Lorenzo Pirisino
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Delays and Rotten Fish
[Thursday 26th June 2008]

Korea is always a surprise to me, no matter how many times I came here I still get some novelties.

The first novelty is something that I would have much rather avoid altogether... Now, before I venture in the explanation the careful reader might be thinking, which one of the two experiences described in the title is Lox referring to?

Well the first one (believe it or not), delays.

Thanks to a questionable air carrier, that goes by the name of Cathay Pacific, I finally managed to experience the "totally delayed and airport ordeal" package.

It all started at 5 o'clock in the morning, with me waking up in Hong Kong, followed by a bus ride that resembled a post-hurricane scenery, with the bus being hit by U.F.O. (unidentified flying objects, more commonly known, in this case, as BRANCHES)... Already the flight was delayed of 2 hours, because of the bad weather, but all in all it was ok.

We got on the plane to know that they were "loading something" and we had to wait one more hour. Oh well, they were loading something after all!
Then we start rolling, there is a queue we are told, wait another hour. Then the plane is about to get on the runway and what happens?
"we have a little technical problem, need to go fix it"... So the plane doens't leave and we get to the engineering department instead.
Now we start to get pissed, how in the grace of God did they find out of a technical problem just before taking off?!? And fuck the "little" too, if it needs repairing is not that little right?!

TWO hours later, we are told that the repairs cannot be made and we need to change the plane. Since we cannot move and the plane is not at the finger, we need to get off via ladder, shame that it's absolutely raining cats and dogs (horizontally thanks to the wind), and we all got drenched...

One more hour passed and finally we get to the airport, ready to board another aircraft. The new aircraft is delayed of TWO MORE hours (9 hours total), people were completely pissed off, and the staff was quite unhelpful. I cannot stop thinking that the situation could have been managed a lot better, eventually we got to Seoul very late at night.

The other part of the Korean visit was highlighted by this new experience, eating RAW ROTTEN FISH. Well technically the fish is left "fermenting", in a jar, but still what you have is rotten meat. the taste is terribly interesting, as it varies from normal fish sashimi to ROQUEFORT CHEESE and ends up with a very strong ammoniac taste. Lovely stuff, couldn't eat more than 4 slices though, it's quite strong.

Tomorrow I am off home... I mean, Japan. It has been a long time since I was there (well it was October, but it feels a long time to me)...

Hong Kong and Typhoons
[Wednesday 25th June 2008]

First top of the trip has been Hong Kong, a very quick couple of days to see some potential new clients. There is very little to say, apart from the fact that my knee is still hurting a lot, I even got it twisted again (just walking) before meeting the client but fortunately the leg started working again soon...

The most interesting thing that is happening is the fact that this night a typhoon struck Hong Kong and as a matter of fact the plane has been delayed of 1 hour (at the moment but it could be worse if the weather doesn't improve), and I am left here waiting.

This trip is started under very bad conditions, first the flight to Hong Kong not being confirmed until 10 minutes before leaving (because the travel agent made a mistake), then this delay, then I realized this morning that the tickets that I have been given are completely CRAP as the day I travel back to Europe the flight is divided in two sections and I have the distinct fear that I must collect my bags in Hong Kong, only to check in another flight to Zurich, all in 2 hours between I land and I leave again (if I make it of course!!).

What a shitty trip, I should have checked the tickets better, but I really did not know until they were bought and confirmed.... :(

Let's hope it improves!
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[Thursday 19th June 2008]

Simone Poggi.

Yesterday night I get a mail, I thought it was about the RPG session that I missed due to the trip to Greece, but instead he told me that on that night, he let all the people present know that he´s going to GET MARRIED!!!

Simone got upset once for a post that I wrote about the way he views the work environment and his position in the society, although I understand what crossed him, I still believe in those things! But still, he´s one of the best friends that I have, the kind of friend that you don´t see too much but the kind of friend with whom I have shared a lot of experiences, and that it´s always great to talk to, as he´s never "banal" or "pre-cooked" like other people are.

But let´s go back to the announcement:

First of all I am utterly upset because I was not there and he should have waited to tell everyone, but probably I am being selfish...(though I am already thinking how he can make up for it... maybe a dinner in a very expensive restaurant...)

Second of all I am totally happy for him and his girlfriend (now future wife), they really make a great couple and it´s really a great piece of news!

Thirdly, that leaves only me and Stefano as singles.

I have been thinking a lot about marrying and setting up a family, it is something that in the past I used to hate even dreaming about, but recently the position has changed. If only the work situation was more stable, I have spoken to Chiara several times about the idea of buying a house, starting to settle down, but in our situation it´s really hard to get a loan, especially when you are not sure if you are going to have a job in two months time... I hope that things will settle soon so that maybe moving forward will be a bit easier, in the meantime:


(We are already organizing a PROPER stag-do) :D

[Thursday 19th June 2008]

The rest of the trip to Greece was quite good, Athens is a massive city with lots of people and a very chaotic feeling to it. I did not leave the hotel at night, did not venture into the streets and squares, did not sample the food of the "real" restaurants as I usually do. I do not know why but the whole time I had just in my mind the strong desire to go back. Not because I do not like Greece, I love it actually, but I think it´s because I know that on Sunday I must leave again for Asia, for a two weeks trip.

The life that I do not like, distant from family, friends, everything...

