I found out this week when the European defense is, that I will be an external examiner for. December 1. No problem, except for the fact that I am returning from a family Thanksgiving vacation on Nov 30th.
At 2:00 pm.
That means the only way for me to make this all work out is if I fly in with my family, say goodbye to my wife and daughter as they drive home and hop on a red eye to Europe. The best available flight gets into my destination just before 10:00 am on the 1st and the defense is at 2:00 pm that afternoon.
Oh, and did I mention that it's in a non-English language?
My ability to sleep on a plane is drastically hampered by my height, so I should be good and sleep deprived with a solid helping of jet lag. I'm guessing that falling asleep during a defense that one is an external for is bad form. Is there enough coffee in the world to keep me awake for this? Hard to say.