Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Spinning is fun

We used to do it as kids, hold hands and spin around until we got real dizzy :-) The modern version: Kylie Minogue.

While in Rome, I decided to try it as a new video feature/effect and loved it. See output below, would just love to have it combined with some teleporting effect: spin here/ stop there.

So take a spin, may bring back nice memories, and it's #happymaking!



PS: feature in the video: my fiance/BFF and the comms girls from IBM- Bogdana, Adela and Birgit :-)

Saturday, September 25, 2010

bYe, bYe, nY

Back from NY after a 24h trip. Yey! Actually from Dubuque, Iowa as exit airport since we didn't get to go back to NY after I finished my US Socila Media Happymaking for the Norh-American IBM delivery centers. Anyway, a few thoughts and pictures from the US:

  • delighted to meet my manager& my VP for the first time plus all the communications team. Connecting virtually is great but nothing beats real world :-) Also got the chance to meet plenty of new people and see how people perceive Romania
  • that's #2 we're still no more than a country somewhere in Europe, with vampires (got asked when I went through security at the airport if I brought any vampires- NOT FUNNY), orphans and gypsies. However there was this lovely campaign @ SEPHORA and saw lots of women signing in and ready to reshape their brows by this famous lady : Anastasia Soare. Yeap, she's Romanian :-)
  • food comes BIG...actually everything is BIG: buildings and cars make no exception :-) Back to food: GLAD to be back home ;-)
  • security is not as drastic as it is in Egypt. Expected more of that but was reliefed to see I only got a ticket from TSA in my luggage saying that it has been randomly picked for inspection but all clear :-) However think that during this trip I got more questions related to my job from airport employees than I ever did from people outside my working area.
  • was in a hybrid car for the first time! All thanks to Jack! also saw plenty of taxis and buses in NY, many of them hybrid- which made me say: HEY, THAT'S GREAT! All going GREEN! But then the shock: air conditioning was ON everywhere, in hotel rooms, meeting rooms, unoccupied restaurants. No idea why they waste so much energy even if it's not hot outside/inside :-( So still lots of simple things to change around the green aspect and get SMARTER!
  • Diversity at its home- which I loved most- people from all over the world visting or working in the Big City :-)
  • Lots of Spanish channels, Spanish translations and Spanish food- which is dreamy for a Latin person :-)
  • Got to see so many places& situations shown in American movies. Which was pretty cool. However no famous actor or star...Even if I did my best (you know I don't run) and went for a run in Central Park on Sunday morning. Nobody!
  • Had the chance to travel to Colorado, Boulder and Iowa, Dubuque which are pretty small cities. Still wondering when can one see a Jackalope ;)
More thoughts but not too much space to write them. So make sure you at least pay a visit to NY. Still lots of the USA to be explored but plenty of time for that!

Many thanks to Liz, Craig, Jessica, Elyssa, Jen, Jack, Elena, Joan, Christine
and Micha for a nice trip!

Bye, Bye NY!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Pensieri d'amore e tradimento

Good evening New York! Couldn't help myself from posting an entry from NY :-) especially as it will be one in Carrie Bradshaw style: about LOVE! Went to Rome last week (check some pics here) for a short vacation aka team building with the communications ladies aka celebration of our 8th anniversary. However this entry is not about the trip as I am still working on the video, but about some events that really touched me.

While happily inlove in such a romantic city I discovered a new feeling. Wish I would have never experienced it but it's too late for that: finding out that someone is being cheated! The second you find out it is either shocking or a confirmation of what you were already suspecting. In my case the second one. The next minute you ask yourself if you should do something about it...especially since I always try to fix things :-) The next half an hour you oscilate between preaching about how wrong it is to cheat on someone, letting the cheated one know about this or not doing anything about it because in the end it was really not your business. But as a witness, I must admit I really felt that I needed to do something. A couple of hours later I decided to postpone the decision since I WAS ON VACATION...but still, every now and then something reminded me of the unfortunate discovery.

I won't ask for your advice and I won't tell you what I decided but I am really wondering: WHAT DO PEOPLE EXPECT? Putting aside the fact that cheating is wrong, why can't some people keep this only for themselves? Why making your friends part of it? Not nice at all. Dimension #2: knowing you're the other one- not sure why people agree with that and date someone even if they know he/she is not single. That's not only sick but also truly, madly, deeply SAD! Is that it? There is no chance for one girl to meet a man who's single? Or viceversa? Honestly, thinking that you've found the love of your life in someone else's man or wife is an illusion. And statistically, the most cases go through the same experience later on, this time as couple.

Will not share more thoughts on this as I may give too many clues. Just one request: if you can't be faithful, have mercy: don't let your friends know- especially if you don't plan to change or listen to their advice! Keep it for yourself!

PS: found this lock on the Lovers' Hill in Rome. Once boy&girl decide to be together they buy a lock, come to the hill, write their name on it and throw the key away. This means nothing will be able to break their love...maybe my friend should have done the same :-) However, seems I got a secret fan who thinks writing my name on a lock will bring me back to Rome...ha ha, we'll see!

yours,
the Happymaker

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Happymaking for the world

I had second thoughts about writing this entry today as I am still planning 2 happymaking trips to Rome and NY and I already have some ideas around how those posts would look like and be about :-) So stau tuned! BUT I got so excited about several events that I just had to post this now and not in 3 weeks when it was planned.

It's somehow work related and somehow happymaking related :-) Two years ago I applied for what I call the coolest idea a company can have. And is probably one of the most brilliant ideas IBM, my employer, ever had: a program where candidates from all over the world are being selected to work in international teams, somewhere outside their geography, for one month, for an NGO, small company or even a governmental agency. Something similar to the Peace Corps but specifically tailored to leadership development needs, cultural awareness, shaping Global Citizens and helping small communities grow. It's called the Corporate Service Corps! So for one month you still get paid to do something extraordinary, in an incredible place, with unique people. Not many companies invest in such programs and luckily about 500 IBMers have the chance to experience this every year and come back with a rich cultural experience and ready to use their newly gained skills to every day problems.

So last year I applied for this but didn't make it. This year I said, "let's try again", I still have the same dreams, I still want to save the world, I am still a Happymaker! So here I stand now, less than 20 days before going to Colombo, Sri Lanka, ready to embark in my first trip to Asia!

3 more paragraphs and I'm done for today :-)

1. So excited to meet get there- call it faith but few years ago I was reading a nice book where Ceylon was mentioned. Network was down so I got crazy finding Ceylon on the map. It was an old book so once internet was running again I discovered that the country is called today SRI LANKA. So here we met for the first time :-) "Faith" aspect number 2- I LOVE CINNAMON- so imagine that Ceylon comes from cinnamon :-) and the spice originates from this magical island at the foot of India. "Faith" aspect #3 we were having a chat with our friends and argueing what "serendipity" means...imagine is also related to Ceylon and I am looking forward to making my own discoveries there just like the princes of Serendip!

2.Together with a colleague from Portugal I have been assigned to work for World Vision Org in Colombo.I will post more about their wonderful work and how our support should help raise more awareness and trust in their presence in Sri Lanka. But if you want to know more about them you can follow them via twitter @worldvisionusa. Seems that the project will fit me like a glove! So excited about participating in anything it has to do with charity :-) And hey, even Hugh Jackman/ Wolverine did :-)



3. In less than 4 weeks I'll meet my new colleagues, the wonderful team and people from World Vision. We will get to work for a good cause but also meet local people, learn the Sinhala language hopefully and eat new things and learn new recipes ;-).

Taking my camera and laptop with me so stay tuned for some cool videos ;-)

Yours,
the happymaker