Tidbits from my trip to San Francisco and Bogotá, Colombia

Recently I was traveling to San Francisco and Bogotá, Colombia, and I wrote frequent updates on Facebook. It seemed to be appreciated, so I’d like to share it in a collected form here.

San Francisco

Arriving at the hotel and first dinner

Just checked in to the hotel. Brings a tear to my eye when they can match my personal taste so well!

My hotel wardrobe - San Francisco & Google I/O, May 2013

Dinner, with build your own desert, i.e. picking all the ingredients – olive oil, nuts, salt etc:

Build your own desert - pick the ingredients - San Francisco & Google I/O, May 2013

Build your own desert - pick the ingredients - San Francisco & Google I/O, May 2013

Work, dinner and Google I/O

Working from the Mozilla patio at our San Francisco office

View from the Mozilla office - San Francisco & Google I/O, May 2013

Dinner with Mozilla, Google, Opera and Microsoft in the shape of Bruce Lawson, Rey Bango, Sam Dutton, Ali Spivak, me + Adam DuVander and more!

Dinner with Google, Opera, Microsoft and lots of other nice people - San Francisco & Google I/O, May 2013

Dinner with Google, Opera, Microsoft and lots of other nice people - San Francisco & Google I/O, May 2013

Surreal party at Google I/O with Billy Idol playing:

Billy Idol, Google I/O party - San Francisco & Google I/O, May 2013

Billy Idol, Google I/O party - San Francisco & Google I/O, May 2013

Videos & pictures from Billy Idol playing at the Google I/O party in San Francisco.

Hotel gym: Workout? S/M hangout? Neither? Both?

San Francisco & Google I/O, May 2013

Traveling to Colombia

My life. It’s currently about 7 in the morning local time in Miami, where I’m sitting with my manager Mark Coggins waiting our next flight to Bogotá, Colombia. One day ago I was in San Francisco watching Billy Idol and Steve Aoki playing at a Google Party.

We’ve flown five hours overnight, and the two people sitting next to me got into a fight twice over encroaching each other’s space – once during take-off… Naturally the Swede tried to mediate the situation. The result was of course that the guy sitting in the middle got our shared armrest and some of my space…

I managed to get some sleep in a weird position and now my body hurts everywhere. After we had landed I got to see a new first: someone flossing in the restroom. The high life of a traveler…

We’re now in a lounge, which was nice to have access to, but the “coffee” being offered looked like a horse had had diarrhea, so I managed to find a Cuban restaurant where they only spoke Spanish, where I could get a proper espresso.

Our current discussion is about Colombia, our assigned bodyguards and the sort of surreal lives we lead. That’s my life.

Miami airport - Bogotá, Colombia, May 2013

First day in Colombia

Spent the first day in Bogotá, Colombia. Entering the country went well and easy, and we met up with your security people/bodyguards, so we now have three dedicated guards taking us in a van everywhere. Feels a bit awkward, but their leader is fun and easy to talk to.

Bogotá is surrounded by mountains, and it’s very pretty. Most local people only speak Spanish, and while the few Spanish words I can muster entertains them for a little while, I can’t actually communicate as much as I want to.

This afternoon we had a nice lunch trying some local dishes and then went to the venue to set up for tomorrow’s Firefox OS workshop. Back to the hotel (in our van that somewhat looks like the Mystery Van in Scooby Doo), work, going over the agenda for tomorrow etc.

Dinner, and then I went to the spa part of the hotel (which is very nice) and spent a long time in the jacuzzi – felt SO good finally being warm after having spent the entire night on air planes.

Bogotá, Colombia, May 2013

Back late at the hotel

I’m in Bogotá, Colombia, and it’s a bit after midnight. Had a full day of workshop, then dinner with everyone. Coming back to discover that the hotel has decided to have a party tonight – on the floor just above mine.

They are playing fucking Macarena and the walls are shaking… The elevators are filled with glitter.

Only have a few hours to sleep before I need to get up tomorrow. Walked down to the reception and negotiated to get another room.

Now I’m in a suite with two massive rooms, one bar and two bathrooms. The ironic thing is that I got asked earlier tonight which has been the fanciest room/hotel I’ve had, and I believe this is one of the biggest ones so far.

Going up Monserrate

Got up early this morning to get the chance to visit Monserrate, a 3152 meters high mountain in Bogotá, with a church on top of it. We got to the bottom of the mountain after some windy roads – at one time in a sharp curve, the driver let go of the steering wheel to hold on to the window ledge instead…

There were two options of going up: cable car and funicular. The group jointly decided to go for the cable car, although at first sight it seemed quite steep. Going up we had an impressive view over the city and there was a huge beautiful rainbow.

Rainbow - Monserrate - Bogotá, Colombia, May 2013

We walked around up there, followed the path of Christ, visited the and went through a small market. The nice thing is that I was the only person out of a lot of people up there who had really white skin – they must’ve thought I was an albino, or something.

We also had a cup of coca leaf tea – good for medicinal purposes, they told us…

Monserrate - Bogotá, Colombia, May 2013

It rained a bit, but later it cleared up and we got a beautiful view of the city! Really happy I sacrificed sleep to go there!

Then we took the funicular down, and went to the airport, where I’m now sitting and waiting for my flights home: first to Miami, then to London and then Stockholm.

Lama - Bogotá, Colombia, May 2013

I’ve had a great trip this last week with fantastic people, but now I’m really looking forward to coming home to my loved ones.

Flying home

Arrived in Miami. On my flight from Bogota here, I had a new experience: I sat next to a woman who had a dog with her on the plane. It was wearing a small red west reading “service dog”. Not sure what kind of help – at least it wasn’t a guide dog.

It smelled dog a bit on the plane, but not too much. The dog behaved well overall, although it tried to run away a few times and had one occasion of “the barking”. Its master was also very friendly, so all good.

Dog on a plane - Bogotá, Colombia, May 2013

Even though I’m only connecting in Miami on my way to London, I still had to go through US customs and get my bag, to enter the US, then leave the bag and go to my next flight…

However, that wait pain went away when I saw a small boy and his mother on one of those small cars that drive people through the airport. He was smiling and pretending he was driving it.

Now time to board the next flight. Have a good night/day, wherever you are.

All pictures and videos

All the pictures and videos can be found on Flickr:

Posted in Personal/life,Travel |

3 Comments

  • sole says:

    Bodyguards for Bogota!? SCARY!

    By the way, I think you meant they only spoke Spanish, not English? (that’s what I expected to read, anyway! ;-))

    I actually once saw a Scooby Doo themed van. In Camden. Where else? :-)

  • Robert Nyman says:

    sole,

    It’s hard to tell if bodyguards were needed, but it was deemed appropriate that we should have some.

    And yes, Spanish – updated the post. :-)

    And of course in Camden!

  • […] I wrote more extensively about this trip in Tidbits from my trip to San Francisco and Bogotá, Colombia […]

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