With thirty six hours until Benedict arrives St. Mary's has begun to go into a bit of a shut down. Normal routes through the campus are suddenly blocked off, common rooms locked and the whole site is being swept. The initial police reckie teams have been replaced by TV executives and production managers planning camera angles and running orders. There's still quite a bit of painting going on - which must stop soon if it's to have any chance of drying by Friday - and an ornate new throne has been installed in the chapel (I know more than one academic whose nipped in to have a sit!)
By lunchtime tomorrow most of us will be on a day and a half of leave; although Sue and Matt have volunteered for stewarding duties and Trevor gets to attend The Big Assembly. Patsy and I are going to get some crisps in and watch it on her plasma screen TV across the river in Ham. It's going to be very strange - kind of an ultimate form of surveillance. They've built a Pope moblie parking space outside my office window.
With all the excitement of the visit plans for the new term have been bitty, although a couple of decent meetings, one on the Robben Island play, which Matt has done some terrific work on and is close to being ready for workshop and a quick chat this evening with Henry at The Orange Tree, who's happy to let some of our students sit in on his rehearsals for the theatre's schools tour of The Tempest in October. Meanwhile Eleanor's printed out lots of information related to applying for Heritage Lottery Grants, which I'd like to go for in order to provide proper funding for The Canterbury Tales. With work about to go into suspended animation I'm also going to try and finish the second draft of the Sarajevo play. There won't be so much time to think about it from Monday when the students arrive.