A new addi(c)tion (aka: a photo blog)

After Flicker, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Posterous, what now? As most of you know, I have soft spot for social media and technology. So well…

I’m glad to show you Rainy London‘s photo blog on @tumblr.

I had this idea in mind for a while: it mixes my passion for pictures, my passion for London and my business. So Rainy Days was born.

I promise, it’s just a trivial addi(c)tion for those ‘off-duty’ moments. And despite the name, it does not only show picturs of rainy days.

I hope you enjoy the pics, strictly taken with Instagram.

Oh.. and stay tuned… competition coming up soon 😛


Job offers from hell I (aka: che dio ce la mandi alta, mora e bella*)

I felt the urge to share a job offer my friend and colleague Nicoletta posted on her Facebook wall and which presumably she read somewhere or got offered herself (poor thing!) by an Italian company seeking a linguist for a trade show:

Requisiti linguistici richiesti: ottima conoscenza di tre delle seguenti quattro lingue: Inglese, Francese, Russo, Tedesca. Non cerchiamo un interprete di trattativa, ma la hostess deve essere in grado di comprendere un discorso e tradurlo per sommi capi. Forti doti relazionali, di persuasione, capacità di risolvere i problemi e gestirsi da sole, rapidità e capacità di afferrare al volo le esigenze dei clienti. Compenso netto di 70 euro al giorno.

I’d assume not all of you would read Italian but to sum it up I’ll provide the translation. It says something in these lines:

Language requirements: excellent command of English, French, Russian and German. No liaison interpreters. Hostess must be able to understand the conversation and convey the general points. Excellent communication, persuasion, problem-solving skills. Practical, quick and smart girls only. Net fee per day: €70.

I am being told the post also include the preferred height and a size 10. Some sort of Monica Bellucci, maybe? O_o


My other very good friend and colleague, Elisa, suggested we adapted this great text by @GermanENTrans (Translation Tribulations blog, aka Kevin Lossner) and send it to the client. Bring it on!

I could leave my comment but to be totally frank with you, I’m gobsmacked.



[*Translator’s note re title: the Italian translates into: May god send us a beautiful, tall, brunette]

Mail, boxes, etc.

Moving is easy. Settling down, well… let’s say it’s OK.

OK in the English sort of way.

[For those who are wondering, things can be, roughly and in an increasing order of ‘bad-to-good‘:

utter rubbish < very bad < bad < average < not too bad < OK < decent < good < very good < excellent < jaw-dropping. At least so I was told by some British friends and I will NEVER ever use OK in the same way!]

So, to recap, settling down finds its place at that middle stage where ‘bad’ borders ‘good’ and really, you don’t know what your feelings are.

As you know, I’ve recently moved (back) from bucolic Devon to the big city of London. All good and nice, ‘how exciting’ is what most ‘Sorry you’re leaving’ cards I got are reading. True, I could not wait to be back in the bubbly, chaotic city I am so much in love with, with endless possibilities and of course (too) many people. I tried to be organised and even listed the contents of each box I have packed in an Excel file, to be in easy reach of the ‘find’ option (it works, it really does!). But moving is exciting until you have to deal with the many issues, bits and pieces that changing home and/or office entails.

When you move, especially when you work from home, you have to carefully plan your moves (no pun intended!). I’d suggest checking out the same:

  • Make a list of utilities you need / do not need to bring with you / transfer / renew / cancel e.g.: phone line. When moving within the same city, that’s relatively difficult as you can keep the same number, at least. In my case, I had to be issued a different one. And first things first, you have to update it if shown on your website, Facebook page, Twitter profile etc. Other utilities are: gas / electricity, water supply, council tax if any, to mention some.
  • Point 1 leads to point 2, the beloved, essential, can’t-live-without Internet. This goes with the phone – unless you are happy to use a dongle – so as soon as you know when you’re moving, do like I did and get in touch with your provider to speed up things. I was lucky and the flat was available later that month, which gave me the time to take a holiday and let BT the time to move the line over. For once, they did well.
  • Redirect your post to the new address (Royal Mail offer a great service; 3 months are fairly acceptable, at around £30). Your stuff will be re-labelled and sent to your new place without efforts on your part. Easy!
  • Company address: most small companies use their accountants’. If you work from home, make sure you check your new tenancy contract because most of them include a clause preventing you from trading from the new address.
  • Check your memberships websites and online cookies: you will need to change the address, especially for deliveries you saved on those websites. I mean, it can also be only Ocado, but you will have to check all is set with the new address.
  • Filing: new spaces may need a rearrangement of your files and documents. A new filing cabinet or even shelves are always a good, stylish solution – I am currently looking for a white one and maybe Habitat can help – I hope.
  • When placing your desk in the new office / room / space / studio, make sure the light is good. The desk should be getting most of it but not directly into your eyes. A bit of feng shui, maybe? I have check http://www.fengshuisociety.org.uk/?link=Business
  • Also, wall sockets: they’re key for your gears, after all, so check where they are first thing or alternatively, you can always use power strips (I have a posh one, with power indicator and switches for each socket).

These are just a handful of the practical things I had to take care of to be fully functional and working in a short period of time. Without going into details, you can imagine how tired it was, how many boxes we packed and unpacked (slowly) and how good it feels now to be (almost) settled. I think I still have a box full of dictionaries screaming ‘Pick me! Pick me!’ hidden somewhere…

Till next time,



My own picture, as usual. Taken in Parliament Square, via Instagram



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