My First Automattic Christmas party

I was looking forward to this event since I started working at Automattic last June. Eventually, December arrived and it comes also the time to enjoy my company annual Christmas party!

My first Automattic Christmas party
My first Automattic Christmas party was such a blast! I had the pleasure to meet up with some of the Automatticians living in the UK. Another bunch of us had a very cool Christmas party in London too, but I couldn’t attend to that one :( They had a nice lunch and then went to a bowling place.

On the other hand, we went ice skating! Last time I tried ice skating was nearly 10 years ago! Saying that I had the best time on the ice rink with my colleagues does not even remotely explain how happy I was in there. I feel like I was born on the ice. Some of my fellow Automatticians had a bit of troubles on the ice, so Rachel (on the pic above bottom right) and I tried to help them out. It turned out I was very useless when trying to aid my friends. Here’s a bad video shot by me whilst skating – it was also on my Instagram stories.

At some point I dared to attempt an angel figure on the ice, with one of my leg flexed out first, then bent over toward my back. I succeeded! I was pretty proud of myself, and my core and stabilising muscles. After the bad injury I had a few years ago I’d never dreamt of performing something like that ❤️
Too bad no one saw my exercise, a part from a couple of guys who applauded me. Better than nothing!

Then we head over Mother India cafe, where we had a lot of good Indian food. The funny thing was the service. It looked like the staff had no clue about what we ordered and to whom to deliver the food. To be honest, I’m not sure if I wouldn’t be able to handle it better, since we were a group of thirty people spread out into two long tables, all cheering and laughing out loud.

The cherry on top was when the lightbulbs in the room started exploding for some reasons, and then a waiter made a tall pile of dishes crash on the ground. It was like we were on Candid Camera, but the food was utterly excellent, so thumbs up!

Edinburgh has been the perfect setting for a lovely evening with the best people.

As a nice side note, the afternoon I arrived in Edinburgh I also met up with my cousin Antonella who moved there last August from sunny Sardinia. It looks like she’s settled there well and I’m happy about it. This is a (rough) pic we took just before having haggis, one of the most delicious food on Earth (that’s why I’m smiling with all my teeth!)
Me, Franz and cousin Antonella in Edinbugh

And if you think that was the end of the fun, think again. The day after the Automattic Christmas party I headed to Matlock, Derbyshire, for the annual Human Made Christmas dinner. I wasn’t the only Automattician invited, as my the girlfriend of my colleague Jack, Daisy, works at Human Made together with my husband Franz (of course plus ones were welcomed in both dinners).
That was my second Human Made Christmas party, and as always it’s been a pleasure to meet up with people I can call family already.

Everybody was dressed smart casual, and I was too – underneath my brilliant Code is Poetry Christmas jumper I sported with proud also in Edinburgh.
I didn’t shoot any pictures in Matlock because time flew and was too busy chatting with everyone, but the great Noel Tock took a couple of pics for me:

All in all, I can cry out loud that I’m so privileged to be part of the Automattic and WordPress families ❤️

Taken at Edinburgh and Matlock, United Kingdom
More pictures and video have been added to my Instagram Stories! Have you missed them out?

Beautiful Norway, il mio viaggio in Norvegia – a trip in the Vikings land

me in the beautiful norwayHo trascorso dieci giorni in Norvegia, tra Oslo (per il WordCamp) e Trysil, una cittadina ai confini con la Svezia. É impossibile raccontare gli odori e i sapori di questa terra (sì, ho mangiato carne di renna), ma ho sintetizzato i punti salienti della mia vacanza. Eccoli.

I spent ten wonderful days in Norway, travelling between Oslo (also to attend the WordCamp) and  Trysil, a town pretty close to Sweden. It’s impossible to tell all the smells and the tastes of this amazing land (yes, I ate reindeers meat). This is a brief summary of my holidays.

beautiful norway noel tock

Credits Noel Tock

Natura: la Norvegia è un posto magico. Immersa in un’alta coltre di bianco, non è mai uguale a se stessa. Ogni posto è diverso, ogni angolo ha il suo “bianco” dettaglio che lo rende unico. Il riflesso della neve sulle nuvole e sui monti crea delle combinazioni cromatiche che ti lasciano senza fiato.

