A nice blog post by @Tio about our recent meet up with some very lovely people - https://www.tiotrom.com/2023/06/the-last-trom-meeting-maybe/
This blog made me smile a lot :)
NEW BLOG POST:
The last TROM Meeting. Maybe?
Read it on my website (recommended):
Or read it here:
The first TROM Meeting was in 2019, in May. Some 12 people came. We rented something for 3 weeks here where I live. It was very exciting at first, to see everyone for the first time:
But then I started to realize how tiring it is to have so many people around at once. So I was struggling a bit. However the worst was when I started to pee blood, mid way the meeting, and I thought am gonna die :D. It was a hellish experience for me. Read this blog post to know more about.
However looking back it was a very nice time, those first days, maybe the first 2 weeks, when I was not as sick. Memories, you know. I’ll try to keep the best and discard the worse.
Since then a bunch of things have changed. My health greatly improved, some people lost interest in TROM, new people gained interest. I created trom.tf and a bunch more stuff, plus managed to finish the TROM II documentary that should be released this month. So we decided to make another TROM Meeting, 4 years after the first one. EXCITED!
All healthy, the documentary (huge project) done and shared with the ones coming at the meeting, new excitement felt in the air. We rented a place near where we live in Spain, and invited some 14 people. Only around 10 or so could come, but then things got more complicated because now most people had jobs (unlike the first time we met) and had a hard time taking some time off for the meeting. I struggled to organize it, but we finally decided to meet for 8-10 days. Based on the first meeting, 3 weeks was way too long.
Unfortunately, again, a few could not come for health reasons or unable to get time off from their jobs, and others came later. But we were all set. I organized everything. Sasha and Georgi helped me prepare it all :). Was so excited about it. I needed a break! I wanted to laugh, to dance, to hike, to spend time with some wonderful beings. I worked too much on the documentary for the past 2-3 years. So I needed a break. It was a great timing since Sasha also finished her book and she also felt similarly.
All set. GO!
I went to the house with Sasha to organize things:
She was not feeling that well. Some abdominal discomfort on and off for the past weeks. But nothing too serious. We continued.
Vicky and Rafa came first, with their car. Drove for 6 hours. They are such positive creatures you will smile 90% of the time when you are with them. So kind, so organized, so friendly. Roma came the next day after the train he supposed to take here, was canceled numerous times. Roma is my brother for sure 🙂 – friendly, organized, in a good mood, helpful, so kind. We were all getting used to being with each other, but a bit tired. They were tired because they had to travel for so long, we were tired because we had to radically change our sleeping schedule to wake up earlier.
Then Alexio came. He was the only one we did not meet in person. He was so tall, and his kindness on par with that 🙂
So positive, always smiling, always friendly.
Me, Sasha, Georgi, Vicky, Rafa, Roma and Alexio. That was the team. Unfortunately Guil had a bad accident a few days before the meeting so he could not come 🙁 – he would need a few months to recover. Aaron was also unable to take any days off from his job…
We were all quite sad that that they could not come.
Ok. Let’s have some fun.
We went to some parks nearby:
To show off our athletic skills 🙂
And coolness 🙂
We then visited the seaside:
And found some alien creatures:
The next day we decided to go to a nearby park in the forest and we spent some really fun time there.
Laying down in the hammocks in the shade:
We played “mime”, a game where someone gives you 2 words, like say “inhabitable exoplanet”, and you have to mime that without making any sounds, and the rest have to guess it. I love this game because everyone is engaged. We laughed, it was fun.
I had to mime: endless time. Go figure….how do you do that? But I managed it eventually haha.
I’ll let you guess what Sasha might be miming here haha. Or Georgi.
Or Rafa being an octopus stripper:
We had such a great time there. Was not too hot, it was calm, it was fun. I felt like a kid again 🙂
Going there, coming back, cooking food, staying in the house, were flavored with us talking about all sort of interesting things, from TROM to the universe, from computers to us.
Later that day we had a barbecue. And I always end up in charge of that and smelling like a burned piece of wood at the end.
At night we could see the Moon and Venus from the backyard:
Unfortunately I had no time to get the telescope from home to watch some of this stuff….You see, the food aspect of life takes so much time. Especially when you are 7 or so people, and some like me having to cook separately because of stomach issues. It is so time consuming and exhausting to buy food, deposit it, cook, eat, clean….I started to get a bit tired. Sasha kept on having those health issues and would wake up in the middle of the night because of that. I tried to keep myself engaged and positive because I had many reasons to. But it was tiring….and a bit stressful because of Sasha’s issues.
