Sunday, November 22, 2009

Spring in November, a very busy week, new internet applications, luxury food shopping, getting ready for Christmas and the spice of life

Tweetdeck, a great tool to manage your social network accounts.
Hi this sunny November morning.

Today is 21st November and the sun is still shining. It seems more like spring than nearly winter, as a taxi driver commented to me the other day. We have had constant good weather for months and months now and in fact this summer was the 3rd hottest recorded ever. I am off to Barcelona today and I know it will probably be even warmer there. Would you believe I have hardly worn a coat yet this Autumn.

I will be going to attend an international seminar organised by the CMT (government body that regulates the telecoms market in Spain, where everybody who is anybody in the sector will be invited.
It will take place at the Gran Teatre Liceu on the Rambla, a beautiful building in a great location.
The Gran Teatre del Liceu in La Rambla in Barcelona where the CMT conference will take place this week, an ideal place.
Whilst I’m in Barcelona I will take the opportunity to site inspect possible locations for a press conference I will be organising during the Mobile World Congress in February. I’ll be killing two birds with one stone so to speak.

I hardly every travel for my job with Yoigo, whereas I was forever on the road with Motorola and Nokia. So going to Barcelona today seems quite exciting. Suzy will be coming with me so I’m guaranteed to have a good time when I’m not busy. Tonight for example we will be meeting Grainne and Marcel, a must every time I go to Barcelona and on Monday night we’ll be going out with Julia, Suzy’s Austrian friend from the N-Gage Tour some years ago.

This week has been extremely busy. On Monday we had an interview with a financial rag called Nuevo Lunes. Thursday was the busiest. It started with a visit to El Economista which was both a breakfast meeting with the editors in chief and then a live online interview where my boss and I had to answer readers’ questions which were sometimes very candid. Our answers were transparent, direct and fun as you can read here in Spanish.

Then we had to rush back to the office as our blogger event was starting. At Yoigo we have a very frank relationship with this new kind of media; the ones who write about technology and our company. They are experts in their fields and more demanding than journalists. Some would call them freakies but I don’t. They were coming to a Yoigo at home event and it was the first time they were visiting the offices. Of course I had gone all out to put on a great event. The theme was “home” so the waiters were dressed in dressing gowns, the tables in the cafeteria had bunches of coloured sweets, there was a table football and darts and as a final touch we gave them a pair of microwaveble slippers as the goodbye gift. Here you can read just one of their impressions. That was one stressful day but thankfully everything went fine.

And Friday brought with it a pleasurable lunch (interview) with ABC with one of my oldest media acquaintances, Fernando who is now the Financial Editor in Chief and the new reporter on telecoms, María Cuesta. It was a good end to a busy week.

On the social front, on Tuesday I had lunch with María and Pilar from Yoigo. It’s good to make friends in the company and I don’t have that many as I work mostly from home. On Thursday, yeah the very busy Thursday, we went out with José Antonio and Dolores to Eco Bar and Spa Madrid which is where I am organising a press conference this Thursday. We went to check out the food which is absolutely superb. It was great seeing them. Somehow we are losing contact with them. José Antonio is Eladio’s next brother down and possibly his closest. When the children were younger we saw a lot of them but sadly that is not so any more. In fact we see them more in Léon than we do in Madrid. I wish they were more in our lives really.

Then the weekend came and Juli, the girls’ lovely Colombian friend came to stay. He was up early yesterday morning and as he is an internet freakie, I got to get 2 new internet applications. One is called Tweet Deck and is a great tool for managing your Twitter and other social network accounts in one. Thus I can control here both my accounts and Yoigo’s. It’s great.

The second application is Google Wave, the next thing in email (and more) that was apparently developed by Google engineers who had to spend one year on a beach in Australia developing it, or so the story goes. Right now it’s only in beta and only works with invitations. Juli, of course, managed to get one for me. Now I have to think what to do with Google Wave.
Google Wave. I still have to figure out how it works.
It’s funny how I love new internet applications. Not many women of my age are interested but I am. I wonder if it has anything to do with wanting to be always one step ahead in everything. That’s me, always up to date. On the other hand applications like these help you organise your life in more ways than you can imagine. I laugh when people ask me: “but how do you have the time?”. Of course I have the time, posting stuff on social networks takes seconds and can be done in between many other tasks of the day.

And that brings me to the next topic in my headline, luxury food shopping. Yesterday Eladio and I went to visit a new shopping centre in Pozuelo called Zielo (pronounced the same way as heaven in Spanish). The place is amazing but not enough to impress me who has seen one too many shopping centres in the world and come to believe they are pretty much all the same. What most attracted us was the supermarket, Sánchez Romero. It is Spain’s most up market chain of supermarkets and is where I hear Real Madrid players do their shopping. There were Christmas hampers on sale for 3000 euros. It’s not quite Fortnum and Mason but Spain’s equivalent; spotlessly clean with the most enticing produce on its shelves. I bought some peeled garlic in a jar plus raspberries, blackberries, strawberries and billberries - the ingredients of the afternoon snacks of my diet. And, by the way, I have now lost 8 kilos. I’m so relieved you can’t imagine.

Being the end of November I am of course gearing up to Christmas. Thanks to dear Amazon. Com the girls now have some lovely low fat (i.e. without chocolate) advent calendars. And thanks to Emma Bridgewater we now have a stock of lovely crackers which are nearly impossible to find in Spain. And some not so low fat Roses chocolates are also on their way. We won’t, however, decorate the house till mid December.
One of the boxes of Crackers from Emma Bridgewater
And the box I like best with the festive Union Jack.
That is all the news for this week. Life however, at least for me, would not be as exciting if there wasn’t something to look forward to and I always need something to look forward to in my life. So what are we looking forward to you will ask? Of course, travelling, as that is the spice of our life. To start with the whole family will be going to stay at the Parador in Calahorra in La Rioja next week (all on points by the way!).
The Parador in Calahorra where we will be going next week.
Then in February we will be going to stay with Sandra in Brussels who I went to University with. Adele, another friend from University will be coming too. Our husbands will have their own programme which already sounds like a sort of joke as one is American, one is French and mine of course, is Spanish. Eladio is a little reluctant but I know we will have a great time.
La Grande Place in Brussels.
The other trip we are looking forward to is to the capital of the world, the big apple, otherwise known as New York City. That will be at the end of March for 8 nights with Eladio. I have travelled all over the world but would you believe I have never been to New York. I can’t wait, it’s going to be good. It’s great to have something to look forward to.

And on that note, I’ll sign off. Hope you have a good week.

1 comment:

Andre Lieven said...

Re your trip to NYC. We are often in the NYC area for an annual SF convention that is held in late March of each year. The one in 2010 will be 19-21 March. We could easily stick around in the area afterwards. So, let me know, by e-mail might be best, about your plans as they develop. Yep, New York City is fab. I've been going there most of the years of my adult life, and several before. Andre