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Vip’s Corner: That Place in Canada

Hello everyone. Back by popular demand, I bring you the next installment of my blog. Seeing as this past weekend was the Honda Indy Toronto race, I suppose that would be a good place to begin.

The race week began on Monday with a truck ride to Canada. I do feel, however, that the events Sunday are indeed worth noting. Being the enormous nerd I am, I felt it to be a good idea staying up all night playing games on my computer. Between this, an inordinate amount of soda, and a last minute laundry effort, I made it to bed around 5:30 in the morning. I was then rudely awoken by my alarm at 6:15 the same morning, to make a 7:00 a.m. departure from the shop with the one and only Steve Barry.

Apparently still revved up on caffeine, I was actually able to stay awake for a solid two hours or so before promptly crashing until the border crossing. Here we encountered an overly chipper customs employee who insisted that our forms stated we were bringing the truck into Canada to race it. I’m not sure how many semi-trucks get raced in Canada, or anywhere for that matter, but if I were to guess I’d say not many. After crossing the border, I did the first thing everyone should do when they get to Canada: I went to sleep again.

Tuesday we set up the hospitality unit. This was when I realized I did not bring socks with me. After digging through my suitcase to no avail, I was forced to accept the fact that I would be setting up in flip flops. All things considered, not a terrible thing; my feet definitely stayed cooler than normal. However there’s always the risk of dropping one of the seemingly infinite number of metal posts on them, adding a true sense of danger to this weekend’s setup.

The weekend was then spent in client services, taking care of the DHL crew the entire time, and ExactTarget on race day. This mainly consisted of making sure people were happy and bringing them to the garages for tours and meet-and-greets. The goal is to make sure that our guests have a good experience meeting the drivers, getting pictures and autographs. Even if the driver only has a short amount of time with each person, we want to make the experience memorable for them.

My dad and brother showed up for the race and we proceeded to watch over half the field spin or crash at some point. Somehow out of the chaos, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Marco Andretti finished 3rd and 4th respectively, which I have to say is a very nice result to be seeing.

Driven by the idea of leaving Canada, we tore down the hospitality tent in what must be record time, despite the inevitable frustration of “the wall.” And thus we made the trek home, un-showered and weary. Though probably less of the weary part for me, as I slept pretty much the entire drive again. I’m starting to enjoy truck rides.

-Jeff

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