Sakai in Paris, Day 1

I arrived in Paris late Thursday afternoon, so Friday was my first full day in the city. The hotel is very nice although everyone staying here seems to be either American or German–very few French folks choose the Marriott, I suspect, but it is the only hotel with conference facilities in the area. I have a room on a high floor (a perk of being part of the group organizing the conference) with a nice view of the Pantheon and Monmartre in the distance.

I got some work done in the morning, visited the school my children will attend while we’re living here (starting in late August) and went back to the hotel where more Sakai folks were finding their way in.  I had a nice lunch at Restaurant Apollo near the hotel with Anthony Whyte, Noah Botimer, Jim Eng, Kirk Alexander, Megan May, Ryan Lowe and Ryan’s wife Brittany.  We then took a long walk (led by me, as I’ve been here more frequently and more recently than anyone else in the group, I think) that took us through the Jardin du Luxembourg to Notre Dame, then across to the Isle Saint-Louis (for ice cream, of course) and then to UPMC.  From there we checked out a small corner of the Jardin des Plantes (a must-visit during the conference since it is so close to the university).

At this point our will to walk gave out and we decided to try the metro ride from the university (stop: Jussieu) to the hotel (stop Glacière, after a change at Place d’Italie) which was very efficient. We all wondered what it will look like when 300 Sakai folks try to get on the train at the same time after the keynote sessions at the hotel. Paris a city of more than 2 million people, so it will probably be just fine…we’ll see.

The project planning meetings start in 2 hours, so it’s time to get ready. I’m really looking forward to the discussions of the next set of Sakai releases. More on this subject after the disucssion….We’re going to try (unlike in St. Paul) to post at least brief notes to the wiki on the same day of the meetings.

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