January 27, 2008

The final part of the journey

We were safely back at Pie’s house by Sunday evening enjoying good food and good company. I am not sure how pleased the newly wedded couple were to see us, as they had been enjoying a quiet house since we left – which they needed after the excitement of the wedding. I think they must have missed the entertainment of having us around though, especially Mark’s early morning piano practice, which he resumed the first morning back.

The last couple of days were spent visiting friends, mostly ex-Warwick people, some other Thai friends, and my Thai family. Mark and I got some great dinners, I got a haircut for less than a pound, and I bought lots of fruit to smuggle back for people at home. It was all over too quickly and on Wednesday evening after another good meal I was sent to the airport by Pie, Nun, Mark and Opp to catch a flight (that I almost missed) back to Blighty. It was great to see so many friendly faces in Bangkok, and I really hope I can return again soon. Thank you for entertaining Mark and I, and for all the great food we enjoyed. If any of you are visiting England soon then you are always welcome at my house – I cannot guarantee the food will be as good as Thailand though!

My story does not quite end there. The 24 hours following my arrival in England were supposed to be occupied with intense revision for my PhD viva. However, post-Thailand fever set in almost immediately and I was consumed with updating my blog which had been neglected the last week of my trip. When I finally got around to revision I quickly came to the conclusion that it was too late, and so I just practiced meditation for a short time instead. I am happy to report though that I managed somehow to get through the viva. It was a grilling experience that lasted two hours, and when they sent me out the room I dashed straight to the kitchen for a much needed cup of tea. By the time I had mashed the tea, they were already searching for me to call me back in. With a cup of tea in front of me I could handle the result whatever, but to my utter surprise they told me I had passed without the need for any corrections.

All of which goes to show, a fun-filled adventure with friends is all the preparation you need to answer the most difficult exam questions.

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Jackie Kennedy
"I want to live my life, not record it."


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