So I’ve been away from home for two weeks, and today begins the second week of my new career. Hi, I’m Cliff. You’re here because you sit close to the floor. (More details on that in a few.) For those who don’t know, I’m now employed at Skype. The first week was a blast and it couldn’t be any better. These guys I work with are the greatest and the company really looks out for its employees. I’m writing today’s post from the SwissOtel in Estonia. Arriving yesterday morning it was like a time warp since you lose a day in flight across time zones. This will probably show up on Sunday night but I assure you it is very much Monday as I type.
I met my new manager here in Estonia and we had a blast. He forgave my jet-lag (which has still got me up at 2am in the morning) and gave me a few hours recovery. We went out in town and he showed me around. I was amazed at how even though things are different they are still very much the same. I picked up on subtle differences, like the pick pocket warning sign. It’s one of those black and yellow signs similar to the Ped-X’ing signs you see in the states but it features a lady having her purse pulled by a thief. We then walked through the old town of Estonia (I hope I’m getting the details right) where there were shops setup all around. One interesting layout was the row of flower shops (about 5-8 of ’em side by side). I was told that they stay open 24-7 to service the many boozing men in the village that need apologize to their wives.
We ended up in a middle-aged themed restaurant where there were people (a group of 3 lady’s) sitting up on the ceiling playing the flute, an old fashioned drum and a banjo. Very true to its theme, we were seated at a small table in a dark corner which was lit by a single candle and offered menus that looked like they had been woven from something like deer skin and inked with a felt tip. I couldn’t pay too much attention to the menu because there were people sitting on the ceiling. The music was nice.
My buddy (formerly known as manager but now in a different setting we were like old pals), and I talked about the company and the current project. As it was our first physical introduction, we spoke about where we each came from and how we arrived at one of the best tech companies on the planet. After ordering some of the most exotic foods I’ve had the pleasure of picking from a lamb-skin coated menu the waitress eventually arrives with the dishes and an explanation. “Let me explain what is on your dishes…”, she begins. I was like, “yeah explain all of that”, because my buddy transcribed what I thought I was ordering in native tongue and I needed to know what I was getting myself into.
We ate and talked some more and people still sat on the ceiling. Because of the obvious difference in culture and the possibility that certain humor is lost in translation I tried to have constraints around my humor but I gotta be me and you know how I am. (…A nut in a soft shell surrounded by silicone don’t ask what that means. I just made it up as I was typing.) The ceiling band switched instruments and songs a few times with one of them playing the triangle. We finished the night at a bar and I got to know a lot about the country after succumbing to an evil blast of jet-lag. It’s time to freshen up now. I think I’m gonna love growing here.
(The above is an autobiographical essay representing real life events. The names of the innocent were hidden to protect the guilty. No real live ceilings were harmed during the above mental broadcasting of the event. All rights reserved in most countries except for Canada because you can’t seem to get any privileges in Canada and it’s so dry there. Skype offers unlimited calling in the US and heavily discounted rates when calling over seas. The last sentence was not intended as an advertisement and it only serves the purpose of growing the size of the current parenthesized quote with meaningless fluff. If you are looking for cool IT jobs speak now (in the square below) or forever hold your current position. If any of the above offends you remember you have the right to browse elsewhere. It’s just jokes.)