May 11, 2016   //   International   //   By Michael Burge

This past weekend was the US German Summit in Hamburg. I was graciously offered an invitation to participate in all of the activities for the weekend. For those of you who do not know, Mueller belongs to an alliance of seven American firms, and five German firms.  They have been meeting a few times a year for the past five years developing an amazing international partnership to help our respective clients develop business internationally.

First off let me tell you, the Germans know how to organize an event. The first evening included a guided tour of Hamburg’s famous Reeperbahn. This street is one of the centers of Hamburg’s nightlife including several musical venues, bars, and places to eat.  There are more things here I feel I cannot write about without fear of getting fired, but you can probably guess what they are… Anyhow many famous musicians played in this area before they were well known, an example being The Beatles (you may have heard of them).  During the tour, we learned a lot about the colorful history of the Reeperbahn, and St. Pauli, the district it is located in.

The next day we went to the newest part of town called the Hafencity (HarborCity).  There we participated in a Segway tour around the area.  Now neither I nor anyone else in the party had ever touched a Segway before so you can imagine there was some humor in trying to teach 30 plus people how to operate a one.  I can personally say that once everyone got the hang of the Segways the following tour was a highlight of the weekend.  The weather happened to be beautiful (which is not the most common thing in Europe) adding to the experience.  Over the two and a half hour tour we zoomed around to almost all of the highlights of Hamburg including the oldest buildings, town squares, the Twin Lakes in the center of the city, and the Reeperbahn area (which looked significantly different during the day).  I know I have only seen a small portion of what Hamburg has to offer, but this was an excellent start to whittle down the list of things to see.  The following day, after the tour and some other celebratory activities, we got down to business with the US German Summit.  I will not bore you all with the details, but in summary it was a very productive and beneficial meeting.

Now with the Summit over, I have been looking at how lucky I was to be able to participate in something like that.  How often does one get the chance to travel to a foreign city and develop relationships with people from around the world?  It will absolutely be a weekend I will never forget.  Until next time.