For the third year in a row I was fortunate enough to be invited to speak at Symfony Live! London.
My First Keynote
The talk I gave ("Unglue all the things!") was selected as the opening keynote. My first! I was excited and anxious but I think I handled it well.
Truth be told, it didn't feel altogether different from giving a normal talk. Or maybe I just told myself that so I didn't freak out about it too much?
I will say that it was nice to have just one talk and have that talk be the first talk of the event. I'm more accustomed to being the last or second-to-last talk of the conference. Usually means I don't get a lot of time to enjoy myself until after the conference is pretty much over.
For the first time in quite a while I arrived quite early before the conference started and stayed at the venue (and engaged with people or watching talks) all the way until it was over. More often than not these days I've been hiding in my hotel room until an hour or so before my speaking slot and then often disappear shortly after.
Why was it different this time? I think this probably had to do with the fact that my talk was so early in the morning and I had no other talks to deliver later in the day. That isn't always going to be the case (and in my case it has happened so rarely) so I can't rely on that.
I also managed to attend most of the after party. It was on the Tattershall Castle, a permanently docked boat. Very nice. It took a few minutes before I realized the uneasy feeling I had was because it was rocking in the waves. It was right across from the South Bank and the view was quite beautiful.
I got to see a bunch of people (special thank you to Michael Cullum for remembering to bring the bag he's been storing for us for the last two months!) but I have no doubt I missed a few I wanted to talk to.
The crowd was a lot smaller this year. The thing that shocked me the most was when the audience was asked, "how many of you are here for the first time?" It seemed like everyone raised their hand.
All-in-all it was quite a busy day. It was also very rewarding.
Something else special about this event was that it was also the first Symfony Live! I've been at where I've been a member of the SensioLabs team.
That's right. I've joined the SensioLabs US team!
This was the first chance I've had to see any of my new co-workers in person. I've met many of them in the past, either online or at conferences but this was special and unique. I'll get to see a few of them at php[world] in November and a whole lot of them at SymfonyCon Berlin!
My family joined me on both of my previous trips to Symfony Live! London but I had to fly solo this time. We had thought the whole family was going to be there when it would have been a two hour road trip. After it turned into an international flight? Wasn't going to work this time.
This might turn into a recurring thing for us. Now that Luke has started properly attending school it might be harder to be a conference family. I'm sure we'll sneak a few trips in but we'll have to be far more strategic about it from now on.
Thanks to the SensioLabs team for organizing Symfony Live! London this year! Hopefully it won't be my last. :)