As you can see from this rather glamorous card, I'm spending a few days at the Martinez Hotel in Cannes, a wonderful art deco building on La Croisette. There's a fine swimming pool, an exquisite restaurant which serves lamb baked in salt (yes, salt!), a wonderful bar with a famous pianist called Jimmy, and delightful rooms overlooking the sea. If you don't want to spend your life in the hotel, you can simply cross the road, select a sunbed on a private beach and wait for the staff to bring you another bottle of ice-cold Provencal rose.
Not that I have any time to enjoy such delights. I'm attending an important and exhausting conference on the Implications of the Dearing Report for Foreign Travel. We've had some fascinating papers already on such subjects as The Absence of Any Mention of Foreign Travel in the Dearing Report and The Future of the Sabbatical in an Age of Mass Higher Education.
I had hoped to be back for the second week of term but yesterday came news that an important conference on The Future of the Handbag in the Tuscan Manufacturing Economy in Florence in early October has been extended by a fortnight to accommodate a last-minute rush of papers. It will be a bit of a wrench not to be back for all the beginning of term fun over registration and room changes. But as Dearing might have said had he got round to it, c'est la vie.
Best wishes to anyone who knows me, Dr Piercemuller
Dept of Cultural and Media Studies
University of Poppleton