It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas

So, here we are a few days before the beginning of the Cambridge part of the fourth cycle and in between finalising matters at work before the Christmas break and a Corporate Finance assignment, I’m trying to figure out where the time has gone. I’m pretty sure that last time I looked it was September…

Wolfson College
Wolfson College in Autumn

I suspect this is the way it’s going to be  for the foreseeable future or at least until I find myself at the end of the EMBA, or perhaps I’m just trying to convince myself of that. Thoreau said in Walden: Or Life in the Woods, he wanted “to live deep and suck the marrow out of life”, and perhaps the great man would be turning in his grave by me applying this to studying an MBA, but I think it sums up my experience well. I’m trying desperately to soak up all of the constituent parts of this EMBA, but sometimes it feels as if there aren’t enough hours in the day to do the things that you want to do, and do them well, which also includes your day job.

To immerse yourself in a subject and read beyond the required, to invest in the relationships you’ve begun to build with your classmates, and to experience all that you can when at your college and at Cambridge. It feels distinctly like there’s a lot to know, and not a lot of hours left to get to know them. I don’t think this is unique amongst my classmates or for that matter the cohort above us. Every time I run into someone on the programme from the year ahead and they ask how it’s all going with a knowing smile, I’m somewhat relieved that I’m not the only one who feels there aren’t enough hours in the day.

In the past few weeks, the usual has happened for November / December in London, it’s been a bit mad: I’ve succumbed to the standard pre-Christmas cold, the annual festival of Christmas parties both within the company and externally, my mother come to stay for three weeks catching up with her first grandchild, attend a three day conference for work with our Treasury teams across the world, and helped my EMBA team hand in what has seemed like a non -stop revolving door of assignments, with one more due just before Christmas eve (take a bow, Corporate Finance).


Executive MBA dinner at Sidney Sussex College
Sidney Sussex College Dinner with EMBA 2013 classmates

So after the final session in Cambridge this coming weekend, and a Christmas dinner with the 2013 and 2014 Classes, I fly out to Sydney to see family I haven’t seen in almost 2.5 years. I’m also planning on catching up with one of the members of the 2013 class who lives in Sydney and flies out to the UK for each session.  As it turns out, I actually went to primary school with Shaun about 25 years ago – it really is a small world. Whilst I’m planning on dealing with my Vitamin D deficiency by spending disgraceful amounts of time in the sun, at the beach or at the Sydney Cricket Ground, I’ll also be doing a fair amount of study in time for the exams which roll around in January and February on my return to London (I believe they call this “squeaky bum time”. Not quite as prosaic as Thoreau, but you get the idea).


Have a great Christmas and a happy New Year!




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