Meeting/Greeting Settling and Planning

It’s so beautiful here in Canada! We had a two-ish-hour bus ride from the airport to Whistler, and I was desperate for sleep (had already been traveling for 11 hrs), but I couldn’t allow myself to nap. The scenery was breath-taking. And the bus driver kept us well-entertained with a history of the area and fun facts about the place we passed.

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But let me back up. I had the smoothest trip one could possibly imagine. I met up with 13 co-workers in Minneapolis and enjoyed the flight with friends.

 

Customs looked a bit daunting, but the lines moved fast. The airport was beautiful, and I enjoyed hearing the background sound of water from the art fountain pictured here as we went through the line.

We reconnected with friends/co-workers we already knew and met some new ones.

Then settled into the hotel. My room is gorgeous and will be a nice respite when I need a break from socialising (as if).

Remember that toothpaste I was worried about? Not an issue. I forgot that the company cares for us so well that they had provided all sorts of things we might need (apparently mint-chocolates are a necessity, because there was a basket of those along with sunblock, toothpaste and other necessities 🙂

We had a lovely Welcome dinner with veggies, cheeses, meats, sushi, dumplings and pasta.

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Then off to be for me. I was exhausted!!!!

Now I’m off to breakfast and meetings with my team. It’s going to be a busy work day, and I can’t wait.

 

 

Packing and GM Prep

Pride isn’t a super attractive trait. That said, I’m pretty proud of my latest packing feat. It’s always my goal to pack light–usually packing for a week in a single backpack. I went a bit over that this time, but not much. These were the factors I had to incorporate:

Travel for a week in Whistler, Canada. (Passport and paperwork essential.) Temperatures in a high near 70F for half the week, and highs in the mid 40s the other half. Nights in the 30s (and I have to walk to restaurants). And room to bring home extra stuff I accumulate during the week.

Events to pack for:

  • Presenting a flash talk
  • Teaching a short class
  • Attending workshops/classes/meetings
  • Early morning (cold) walks with friends/co-workers.
  • Three hrs mountain biking (rain predicted)
  • An ecology/geology walk
  • A jiujitsu class
  • Two swing dance classes
  • An escape room
  • A party for which we were encouraged to bring neon and sparkly clothing

This took a lot of thought…compounded by the fact that I had to find warmer clothes, which were still in boxes from our move. And I discovered key essentials (such as travel toothpaste) were still safely ensconced at our old house, three hrs away.

But I did it! And I have a bag mostly empty, ready to bring home swag I pick up at the Grand Meetup 🙂

What’s the GM? I work for a distributed company and interact very closely with my co-workers in an online environment, but all 450-ish of us only get to meet face-to-face one time a year. (We have smaller team meetups during the year, but this is the biggie.)

For an entire week we play, bond, pool brain power to make WordPress.com/Jetpack/mobile apps (I wrote this using the WordPress mobile app while I was on the plane yesterday)/etc. better. In short, I get to geek out and collaborate with others like me with no guilt.

It’s exhausting, exhilarating and inspirational. Meeting my co-workers makes me more comfortable working with them online throughout the year, and I love how this team effort helps us help others.

And I’m super happy I got all the traveling stuff in my bag.