SES Munich.

Still reeling with jet-lag after China, I popped back home for a couple of days to empty my suitcase, wash the contents and head off again.

And as I arrive in Munich, who’s the first person I bump into?

Yes, my great pal and world-touring counterpart, Bill Hunt. It’s only a week since we were having lunch in China!

Actually, Bill was the first person I bumped into when I got downtown. But Danny Sullivan and I had agreed to hook up in Munich airport and share a ride to the hotel. So it was really Danny that I bumped into first. It was a great opportunity for the two of us to have a proper catch-up.

Although we see each other at every SES, sometimes we don’t even get a chance to have a beer together, let alone have dinner. So we yakked for a while in the cab and then had a chance to get together again for dinner with a small group, later on.

Bill Hunt is being hidden (almost) by his colleague Sara, who runs his Swedish operation. Opposite her, on the right is Jonathan from Commission Junction, also based in Stockholm, but he’s a home grown Geordie, just like me. Behind him is Danny’s brother-in-law, Gernot. And the great man himself, Danny sits next to my empty chair. Well somebody has to take the pics!

Anybody notice, there’s a distinct lack of pictures of international man of mystery, Thomas Bindl.

SES Munich is one of the smaller, more intimate shows. I remember thinking last year what a great atmosphere it has. And certainly not disappointed this year.

Also, these smaller shows have such great lunches. Hot buffet on the 20th floor this time. So much nicer than the lunch boxes at the major shows.

One thing that really stuck out this year, was how much more advanced the audience was to last year’s show. I did my usual link basics presentation which was attached to my German team mate, Alan Webb’s more advanced tactical presentation.

We had some very good questions I thought. And yes, here’s a pic of the audience to give them something to link to!

Thomas was on the big spam debate session with Danny and Stefan Karzauninkat, from Seekport. There’s a friendly hug going on there, but it did start with Danny faking beating Thomas up!

Munich is Thomas’ home city. And Thomas is one of the nicest guys in the business. He’s very proud of his city and makes a most excellent host. Everyone agreed (the English speaking contingent, that is) that his selection of bars and restaurants was absolutely wonderful, yet again.

However, for me this time, the highlight was lunch in a real Bavarian beer garden. The English Beer Garden, no less! Thomas had arranged a kind of, German SEO roadshow for the Saturday afternoon after SES. And before he and I went along, he treated me to lunch in true Munich style.

The atmosphere was wonderful, with people just chilling and eating… And doing what you do in a beer garden – drinking great beer!

The whole thing was topped off with the sound of a real German brass band up in the tower in traditional dress giving it oompah, oompah all the way!

And so we headed downtown to yet another wonderful location chosen by Thomas. It was a huge restaurant/ bar with cavernous rooms, lots of people and plenty of good cheer.

Upstairs, there was a section set aside for Germany’s finest (spammers, that is) to get together and talk about their… weapons of spam induction!

This was a really great crowd and I only wish I’d had more time to spend with them. However, it was my daughter’s 18th birthday at the weekend. And if I hadn’t made it back home for that… You have no idea how miserable my life could have been made!

One thing I couldn’t figure out as I headed back to the airport. Why is Munich littered with multi-colored Lions?

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