Anyways, the flight back to Frankfurt was delayed and I missed the connecting flight to Florence, meaning that I have to wait 5 hours in the lounge. I did get an upgrade in business class from Athens to Frankfurt, but it´s little a consolation compared to the night spent here.

In order to write this piece I had to fight with people wanting to use the only internet capable computer in the bleeding airport, when will the people at Lufthansa decide that it´s time to offer wireless connection for free, AS IT IS IN EVERY CIVILIZED COUNTRY? Internet connections should be always free in public places...

Oh well, one hour to go now, I can feel the stares of the people waiting looking at my back, I´d better get moving now!
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[Monday 16th June 2008]

Today I have travelled as far as Greece, to Thessaloniki to be precise, which I think is the second city in Greece after Athens.

I am here to meet a potential business partner that I have discovered rummaging through scores of pages filled with names, numbers and stuff like that. Surely taking part to an international fair would have been better and would have made my life easier, but that is not the case in the the present company.

The trip has not set off with the best omens, or should I say, with the best preparation, as the fact that I forgot my camera is entirely my fault.

What is not entirely my fault is the fact that I am stuck in a shitty hotel 20 (yes, bloody TWENTY) kilometres away from the city!! I really don't know why my contact advised me to go here, but apart from a nice swimming pool and gym, the hotel is quite shite.

Internet must work with these 1 euro x hour cards, there is not a single bar or restaurant apart from what you get in the hotel to be seen, I have tried to walk a little, but the heat and the total emptiness of the surroundings made me go back immediately.

TV is only in greek and I am really worried at what I am going to be served for dinner, as I must stop here.

The good side is that tomorrow morning I get to go away and move to Athens in the evening. I have few memories of Thessaloniki, coming from when I was a kid, we used to travel all the way from Italy to Greece with our cars or RVs. It wasn't one of the target of the holidays, I think it a more industrial city than anything else.

But my poor choice of hotel does not allow me to re-form this thought that I have of this city, because I am stuck 20 kilometres away from it!!

Oh well, next time I know where not to go, and you would think that I am an experienced traveller by now!! I have finished a passports with visas last December, 4 years before the due expiry date, but still, I fell for this hotel.

Live and learn Lorenzo, live and learn....

Last week in a drop
[Monday 9th June - Friday 13th June 2008]

I have stopped writing my blog and I really hate that. I love being able to put stuff on this little corner of the world, even if there aren't many readers, that doesn't make any difference to me.

This week has been pretty eventful, especially at work, but I cannot disclose any of those topics right now, I can only say that I have never experience anything like that before. Human beings are truly amazing sometimes.

I will be soon leaving for Greece for a quick business trip, Monday to Thursday, only to go back to work on Friday and leave once more to Asia for two weeks. I hope that at least I will not be accused of not putting some effort in the things I do!

More news on the business trips soon, and sorry again for being slack at writing! :D

Messy Knee
[Saturday 31st May 2008]

Well, well, the title says it all I guess. Today I finally got back the results of the exams that I did on the right knee (MRI).

It doesn't look as bad as I thought at first, the ligament is still in place and works fine, so the problem is with the meniscus and cartilage...
It has been two weeks more or less since I got injured at work and the knee was doing extremely fine, no pain at all, not swollen at all.

After getting the results of the MRI I went to the usual underwater rugby training and....

....and believe it or not my knee TWISTED AGAIN!!! This time while I was swimming.. :(

I started this sport because I thought it was much easier on the articulation and certain violent tackles and contrasts as they happen in football do not occur, after all we are swimming underwater.

Well apparently, Alice's (my sister) husband said, the muscles of the right leg are all messed up and probably when trying to move fast underwater the muscles on a side of the knee pulled while the others took a break.
The result is that even underwater, even unsolicited (no blows or tackles), the knee twisted and the meniscus (one of the three that you have inside the knee) came out and it's not out of place.

It will go back into it's slot, now I am used to the pain, but every time it's a stress on the joint and the cartilage suffers from the meniscus being out of place.

I think that I might have to see a specialist anyway, on the net I read that the damage that was diagnosed is usually dealt with with a simple arthroscopic surgery... Though I do not want to be operated, if I have to be in pain every two weeks I might have to consider it...
All in all, despite me being injured again now, it's good news, at least ligaments are ok!

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Lox, Lorenzo... ME!!
A little introduction about the author and the blog itself. Plus contacts and CVs... You never know!

A Selection of the best pictures that I have taken all over the world during the years, all nicely indexed by year and geographical area. Jolly good!

History of this Blog
A collection of all the articles that I have wrote so far, divided by month/year.

I have had the bad idea of writing my e-mail address on the board before, so this time I'll try to prevent some spam to get to me by putting this little image.. Let's hope it does the trick!


A reminder to Myself

Left and right
Like day and night
That's what makes the world go round
In and out
Thin and stout
That's what makes the world go round

For every up there is a down
For every square there is a round
For every high there is a low
For every to there is a fro
To and fro
Stop and go
That's what makes the world go round

You must set your sights upon the heights
Don't be a mediocrity
Don't just wait and trust to fate
And say, that's how it's meant to be
It's up to you how far you go
If you don't try you'll never know
And so my lad as I've explained
Nothing ventured, nothing gained

You see my boy it's nature's way
Upon the weak the strong ones prey
The human life it's also true
The strong will try to conquer you
That is what you must expect
Unless you use your intellect
Brains and brawn, weak and strong
That's what makes the world go round


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