You see when these wonderful people come for these meetings they are so eager to talk. And talk. And talk about many many interesting things. And that can become very tiring. Especially for me since I just finished a 2-3 years work for the documentary and I wanted to mostly chill and relax. But I cannot ignore interesting people and discussions. I can’t :D.
Next. We visited a medieval town nearby. Was quite nice.
And at home we reinstalled TROMjaro on Rafa’s MiniPC:
But Sasha’s issues did not go away. She had them every morning. Not too painful really, just a weird discomfort in the lower part of the abdomen, as if you have an UTI. We went to the doctor and no UTI. Strange. She was sent for more tests. You see Sasha’s stomach, the digestive machine, is amazing 🙂 – she can eat anything and pretty much never has any stomach issues. But now suddenly she started to have these uncomfortable stomach issues that were on a daily basis and lasted on and off for more than a month by this time. And for the past days it was a daily occurrence.
I was like….wtf….the first TROM Meeting was ruined by my weird health issues and now Sasha has these weird health problems. This is too much….
Of course, the important bit was for her to be healthy, the meeting was secondary. But I was thinking how unlucky we are… Her health issues made us kinda stressed, tired, and cut the fun in half. At least for me for sure.
But anyway, we tried to still keep ourselves happy.
A year or so ago we (I, Georgi and Sasha) made a song. Original lyrics and all that. So we printed it for everyone and sang it together. These are the lyrics:
And here’s a bad recording of us trying it out 🙂 – bad in terms of video quality 🙂
Everyone really liked the song. Actually we had a guitar and an ukulele and we jammed a bunch of times together. I know how to play them but only a little bit :), Sasha and Rafa know a lot more. Roma knows some too :). So it was fun to play some songs together.
Two more people came the following days: Matthias and Ann.
I met Matthias when he came a year or two ago to our place for a barbecue with Dima. He was volunteering with the same organization as Dima and came back with him to stay at his place for a day or so. I really liked the guy. He seemed very interested in TROM. He said he will visit us but we had to kindly refuse any visit for the past year or so in order to finish our documentary and the book. So I told him that he can come for the meeting. He is so kind, interested and interesting. Same is Ann. Very nice and calm people. Chill as fuck :).
We were more now, but Matthias and Ann had a van and a tent and they were staying near by in that nice forest where we put the hammocks. So the house was still not that crowded.
The next days we went to visit a very nice botanical garden. Another reason to talk more about interesting things.
Vicky is studying the plants for some courses she takes and she knew a lot about plants and insects. Her English improved since the last meeting, by a lot, and she is so funny. She uses the word “fuck” many times, and that’s so hilarious when combined with her Spanish accent.
By the way, I really like the girl from this above photo. Just saying.
We spent several hours in that garden and took a million photos. Right Alexio!? 🙂
We then visited a castle that’s on a very high hill where you can see all of the surrounding areas.
I was getting more and more tired. And a bit stressed because of Sasha’s issues. But the “party” continued. One night we made some TROM tshirts like we did the last time. Basically all you need is some tshirts (old or buy new ones) and some normal paint.
And then you can put your handprint on them. That easy!
Unfortunately it was late at night and Matthias and Ann were “long gone” to their cozy forest, so we did not make any for them 🙁 .
We wanted to do one more trip before the meeting was over. To a place where we always find friendly octopuses. And so we went:
It is such a beautiful place. Sasha found a grumpy old octopus a bit far, so only Rafa, Matthias and Ann adventured to see it.
You may wonder….this all sounds like a fun nice vacation. What’s so TROM about it?
You see, the work I/we do for TROM is happening behind the screens. I work like a maniac almost every single day. Alexio is always on the chats helping out, Roma helped the project financially so many times it is insane, plus he helps with TROMjaro and such; And so are the rest helping whenever they can. The meeting is supposed to be for creating some bonds, some relationships; to talk, to enjoy, to get to know each other better. You can’t realistically do more than that. I know a bunch of projects that have these “brainstorm” gatherings and in reality they do not do anything more than that.
For TROM is the opposite. The work is done in silence, individually, by each of us. And when we meet is for the connections between us.
