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Day 3: Lyon, France

So, we go to lunch is this gorgeous 19th century traditional French restaurant, in Lyon, with beautiful old French décor (like the palace at Versailles), and these amazing May trees in full, pink blooms outside and 3 French guys sit down and start comparing mobile phones!!

Well, I appreciated the ambiance of the place and the food was exquisite. I had this grilled fish, which was “to-die-for,” while the French guys ate bone marrow for starters and horse meat for their main course!

lyonrestaurantThe whole conversation was in French and my “Inspector Clouseau” level French created polite smiles and quizzical expressions.

At a local French government municipality that afternoon, I also used my French to introduce myself, but decided to do the presentation and demo in English, after the client was confused why InfoSol had sent a chef to discuss Business Intelligence report distribution with them.

Anyway, I had their mouths watering by the end of that demo and they were asking for pricing and discounting before I could finish. I was so excited, I had to go to the bathroom, and got lost on the way back.

Also, I have noticed how cramped things are in France. It’s not just crunched up little cars, to fit in minute parking spaces down tiny streets, and carousel style parking lots that go ten levels down underground, it’s their office spaces too. I visited one company today and they had no less than 15 people working side-by-side on laptops, at tiny tables, in a room the size of a regular director’s office.  Telecommuting has not caught on in a big way, because “The French” work a 35-hour week, and usually get 6 to 7 weeks vacation, so they spend too much time at home already!

About Paul

Paul Grill started his career in Information Technology in the U.K. in 1978, as an Executive Data Processing Trainee for Honeywell. More than thirty years later, he still has a voracious appetite for learning as Information Technology continues to advance at an ever accelerating pace. He was first introduced to the world of Business Intelligence in 1991, in France, when he saw a demonstration of an early version of BusinessObjects on Windows 2.1. He returned to the U.S. to rave about this phenomenal product, but it was many years before BusinessObjects made it into the mainstream. Paul founded InfoSol in 1997, and made Business Intelligence one of the key solutions offered by the company. Today, InfoSol is a leading SAP BusinessObjects solutions partner, known for its expert consulting, education and innovative add-on solutions. Paul is well known within the SAP BusinessObjects community for his extensive knowledge of Business Intelligence, and he has lectured and written many articles on the subject. Paul enjoys writing, running and coaching kids soccer, and is passionate about Ancient Egyptology.

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