I’ve just spent a great week in Floriniapolis, Brazil.

The reason for the trip was an Agile Alliance board meeting, in conjunction with an Open Space conference with the local Agile community. I wrote about the Open Space in this InfoQ article.

Getting there took much longer than planned. The Lan Chile flight out of Auckland on Tuesday was two hours late, which meant I missed my connecting flight to Rio, so I was stuck in Santiago for a night. Unfortunately it was after 18:00 before I got to the airport hotel (quite far from the city) and had to be back at the airport by 09:00 the next morning so I couldn’t get to see anything of Santiago except the transit hotel. Wednesday ended up being a whole day of airports and airplanes, Santiago to Rio where I had to search for my bag (which had made it there the previous day) then wait nearly an hour while my ticket to Florianopolis was reissued. Travel tip – if you are rerouted make sure the airline reissues all the tickets on your journey, otherwise you can find yourself stranded or struggling to find an airline representative in an airport along the way. Eventually, 52 hours after leaving home, I arrived at the hotel in Florianopolis at 22:30.

Thursday morning I woke to see the view over the waterfront from my hotel room. The Sofitel is across from the beachfront, a very comfortable hotel with magnificent views.
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Thursday was the Open Space – I proposed a session titled “Different is not Wrong”, looking at cultural differences and how they impact communication on teams. About 15 people came to the session, and we had great discussions.

The Open Space ended with a reception, after which it was back to the hotel before we headed to dinner at the Dige Cafe an “Authentic Australian” restaurant right next to the hotel. I’m not so sure about the “authentic” but the food was good.

Authentic?

Authentic?

Friday was the first of three intensive days of the board meeting – we covered a lot of ground and set policy which will bring the Agile Alliance closer to the Agile communities around the world.

Friday evening Samuel and Daniella took us all to eat a great seafood restaurant in the city, after which a couple of us took a walk along the waterfront, and watched the buskers juggling fire at traffic lights.
Floripa #3 Street Busker

Saturday evening we were treated to an authentic Brazilian BBQ, Samuel’s capuera master very generously allowed us to come to the dojo where he and the great people from Oncast prepared a feast of traditional foods, which of course includes lots of meat! It was a fantastic evening which included live music and a capuera display by some of the students. A deep and heartfelt thanks to everyone who made us so welcome.
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Sunday was the end of the meeting, and the board started dispersing. Flight connections meant that a couple left on Sunday evening, some on Monday and on Tuesday it was just two of us.

Sunday evening we ate at a Curasca restaurant, another feast amidst good company.

Monday there were four of us left, we spent the morning sight-seeing and shopping in the old town. Colonial buildings and cobbled stone streets.

Then we visited the Oncast offices to say goodbyes to the wonderful team who hosted and looked after us so well.

On Monday evening there were just two of the out-of-towners left – Ola and myself. Samuel and Daniella took us to another great seafood restaurant, right on the water in a village on the other side of the island.

Samuel & Daniella were wonderfully generous hosts, they took us all around, showed us the best places to eat, where to shop, and took us around. Thank you so very much. One day I hope to return the favour in my town.

Tuesday was the start of the long trip hope. Ola and I travelled to Sau Paulo together, then he went north to Munich and beyond and I went south to Santiago, Auckland and home.

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