3 days before TED2017

3 days before Ted.

Friday, 6:32 pm. A long day but a good one. The first floor of the Vancouver Convention Center is a hive of activity.

Our job today was relatively simple: Get two espresso stations running and test everything by making coffee. Mission accomplished!

Tomorrow 3 more stations to set up, but first they have to be built as there are partnered with some significant corporate sponsors.

It's a little scary as there isn't much time, and the espresso technicians are anxious to join the festivities of the SCA Expo in Seattle this week.

Speaking of which, I am hopeful I will be able to escape Ted2017 briefly on Saturday night, to attend the party at Caffe Vita, in celebration of Gianni Cassatini's 80th birthday.
Gianni might be the world's most interesting man, in coffee. I'd hate to miss it.

But the consolation prize of being here at Ted2017 is pretty exciting.

Everywhere you turn, you can't help but bump into someone moving some furniture, an electrician wiring something or a carpenter.... building something I can only describe as.. well.. a cathedral!

There are little cozy zones of seating in every little corner, twist and turn. Places where a small group can splinter off into private discussion, or a heated quorum. Of course there are a zillion TV screens to make sure nobody misses any of the talks.

The project seems monumental yet it is being pulled off by a relatively young group of organizers, with their faces buried in their laptops and phones glued to their ears.

The setting is breathtaking. Pictures cannot do it justice.

Imagine making coffee everyday, framed by the snow capped "Lions Mountains" of Vancouver, with a carpet of blue ocean in front of you. Accented by seaplanes, taking off and landing, with the occasional cruise ship passing by, as sea birds fly past.

It almost erases the time pressure of setting up and organizing the Ted2017 coffee stations.

ALMOST erases....... one of the Ted2017 managers here joked that if one of the TED speakers got delayed, the people would understand, but if the coffee bars suddenly stopped making coffee, there would be a riot!

So yes. there is that tick-tock in the back of my brain.. But it isn't so noticeable when I'm sitting on a sleekly upholstered contemporary couch, with my feet up on a mod coffee table, warm computer on my lap, just drinking it all in.

Canadian Barista Academy Trainer enjoying the view from TED2017
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