Wednesday, 4 May 2011

ISEND 2011 part 1

I do believe there have been some Bank Holiday days over the past week and  half - oh and a wedding, but we didn't see any of it/them!!!!

On Easter Saturday we set
off for La Rochelle a 400+ mile journey through beautiful parts of France - Rouen, Le Mans, Angers, we did as little motorway driving as possible - not just to avoid the peage  (we do try to be sensible with our money!!) - but we like to see the scenery! I'm so glad we did on this occasion, we fell in love with the Loir region (just above the Loire) and were surprised by the part of the Charente we saw - so flat! (Photo is of La Fleche, taken on the homeward journey)
La Rochelle is in the Charente Maritime, very pretty in the old town and round the Vieux Port, quite boring round the rest - the landscape was very flat and over all I guess I was disappointed with the area -  so many people told me how lovely it was. As such a popular holiday destination I expected it to have more about it!

We camped! No posh hotel for us, just our trusty van as a bedroom and the Burgundian tent as out living quarters. To be fair it was very comfortable and the Municipal camp site at Port Neuf was fine (certainly not luxurious, but the water was hot enough to shower comfortably!!!) It was a half hour walk to the Vieux Port and about 40 minutes to Espace Encan - the venue for Isend. We walked everywhere, which was lovely, and got to spend time with friends old and new!

I attended ISEND 2011 as a trader only - a decision taken based on the price of attending. I was allowed to attend the lectures during the day, but not the workshops and demonstrations. Set up was on the Sunday, as was registration for all the delegates. I was delighted when Ulrike from the Online Guild came in soon after we'd started and introduced herself, then threw herself into helping with the set up! Thanks Ulrike!

Over the course of the week I got to see many of my old friends from DHA meetings, make contact with my "idols" like Dominique Cardon, Michelle Whipplinger, India Flint .... The biggest thrill of the week was probably talking to Michel Garcia about our water problem here, not long afterwards he appeared at the stall to say he'd take me through and give a demonstration of his indigo vat using sugar as a reducing agent - just me and the lady from El Salvador (whose name I have forgotten I am sorry to say!)  He then gave full details of how the whole thing works, plus the chemistry. All the official delegates had had to scrabble for a bit of space round his demonstration, most unable to hear what he was saying .........

Maybe it wasn't so bad just being there as a trader!

(Part 2 - the conference)


madewithloops said...

Sounds as if you had a great time ;) and I agree, the country side there is beautiful. Hope to see you very soon. xx

Helen said...

Hi Debbie I have put my account up to.:)
Nice to see my smiling face and nice to talk to you today too.

Birdsong said...

It sounds like a wonderful experience!