May 16th, 2011 — Travels, Work
We’re moving! There was even media coverage about it – my 2nd ever mention in the NBR!
But now we have visas, it’s all a bit more public – hoping to relocate in about 3 months. A different kind of exciting to New York which obviously tops all levels of exciting but very very cool to be in the centre of Xero’s entry into the US with the set up of an office, search for new staff and getting our brand and product out there. If I was to be honest, probably 49% exciting, 51% scary! Still SO many details to be worked through – still have to untie some of the red tape tied and knotted tightly around the visas and work permits and figure out all that other stuff we don’t worry so much about in NZ like how do you see a doctor, personal insurance in case someone trips over your bag at a cafe and sues you, social security, driving, paying for water etc etc so watch this space!
But thanks to our recent trip, there is decent coffee to be had, we’ve met some nice people and the site of The Big Orange Bridge does thrill me
May 16th, 2011 — Travels
When I was packing to come home from our trip to San Francisco and Portland, I realised most of my coats and scarves smelt like coffee … lovely … and better than the turmeric smell I used to come home with when I was a fresh young PA working at Davis Trading in Petone – direct importer of food ingredients … every spice and flavour you could think of plus some other strange things I’d certainly never heard of until I spent 18 months there (rollmops, prawn crackers (yes I was surrounded by foreign food!)).
Anyway, reflecting on the cafes I’d been to in San Francisco and Portland – a general comment about baristas – they’re all about the same age, perhaps around 30 and seem really committed to coffee as a profession. Didn’t get the impression or see anyone following a recipe, taking shortcuts (with the extraction or reusing milk (in fact most times jugs washed out between customers)), or looking like they’d been rostered on and were waiting for the end of their shift. We’re getting quite a few places of this quality around Wellington now, but we still have our fair share of cafes slamming out the coffees to go with muffins or toasted paninis. Perhaps being about the craft and appreciation of coffee rather than primarily about food or getting through a morning tea rush is what makes the time taken to do it properly possible. And the customers there like me were waiting for a perfect coffee not a flat white that tastes different every time you visit.
As for the customers – there are always half a dozen people in a cafe whether together or on laptops; no-one wears a suit and those in meetings have a yellow work pad; all the cool dudes have little beards; the cafe smells of coffee, not whatever last thing was cooked on the sandwich press and is now lingering in the air. And this is definitely what I wish for in Wellington – no-one stays just 15 minutes or as long as it takes to drink coffee – they stay, they use their computer, they use the cafe’s free fast wi-fi, a group swells and trickles out as acquaintances come and go, whether it be bike couriers, students, other guys from the office; no-one clears the cups noisily (in fact you put your own cup on the bench when you’re done). Hanging out is serious business. I’m going to try more of this in Wellington – will be interesting to see how long I feel comfortable staying for.
May 16th, 2011 — Woollen things
This last project has been part of a knitalong – working on it a while as I’ve paced myself to keep in sync with the group (almost finished Xero knitting #12) alongside it!!
It’s a pattern one of the girls found so not something I’d attempted before – jacket with a hood. But it looks great! It’s for baby Lucas – not strictly a Xero baby but belonging to one of our accounting partners, he’s in the family!
When we’re all done I’ll try and get a photo line-up – the smallest and quickest to knit jumper has already been sent off to the Hawke’s Bay but luckily a photo was snapped before it went!