Happily, Alice - minus her gallbladder and its collection of stones - is now safely home and resting. Many, many thanks to all friends who sent good wishes and kind thoughts and all sorts of positive vibes. But oh, gosh, the anxious tedium of waiting - first for her, trussed up in a relatively fetching pale mauve paper gown, and still compos mentis enough to be checking her iphone - and then me, in a downstairs room full of large family groups whose relatives had various dramatic and scary problems (I am, evidently, the kind of sympathetic looking person that you sit next to if you're a Cuban immigrant to Florida, and want to start a long narrative beginning"Can I tell you a story?"). And then back upstairs, with Alice - with four new incisions - relatively relaxed and coherent, but needing to be able to pee (in a significant quantity) before she was allowed home: this led me to google "sound of running water", an exercise that I recommend, under such circumstances. But here she is, recovering, and normal academic life will be resumed - at least for me - tomorrow.