Peace, Love, and Chicken Tikka Masala
Last Saturday, December 3 was the annual Euro Jet Holiday Party. Any doubters about the global presence of Euro Jet would have been proven wrong. It was truly an International gathering with staff in attendance from the Balkans to the Baltics mixed in with Ukraine and Kyrgyzstan.
While watching a hodgepodge of Eastern Europeans get down to the YMCA (apparently an International crowd pleaser), I was struck by the open seating arrangement. The Romanians and Bulgarians sat together, the Financial Team sat together as did the Operations team. Traveling in packs is not just a freshman year of University phenomenon.
But joking aside, here is something that was really interesting
I am in my mid 30s and studied political science in University. Do the math and that means I attended school in the mid to late 90s. Google the biggest International news story of the 1990s and it is no doubt the Balkan War. Certain rouge entities proved (as would Rwanda at the same time) that the world had not moved on from the horrors of World War II and mankind would continue to commit shameless atrocities.
And now we are in 2011. The war is over and the countries all get along.
It was clearly evident at the table in the far right hand corner (nearest to the Chicken Tikka Masala nonetheless) where the Euro Jet team from the Balkans sat very happily together. This included country managers and staff from Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Slovenia, Albania, and Montenegro. Their languages are very similar as is their love of a sweet honey flavored liquor.
When I commented on how nice it was to see the Balkans all sitting next to each other, one of the representative from Zagreb, Croatia turned to me said “We were at war 15 years ago, but today we are all friends. We are having a good time.”
This region has gone through so much and for so long and at one point all hope seemed to have been lost. That is all in the past and this region (Croatia is #1) is now right at the top of our flight of activity (don’t be jealous Bulgaria).
So while the dancing, the food, and the limited libations went on through the night, a little piece of modern history was highlighted. Perhaps at no better setting than a Holiday party.
And for those who actually read this through, are you thinking what I am thinking…..Chicken Tikka Masala at a Czech Christmas Party?