This is just a quick update as we’re gearing up for the launch of our first IVOZI podcast workbook series here in Barcelona, and are working flat out. We’ve recorded & edited 9 out of 10 podcasts and will be releasing a pack of 10 accompanying workbooks in the next week or so.
We had some rather pleasant news yesterday, that iTunes in Spain are featuring our podcast on the front page of iTunes in a “New and noteworthy” category (see the little red square below). Must be the woman we put on the cover 😉
Every time I return to England, it seems almost immediately there is a weather-related superlative issued for the month I choose to return. We all know the Brits are obsessed with weather, but in June 2007 it was the wettest/worst June since records began (hundreds of years ago), this winter, it has already been the coldest Winter for 30 or 40 years. And counting.
With temperatures as low as -22 Celsius, and a decent covering of snow: 10,000 schools are shut, the economy is losing 600 million pounds a day, old people are burning cheap second hand books to warm their houses (it’s cheaper than coal!) and the RSPB is regularly publishing warnings about imminent irrecoverable bird deaths.
So what did I do (apart from feeding the birds)? I tried to get back to Spain, on Easyjet, from Gatwick. Not a very sound plan. I ended up wasting the day in queues of people whilst waiting for the inevitable “Flight cancelled” confirmation. In the end it came, and I headed back to Oxford, only to try again another day…
You’ll perhaps be pleased to know (I was) that I made it back to Spain having rescheduled my flight for 3 days later. I got to Barcelona, wasn’t as pleasantly surprised as I’d hoped by the ‘warm climes’ here, and have promptly set about sorting out my crap Sony Vaio (sounds like it has chronic wind) so that I can get on with my IVOZI audio work soon.
On that note, I finally got my hands on the Zoom H2 Recorder and will be starting recording again in a couple of days.
I’ll leave you with a photo of my mother’s back garden in Eynsham, England where I stayed during my weather related incarceration. I tried to feed the birds, but my nuts promptly froze.
It’s my first Christmas back in England for 7 years and I have been lucky enough to be treated to the first White Christmas I remember. Perhaps it’s the fact that I have ventured North of the Watford Gap for nearly the first time in my life – heading up to Bedale in North Yorkshire for a family reunion.
Here’s a photo from today – Boxing Day – where we went for an afternoon walk (and sledge) in the grounds of the 12th Century Jervaulx Abbey.
15 months after leaving the UK for Spain and Latin America, I’m now back in England. It’s been a quiet period for me on the Earthoria front for far too long. Part of the reason for this is the work I have been putting into our IVOZI English teaching business in Spain, and partly because I just needed some ‘anonymous’ time.
Since returning from Vejer de La Frontera at the end of September, I have been based continuously in Barcelona, or rather in Castelldefels – 24KM to the South of Barcelona on the coast.
In the new year, I’ll be returning to Barcelona and the aim will be to get a team of people together to hugely increase our productivity – especially in the area of new product development, and with a focus on audio and multi-media products. We’ve already been advertising and have had a promising response.
I promise to try and keep Earthoria more up-to-date in the future, and I’ll leave you with a photo of where I am now in a small freezing village called Eynsham, 10km West of Oxford in England.
Earlier this week, the weather in Barcelona was very, very windy. Little did we know at the time, but as we chattered our teeth in unison, Spain was about to set a world first.
From 3am until 8am on Sunday 8th November 2009, more than 50% of Spain’s electricity was generated by wind – according to the Spanish Wind Energy Association, “For several moments, wind energy had the honor of delivering up to 53 percent of total needs”.
With high winds gusting across much of the country, Spain’s huge network of windfarms jointly poured the equivalent of 11 nuclear power stations’ worth of electricity into the national grid.
Driving around Andalucia with my family over the last couple of years, we’ve often found ourselves in discussions about whether the wind farms are actually more of a blight on the environment (at least aesthetically) than a solution to the problem of generating energy sustainably.
Are we generating sustainable energy at the expense of our pristine landscapes forever?
After a couple of months of fairly strenuous work since I arrived back in Spain, we’ve finally launched the initial version of our new English teaching website Ingles.fm.
Geared towards the Spanish speaking world, we will over the next few months be creating a range of audio-visual products to compliment the Tools of Fluency package that James – my partner in Ingles.fm – has already put together.
For those interested in the technical side of things, we’ve built the site in WordPress (2.8.5) using a modified version of the Thesis WordPress Theme from DIYthemes. Thesis takes the already fabulous framework of WordPress and turns it into a Ferrari ‘blogging’ platform, with great support for SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) ‘out of the box’.
Apart from this we are using Paypal for payment processing and E-Junkie to manage our Digital Downloads and password protection.
Finally, we’ve put in an affiliate system so that anyone can join up, place links and banners on their blog/website to ivozi.com, and make 40% commission per sale. Please support us, and sign up today! It takes 5-10 mins of your time and you can even make money by posting an occasional link to our website from the likes of Facebook or MySpace. Find out how here.