Imagine me, Monday morning, 10:30 am, pretty relaxed, next meeting in late afternoon (did I say I was relaxed?) … and so there’s my mobile ringing – I pick up the phone and a nice lady from Integrata offices Düsseldorf is asking if everything’s OK?
OK? Why, yes, I feel OK? Sure …
“And you’re on your way, are you?” she said “You’re booked for this wiki workshop today, there’s three people waiting for you …”
“No, it can’t be, it’s Tuesday and Wednesday, tomorrow we start”
“[…] people waiting […]”
So I check my Google apps calendar (that says Tuesday & Wednesday), then I check my emails (Monday & Tuesday, MONDAY & Tuesday …). Now you get the idea and the knack of the story. How to handle this situation, given that teleportation ain’t ready? Short discussion in various back offices and it’s decided to do the Tuesday workshop anyway, and try to put it all into one big day. Smart decision it turned out to be … learning opportunities en masse:
Some of my learnings:
– one can easily rearrange travel arrangements with Deutsche Bahn, it may cost you a bit, esp. the reservation fare is lost but you get back most of your money
– you can’t travel one day in advance with the prepaid ticket, it says “Valid starting date onward for one month” – in my case starting date was Tuesday, obviously.
– Hotel rearrangements are mostly easy, but better done online, not over the phone. Especially when and because your hotel office clerk may not speak German perfectly.
– bringing flowers for the nice ladies at the Integrata offices helps a bit when showing up a day late (and I caused them some confusion, worries and intensive activity for sure)
and not to forget
– double check everything on Sunday evening (checking the calendar is NOT enough)
– I can manage to do a two-day introductory wiki workshop in one extended day, given some prerequisites are given (1. few, smart and nice learners, 2. smallish breaks in between, 3. a nice little group that discusses what is necessary / holds value and greps the basic stuff very fast and 4. a nice little group of smart and nice people that are willing to pull through with you). In the end we succeeded with the day but it’s strenuous – the normal two-day setup is much easier on everybodys nerves.
– offering beer to the eager learners after the intensive day of learning and discussion is an obligation (and it’s a pleasure, too – see points 1. and 4. above)
Oh, and one last thing – by means of my
sloppiness fate I’ve won a free day of web surfing, reading up on industry trends, wiki updating, email list geekery, system backups, wiki gardening, and at least some blogging.
(I have been too quiet in here due to a variety of work and other reasons, spending my time mostly on the + side of the webs – I won’t promise anything, but I may do some syndication automagic stuff from there to here. Let’s see how this will work out)
(Sh*t happens, they say. True story. First time it happened to me that severely in – let me see – close to six years of professional consulting and geeking)
(Oh and please, somebody spot the irony that my free day is on February 29th)