This is the time of year when academics take full advantage of their two-week statutory holiday allowance and seek out pastures new. And this year, The Poppletonian will be going with some of them.
In our brand-new feature, Thoughts from Abroad, well-known Poppleton personalities will bring us news of their vacation adventures.
This week's selected holidaymaker is Professor Gordon Lapping of our Department of Media and Cultural Studies. Over to you, Gordon.
Greetings from the outskirts of Llandudno!
Yes, Mrs Lapping and I are now taking things easy in this jewel of the North Wales coast - although we've already discovered that if you really want to fit in with the "natives" here, you don't call it the "outskirts of Llandudno" but the "outskirts of Clandiddno".
Yesterday we took full advantage of a break in the clouds and set off in our new North Face walking boots to climb the famous Great Orme, but found ourselves quickly distracted by the refreshment facilities in the appropriately named Happy Valley (no difficulty with pronunciation there!). As the local guidebook says: "One visit to this sheltered spot is never enough."
We're staying at the Cadwaladr Guest House, which is a mile and a half further out of town than the brochure suggested, but otherwise fully lives up to its claim to provide "family-oriented" accommodation. Mrs Lapping made a faux pas on the first morning when she ordered "a full English breakfast", only to be told that as she was now, as it were, in Rome, she would have to have "the full Welsh", which turned out to be the same as a full English but with organic Welsh bacon. Very more-ish.
One small thing. In the rush to get away, I quite forgot to send out the usual letter welcoming first-years to the department. If Maureen sees this, would she be a sport and knock out something along the usual lines: "We all look forward to meeting you in October - university is far less structured than school - don't expect too much too soon." And then a line about "all courses and tutors are subject to last-minute modification without any warning whatsoever". That sort of thing.
Cheerio for now and all the best, or as they apparently say in Wales - Cheerio a paw 'r enilla
Other news in brief
Following the announcement that Thames Valley University has decided to change its name to the University of West London, our vice-chancellor has moved quickly to deny rumours that consideration is being given to Poppleton raising its metropolitan status by becoming the University of North North West London.
A warm Poppleton welcome to delegates from the Association of Satanists and Allied Trades, who will be holding their annual conference at the university all next week. In a change of venue from previous years, the Black Mass that traditionally concludes the proceedings will be held in the atrium of the David Willetts Building.