Clunk. Karen placed her Grateful Dead CD onto her walkman and looked around her as she travelled on the BART subway from the airport to Pineforest where the San Paradiso University campus was situated.
She realised she should have an Ipod.
Everyone on the train had one and sat tapping happily, music hidden away discretely.
The train burst into sunlight and Karen sat up dazzled as she saw tree-lined hills in distance, and, close by, a series of smaller hills with wooden houses clutching them.
It was 2 in the afternoon and to Karen it was midnight.
Karen felt that she had walked into a brave new world, (pictured here)...
full of light and trees and beyond, the Pacific ocean.
She was on the other side of the world.
She pulled out an invitation she had been nursing on the flight, which bafflingly read:
'A reception to be held in your honour.
All Faculty invited
Wine to be served
At the Dean's residence.
With a start, Karen realised that this was today.
She re-checked the date and to her horror,
this was confirmed.
She would be attending a reception in her honour at 4 in the morning.
TO BE CONTINUED...