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Ave atque vale
22 May

Ave atque vale

For those of you who are not Latin Scholars (including myself – 14% at Common Entrance), Ave atque vale means hail and farewell. This comes from Catullus 101 (Wikipedia is a wonderful thing), the poem to his dead brother or rather to his ashes, but may in fact be Greek in origin, which is very apt as I was using it in a “Greek” context. These last few weeks we have had to say farewell to two stalwarts of the industry – Dimitris Manikis who has left RCI after 27 years to take up a similar but expanded role at...

Things can only get better
13 Feb

Things can only get better………?

Things can only get better, or so the song title goes by D:Ream in 1997 (a Northern Irish Band who subsequently broke up).The song was of course adopted by the Labour Party as their theme song and Tony Blair became Prime Minister in the General Election that year. I only mention it as it seems appropriate to the current situation. We have struggled through January – always the worst month of the year and stumbled into February – which is not much better! Unfortunately turning to the world at large is not that much more encouraging. That said I had the...

19 Dec

Get a Grip!

I apologise for what is going to look and sound like another Brexit based blog – but let’s face it this is the most dominant topic this side of the English Channel. However, I do appreciate there are the upcoming elections in Catalonia this month, when again all attention will be focussed on that region and the outcome will determine whether Spain will be plunged into further political upheaval. Also in Germany it did look until a couple of weeks ago that the Germans would have to return to the polls as it had proved impossible for Angela Merkel to...

Letter from America
21 Nov

Letter from America

I have always wanted to write that as a headline having been a great admirer of the late Alistair Cooke who sent out his “Letter from America” on BBC Radio every week from 1946 to 2004 and most memorably was in the lobby of the Ambassador Hotel, Los Angeles and witnessed the assassination of Bobby Kennedy. So that was all just by way of introducing the fact that I was in Washington last week, at the ARDA Fall Convention to make presentations, along with Declan Kenny, to the ARDA ROC and ARDA Boards. As explained at the RDO AGM in Marbella in September,...

OK - so I am an elephant
20 Sep

OK – so I am an elephant

It would be true to say that I was quite disappointed when Nigel Risner told me I'm an elephant, as he, Jackie Murphy and I struggled through Malaga Airport in the closing hours of last Tuesday week, after RDO8 finished in Marbella. There had been an Air Traffic Controllers’ strike in France (where else) and of course flights were delayed and re-directed etc. Ok, I always suspected that there was a central element of elephant in my character but I had always hoped there was a bit of monkey or lion as well – not dolphin (see Nigel’s book “It’s a...

brexit
21 Jun

Brexit – What has happened to us?

We have a close neighbour who lives some three doors down from us. She is Austrian by birth but has lived here with her husband for some thirty years. She is probably in her early 70’s but last week, was clearly worried as she asked me if I thought she would have to leave the country once the Brexit negotiations were concluded. I did my best to reassure her that after all this time she would most certainly be welcome to stay I was listening to BBC Radio 4’s news programme at 10.00 last night (such a British thing to do whilst...

Notice to quit - Chief Executive Blog
3 Apr

Notice to Quit – Chief Executive Blog

So 29th March will go down as the day we officially told Brussels that the UK was leaving the EU. It also happened to be the same day that Scotland’s First Minister told Theresa May, that Scotland wanted to have a second Independence Referendum - now who could have seen that coming I wonder? Sarcasm apart – the day was one of mixed emotions, we had the euphoria of the “Brexiteers” alongside what can probably be described as the muted despair of the “Remoaners”. Ironically we now have the prospect of “The Great Repeal Bill,” which first surfaced in 1539 in...

7 Mar

The question I wished I had asked – Chief Executive Blog

Last Saturday I was at the TATOC Conference in Warrington giving a summary of the work RDO has been doing since last year’s conference. Rivetingly entitled “RDO Update” – my fault I should have submitted a better title - but at least Robin Mills changed it on the day to something more appropriate – “Annus Horribilis” as quoted by Her Majesty of the year various Royal Marriages came unstuck – Prince Charles, Princess Anne and Prince Andrew as I recall it. In contrast Howard Nusbaum President and CEO of ARDA, gave a round-up of the US Market later in the day and the...

“Trexit” – RDO leads the way
12 Oct

Trexit – RDO leads the way

You heard it here first. Trexit, which I believe you classify as an acronym, was buzzing around the Conference hall at RDO7 last month, and coined by a number of our American delegates. Admittedly tongue in cheek, it was defined as what may happen after the US Presidential elections in November if Donald Trump wins the election. It is the reverse of Brexit in that individual Americans leave the country as a result of his election to office. Good news for estate agents in Central London, looking to sell some of the apartments the Chinese and Russians are no longer interested in! There...