It all started with an e mail:
My name is Marlous van Oostrum, I am a Communication student at Utrecht University, the Netherlands. With my student association, SV Contact, each year we organize a cultural trip, 13 April – 18 April, for 45 people to a foreign city. This year we choose the beautiful Valencia, and we are looking forward to it very much! Part of the cultural trip is a visit to the university in Valencia, and a company visit relevant to our study. As I was looking up newspapers in Valencia, I came across your site. I find your optimism and willpower to showcase the good news of the world very refreshing and admirable”.
Obviously when I read that part I was immediately available for anything; anything legal I mean.
But there was more:
“Now, journalism is very closely related to our study. So I was wondering the following: would it be possible for our group of very interested students to have a meeting with one of your employees who can tell us something about the Valencia International online newspaper and its daily work?
Maybe you are not able to host this many people or don’t have time at all, but one can try. In that case, would you be so kind to help me out with some other businesses that do almost the same, so that we can find a suitable company to visit? I would love to hear so.
With kind regards and looking forward hearing from you,
Marlous van Oostrum
Chair of the foreign travel committee ’14 – ’15
Surprisingly the offices of Valencia International, for architectural reasons, are not suitable for a visit of so many, and furthermore they don’t exist anyway except in my optimistic imagination.
The group wanted a tour of a Valencian media and moreover they wanted it in perfect English; so I did what everybody else does when this happens; I called Paco Polit; sports journalist, English teacher, showman and generous enough to give up his hard earned half day off to not only guide the students around Las Provincias newspaper, but also give an impromptu workshop on the state of the Spanish media and economy and to tell his life story with only a flip chart to help him.
The students were very happy and rewarded us with Dutch biscuits, which they surprisingly managed to get through Customs.
Actually they might have been happy because they had visited the Wine and Gastronomy Fair in the Turia Park the night before!