• Sergey Solonskiy

The Dutch Ambassador

Now I will tell you about the most interesting and difficult work in my career. I was fortunate enough to work for twelve consecutive hours as an interpreter for the extraordinary and plenipotentiary ambassador of Holland, Ms. Renée Jones-Bos and her delegation during their visit to Tomsk on 12 October 2017.

The agenda was very right. We began with a tour of the city, then visited the Special Economic Zone, then there was a press conference, an introduction to the Living Laboratory, a round table with the rectors of Tomsk universities in the Administration of the Tomsk Region, and ended with a long working dinner.

I am always glad to see the Tomsk Region develop international contacts. It is doubly pleasant when it results in actual activities, contracts, projects, acquaintances and the exchange of experience.

Often, with the exchange of experience, wisdom is required to heed the advice of real experts, to recognize that in your region, much more can and needs to be improved so that people could live in proper conditions. To see sincere understanding and readiness for cooperation in the eyes of the people I translate for is a great joy. It was exactly the case this time.

Like all the most pleasant high-ranking people I have worked with, Ms. Jones-Bos was courtly, polite, intelligent, and pleasant to talk to. According to my observations, people with a mature character who have achieved great success in their life behave like ordinary well-bred people. I can safely say the same about all the members of the Dutch delegation. Working with them was a complete pleasure, despite the difficult schedule.

Ms. Ambassador, as well as members of her delegation, demonstrated a genuine interest in mutually beneficial projects in the Tomsk Region. One of them is the so-called Living Laboratory. This is the site of the city where the best practices in the field of smart city technologies will be tested: from lighting and construction features to applications for people living on this territory, so that they could participate more actively in making decisions regarding the place where they live.

Never before have I encountered such a level of mutual understanding and friendliness in the negotiations. Never before have I worked with a foreign ambassador. Never before have I translated twelve hours in a row in such difficult conditions (imagine the level of responsibility).

It was a memorable day in my life. I am proud to have made my small contribution to the cause of friendship between our countries and to the development of the region.

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