I continued with my ‘meeting the troops’ series this morning, enjoying a working breakfast with the Infrastructure Unit. Infrastructure is part of the Joint Services, the pioneering arrangement whereby the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions pool their resources in a series of horizontal areas in order to achieve synergies and economies of scale. That meant that I met with officials from both Committees. Indeed, the Head of the Unit, Marc De Feu, is a Committee of the Regions official. The Unit is one of the Committees’ engine houses, maintaining and improving our buildings and the equipment within them. It has a major budget and is frequently involved in tendering processes and it has in its ranks a number of specialists. The Unit is also in the front line of the Committees’ successful efforts to win the Eco-Management and Audit Scheme award. I used the metaphor of a car. The driver does not worry all the time about the state of the engine and the functioning of the gears and the brakes. Indeed, drivers tend mostly to take these things for granted, for they are ‘out of sight and out of mind’. But it is only thanks to these colleagues that we, European Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions, can drive our ‘cars’.