OTN Tour of Latin America: Trinidad & Tobago…

We arrived at Trinidad & Tobago in the evening and it was hot and humid. I decided to wash some clothes in the hotel room sink, which was a mistake. It was so humid that even after about 36 hours my clothes were still damp and smelled a bit like wet dog when I packed them. Asking around it sounds like Guatemala will be just as humid, so I might have to use a hotel laundry service to get my clothes clean. :)

The timetable was such that I really didn’t get to see anything of Trinidad & Tobago. The whole of the first day was taken up with the conference. It was a single track event, so every presentation was to the whole audience. I was the first speaker, so I did a quick poll of the audience and decided to switch from my intended presentation to a more general one, so as not to alienate all but 5 of the audience. :)

The previous events were using translation services, so I had been constantly trying to speak slower. Presenting to an English speaking audience should have made it easier, but I found myself rushing a little. You gotta laugh. I’m never satisfied. :)

When the event was over a few of us went next door to the Hyatt Hotel and sat on the terrace chatting for a couple of hours. I had a Hyatt Sunrise and a Toasted Almond Joy, both of which were very sweet and a little alcoholic. :) Sheeri and I had agreed to present at a separate event the following day, so we were discussing the event with Loren (the organiser). When I heard the audience was made up of students I decided none of my presentations were suitable, so it was back to the hotel to write something new. I got most of the outline done before bed and (almost) finished it in the morning. I spoke to Debra Lilley at breakfast and she gave me a couple of ideas, which I added when I got to the event.

I like to rehearse my presentations a lot, so doing an on-the-fly presentation like this was pretty scary for me. I was really pleased with the way it went. I feel like it flowed well and the response from the audience was good. If anything, I feel like it went better than my presentation from the previous day. During the presentation I made some comments about documenting code and systems, so when I finished Loren asked if I could do a short presentation about documentation. I figured “in for a penny, in for a pound”, so while Sheeri was presenting I wrote some slides. As soon as Sheeri was finished I did a 20 minute spot on documentation. Two unplanned presentations in one day is about as much as my tiny brain could cope with. :)

Soon after our sessions were done, we got a taxi to the airport for our flights to Guatemala. The crammed timetable meant all I really saw of Trinidad & Tobago was:

  • The airport.
  • The Hilton hotel.
  • The government building hosting the two events.
  • The terrace of the Hyatt hotel.
  • The scenes on the two fridge magnets I bought at the airport.
  • A guy selling coconuts from a cart near a park (thanks to Debra for reminding me :) ).

I’m not sure I can count this as a visit to the carribean. It’s a bit like saying you’ve been to a country when all you’ve done is a wait at an airport for a connecting flight. :)

The timetable for Guatamala suggests it’s going to be a similar story there. Such is life!

Thanks to Loren and the gang for organising the event and of course, thanks to the Oracle ACE program for making it all happen.

Cheers

Tim…

PS. I’m looking forward to getting some sleep. I’ve kinda forgotten what it’s like…

PPS. I don’t have many photos, but what I have are here.