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The invitation to speak was printed on satisfyingly heavy paper. “Please accept the committee’s invitation to speak on ‘Pneumocystis infection in AIDS’ at the 5th Pan-Eurasian Nosocomial Infection Society. The meeting will be held 14th–16th November 2003 in X.” I’d not heard of “X” for many years. In fact not since I studied ‘O’ level geography, when I remember it was (and still is) the capital city of Y. My ego inflated. I asked my secretary to respond with indecent haste in order to confirm my participation. Her blushes caused me to re-read the invitation and made me aware of the conference organising committee’s acronym. A few days later a letter arrived, confirming arrangements for travel, hotel, and conference registration. Buried in the small print at the bottom of the letter was the statement that “PowerPoint facilities will not be available.” A month before the conference I made slides for my talk and I was reassured when flight tickets and details of hotel accommodation arrived by courier.
With some excitement, and considerable “jetlag” …