Sasha worked quite a bit on the transcription in that meantime is true, I tried too. But it is difficult to focus much on these things. Too many people around, doing many things.
She also cooked for everyone a bunch of times, for hours. Even thought Alexio how to cook 🙂
I think that’s by FAR the best outcome from these meetings. To know each other, get comfortable with each other, and create new relationships. After all that’s how I and Sasha ended up together. That’s how I and Aaron became best friends and how I see this happening with Roma and Alexio and me. That’s how we got to know Vicky and not only Rafa, and get so close to them. That’s how we now got to know Matthias and Ann and who knows maybe we will meet again with them, maybe they’ll get involved with the TROM project in the future….
One comment I’ve seen from Matthias and Ann was that they were expecting more talks about TROM, maybe even to watch the documentary together and such, however for one I was exhausted, and second I did not want to shove down people’s throat this project. We have so many materials online so I thought to not make it look like a “cult meeting” :). In any case, this meeting was (from the get-go) one about friends more than one about TROM.
Dima and Mara came basically after the meeting was officially over, when Vicky and Rafa were already gone. Unfortunately we were all too tired by that time.
I kept in touch with Dima over Signal for these past 2 years so it was nice to see him again. The last 2 days were basically all about Alexio kicking everyone’s butt at chess 🙂 – apparently he is a grand-master at chess.
He was so good no one stood a single chance. And yet so funny and kind. You can’t get angry at having your ass kicked by him :).
It was getting very hot, Sasha’s problems were still problems, we were getting only a few hours of sleep, and it was becoming more and more of a struggle for us. Oh, did I mention that all of this time Sasha was forced to deal with a lot of papers? The residency, the work, the this, the that….It was insane and endless. We still did not solve the paper situation….
We needed a break.
Everyone left except Roma who stayed 3 more days to our place and we had a more chill time together.
Such a wonderful kind! Despite us being tired and all that, this guy did not bother us at all. He manages his own shit and is so friendly you can’t be bothered by him.
I wish Roko or Shas could have come too, but they live far far away and on this paper planet you need a ton of papers to go from one place to another.
The meeting was better than I expected now that I look at it in perspective. Was quite comfortable and despite tiring it was super fun many times.
Why no more TROM Meetings?
When we rented a new place I did NOT want to rent the same house because that house looks haunted to me :D. It was the place where I had to stay while having so many health issues. It felt like an awful place towards the end of that meeting. For this new meeting me and Sasha stayed in a weird room, tho comfy still. The room was partly a bathroom.
Had a sink and a shower inside. The toilette was in a separate room. I mean is cozy to have your own shower and sink in the room, but because of Sasha’s health issues and waking up in the middle of the night and all that, I started to feel like being in a hospital for the last days. And that felt very strange. I mean it kinda looks like a hospital room.
So I honestly am sick of being sick when we do these sort of meetings. It is too much planning involved, too much responsibility for me to organize stuff for everyone, and so on. So I do not want to do this anymore. I want to relax more. If we meet we should do it somewhere else and I should not have to organize it, but all of us to.
The TROM Meeting is also more of a personal meeting so it may make no sense to call it that way.
Therefore I think this could have been the last “TROM Meeting” but for sure not the last meeting that we will have. Maybe even this year at the end of it we may meet again, at least some of us.
Sasha feels a bit better now, but we are still investigating. So far it does not seem to be anything that serious.
Despite that interpretation of the bathroom/bedroom, the house was very nice:
With a cozy living-room and a fireplace:
A nice backyard:
And a nice terrace:
And despite the tiredness, everything was wonderful and I absolutely appreciate these awesome human beings:
And I hope to see each other more often, and dance, and play the guitar and ukulele, and make a new song, and go in nature, and have fun, and talk about interesting things, and live. Because life is like a domino game that has already started for all of us. And at times it is tricky and complex, at times it is smooth, but the fact is, that IT IS. And we should enjoy it while it is. The fun part of a domino game is while it is “rolling”, not when it ends.
So let’s enjoy the ride folks, as long as the ride is riding!
I appreciate you all very much, and if there is one victory I can claim in my personal life so far, it cannot be the change of this trade system that I talk about, it cannot be the popularity of the content I’ve created over the years, and it cannot be any big success with TROM. But I can claim victory when it comes to the relationships and the humans I’ve met. They are real, and they are enough for me.