Tag Archives: Travel

Highlights from the Summer of 2013

The Summer of 2013 was truly amazing for me with a wide range of travel and big events.

It seemed appropriate to jot everything down while the memories were still fresh:

  • Wrote and then read the first chapter of my sequel to the Submarine Warriors novel to a great group of elementary school kids at Eagle Rock.  Needless to say, the Underworlders Strike Back.
  • I published my 5th computer book.  This title is “Keeping Windows 8 Tablets in Sync with SQL Server 2012.”  It covers the creation of virtualized SQL Server, Active Directory, and IIS instances in Hyper-V where they can be uploaded to Windows Azure IaaS to support cloud-based data sync operations.  I describe DDL, DML & sync operations with SQL Server Compact as as how to build Modern tablet apps.
  • I was a speaker at Microsoft TechEd North America in New Orleans where I presented three Windows Phone 8 sessions including:
    • The Phone That Has Everything the Enterprise Needs: Windows Phone 8
    • Developing Large-Scale Enterprise Mobile Apps for Windows Phone 8 and Windows Tablets
    • The Future of HTML5 Mobile and Hybrid Web Apps for Windows Phone 8 and Windows Tablets
  • I enjoyed the famous Jazz Brunch outside on the courtyard at The Court of Two Sisters in the French Quarter.
  • I walked into Peaches Records to check out some vinyl.  Since I was wearing my Microsoft speaker shirt, the owner thought I was there to help them with customer support.  After uninstalling two anti-virus and firewall packages that were both running concurrently, I restored the owner’s faith in Windows 8.
  • I had a wonderful dinner with old friends at Emeril Lagasse’s NOLA.
  • I won a speaker award from the Microsoft Executive Briefing Center for providing Best Customer Focus.  Believe it or not, I delivered over 50 Windows Phone 8 sessions to corporate executives visiting from all over the world in FY13.
  • I was a speaker at Microsoft TechEd Europe in Madrid where I presented the same three breakout session as I did in New Orleans.
  • Had a great dinner near the speaker hotel with my friend Jeff Prosise and decided to make training videos for WintellectNOW.
  • Enjoyed being the loudest person at TechEd as I delivered over a dozen enterprise mobility sessions at the Windows Phone booth with dark sunglasses, a cigar, and a microphone.  I had special guest appearances from will.i.am and Daft Punk.
  • UK Country Drinks with Sarah Lamb and Andy Wigley and then a birthday party dinner for Raleigh in a cool part of Madrid.
  • Flew to London to hang out with Vicky, Ken and their kids at their home in St. John’s Wood.  When Julia and Rob arrived, we had a mini family reunion going.
  • Via a FaceTime conversation, Vicky and I convinced Cathy to drop everything a make a last minute flight from Seattle to London the next day.  Thanks Delta air miles!
  • Bought Churchill’s “Their Finest Hour” at Hatchards bookstore in Piccadilly Circus that’s been around since 1797.  Remarkably, when I was paying for the book and the woman at the counter noticed I was from Seattle, she asked how things were going at Elliot Bay Book Company?  Ah, the small world of literature.
  • Cathy and I spent a wonderful weekend walking along the Thames, crossed the Millennium Bridge to visit  Shakespeare’s Globe,   and trekked out to The All England Lawn Tennis Club.
  • Walked across Abbey Road and had my picture taken.
  • Had a fun dinner with Cathy, Vicky, Ken, Julia, and Rob at The Pig’s Ear in Chelsea.
  • Took the Eurostar to Paris to ensure we were out of England and in France in time for the Fourth of July.  There’s no better way to travel.
  • My good friend Arnaud let Cathy and I stay at his apartment while he was out of town.  I loved how the bed is pulled down from the ceiling to sleep in it.
  • Dinner with Thierry, Cathy, and David at Le Café du Commerce in the 15th arrondissement.  We sat on the third floor and dined under the stars because of the cool retractable roof.
  • Scotch at Harry’s New York Bar near Place de Vendome is my regular hangout when I’m in Paris.
  • Cathy and I spent several hours roaming around the grounds of Roland-Garros and immersed ourselves in French Open history.  We actually got to walk on the hallowed clay courts themselves.
  • I created the official Seattle Bumbershoot app for Windows Phone 8 to provide festival goers with a schedule of events.  I worked with the One Reel folks and wrote all the code outside sitting on my deck over a weekend.
  • At MGX in Atlanta, I enjoyed sitting at the counter at the Waffle House in Centennial Olympic Park teaching fellow Microsofties how to sell mobile solutions while they ate waffles and sausage.  You never know where you’re going to be able to help someone.  BTW, have you ever tried their hashbrowns with cream gravy?
  • Had lots of fun with all my Windows Phone friends outdoors at the Pitbull + Usher concert in Centennial Olympic Park.
  • I was a speaker at TechReady in Seattle where I delivered the same content as I did for the previous two TechEd events.
  • My favorite highlight of the summer was when I slept under a tree one afternoon at Madison Park.
  • Had a nice time hanging out with Jeff and shopping for waterfront homes on Bainbridge Island.
  • Cathy and I made our annual trek to my spirtual home of Walla Walla to taste great wines.  We stayed at Walla Faces Inn at the Vineyard which is our favorite spot.
  • Cathy and I enjoyed in immersive, 2-hour wine tour at Long Shadows Vintners where we learned alot about the art and science of winemaking.  The The Chihuly tasting room was just beautiful.
  • One of the evenings Cathy and I had dinner in the vineyard with a French baguette, Brie, spicy Soppressata, and a crisp, Walla Walla Rose.  Memorable.
  • Packed up the kids and drove up to our home away from home, Whistler/Blackcomb in beautiful British Columbia.  The scenery along the the Sea to Sky Highway is hard to beat.
  • Everyone was thrilled that my Mom flew up to join us in Whistler.
  • We went to Cows for ice cream every night in Whistler Village.
  • Cathy and I ventured into the Belvedere Ice Room for a chilly Vodka tasting wearing heavy coats.  Definitely a super-cool moment!
  • I volunteered my time to develop a grant submission and reporting website for the Riverview Education Foundation running in Windows Azure.
  • Created my first WintelllectNOW video that covers Windows Phone 8 in the enterprise.  Go check it out at wintellectnow.com and use my promo code TIFFANY-13 to view all the great training content.
  • Joined the Windows Intune team to help grow Microsoft’s Mobile Device Management (MDM) business.
  • My blog https://robtiffany.com was named one of BizTech Magazine’s 50 Must-Read IT Blogs for 2013.

I am grateful.


Sharing my knowledge and helping others never stops, so connect with me on my blog at https://robtiffany.com , follow me on Twitter at https://twitter.com/RobTiffany and on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/robtiffany