An event such as the Annual Conference obviously occasionally creates situations that are more or less comical or serious, though are not directly related to the ‘official’ business. There is a wide variety of examples, which you can judge for yourself.
Everyone could see: it was ‘all hands on deck’ for all the IPSEOA teams in all areas to make sure that this 28th Annual Conference was a success. But it was the organisation of the gala evening that required an extra special expenditure of energy. Not least to obtain authorisation. Not a simple matter in military spheres. And then transporting absolutely everything from the school to the base required extraordinary planning. A very big slap on the back for everyone!
The Front Office competition was taking place in a room next to one where, just as on a station concourse, lots of people were walking past causing a high level of noise; the man in charge of the competition therefore transformed himself into a sandwich-board man and walked around with a billboard on which were written the words, ‘silence please, competition is on’. He did it with a smile, however.
A greetings card
Natalia Komanicka, the AEHT’s official translator, was stricken with a serious illness and had not been able to come to Cervia to carry out her task, to the great chagrin of those who know her. This was why President Ana Paula Pais passed round a pretty greetings card for signature, to wish Natalia a rapid recovery and all the best during her treatment.
Mobiles and smartphones
It’s no secret that everyone walks around with their mobile or their smartphone in their hand. This is nothing new but when there is such a concentration of young people, it does become comical.
A souvenir bag
The Cervia team had thought of everything. In a bag branded with the colours of the IPSEOA, each participant was given, not just a number of documents crammed with information about Emilia Romagna and its products including the famous ‘parmigiano’, but in addition, when their badge was handed over, some implements to serve it and a tin of Cirio tomato sauce. As well as a USB stick containing all the necessary information.
A much appreciated task
The judges in charge of the judging panels at the competitions were not only obliged to observe the contestants during their tests, they also had to thoroughly taste, and give marks to, the dishes prepared by the competitors. This was a task which they obviously enjoyed.
The person in charge of the wine service competition had given instructions to one of the School’s students not to let anyone into the room during the wine-tasting test, with the exception of the AEHT photographer. The latter – your devoted servant – was refused entry on three occasions by this young lady, who would not listen to my protestations.
In case of possible illness during the competitions the organisers even arranged for an ambulance and its team to be on standby in front of the school. Very fortunately the team had no cause to intervene!
Red, green and yellow cards
There can be no General Assembly without the participants being provided with red, green and yellow cards for the different votes that are likely. General Secretary Nadine Schintgen and President Ana Paula Pais handled the task of handing out the cards and having the participants sign the attendance register. It seems that the green card was the only one to be used!
USB sticks: we’re making progress!
There was a time when, at the General Assemblies, the promoters of the various events often had problems with their presentations. It would seem that these problems belong to the past because this year everyone had come along with a USB stick containing the relevant video. Well done!
Serge Sevaux, the ‘missus dominicus’ or grand ambassador of the Grand Marnier company and a regular attender at the Annual Conference, had been unable to attend the gala evening. He therefore delegated President Ana Paula Pais and General Secretary Nadine Schintgen to present, on his behalf, two bottles of this liqueur: one to Giuliano Poletti, Minister of Labour, the other to Colonel Tomaso Invrea, Chief of Staff of the Italian Air Force. The two men were delighted with their gifts. Rightly so!
A pretty knot in the colours of Italy
A small gesture on arrival at the Cervia air-force base: all the participants were presented with a pretty little knot in the colours of Italy, to be pinned to their dress or jacket.
A kind of serving dish for snacks
For good measure, at the end of the gala evening, a number of serving dishes for snacks were on offer, gifts from Villeroy et Boch, a faithful sponsor of the AEHT!