TELUS had sent me to pick up a few awards for the innovative videos that TELUS Studios has made over the past year but the moment I stepped off the plane in Barcelona, I realized that this trip would be far more than just award shows and trophies. It was an opportunity of a lifetime to experience the culture and meet the people…and what better way to experience the culture than on the back of motorbike.
I rejected all the sales pitches to rent the fancy new scooters and instead asked if I could instead rent the 1978 Suzuki 250 that was tucked in the back of the shop. Despite it’s ripped seat and broken mirror it came to life after a few starts. It was perfect to get me into those tucked away little alleys and shops inaccessible by car and to see the beauty of the Spanish architect Gaudi throughout the city. There is just too much too see if you rely only on walking and taxis.
After visiting the shops and cafés of the old town I headed for the Spanish hills. I drove for about an hour and turned off some random exit and followed the streets into a tiny Spanish town north of Barcelona. I found the city square and had an espresso on the 300 year old cobblestone promenade.
I was lost and so asked the local policemen who were also grabbing a coffee in the shade of the tree but no one spoke English so I just looked on a map and went for it. I found the most beautiful mountain road full of motorbike-leaning s-curves that wound around vineyards and Spanish villas high in the rolling hills of Spain. Every now and then I would get a glimpse of the Mediterranean and Barcelona in the distance. It was truly the ride of my life.
The awards night in Barcelona was spectacular and TELUS Studios ended up winning three different awards for our creativity and innovative approaches to video.
The next day I carried on to Cannes, Southern France and this time I rented a Vespa scooter.
After having an amazing lunch of french cheeses and breads I took a dip in the blue waters of the neighbouring city of Nice.
After exploring the city it was time to park the Vespa and put on the tux. It was so great to be joined in Cannes by my TELUS Studios colleague Eric Morrison.
The Cannes Corporate Media & TV Awards took place at Palm Beach Cannes during an exquisite Awards Gala Dinner. More than 200 guests representing producers, film makers, marketing and communication professionals from corporations, public relations agencies, the public sector, and TV stations travelled from all over the world to take part in the festivities. TELUS was at a table with producers and directors from Taiwan, Germany, France and Australia. It was such a privilege to accept the Silver award on behalf of TELUS Studios. Under the creative direction of Nick Schelle and writing from Ali Wilson, the TELUS Innovation video featured a little girl talking about the amazing accomplishments of TELUS over the years. It made a big impact on the Cannes award committee because of how it highlighted the extraordinary support of charities and non-profits. Knowing that TELUS was being recognized internationally for its creative video production made me so proud to work for this company.
The night was getting late and I had to say good-bye to my new international friends. But I think the hardest thing was to say good-bye to my two-wheeled friend and all the adventure and memories that we had together.