Thursday, June 23, 2011

No Flies On Me

The hotel for the conference is in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by beautiful mountains, a golf course, green, green grass ... And flies. Millions of flies. It was a bit disconcerting to have three days of meetings in a helicopter hangar, where every two minutes another huge black fly would buzz into your ear, or dance across the presentation screen.

The hotel staff were not that skilled at dealing with vegetarians. Well, they were quite good at sweeping the meat off the plate and giving it back to you. Yum yum. I love a plate of limp green beans as much as the next man, but this was ridiculous. Today we all got a plastic bag full of microwaved onions. Had the staff gone mad? Were they taking the piss? At least the carnivores were moaning about the tough cod/pork/veal they were provided with, so I didn't feel singled out by a Frenchman, wrathful that his national cuisine was deprecated by an Englishman.

This afternoon we had a team building event, where we had to make something to protect an egg when dropped from a height. All we had were some matches and a few straws, but I decided it was time to think outside the box. Well, to take our egg to the kitchens and get them to hardboil it. Since the boiling water wasn't an integral part of our egg-protection apparatus, this didn't seem to violate the rules of the competition.

Unfortunately, the staff at the hotel couldn't boil an egg.

Really. It's no help trying to cheat in a team building event if you get all the way to the kitchen, just to watch four Frenchmen staring at an egg in not-so-boiling water. After fifteen minutes they gave us two boiled eggs, which they'd helpfully shelled, which is rather unhelpful if you're trying to sneak your boiled eggs past the adjudicator of the competition.

Still, they didn't smash. So we were winners. We are all winners.

The insects are the biggest winners. There were flies crawling all over our eggs. Maybe they were laying eggs in the eggs. Maybe we could have built something out of flies, to allow the eggs to fall softly to the ground.


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