe is so compact that a business trip I would have had entirely in the United States was spread across borders. Very weird, but very awesome too.

No comments:

Post a Comment