12.30AM I’m all packed, got a long day ahead of me when I wake up in 6 hours
7.50AM – Took a train to Brussels on Friday and went to visit the good folks at the OX² web agency. Let me tell you that travelling 7 hours is not something I do without proper motivation
10.00AM — After a few prayers and a healthy dose of wishful-thinking, it seems that train users these days cannot care less about the no-cell-phone guidelines. Not only did a fellow travellers three rows back have an obnoxious ring tone to the tune of the “Cucaracha”, he pretty much yelled out his credit card PIN to about everyone in the train…
I’m trying to optimize my battery usage but it seems I only got 10 minutes worth of electricity left so I’ll sign off for now.
1.30PM — After much SNCF employee confusion in Lille, I got to the Lille Europe station where I caught the EuroStar mere seconds before it left the station and, lo and behold, the controller waved me into first class, free – until further notice!! Merci beaucoup!!
I always enjoy the more modern train cars (or the first class ones, whichever I can afford) because they have electric outlets in which I can plug my laptop. Glee! ^_^ Currently typing those lines from seat 35, with a window view of the Belgian country side zooming by, as our bullet train makes its way to Brussels.
There is a group of senior/elderly – and ostensibly bourgeois, I might add – Brits and their grandchildren, chatting away and exchanging recipes, discussing their grandchildren’s future careers. They apparently do not think much of plumbers, firemen and astronauts. Pity, really.
2.00PM – The controller hasn’t come round again so fingers crossed!! René and Aurélie are already kind enough to have me over so if I can save them the expense, all the better!
I’m really looking forward to seeing them again. I like the way they approach Web Analytics and I’d definitely like to know more about OX², even though I had a good overview last time I visited with them.
WebTrends seems fascinating in its new On Demand version. The last time I used WebTrends, it choked on my Apache log files and spurted out meaningless reports. It now appears that it made its way into a market leadership since then. I’m more knowledgeable in Omniture and Google Analytics but I just set my brain in “sponge mode”. 🙂
2.15PM – The Belgian GSM provider Proximus eventually managed to get things straight with SFR and I can now place and receive calls to/from Belgium on my mobile phone. Expensive as hell. Which meant I just HAD to place calls every minute to make sure it worked. And there was much rejoicing.
3.00PM – I arrive at OX² right on schedule ; what happens next is between Aurelie, Rene and myself 🙂
6.30PM – Aurelie and Rene kindly drop me off at Brussels South station and there ends my trip to Brussels; the return trip is uneventful 🙂 (phew)