Business took me to South Africa and Istanbul for the first time. Thanks to my outstanding IBM hosts, the business side was fruitful and the experience was exceptional.
Getting to South Africa is a challenge from anywhere but from Peoria, it’s a whole ‘nuther thing – 3 hr drive to Chicago, 7.5 hr flight to London, 11 hr flight to South Africa plus layovers adds up to 32+ hrs. Fortunately, the weather was perfect and the Sandton Hilton hotel accommodations made the adjustment better. Continue reading Istanbul & South Africa→
It had been almost four years since I was last in Japan so time to pay a visit to some clients and our hard working storage technical team here.
I was lucky to use my last system wide upgrade flying to Tokyo, so I caught a few hours shut eye on the way here. That made the whole trip more pleasant to be time adjusted and wrested – especially for a jam packed 2-day business trip.
On my first day, I called on the IT leadership team at JPX to discuss some new storage technical options. After our business meeting, our client was more than happy to let us roam the exchange floor and snap some obligatory pictures. I was surprised to see almost no traders on the floor and no one waving their hands like in NYC. But we did get to see a new company listing ceremony. Continue reading Tokyo 2018→
We met with our Digital Business Group from Dublin this week. Because it gets dark so late, we were able to catch some sites after our meetings. Flew into Dublin over night arriving 6:30 AM local time and caught a coast line golf course. Continue reading Dublin 2018→
Last week, our European colleagues held their annual sales training event in Malaga Spain. I was honored to be invited to present as I always enjoy working in Europe.
Boy oh boy it’s hard to get to Malaga! Of course, it doesn’t help that I am leaving from Peoria but it’s harder to get to Malaga Spain than it is to get to Australia. It took four legs and 24 hours both ways. Malaga is in southern part of Spain, just 60 miles from Gibralter, right on the Alboran Sea. It reminded me of Fort Lauderdale with a very active beach community if Fort Lauderdale was below a set of mountains.
View from my room. Rainy day but beautiful view.
After work one after noon, we ventured into the city to see the sites. We didn’t have time to see the Picasso museum but we saw a few of the famous sites. Continue reading Malaga→
My most recent trip to Europe was to Prague for a client and partner event. Of course, you can’t go to Prague without visiting the sites and capturing some stunning pictures. Except the weather didn’t cooperate. We had cool, damp, and foggy weather the whole week. The sites were stunning but the colors didn’t pop quite like they could have.
View of Prague from Prague Castle
Statue on Charles Bridge
Prague night view from Charles Bridge
View from Charles Bridge
View of Prague from Prague Castle
Prague Late Night Charles Bridge
Charles Bridge early in the morning
Astronolmical Clock: Unfortunately, the 600 year-old clock was under construction but the face was still visible.
Church of Our Lady before Týn
Church of Our Lady before Týn
Selfie in front of Church of Our Lady before Týn
Andrew Greenfield and me taking a gigapan of Prague’s Old Town Square. Thanks to Andrew for his patience and guidance. Future shots will improve.
Check out the monster Gigapan Andrew & I captured in Prague’s Old Town Square. Click on the image below.
It was time to hit the road and pay for all that fun I had this summer. Flew out on Sunday afternoon to Melbourne, right after member guest. Connect through DFW and LAX to MEL. Twenty four hours after departure, I arrive in Melbourne on Tuesday morning.
I know some people think travel is glamorous but I believe those are people that don’t travel. For my final 15 hour leg to Melbourne, I thought I was going to have lots of leg room only to find out that I was stuck in perhaps the tightest overseas seat I have experienced. And Monday disappeared while I was in the air.
Boarded this A380 to Melbourne from LAX. Notice the dual entry top/bottom. I was on the top. Thought it would be a cool/quiet ride. Uh…. no. Cramped and not quiet.
The view from my hotel room on Tuesday morning as I arrived.
It’s been a while since I posted a new entry. Not for lack of desire but life has a way of getting away from you. In May, my job took me to the south of France to Montpellier. Technically, I’m told, this is not the French Riviera but it’s right next door. I feel like I’ve already been there because I drive through Creve Coeur, IL almost twice a week. That’s our Riviera and I live right next door. 🙂
We decided to fly into Paris and train to Montpellier so we could see the French country side. The ride into Montpellier was majestic.
After we were told we had to pay 50 Euro to change train tickets to the earlier train, we sat around for what seemed like forever. They don’t tell your train platform until the last minute. Why? I can only imagine is to avoid interference with the crews preparing the train for the next trip. I truly enjoyed the ride down to Montpellier (MOP). We saw countless old cities and classic French country side. These shots only cover a slice of the beautiful countryside.
Train station in Paris
On the train to MOP, I was rapid firing my camera. Then I noticed what seemed like a Roman bridge, perhaps acquaduct. Cool either way.
I was taking pictures of this castel in the distance and when Iooked at the images later, I noticed this river int he foreground.
We saw countless villages like this along the way that must date to Roman times
In May, I returned to Europe for business. This trip was special for a couple reasons. After long last I finally got the chance to visit Paris and since I had meetings in London, I spent the weekend there before hopping the Eurostar through the Chunnel to Paris. Bucket list checked.
We stayed in South Bank at the Mondrian Hotel right on the Thames because our office and our meetings on Thursday and Friday were nearby. This is the view from my hotel room. Quite nice.
Of course you can’t go to London without having dinner at a proper pub. On our first night, we had dinner at the Black Friar, which was a short walk from our hotel on the other side of the Thames.
It’s been a while since I have posted pictures from my IBM travels. This first picture doesn’t do justice of the gorgeous skies flying into Chicago early on August 24. I was making a connection to Raleigh for an event there and it was about 7:00 am as we circled the city and flew over Wrigley Field. I had to capture this shot using my iPhone. My only regret was that I didn’t have my good camera with me to get a better picture of the approach into O’Hare. Oh well. You can get an idea of what a great start this trip was.
The picture of froggy gives you and idea of what it’s like to have a worldwide role. My boss and much of our team was in Dublin, Ireland. They were holding an important planning session. I woke up at 2:30 am for a 3:00 am start. This little guy greeted me when the call started. It’s like he’s saying, “what are you doing up at this hour?” The meeting was good but it was tough to answer his question. Continue reading Updated IBM Travels→