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Fame at last!

Apparently, I enjoyed fifteen seconds of fame yesterday evening. The award of Gloria Hunniford's honorary degree was covered on UTV (Ulster Television, the local equivalent of ITV), and I'm told that footage showing her standing on the platform during the ceremony featured me sitting in the background. A good thing I'd realised at the time that I was on show, then (even if I didn't know the event was being covered for the news), and had resolved to Sit Up Straight and Not Pick My Nose.

The evening ceremony last night, meanwhile, was much as the morning one, except without Gloria Hunniford, David Whitehead, or, I'm sorry to say, anyone doing a victory leap on the stage. One poor fellow I chatted to in the academic procession had a whopping seven ceremonies to do over the course of the week. He was in fact a chaplain, whose role seemed to be to support his flock as part of a rota which ensured that the University chaplaincy was represented at all of the week's ceremonies. I don't envy him having to do it all seven times, anyway.

I had a lovely time at both the garden party and the evening reception (which was exactly the same as the garden party, except in the evening), chatting to students, and feeling nostalgic about the fact that it will probably be the last time I see them. The weather was fine, the strawberries were good and the achievements being celebrated were important. And now this morning a fresh batch of proud parents and slightly embarrassed students are pouring in to do it all again. Gah, maybe that chaplain isn't so unlucky after all.


( 18 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 5th, 2005 09:18 am (UTC)
I was going to say yesterday, that all graduation ceremonies are indeed exactly the same, bar a slight variation in Scotland (or at least Edinburgh/St Andrews), where instead of the handshakey business, you get tapped on the head by a ceremonial hat made out of John Knox's trousers (yes, really). I have no idea why this is, other than maybe it's less work for the VC..

On a completely unrelated note, what are you doing about places to stay for SB's wedding?
Jul. 5th, 2005 10:41 am (UTC)
Yes, someone was saying something about the use of hats in Scotland yesterday, although I can't remember which university they were talking about, and they certainly didn't mention John Knox's trousers! Of course there is also that special handshake they do at Bristol - do you remember that? Where you have to put your hands together as through praying, and the V-C puts his hands on the outside of yours instead of shaking your hand in the normal way.

As for SB's wedding, it's all still up in the air, although I might have a better idea after this coming Sunday. I'll be in Birmingham for a few days, and will be seeing edling while I'm there. My hope is that I can persuade him to allow me to turn up in Oxford and throw in my lot with him, getting lifts to and from the wedding, and either staying somewhere in the local area if he does, or with him back in Oxford if he drives back. I'm certainly going to be reliant on somebody else for lifts there and back, as it's not really accessible via public transport, is it? It's just a question of identifying a suitable somebody!
Jul. 5th, 2005 10:48 am (UTC)
Of course there is also that special handshake they do at Bristol

yes, I always thought that was quite suspiciously Masonic!

If there's at all an option of throwing mine and M's collective hat in with you and/or edling, that would be great. We need to sort somewhere to stay as well, and I suppose a B&B in Henley would be easiest. *Or* we could be extra organised and find somewhere in one of the local villages, all stay there, and share taxis or something? Let me know what Ed thinks, as I've lifted my head from the housemoving chaos and realised it's actually coming up really rather soon!
Jul. 5th, 2005 10:55 am (UTC)
OK, well I'll mention that you're looking to work out transport / accommodation details yourself when I talk to him. I don't know how much room there will be in his car, as he's definitely bringing Cat, and he may be transporting Bob and Tree as well. But if they're driving themselves, then hopefully there will be two cars going, in which case all should be fine. Basically, getting to Oxford is easy, getting to Henley is manageable, but getting any further than that is next to impossible if you don't have your own wheels. :(

The local village idea is very attractive, although on the whole I'm not too worried about where I stay - anywhere that fits in with whatever transport I can sort out will be fine.
Jul. 5th, 2005 10:59 am (UTC)
Similarly, I'm not bothered as long as there's somewhere to sleep. It just struck me that somewhere local means no-one has to drive that night, which always good after a wedding! I'll try and dig out from post-moving chaos the piece of paper that said where the hell it was, and do some web trawling on places to stay.
Jul. 5th, 2005 11:10 am (UTC)
Indeed! Yes, do let me know what you find out about places to stay, and we'll compare notes in a week once I've spoken to edling.
Jul. 5th, 2005 09:43 am (UTC)

I don't envy you having to go to all those ceremonies - I got bored enough at my own, lol. And we had quite a few people doing victory leaps and the like (including my git of a housemate who no one liked anyway, and no one laughed)
Jul. 5th, 2005 10:50 am (UTC)
I bet that chaplain will have developed callouses on his hands from all the clapping by the end of the week!
Jul. 5th, 2005 09:45 am (UTC)
yay for the Daria icon. I love Daria, me.
Jul. 5th, 2005 10:49 am (UTC)
Hee, thanks! Everyone needs a sarcastic / cynical icon, I think, and she does the job very well.
Jul. 5th, 2005 09:59 am (UTC)
Yes I saw you on the telly and you looked *very* academic ;)
Jul. 5th, 2005 10:43 am (UTC)
Ooh, cool! Pity I'll probably never see it myself, but it's nice to know I was actually recognisable by people who know me.
Jul. 5th, 2005 10:28 am (UTC)
Aww I didn't see that. Sorry I missed you at the garden party - we were there but I didn't think you would be cos you weren't at the ceremony and I hadn't seen your message yet, so wasn't looking out for you. Funny we didn't see you! It was a lovely day :) Even Donna really enjoyed it and she hates attention. We didn't go to the evening thing cos we had a table booked for dinner at 8.
Jul. 5th, 2005 10:46 am (UTC)
That's a shame. I'm afraid I forgot until I'd left the garden party that you might be at it, and of course there were so many people there that it would have been quite unlikely to spot someone you weren't actively looking for. I'm also sorry I missed Donna, because I still haven't met her! Oh well, glad you both enjoyed the day anyway, and I hope your meal out was good.
Jul. 5th, 2005 02:00 pm (UTC)
You'll have to meet Donna soon! Maybe at a barbeque some time when we get round to it. We did have a good day. Donna wasn't expecting to enjoy it too much as she hates attention, but she loved it in the end :)
Jul. 5th, 2005 02:08 pm (UTC)
I'm certainly on for any upcoming barbeques.
Jul. 5th, 2005 06:07 pm (UTC)
I suspect that if you ahd known you were going to be videoed, you would have secreted an MLP about your person - an appropriately gowned and hatted MLP, naturally - and waved it at the camera...
Jul. 5th, 2005 06:09 pm (UTC)
I do actually know a collector who made one of her favourite ponies its own little academic gown, in colours to match her own, and took it along to her ceremony. Maybe the thinking was that the pony had inspired her so profoundly that it could take equal credit for the degree - I'm not sure!
( 18 comments — Leave a comment )

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