Lotus Forum, Moscow

October 1 2004

Today has been quite the blur, let's see how I do on the memory recall test:

  • I don't think 770 showed up, but we definitely had several hundred partners and customers at today's Lotus Forum.  It felt to me like a very good event, and I was pleased to meet several new people this year.  The local team was great and supported the event well, definitely a first class operation.
  • I attended a press conference and also did a 1-on-1 press interview.  The reporter noted at the beginning of the interview that he was aware of my blog -- from that, and his questions, it was clear he had done a lot of homework to prepare for the interview.  Some excellent, thought-provoking questions, and a good chance to learn more about the local market.  The Domino Express offerings are especially important and useful in a country like this.
  • I managed to change my flight to St. Petersburg.  My colleague Igor was a savior -- took me to Pulkovo's offices to exchange the ticket.  While I understood little of the discussion, I was intrigued by the interaction between Igor and the airline ticket agent.  It seemed to be a much more involved transaction than I expected.  Igor told me later that the ticket agents liked my US passport -- said it was "colorful".  I guess they don't see many of us in that office.
  • We had dinner down near Red Square and the Metropol hotel tonight.  In a quick post-dinner walkaround (to let the vodka settle, of course) I noticed one major change from the 2002 trip -- The Hotel Moskva is gone!  Lenin must be rolling over in his grave.
  • Once again, somehow we managed to pay US$20 for a five minute cab ride.  Don't get me started...
I'm supposed to write about some of the other fun, but I'll leave it for tonight.  Maybe Roberto or Jason want to add their two cents...er, maybe that would be more like two dollars.

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