The past two weeks was a big project in Amsterdam and Paris to get new equipment installed in the data centers. There were three guys who came over from the US and I was pretty much the only person from Europe who helped for the most part.
First we started in Amsterdam. The first day was crazy. There was a ton to do at the site and a bunch of other issues to manage that was going in with AT&T in Paris. By the end of the day, my phone was totally dead and I had had it with Global Switch and AT&T, they were really pissing me off.
The rest of the week we remained in Amsterdam trying to get everything worked out which luckily we did. I will spare you all the details but trust me they were long days.
Last weekend was the PPG Tennis tournament. It is a tennis tournament held every year for people who work for PPG in Holland. Basically you pick a skill level for yourself and you get put into four random games with people you may or may not know. It is a great way to get to meet people. One person is your partner and the other two are your opponents. The whole day there are free drinks and a BBQ lunch. I ended up winning one game (against Kris! :-) ) loosing two games, and tying the last. It was a nice time.
The next day I hopped the train to Paris, it was going to be another week of getting things setup there like we just did in Amsterdam. I met the guys when I got there and took them into Paris. They did not like it all that much so we did not stay for very long, after that, we never went back into the city (while they were there)
My favorite part every time about going to France is eating. This time, I found a great little bakery not for from the data center that had fresh sandwiches and pastries. I went there almost every day for lunch...great!
We ended up getting done a bit early so the guys changed their flight and went home early, none of them really seamed to be big fans of Europe. Me, I stayed because I did not want to change my ticket and I like France.
Wednesday I took the train and worked in the not far off PPG office in Rueil-Malmaison, France. After that went back to my hotel and was getting ready to go into Paris. I though why not just check to see if the Louvre would be opened. And guess what? It was! Wednesday is the only evening that it is open and it was Wednesday! Cool! I got there not long after and bought my ticket, the place was beautiful and huge. There was all kinds of famous paintings, but the coolest of all was seeing the Mona Lisa! Wow!
The next day it was back to the data center to finish up then catch my train back to Amsterdam. On the train. It was a very busy two weeks, but it was nice to be busy for a change, things have been moving so slowly at work and this was a nice change of pace. After I got back, I was glad to hear people speaking in Dutch again so I could understand what was going on around me...I still don't know any French, but I think I'm really going to have to learn with having to go there so much. One other strange thing is when I hear people speaking in French, my brain automatically starts thinking in Dutch! Is that weird? Then I would think to myself, these people are not going to understand Dutch!
Looks like I will probably be in Paris again in two weeks, then again in August, and probably again in October. I don't mind though because Paris is pretty cool.