Good News I suppose
etter from Edinburgh University extending my Honorary Fellowship for 2004/5. This is a fairly cautious approach as Fellowships are usually for spells of three years at a time. Perhaps someone has reported to the Dean of the Arts Faculty that I am showing signs of galloping decrepitude. But still it is nice to be wanted-if only in short doses. It will mean the rather wearisome traipse up to Ould Reekie in freezing dreich infested January and the challenge of keeping 60 plus students awake in an over heated lectureroom. At least my last lecture ended on a high note with a burst of applause from those present as my views on the Iraq war seemed to coincide with theirs. And the only sound asleep student I ever encountered was (a) hungover (b) tired (c) slumberingly emotional and (d) at the wrong lecture. His subject was Physics a subject which can be absorbed by osmosis.
The money is not great. By the time tax is deducted at source and again by HMI of T on top of my other income and my travel costs are taken into account I make a small loss. This apparently does not affect my overall tax position in my favour. So why do you do it I hear one of you cry? Search me Mate. It is I suppose nice to be able to pontificate without challenge to a more or less captive audience (Doors are not locked but the students are very polite) But then I can always do that at home with the wife and Rosie the cat. It must be the foreign travel element which is so stimulating.