Monday, December 18, 2006

Mind the Gap (London trip review)

The funniest part of London is that they all speak English (sort of). At least that's the first thing that strikes you when you're there after living in countries with other languages for so long ("oh my, all the ads shout at me directly").

I have to say that the city looks in very good shape. Everything seems clean, fixed and properly maintained, besides being a beautiful place per se.

We visited JPMorgan, Mergermarket and Lloyd's, besides attending a marketing workshop with Beaconbrands at the Anglo-Belgian Club. The visits were very well organised and we had plenty of time to explore the city. Even though I had been to London many times before, there were many places I didn't know and enjoyed immensely.

Having visited many firms in the City, I realised one thing: City life is not for me. These guys have no life outside of the office, and no time for marriage or kids. Maybe if I were another kind of person, but I'm not; money is very important, but it's definitely not everything in life. I'd rather have a chat with my significant other any day of the week, and twice on Sundays.

Another thing that really strikes you when you reach London is their different take to multiculturalism form what we're used to in the Continent. In England policement are allowed to wear scarves or turbants, as long as their face is seen. There is many, many foreigners, but they're, if not accepted, at least tolerated. The situation is not perfect, but I believe it fosters less marginalisation in general. The level of society acceptance is reflected in something that is obvious to Brits, but not very well understood anywhere else: the national food of England is not fish and chips, but curry.

The pictures from the trip are in Flickr, of course.

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