5 August 2009
The die is cast. I took the plunge today and booked the flights for me and my good friend, Dr. Long to go to China and then onto Hua Hin, towards the end of October. This, despite my trepidation at the rate that my hands and arms are giving up. Two and a half months is a very long time with such an aggressive disease. However, the good doctor has made it quite clear that he is only too happy to be with me 24/7 on this trip and do whatever is necessary. Sobeit. I had been led to believe that it was virtually impossible for someone of my age and infirmity to get travel insurance at anything other than a ridiculously high premium. However I am pleased to report that I did find a company today to cover my forthcoming visit to China and Thailand for what I consider a very reasonable premium of Â£122 which also includes cover for anything arising from my MND or prostate cancer, which I had 10 years ago.
I spent most of the day preparing my talk for the memorial address in Dublin on the 18th September. The trouble is it cannot be entirely light-hearted and has to have some academic interest which means the preparation of a number of PowerPoint slides. Easy enough in the old days but now with weak hands, a laborious process.
Hi Mark, I have only just heard that you are to speak in Dublin on 23rd September 2009 (don’t come on the 18th or you may be lonely). Please don’t make the talk too academic – I’m sure most people will prefer to hear your anecdotes etc – and stuff the PowerPoints. The picture of you with the hat and the champagne reminds me of the last time you were over here in Malahide, as Course Director on a Fellowship Assessment course with John Simms. After the day was over, we retired to the bar – where you ordered champagne (no credit crunch in those days). You spat out the first mouthful, declaring it to be no better than sparkling wine – and told them to bring some decent stuff. By the way, your book still makes a great doorstop (when I’m not reading it). I look forward to meeting you again soon. Roy