On The Road – Part 4
Written on 28th March 2012
It’s the first day of The SKOLL World Forum here in Oxford and I am sitting in the sunshine between networking sessions reflecting in the last few days Dan & I had in London. I arrived there on Sunday afternoon after flying from Hanoi to Paris then catching the train to London; whilst this sounds like a round-a -bout route, it was nothing like the delays experienced by Dan who finally arrived Monday morning!
Off the plane Dan & I were straight into meetings, with our first being a stop at a charming family office near Harrods. The meeting was wonderful, but the real kicker came at the end, after Dan had given our host a copy of Dumbo Feather and some TOM samples at the beginning of the meeting, we were generously given two samples of tomato sauce from our host (the sauce was his primary business). Without descending in to too much toilet humour, we had to laugh at the irony of the exchange.
We followed this meeting with a visit to Hub Westminster, an new hub location which whilst being young was a very ambitious enterprise. We were impressed by how established this venue was, with a great vibe and location. Great to see hubs around the world expanding like our home favourite Melbourne! Our day of meetings concluded with a very special (and personally exciting) lunch with Alain de Botton and the team from the School of Life. Alain was an interviewee in the latest Dumbo, and the author of some of my favourite books. It was an honour and a thoroughly enjoyable lunch.
Yesterday consisted of some informal meetings followed by a bit of tourism at the Royal Mews, where the Queen’s horses, carriages, and cars are kept. We had a fascinating tour of the operating facility, constantly amazed by how impractical (but impressive) tradition can be! We boarded a train to Oxford that afternoon and took up residence in out College Dorms, which whilst being basic, were incredibly apt for our surroundings, and we finished the night at the house of a friend Dan met at last year’s SKOLL for a very enjoyable and delicious home cooked meal.
Stay tuned for my experiences at the SKOLL World Forum, but if you somply can’t wait, you can see videos from the event posted here.
PS. Click on the header image for more photos…