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Heading to Helsinki?

A number of friends and colleagues are among the many lucky library folks heading to Helsinki this week for the IFLA World Library and Information Congress. I wish I could be among them. I’ve had two nice long visits to Helsinki in recent years, most recently for 2 weeks this past May. It’s a lovely city, big enough to be cosmopolitan and full of variety, but not overwhelming and exhausting. For me, it’s a “just right” kind of city. And it’s just a short train or bus ride to get out to the countryside, the lakes and the shore. Though I’m certainly not an expert on Helsinki, I wanted to share a some of my experiences & tips.

First, starting at the airport – visit the airport book swap room (Terminal 2, second floor, next to gate 27) and pick up or drop off a book. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to fill the place full of books from librarians all over the world. And maybe with a label of some sort that promotes libraries?

Bicycle lanes – Finns take their bike lanes seriously.  You should too.  If you’re an exhausted, jet-lagged tourist, dazzled by all the sunshine and find yourself walking down a bicycle stenciled portion of the street, (more…)

Great customer service

Some kudos to these companies for their great customer service this past week:

  • Hertz – I called to confirm a reservation, they found me a cheaper rate. Nearly $100 cheaper! Yay.
  • Coldwater Creek – Stopped at local store to return an item from mail order. Noticed one of the items I’d decided to keep was on sale in the store. They refunded the price difference! Ok, I turned right around and spent that savings on something else.
  • Hampton Inn – A phone call from them to let me know that their Internet service might be interrupted during an upcoming stay. Wow, they must have made a zillion phone calls. 
  • Best Western Monterey – Helpful, friendly reservations person who answered all my questions and was really pleasant in the process.
  • Ok US AIR! – you’ve got a lot to live up to tomorrow…… Please astonish me – in a good way!

Upcoming Schedule

I just realized what a busy couple of weeks I have coming up. Not that the last few weeks haven’t been busy too….

Here’s where I’ll be teaching and speaking:

  • April 21 – Google Docs After School Workshop,  Questar III School Library System, Castleton, NY
  • April 23 – Flip Out Video Editing Workshop for MidHudson Library System, Poughkeepsie, NY
  • April 24 – Career Paths as Information Professionals Panel Discussion at Upstate NY SLA Conference, Albany, NY
  • April 27 – Screencasting Workshop, WNYRLC, Buffalo NY
  • April 28 – Online Marketing & Outreach, WNYRLC, Buffalo NY
  • May 2 – Using Web 2.0 Tools to Boost Your Program, NYLA SLMS Spring Conference, Saratoga, NY
  • May 2 – Google Tools for Collaboration & Productivity, NYLA SLMS Spring Conference, Saratoga, NY
  • May 5 – Delicious After School Workshop, Questar III School Library System, Castleton, NY
  • May 8 – Online Outreach and Marketing: Taking Advantage of Web Services to Promote Your Library, Westchester Library Association Annual Conference,  Tarrytown, NY
  • May 12 – Google Docs, Capital Region BOCES School Library System Liaison Meeting, Albany, NY

Really looking forward to meeting lots of friends – new and old – at these meetings and workshops!