Today’s paper-pushing, student-calming and so forth ended in a curious sort of gig which was entertaining 43 Arab maidens from the Emirates. They have been on some sort of empowerment course in Dundee, and were up for a day’s worth of Aberdeen, where it was, on and off, snowing. We therefore excused them Plan A, ‘A Walk Round Old Aberdeen’ and substituted a lecture with powerpoint pictures, improvised at the eleventh hour. I must say, they are clearly a very bright bunch, as an audience, they were both courteous and lively, and I can only say that whatever empowerment has been going on seems to be working. The chador does not necessarily result in a switching off of higher mental processes, whatever the French President might think. We had a schedule for this event, but the thing we hadn’t reckoned on was the aftermath. Not questions, but, I strongly suspect, a Courtesy of the Modern World (I encountered it in Japan). They wanted to take their photos with us. I can’t really think why they want stout, grey & shabby Aberdeen professors, other than to demonstrate that the event took place & they were there, in case of Questions Later, but they did. They were commendably efficient about the whole thing, and asked politely if we minded being on their Facebooks, but even so, as with weddings, it took FOREVER.