Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The second of two hippos that I encountered in France

My week in France was very intense from a work perspective, and I was working until about 9:00 pm most of the time that I was in France. There was, however, one exception. Because many of the attendees of these business meetings were from outside of France, the organizers planned a special dinner in Paris. We were not told the location, but just before I arrived, I was asked if I was allergic to horses. Luckily for me, I wasn't, because we ended up at the Hippodrome Paris Vincennes. This is a horse racing venue, established in the 19th century, and host to both horse races and huge music concerts in the 20th century.

Well, Bono wasn't there the night that we came, so we only had the horses to deal with. We started the evening by taking a tour of the stables. The tour was conducted in French, but one of our group translated. We then went to the upper level to eat dinner and watch the horses. Inasmuch as this was a French restaurant, and not an American one, the dinner lasted through all seven of the races.

So what did I eat? Well, after the evening was over, I communicated to a fellow Disney-lover that I didn't eat Bambi, but that I did eat Donald, and he was delicious.

And, of course, there was horse racing, and gambling. One would think that the material that we were studying during the week, which included tools for risk analysis and mitigation, would have helped us in selecting our horses. Well, the tools certainly didn't help me, since I lost two euros on the single race on which I bet. Then again, perhaps the fact that I only bet on one race indicated that I was doing a good job at reducing my risk.

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