Kindred spirits

Kindred spirits

Because I work for an international company – and because I am actually the Dutch office – all my colleagues are foreign. Because we work on different projects all over the world we rarely meet each other. But two weeks ago I met all my colleagues in Florida for the yearly corporate event: Connect 2015.

It was a great experience! Several hundreds of co-workers stayed in the same resort and met for different sessions: both business oriented and fun. In the spirit of ‘Connect’ we were asked to share a room. Of course it was possible to get a single room with extra charge. But as you might expect – me being Dutch and all – I went for the free of charge option. Luckily we could pick our own roommate. And it didn’t take me long to decide who I would like to invite to share a room: my Italian colleague Francesca. I had met Francesca only once at the get-together of the European employees in our European main office in the beautiful sea side resort Sestri Levante. She immediately caught my attention because of her transparent personality, her intelligent questions and the strong opinions that she had on for instance privacy on the Internet. In short, characteristics that made me appreciate her immediately! We didn’t find the time to talk much at the time. We do chat on Skype on a regular basis, but that is mostly business related. Therefore I looked forward to sharing a room with her. And to my delight the original exasperation to share a room turned out to be a huge joy and privilege!

And even though we are like black and white in many ways

  • I am an Internet ‘slut’ and she’s really private
  • I am a loud person, she is a modest person
  • I react impulsive, see takes the time to think things through
  • I have short blond hair and she has long dark hair

Francesca and I found out that we are actual kindred spirits. We share the passion for everything that has to do with Jane Austen. What luck to share a room with a Jane adept! And what fun to be able to go into details of one of my most favorite authors of all time! I never meet Jane fans, even though I regularly show myself in public with my ‘I ♥ Mr Darcy’ tote bag.

I had a lovely evening discussing the books, the movies, the characters and the trip I’m going to make with my mother to memorable Jane Austen sites this summer. It felt like being college roomies. To be honest I actually enjoyed every conversation that I had with her. So therefore I want to thank my employer for giving me the opportunity to get to know Francesca better and to connect with her on a kindred spirit level. This years’ Connect has really lived up to its name!

Post Scriptum:
Francesca, this blogpost is an invitation and encouragement for you to share your great thoughts on philosophy to all children of the world. I hope you don’t mind that I have crossed your Internet privacy boundaries. I assume that the disguise complies with the necessary need for privacy.
And to Dorine Peters: thanks for encouraging me to start writing again.

2 Reacties op “Kindred spirits

  1. Dear Bea,

    you really are the only person in the world who could come up with the idea to write a blogpost on someone who wants to stay off the Internet and keep Zuckerberg’s claws off her identity! Never mind, Brin and Page know it all already, and thanks to our trip, the US have now the unabridged collection of my 10 fingerprints – there’s nowhere I can hide. My only hope are yellow sunglasses and a fake mustache.

    You define me private, modest and thoughtful, but it would be more correct to say that beside you I am a boiled potato. You are an inspiration to all the people you meet, you touch hearts and souls, you are a believer and a seer, you are everywhere all the time. And if I were a man, I would be in love with you and I would learn Dutch to read your blog and I would emerge from a lake in a wet shirt just for you to desire me.

    So, because you said so, and even dreamt of it in one of our communal nights, I will find a way to reach out to children to talk about philosophy, and maybe one of them will finally reveal to me the meaning of life.

    Thanks, sweet crazy Bea. May you dream of Darcy tonight, and may that dream come true ;-)

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