Diary: Ash grounds adlanders

Adland has had its share of refugees thanks to the volcanic ash cloud that closed UK airspace.

No fun in Finland

While some found themselves in rather exotic locations, there were other destinations that in the cold light of a week-long stay began to lose their charm.

Helsinki, judging by the experiences of seven of Wieden & Kennedy's staff, including the managing director, Neil Christie, is one of those.

After a week of getting to know the city's limited nightlife (and the stranded contingent of air stewardesses), the troops decided there was nothing for it but to take the plane, train, boat and automobile home, a journey that took more than two days to complete.

On the good ship HMS Albion

The chaos also posed a transport dilemma for the Albion chief executive, Jason Goodman. Stuck in Tel Aviv, Goodman spotted the perfect excuse for a PR stunt by making his way across Europe to Santander, where he could try to grab a journey home on - that's right - the HMS Albion. But, with planes beginning to take off again and a number of demanding clients at home, Goodman put speed before stunt and grabbed himself a flight back to the UK instead.

Looking on the bright side

But while the world's least pronounceable volcano was causing stress and frustrations for most, there were a few who managed to make light of the situation.

There was Grey's Nils Leonard, who had the difficult job of spending a few days in Barbados soaking up the sun before being whisked to New York, and Publicis' Neil Simpson, who found that setting up an office in Oman to get on with some work actually made him more productive. That destination also played host to Nick Hurrell, who got stuck for more than a week on an Easter break, but nevertheless described the experience as "like being in paradise but with the heating on full blast".

Mike cullis goes to 'heaven'

Perhaps none had it better than Elvis' managing partner, Mike Cullis who, when stuck in Johannesburg, was forced to seek refuge in a local hotel, which, by sheer coincidence, was also housing the 40 beauties taking part in the Miss Earth South Africa 2010 final. Somehow, Cullis managed to see the brighter side of being stranded, and as you can see from the picture, ended up looking rather smug about the whole situation.

Gil gets Brazilian TV airtime

The most high profile (in Latin America at least) of any an agency tale was that of Publicis' Nathalie Gil, who upon finding out that she couldn't make her cousin's wedding in Sao Paulo donned her wedding clothes and made a video of herself in front of various London landmarks, so her friends in Brazil could see it.

However, after it came to the attention of a journalist, the video ended up on Rede Globo, Brazil's biggest TV station. She was then interviewed on Bom Dia Brasil, the channel's morning weekday news show, which attracts tens of millions of viewers every day.

Audi lags behind BMW

And in non-volcanic-related news ...

It seems that Audi and Bartle Bogle Hegarty have found a car wing mirror that can see back in time to 2005.

In what is a very well put-together ad for the R8 Spyder, the agency shows the beauty and style that has made the Audi one of the world's best, then wraps it up nicely with a smooth endline: "Mirror, signal, outmanoeuvre."

But a little look back into advertising's archives shows that just five years ago, another ad used the line: an ad for none other than one of Audi's fiercest rivals, BMW.