Friday, April 29, 2016

Off to a Wedding

It's finally time to head off to England for the first of two weddings this year.  Liz and James are getting married this weekend and in July Eiko and Tommi are getting married in Helsinki.

Lenka, Féro, and I are on a Ryanair flight from Brno to London Stansted.  Then it's just over a two-hour drive to near Stroud where the wedding is.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

2016 Q2 Team Building Event

This time we held out Q3 team building event in Slovakia.  My team organised it at a cottage in Pezinok, about 30 minutes or so from Bratislava.

I was very proud of my team as they put on a fantastic event!  This was by far our best event yet.

Aside from the Brno and Bratislava offices, we also had people make it from Wrocław and Székesfehérvár.

There was plenty of great food, especially Martina's famous wild boar goulaš.

There was, of course, plenty of slivovice and pálinka.

There were plenty of games, a selfie corner, and even some late night karaoke.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Back and Forth to Slovakia

Bratislava Castle
I seem to spend more and more time going between our offices in Brno and Bratislava.

I just finished two days in Slovakia and I even managed to catch an earlier train back home.

Bratislava train station
Now I have time to do a load of laundry and get ready to go back tomorrow for another couple of days.

The only difference is that tomorrow morning I'm on my way near Pezinok for a team building event organised by my Slovak crew.

Friday, April 15, 2016


Welcome to Czechia!  The government has made the official English short name for the country Czechia.  The country's long name is still Czech Republic.

In the Czech language, Česko means Bohemia.  But it is the official short name for all of the Czech lands - Bohemia, Moravia, and Silesia.

The problem is that there is not a common short name in English.  The French Republic has France as its short name.  The Russian Federation is known as Russia.  The Hellenic Republic is better known as Greece.

After the break up of Czechoslovakia, the Slovaks seem to have gotten the name thing right.  The long name is Slovak Republic and the short name is Slovakia.  The same pattern used here is the long name being Czech Republic with Czechia as the short name.

In English, Czechia just doesn't roll of the tongue.  The concern is that it sounds a lot like the Russian semi-autonomous Republic of Chechnya.

The Czech government as also made Tschechien the official short name in German and in French it is Tchéquie.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Little Saigon

Today was a crazy hectic day in the office.  Afterwards, a couple of the guys invited me to tag along to the Vietnamese market at Olomoucké.

This was my first visit and now I wonder why in the hell I haven't come here before.  This is where all of the Vietnamese vendors come to restock all of the cheap items and knock off clothing that is sold under the train station.

Better still, this is where you can get great prices on frozen seafood, coconut milk, spices and sauces.  I was able to pick up a couple of bottles of Sriracha - a hot chilli sauce made from chilli peppers, distilled vinegar, garlic, sugar, and salt.

There are several food stalls with authentic Vietnamese food.  It's amazing that after a bad day, just a visit to Little Saigon and a delicious bowl of Phở, can make things all better.  

Monday, April 11, 2016

Hill of Tara, Ireland

The Hill of Tara, Cnoc na Teamhrach, is an archeological complex in County Meath, Ireland.  The hill was the seat of the High King of Ireland.  It was used by people in the Neolithic era.

There are a number of ancient monuments and a church dedicated to St. Patrick.

Here's a short Rick Steves video about the hill that I found out on YouTube.

©Rick Steves

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Newgrange, Ireland

NewgrangeSi an Bhrú, is a prehistoric monument near the River Boyne in Ireland.  It was built by Stone Age farmers around 3200 BC during the Neolithic period which makes it older than than Stonehenge or the Pyramids of Giza.

The site is a large circular mound 85 meters (93 yards) in diameter and 13,5 meters (15 yards) high on about an acre.  There is an inner stone passageway and chambers.

No one really knows what the site was used for.  The entrance is aligned with the winter solstice so that once a year sunlight shines through into the inner chamber.

Newgrange was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1993.  Here's a National Geographic video that I found out on YouTube.
©National Geographic

Monday, April 4, 2016

Palmerstown, Ireland

Palmerstown, Baile Phámar, is a County Leinster and is a suburb in South Dublin, Ireland.  The area is on the River Liffey and is about 8 km (5 miles) west of Dublin city centre.

Palmerstown is home to about 4,000 people.

The Palmerstown Cemetery opened in 1978.