At HEC Paris, mvlti svnt vocati, pavci vero electi!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

We plant the trees for the next generation to enjoy the shade...

Things do fly when one is actively engaged in one's work but this week was certainly slow...I only had a handful of meetings and consultations and not much else was happening so I started writing my IPP report. I have to do it at some point so might as well start now! Perhaps, my heart was not at work as I had my family over in the UK. They came by train so I got myself a hire car, drove into London to pick them up and welcomed them by taking them for a very English pub lunch! :-) My wife had also booked a few days at a holiday resort in the south so that she could spend some time without having to worry about cooking and washing up so I spent a couple of days driving 200 miles each day just to get to work, 100 miles up and 100 miles down! Thanks to a friend who works for a large car rental company, I got a 25% discount and on the day I went to pick the car up, I was given the choice to upgrade, FOC, to any car I wanted instead of the most economical one I had asked for. So, of course, I picked a fine piece of German engineering that was twice, maybe thrice, as large and powerful as what I had booked. And, the gentleman at the counter forgot to charge for the child seat, and then didn't bother to do so when he did remember, so I think I definitely got very lucky with this hire car business! I just have to be careful that my clean driving licence is not tarred with a speeding ticket as the car takes off rather rapidly at the sligtest of pressure on the accelerator! 200 miles a day of pure joy, power and comfort! ;-)

The 'standard' quality of accommodation and food at the holiday resort was a little disappointing but, if we do return to the place and we are not sure we ever will, we will opt for 'gold'. Nevertheless, this week has been one of the best ever for our son. He was a bit young and short to go on a lot of the rides in the park but, for the ones he could, he did it with a relish. So, yet again, the smile on his face says that it has been worthwhile. It is also nervously pleasing to realise how much time and effort I am putting into making him happy. I wonder if it is guilt from not being there for him everyday, or me just being fatherly. Talking about work and life balance, I am in discussion for a role that will be half-based in London or Paris and half-based, or not based, trotting around 50% of the countries in the EU. If it works out I think I will choose Paris as my location with a few days a month spent working from London and most other capitals in Europe!

Coming back to what I was writing about earlier, we took our son to the Aquarium in Portsmouth yesterday and he was so excited to see the fish, otters, monitor, frogs and snakes on display he could have easily spent the whole day there. We also checked into the Ibis hotel in Portsmouth which, though small, was economical, neat and clean. Our son has also developed a strong liking for cartoons so we have decided to buy him a few English DVDs so that he can improve his English whilst watching cartoons. Right now, he speaks more French than English and if it continues, he and I are going to have what is normally referred to as a communication gap!

We came back to my little village in the countryside this afternoon and my wife and son will return to France tomorrow. And, I head off to Chicago on Monday so my next blog will probably be from the windy city. So long...

Below is a good picture of Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth linked from

Addendum: Now, this man certainly knows how to get a good ROI! Or, he is just plain lucky! :-)


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