Wow! Vancouver, B.C. is one excited and happy city. They are so energized by the Olympics that the crowds are out and about at all hours, whoopin’ it up and generally displaying their sincere delight at the world class event taking place in their city. Supposedly, this is more people than any one event has ever had but even with all the people, it’s very orderly and people are kind.
Let’s hope that trend continues for the hockey game tonight! USA versus Canada – we’ll be there in the stands, cheering for Team USA.
Yesterday was an incredible day (I’ve uploaded some of the photos to this Flickr set). Metro Vancouver did a great job with organizing the day to ensure we got the most out of every hour. First, we went to a 3 hour learning session on how to best do business in Vancouver. We learned about the tax advantages to doing business in B.C. (such as lower corporate taxes and streamlined tax reporting processes), the social advantages for doing business in Canada (all your employees have medical) and the nice business climate (stable banking system, no outlandish personal injury lawsuits). By the time the morning breakfast and learning time was over, Chris and I were both interested in learning more about opening branch offices in Vancouver. We had some one on one time with tax attorneys to talk about next steps and will be following up on those conversations in the next few weeks.
We also took a tour of Richmond (a suburb of Vancouver) and the Hudson Bay Company. We learned about Six Sigma and how it can be used to implement time and efficiency savings for warehouses. My mind was completely blown by how cool all the equipment at the distribution center of the Hudson Bay Company was. The scale and scope of what they have accomplished is incredible! I left inspired to re-look at how we do all of our warehouse operations at Bramble Berry to look for simple things we can do to improve on efficiency and simplify operations.
Then it was on to the main event – speed skating! We watched long track Men’s 1,500 metres. It was incredible – so thrilling, so energizing and so completely entrancing. The races were lightning fast and it was such a unique experience to be there when the upset, a Netherlands’s skater, took the gold.
We ended the night at the Holland Heineken House.You can imagine how excited the huge crowd was that they had just taken gold.
We rode the Sky Train back to our hotel and were asleep by midnight so we could save all of our energy for the USA-Canada Hockey game tonight! Our train leaves tomorrow at 6:40 a.m. to take us back home so don’t be surprised if you don’t get much of a blog post from me until the evening. Monday is a jam packed (in a good way!) day at work at Bramble Berry. =) Until then, happy soaping!