The second adacamp was held on June 8th and 9th in San Francisco. Thanks to the mozilla reps program, I had the opportunity to attend this awesome event and thanks to Delphine and Nico, Bobo and I had a roof over our heads.
So about Adacamp... I was really excited about going to Adacamp, but in the same time worried of what I would do among all these amazing women. On Saturday morning I put a name on this feeling, it is called
The imposter syndrome: this was the first session and it was clearly vital as many women in IT suffer from this syndrome (I'm sure that men suffer also from this).
Friday evening: Adacamp day 0, Reception at google office in San Francisco
We were greeted by volunteers in the office, received our name tags and got to choose the associated lanyard that would state our photo policy. The dinner was really good and for every taste (meat, vegan, gluten-free, wine, beer, non alcoholic drinks...). A welcome speech was given by Valerie Aurora and someone from google (sorry, I can't remember the name). Everyone got a bag with a bunch of swag on her chair (the drinking bottle is on my desk right now, I gave the bangles to my kids (one for each) and the notebook will replace the one I just finished at my work). Then, it was announced that 2 lucky persons would find a paper under their chair stating
You are a winner and would get a bigger bag of swag. Ioana shouted
I'm a winner! and immediately after
Am I as red as I think I am?. Oh yes, Ioana, you were! The plushie Android found in the bag was almost immediately hugged by Daisy (Emma's daughter) who would not let it go (she got one for herself later).
Later, we dispatched in small groups, discussing, meeting people that we only ever talked to by email. Seeing kids laughing while riding Liz's electric scooter through the reception room was really funny.
We gathered on the terrace where we could see Bay bridge, which lit up as it was slowly getting darker and darker. It was the perfect time for a few photos. Then we left the reception and call our driver to take us (Delphine and me) home. Yeah, I confess that we took advantage of my boyfriend for driving us to and from the Adacamp (he visited San Francisco with friends during the week-end). So back to Palo Alto to get a good night sleep.
Saturday: Adacamp day 1
Delphine had to go to the mozilla office in Mountainview to take the vertical banner to put near the stage. We arranged to meet there another adacamper and carpool to San Francisco. After the breakfast and the welcome speech by Valerie and Mary to explain the adacamp organization, Leigh Honeywell gave the first talk:
the imposter syndrome. She described really well what I felt (and what other people also felt, I'm sure) and it made me more self-confident. I'm now ready to go out of the closet and claim to the world that I'm a woman in tech. In fact, I already began... My coworkers (I work in a clinical trials CRO) learnt a few months ago that I've been contributing to mozilla for almost 10 years and I'm very proud of this. All those weird shirts I wear almost everyday, I did not steal them from my boyfriend: they're mine, I earnt them, I am not an imposter. Thanks for that, Leigh!
This week end, I'll give a talk about womoz during the mozfr meetup, a good part of it will be dedicated to this syndrome.
During Adacamp, I always spoke english except on a few occasions with Delphine, because she's also french. And suddenly, a woman told us
Eh, mais vous êtes françaises ?. We then talked (in french, of course) and found out that she studied for one year in Lyon and I live very near from the school she attended (About 300 meters). It just took us 10 000 km to meet!
Right after the lunch, I gave my lightning talk about localization and its importance in building communities. Very hard to summarize everything in 90 seconds and I'm sure I forgot a lot of things, but the important things, I said! There were also a poem and a song among the other lightning talks.
On the evening, mozilla sponsored a dinner and the subject was Womoz, of course. It was in a bolivian restaurant. We left just before the music began. That would have been nice, but it was easier to talk without music.
Sunday: Adacamp day 2
After the group discussions in the morning and the lunch, there was a make-a-thon. One could sew a lightning brooch, or make a robot or play with rabbit ears that moved according to your brainwaves. As for me, I presented webmaker tools to anyone interested. It was hard to compete against these awesome workshops, but I managed to get some people and they were very interested in Webmaker. In the meantime, Ioana, Delphine, Marcela and Emma presented FirefoxOS.
But everything has to come to an end and Adacamp closed its doors on sunday evening. I had volunteered for a few tasks like moving the furniture and removing the blue tape. But as it happened during the whole camp, everyone helped, so it was done in no time!
On sunday evening, we had a dinner with a few mozillians in an indian restaurant, everything was so spicy, almost everyone was breathing fire (except for the indian guy, of course!!!). At the end of the dinner, I promised Selena that if an Adacamp was planned in Europe, I would gladly help. This promise stands, you can count me in!
I've learnt so many things in such a few time, it's hard to list them all! But here are a few:
- I am not an imposter, I have every right to be here!
Fake it, till you make it!: definitely, yes!
- Burn the fucking manual: well, sometimes it seems a good idea
- We are amazing!
Thank you all for this great event!