Five minutes with Martin

Martin tells us what is most likely to impress him and annoy him! Why South Tyrol is his go-to holiday destination and why you’ll find him taking strolls very close to home. 

What do you love most about your job? The variety of different projects and problems is the best thing, it’s never mundane which is what I want from a job. I like all the different skill sets that I get to be involved with. 

What impresses you the most? Really friendly, knowledgeable people leave the biggest impression on me. Particularly those who are willing to share their knowledge. That and spectacular views. 

What do you like doing on the weekend? I like to spend time with my wife, we usually go cycling or walking together. We do less cycling now since I broke my elbow when I came off my bike 😲 It’s great to just walk around the area by my house, I live on the South Downs so we can walk there or on the cliffs by the sea. I enjoy cooking and baking cakes 🍰 and bread 🍞 but I always follow a recipe for them, I’m not very good at improvisational cooking. 

What would your ideal holiday be? Well, holidays I have enjoyed the most and would like to go back to would be South Tyrol. It’s an area in the Italian Alps on the border of Austria, it’s a German-speaking part of Italy. There are wonderful mountains with snow on the peaks 🏔 it’s great for walking, the food is delicious and the beer is good 🍺

What is your favourite time of the year and why? Early summer before it gets too hot 🌞 it’s drier, warmer and the ground isn’t all muddy. Everything is growing and flowering 🌷the only downside is having to cut the grass in the summer. 

What is the best thing about working at Ocasta? I know everyone says this, but it is the people. Everyone is friendly, supportive and has a great set of skills and knowledge, each person brings something different which makes for a really collaborative environment. I also like the fact I get to work from home 🏡 I prefer working from home as there are fewer interruptions.  

Is there anything that makes you really annoyed? People who are disingenuous and ignore things that are clearly undermining them but they choose to take no notice of them anyway. People who lie is another dislike of mine, blatant liars just trying to cover up for something 😒

Do you collect anything? I don’t collect anything now, I used to collect matchboxes when I was a kid, it’s known as Phillumeny. I began collecting them because my dad used to travel around Europe for his job which was unusual back then, he used to bring back matchboxes from everywhere he had been ✈️

What is the best Halloween costume you have ever had? Hmmm I don’t have any Halloween costumes that I remember. The only time I recall dressing up was for the Rag week procession at university. I dressed up as anything left in the fancy dress shop, which was a wizard…(so everyone tells me, I can’t remember 🤔). 

What is the best book that you have ever read? Well, I can never re-read a book so it’s hard to say what the best book has been 📚One which sticks in my mind is Neuromancer by William Gibbons, it was published at the start of the whole cyberpunk explosion. It’s a science fiction book set in a dystopian world rather than a happy world which back then was unusual.

Would you rather be a radio presenter or a TV presenter and why? A radio presenter 📻 I did some radio presenting at University, it was a request show, we mainly played indie music. I think with radio it’s easier to be relaxed with no one looking at you 👀

What is your favourite thing to do? It depends on the weather, apart from walking, my wife and I like to eat out. There is a place called The Harrow in Berkshire, it’s a one-star Michelin restaurant that sells modern English food 🍽 We used to live in Berkshire and went back to visit last year, the food there is always so good.