Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Desert Meets Dickens

A lovely co-worker who I miss terribly wrote a blip for our company’s internal newsletter and now guess who’s featured in September’s issue? Yours truly! Without even having to request it, the article is in the form of an even numbered list of questions . . . PERFECT! Here’s your own personal copy to peruse:

Phoenix Marketing Coordinator Stephanie [last name] has traded scorching temperatures for scones, as she has moved to our London office to cover [name]’s maternity leave. Stephanie, who reports a warm welcome from Londoners, is enjoying her off-hours getting to know her beautiful new city. She is already planning jaunts to neighboring countries during her year abroad, starting with a September birthday weekend in Paris! We posed a few questions to Stephanie regarding her temporary relocation:

1. What was the key motivation behind your move to London?
I’d never been to Europe prior to stepping off the plane a few weeks ago. When the opportunity presented itself, I was fortunate enough to be in a place in my life that it was fairly easy to pack up a move for a year. I saw it as a great chance to work in a new office, in an amazing city much different from what I was used to. The timing and support I received coincided in one of those rare moments in life that I knew I couldn’t let the opportunity pass me by.

2. Biggest difference between the London and Phoenix office?
One of the biggest differences is definitely the size of the office – London has over 150 people while Phoenix has closer to 25. It is also a big change working as part of a marketing team all located in the same office versus being the only marketer in Phoenix with the rest of the Southwest team in other offices.

3. What do you miss most about the US?
Without a doubt, I miss the people from home the most. On the flipside, hopefully this will give family and friends a great excuse to take holiday in London. One thing I don’t miss yet is the Arizona heat – it wasn’t hard jumping on a plane flying away from Phoenix in the middle of July. I’m guessing I’ll take that sentiment back come December!

4. What will be the hardest thing to give up when you return to the US?
Since I’ve only been here a short while, it’s hard to answer this question just yet. If I had to guess, I imagine the hardest thing to give up after heading back home will be all of the travel I hope to do. It’s exciting to be able to take advantage of all of the other amazing places in such proximity to London, even if just for a weekend.

5. Biggest surprise about living in London?
I’ve tried to come into this next year with no expectations so that I can truly make the most of the experience. So almost everything has been a surprise – from how easy the tube is to use to how long it took me to figure out the washing machine. I’ve also been pleasantly surprised at how easy the transition has been from working in marketing in the US compared to Europe.

6. A London discovery that you hope everyone can experience?
To be fair to the city I think I need more time here before having a great answer, although I’d love to hear how others would respond to this question!

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