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  • 16 Sep 2010

Rog Day 3

Wow – that was one very long day!

It all began at about 7:45am when I left the hotel and took the MARTA north to Dunwoody, and after successfully locating the shuttle bus to the business park where SPI are based, I walked into their offices at just after 8:30am – ¾ of an hour door to door and overall a very pleasant commute.

After meeting the team I settled back in the extremely large and comfy leather chair in the office that they had made available for me, to begin my first day, which was helped by a fantastic cup of coffee even though they don’t have proper milk and instead have powdered creamer!

My main points of contact during this trip are Des Martin, who is actually a fellow Brit that has been in the States for a few years now, and Jack Robinson, who flew down from his Chicago base to spend a couple of days with me. Most of the day was spent reviewing the presentation deck that we created a few weeks ago, and re-working it to make it more aligned to what we were trying to achieve at first, mainly webex, meetings with prospective customers. Whilst it was a bit of a brain-sapping day, it was extremely productive, and Des’ Consulting background and experience really served to help me look at things from different angles, and hence my daily box of ‘learning something new’ was well and truly ticked today!

In between that we went to a local café for lunch, where I had to smile when I ordered OJ and Lemonade, and they brought me a glass of OJ, and said that the Lemonade would be right out!

By sheer luck, it’s transpired that Des actually lives only a few blocks from my Hotel, and very kindly gave me a lift back, and has also said he’d be happy to pick me up in the morning – what a kind chap he is!

After a quick freshen up, it was down to the Hotel bar to meet Des, Jack, and Des’ ‘significant other’ (his words!), Barbara for pre-dinner drinks, before heading off to an Italian restaurant over the road from the Hotel called Baraonda. I found a couple of nights ago that the Hotel bar serves Stella, which is what I drink back home so I’m extremely happy at not having to drink the ghastly Bud! Jack and Barbara both drank Vodka Martini’s, whilst Des was on the Harvey Wallbangers, and it turns out that Cocktails like this are very, very popular in Atlanta, and hence I obviously stuck out like a sore thumb with my pint of lager!

Had a great time in Baraonda, as both the food and service were out of this world, and the Chianti recommended by our waiter was sublime! It was a great way of really getting to know Des and Jack, and as regards the latter we have a lot in common given that he has two boys that are very similar ages to mine (as well as a gorgeous little baby girl). Des is a very interesting and intelligent guy, but in a really nice way – you sometimes come across intellectual types that see themselves on different levels and make you know it, but Des isn’t like that at all.

Got back to the hotel at about 10:30pm, and had a quick nightcap in the Hotel bar, which by that time was very busy. I thought this strange for a Tuesday night, but it was apparently due to it being a ‘European night’, which was funny as the only accents I heard whilst in there were American ones!

After doing a bit of last minute work on the presentation in preparation for our first Webex in the morning, I called it a day.

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