When Dan asked me to join the team for WordCamp Europe 2019 in Berlin it was a mix of, mostly, over-excited emotions and a dose of fear of the unknown, but yes, mostly utterly chuffed to little mint balls (aka very, very pleased).
We arrived in good time to settle into the motel for the weekend, meet up with some of our sponsors and friends within the WordPress community, and test out the mobile podcasting kit setup; throughout this weekend we intended to talk with as many people as we could fit in about their experiences of and around WordCamps and the WordPress community. Plus, of course, meeting lots more fellow WordCampers and sharing just what Big Orange Heart means, our plans and intentions.
Nathan, happy with the podcasting
toys kit, started the interviews with Robby McCullough followed by an impromptu “chat” with Raj, Vito and our Giles, while I had the privilege to interview Birgit in the calm and very-nice-to-have volunteers’ lounge (and now I’ve the post of my life to write to do her justice). My first interview for Big Orange Heart, and Nathan had not warned me about how blown away we can be by the people we interview; I look forward to never getting used to that.
Up bright and early, on with our orange t-shirts, and into the venue to prepare for a chat with Matt Mullenweg, and although I was unable to join them, the chaps managed without me 😉 and had a positive chat with him. The rest of the weekend was packed with interviews in “Nathan’s Corner” with many amazing WordPress people – we have so many podcasts and posts to share with you through the coming weeks (or months, even!). We even managed to get to some of the talks – not as many as we probably should have, but with such awesomeness in the “hallway track” (as is often the way), it was not as easy as you might think. I certainly enjoyed a spot of mindfulness in the Wellness “track” – definitely something to encourage and support, as well as some insightful talks on such a variety of topics, including those that are more personal.
After the Conference
Before returning home, a welcome Sunday for gathering our thoughts ready for the next phase of all we want to bring you, and enjoyed an amazing sightseeing boat trip around Berlin. The team had an wonderful, if incredibly busy, time and a little calm to take it all in – the meetings, the podcasting, the atmosphere, the ideas – and there are so very many ideas – the feedback from the WordPress community to all that Big Orange Heart is doing and will do for you.
Even towards the end of the Contributor Day, sat within the huge lobby of the Estrel hotel, listening to people from all over Europe, I knew this to be an awesome WordCamp and one that will fire us up to do even more than we’d intended (this may just be me, but knowing the team, I am sure this is all of us). As I write this I know Dan will be on his way home from WordCamp Boston, and there are many others that we look forward to attending and enjoying, all the better to know what you want and need of us. See you soon…