Newsletter July 2006

Saturday, 1st April 2006

Nothing to do with April Fool, but rather the day the removal men came. It was a freezing cold, gusty day with hefty rain showers (what else?). A team of friendly, tireless and extremely professional men arrived early in the morning to move the office contents of all three companies in our shared premises from the 6th floor at Hohe Bleichen 11 to the 4th floor of the building at Hohe Bleichen 10, just across the road. Our telephones had been switched off on Friday afternoon and as if by miracle, all the lines were up and running on Monday morning, including fax and internet connections. Fortunately we had a genius at work on the staff of our office partner, Arlington Consultants, and he kindly spent hour after hour in the air-conditioned server room of our new offices, bringing to life the large control cabinet and its endless number of wires and cables. Only two days later the result was - business as usual, but in very stylish, new surroundings.


The elegant, brand- new building with the inn venue for pasta lovers on the ground floor, Vapiano and the ultra-modern office space which we three companies were invited to share owing to the demolition of the building at Hohe Bleichen 11, is a premier example of contemporary design. Susanne Schwarz looks on to the landscaped inner courtyard of the Hanseviertel mall with its glass dome and can enjoy the morning sun whenever it shines in Hamburg.

If it gets too bright, there are large, panels of coloured glass on the outside of the building that can be adjusted to the required degree of shade.
All in all, for us the move went relatively smoothly. We only hope that you, our clients, had no problem in reaching us, despite the fact that our telephone system still comes up with somewhat strange messages from time to time, like: You are connected to line one thank you and goodbye!!

We love to receive visitors on the 4th floor: whether they come simply out of curiosity or are looking for a gastronomic experience, we have something for everyone, from the pasta restaurant with an indoor olive tree on the ground floor to the latest gourmet temple in Hamburg, Die Bank, on the opposite side of the street in the hall of what used to be the Eurohypo AG. Whatever the occasion, we always have a coffee or a cup of tea and a biscuit to offer.

Sport.... Sport.... Sport....

The first six months were certainly dominated by sport. Ah ha,, youull say. obviously football.. Well, of course it was football, but not only. One conference that had been long in the planning and underwent a considerable number of changes took place in Bremen at the Table Tennis World Championship 2006 in April. The team of interpreters for English, French, Spanish and German did not see any of the matches live, but they were able to enjoy table tennis on the big screen. Those players are well-known for their incredible speed, but their skill and ability to react are simply breathtaking. When table tennis comes to mind, most people think immediately of China, but Germany has also produced a series of top-class players, who unfortunately are not as famous as their fellow-sportsmen on the courts.

This year in May as usual the tennis event of the year took place on the courts at Rothenbaum. The German Tennis Association also celebrated its centenary with a gala evening in the City Hall, with interpretation provided by a team of SIMCONSULT interpreters.

Sport continued to dominate the horizon. We received an order from Scholz & Friends Brands Affairs GmbH to work at a press conference to present the Milram cyclist team, including great names such as Zabel, Petacchi and Celestino.

Not surprisingly, football and Germany 2006 were the predominant themes of the past six months with Hamburg preparing for the five matches to be held here. There was a great variety of tasks and events. One particular event involving a very particular working environment for the interpreters was the opening of the "Faszination Fußball" Exhibition attended by the Lord Mayor of Hamburg, Ole von Beust. It all took place in a crowded marquee in front of the Ethnologigal Museum. Those present included great names of football like Uwe Seeler and Willi Schulz. Italy was represented by the politician and Italian player of the centuryy, Gianni Rivera. For the interpreters it was an unusual assignment in very unusual surroundings.

SIMCONSULT interpreters were also assigned to a series of receptions held at the City Hall in honour of the guest football teams with their officials and in the presence of the diplomatic representatives of the respective countries. These included the US team who were resident in Hamburg as well as teams from Argentina, CCte ddIvoire, Ecuador Costa Rica, Saudi Arabia and Ukraine.

The pearl of Herford

Germany is always good for surprises. A very pleasant surprise for us was the discovery of the MARTHa conference venue in Herford, a museum for contemporary furniture and design. For museum cognoscenti and certainly for the inhabitants of Eastern Westphalia it may be a gap in onees education not to know of this museum. For us it was not only new but also very exciting. This incredibly individual building rises in the centre of Herford, an unmistakable example of the work of world-famous architect, Frank Gehry. MARTHa is undoubtedly the smaller sibling of the Guggenheim Museum designed by Gehry in Bilbao.

The conference coincided with a well-presented exhibition of Tupperware. To jog your memory, Tupperware was one of the first fashionable household storage systems that revolutionised the storage of foodstuffs already in the 1940's. Tupperware is still successfully marketed today through Tupperware partiess in private households. Perhaps we should organise a Tupperware party in the office to bring some semblance of order to the inside of the office fridge. All of this was made possible by our long-standing client Schieder-MMbel, the largest furniture manufacturer in Europe.

On the second day of the conference, continuing a long tradition of prominent speakers such as heads of government, ministers and politicians being invited by Schieder-Möbel, Christian Wulf the youngest Minister-President in Germany, held an impassioned speech full of confidence and encouragement for Germany and for Berlin. For the interpreters who had not seen the text and were working off the cuff, it was nevertheless an experience like a walk in the woods at sunset on a summerrs evening. It was full of key facts of business and politics, sprinkled with literary and philosophical quotations. The speaker, radiating optimism, even apologised to the interpreters, saying that he is known among interpreters for being a fast speaker very apt. But this is what we love about our profession, thank you Schieder!

Like you, we are also hoping for a continuing upward surge in Germany and in Europe and we look forward to contacting you again before the end of the year.



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