Thursday, February 6, 2020

ETC 2020 - day 0

So, after landing yesterday in Amsterdam, I used most of the day before ETC is starting to tour in some of the fishing villages around. That, at least, was the plan. At the hotel I was told that there's a hop-on hop-off bus I could take from central station, and so I went there, looked for the relevant booth and found out that this is true only during summer. Ah, well, I'll take a regular bus, the helpful man at the counter told me I could find tickets at the EBS office just on the other side of the central station.  So I went looking for it. about an hour later, I realized I have no idea where's that and went back to the info booth to ask for more specific directions (as no-one was familiar with the name I was given). It appears that the EBS is inside the train office, and so I managed to purchase a bus ticket - which in turn led to me looking for the bus. It took me a while to figure out that they were hiding hte buses on the 2nd floor, up the stairs. And finally, I was out to Volendam (which, as one can guess from the massive wooden stakes in the picture, is suffering from a grave problem of giant vampires). The village itself is a nice place to walk about, and the scenery is lovely and very calming. I took a ferry to Marken, and from there back to Amsterdam.
Then, after a quick shower (and time to recharge my phone's battery, that was depleting quite rapidly), down to the lobby and out to the pre-conference meetup, I met Marianne on my way down, and we met with more people in the Lobby (Joep, Elizabeth  and Marit) and most of us set out to the meetup venue at one of the ING buildings. At the meetup itself I met a lot of people I've met before, and some new people as well, but listing their names would be testing my memory a bit too much, so I'll just say that I got to meet Gem Hill, for the first time, and talk again shortly with Thomas, and that there was a nice talk given by Lisa Crispin and Janet Gregory, and that Maaret facilitated a very interesting discussion, and that I heard some horror stories from Fiona Charles with regards to disfunctional workplaces, as well as an interesting tip for the daily stand-up: come prepared. I wonder whether my team will buy into this one for an experiment, as we are having trouble just in keeping the stand-ups in time (Hi team! how are things back at home?), it feels like something worth trying.

All in all, I had  a really nice day, can't wait for the conference to start tomorrow.

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