Nature: Norway is a magical place. Although it’s covered by metres of white, any landscape never looks like another one. Every place is different, every corner has its own white detail that makes it special. The reflections of the snow on the clouds and the mounts create such a breathless chromatic combinations!

Norway snowflakeFreddo: un mito da sfatare. Il freddo umido di Londra o di Tursenia, anche a +5°C, è molto peggio dei -13°C di Trysil o i -9°C di Oslo. Il freddo norvegese è secco e non entra nelle ossa. La neve, poi, è splendida: leggera e quasi impalpabile. Non avevo mai visto un cristallo di neve a occhio nudo. Alla fine, ho passato più di un quarto d’ora sotto la neve a osservare i cristalli che si scioglievano sul mio giubbotto.

Cold: a myth to dispel. The humid +5°C of London or Tursenia is way worse than the -13°C of Trysil or the slightly windy -9°C of Oslo. Norwegian cold is quite dry and easy to cope with, you don’t feel it deep on your bones. Moreover, the snow is wonderful, light and impalpable. I had never seen a snowflake so clearly with my eyes, so I spent more than fifteen minutes outside watching the snow landing on my jacket. 

wodrpress (vi)kings Credits Noel Tock

Credits Noel Tock

WordCamp Oslo: il mio primo WordCamp, davvero interessante. Ho scoperto che dietro l’interfaccia di WordPress c’è una grande community di persone che collaborano per rendere WordPress una piattaforma migliore. Ho assistito a degli interventi molto interessanti, non solo di programmazione, ma anche di natura più commerciale. Da autrice di fiction è tutto grasso che cola.

WordCamp Oslo: my first WordCamp, hopefully not the last one. I found out that behind the WordPress brand there’s a great community of people who cooperate to improve WordPress itself. I attended a lot of speeches about several subjects, about coding and commercial/business matters. As a crime self published author, every little helps.

Norway company - Human made &friends

Credits Zoe Hoyle

Compagnia: ho passato 10 giorni con il team al completo di Human Made, più Kate BroughtonSonja Leix e Leanne Willmot. Ci siamo divertiti un sacco, ma ho anche avuto l’occasione di lavorare un po’ a Pull the Trigger. Ho visto la squadra di Human Made al lavoro ed è stato molto interessante. Tom, Joe e Noel hanno creato qualcosa di davvero speciale, quasi magico. Vederli in azione è un piacere. Il nome dell’azienda rispecchia in pieno la loro etica del lavoro.

Company: I spent ten days with the Human Made team, plus Kate BroughtonSonja Leix and Leanne Willmot. We had a lot of fun, but we had also time to work – I was on Pull the Trigger‘s final draft. I saw the Human Made team at work and it has been so inspiring. Tom, Joe and Noel had managed to create something which is truly amazing and special. The company name reflects their job philosophy and I feel lucky to have enjoyed a sample of it.

-9°C Jacuzzi Norway

Credits Zoe Hoyle

Attività: ogni giorno abbiamo fatto qualcosa di nuovo e bellissimo. A causa del mio infortunio senza fine, purtroppo non ho potuto provare gli sci e lo snowboard, ma mi sono consolata con un’escursione notturna nei boschi con la slitta trainata dai cavalli (e abbiamo visto un cielo stellato che ricorderò per sempre), una fonduta in cima a una montagna, dopo un avventuroso viaggio in slitta e gatto delle nevi, e un pomeriggio in una spa. Mai fatto un bagno nella Jacuzzi all’esterno, mentre la gente scia? Noi lo abbiamo fatto, e credetemi, non avrei mai pensato che sarebbe stato bellissimo.

Activities: every day was different, with lovely activities. Due to my never ending injury I could not try skiing or snowboarding, but I enjoyed a nocturnal horse sleigh inside the woods (and I saw a starry sky I will never forget) and a delicious fondue on the top of a mountain, after an adventurous journey on a sleigh and a snow cat. Have you ever spent an afternoon at the spa? Have you ever tried a Jacuzzi outside, when it’s -9°C? I have, and trust me, I had never thought that it would have been so cool.