‘I’ as in EPIK, Interactivity or… Isabel

The article we have for you today is about a real music lover who cannot stay away from the radio even one single day, but also enjoys cooking, the sensory experiences associated with gastronomy, has a passion for driving, and obviously cars, and cannot resist the thrills of riding a motorcycle.

Languages showed up in her life at an early age and one at a time. First came Spanish, then French and then English, which she started learning with her father “with the support of a BBC course in instalments that she adored. Finally came German.


Full name: Isabel Sofia Tomaz da Costa Reis

Age: 47

Birthplace: Lisbon

Academic degree: Degree in Modern Languages and Literatures, English and German Studies, Post-graduation in Translation, both at the School of Arts and Humanities of the University of Lisbon. Diploma of Spanish as a Foreign Language (DELE, Mastery)

Born in Lisbon, she lived a couple of years in Ponta Delgada, Azores, and spent her teenage years in Castelo Branco, close to the Spanish border. In those years, the quite limited offer available through Portuguese television forced her to look for a far more attractive broad array of entertainment offerings on the other side of the frontier: “I watched all the children’s TV series that marked the 80s, such as ‘The Smurfs’, ‘Dogtanian and the Three Muskehounds’ and ‘The Flintstones’, with Spanish dubbing”. This solution for her entertainment shortage also turned out to be a passport to the world of languages, for which she began to develop an interest and fell in love with at an early age.

She considers herself a lucky person for having had a fulfilled childhood, full of valuable moments, enriching experiences and a priceless personal development. “Fortunately, I was lucky enough to have parents that could provide me with many social activities, trips, general culture, which helped me to acquire very clear interests.”

Her personality carries the mark of strong and diversified interests. Isabel has an exquisite taste for crafts and she is good at them, namely in matters of cake decorating. She is imbued with the spirit of art, the art of creating, and whenever she is creating, she can put a little bit of herself in every detail. She is passionate about children’s books and about the journeys they allow us to experience: “I could spend a whole day in a bookshop, reading children’s books with wonderful illustrations”. Given her eclecticism, her attention to detail, her delicacy and determination, one could say that she is an ancient soul in a young body.

That fretful and lovely dawn,

replete with every kind of ache,

so long as the world recalls heartbreak

I wish that hour forever known.

Aquela leda e triste madrugada translated by Landeg White, in The Collected Lyric Poems of Luís de Camões, Princeton University Press, 2008

As a lover of Camões’ works and being especially fond of the Portuguese word “saudade” (a kind of “yearning”), she loves to tell stories in verse. This passion and her ease in dealing with words are the perfect fit for the positions she holds in the company. Besides being a translator and proofreader, she is the Administrative Director and the person responsible for direct contact with clients. Her ability to communicate is the main reason why the word “interactivity” describes TETRAEPIK so well. All of these roles fit her like a glove — the former two being clearly a vocation and the latter one a skill that is extensively used at the agency.

TETRAEPIK: What is your opinion about TETRAEPIK’s journey thus far?

Isabel: 22 years is a really long time… It’s almost like celebrating a silver wedding anniversary! It seems as if TETRAEPIK has been around forever. We had our ups and downs, we grew a lot, we shrank a lot, almost to the point of vanishing, we fought back, survived, we overcame the crisis and grew even more than before.

According to Isabel, TETRAEPIK means, among many other things, “teamwork and an incredible complementarity”. Her current and only hobby, which she inherited from her mother and grandmother, is gardening. And thus, like a garden, where each plant contributes in a special way to the balance and well-being of all species, the company draws strength from each one of the elements who play their daily part in TETRAEPIK’s success.

Like Ricardo Reis, one of Fernando Pessoa’s heteronyms, Isabel is moved by “the desire to live the present without making big plans for the future, to live each day in the best way, so that each day counts”. It is crucial to give due importance to each event in our lives, so that we do not focus excessively on the events that hurt and let those that bring us small doses of happiness every day go unnoticed. This is, according to Isabel, the antidote we need on a daily basis.

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