Lawyers excitedly taking selfies like teenagers, a naked Brad Pitt and more bow ties than the Bullingdon Club – such is life at the International Bar Association conference.
Thousands of delegates descended on Boston (Mass., not Lincs) last week for a week of lectures, speeches and meetings. With a fair amount of booze thrown in to make it all go down that bit easier.
Some of the UK contingent nearly did not make it at all – their plane was delayed on the runway at Heathrow before being turned back after two hours due to a problem with the water on board. After a night at a Heathrow hotel, the weary party then arrived in Boston – via Paris – some 48 hours after they had set off.
Still, it was worth it for the parties and receptions, held everywhere from the city aquarium to the Cheers bar (turns out everybody doesn’t know your name, it’s all a lie). Kudos to the delegates who filled the breakfast seminars after partying (well, standing still with a wine glass) long into the night before.
Highlights of the conference included a ding-dong between John Bellinger (Bush administration) and Lord Goldsmith (former attorney general) over Guantanamo, which ended with the latter accusing his opponent of being an ‘apologist’.
Delegates at a meeting on privacy issues also got more than they bargained for with a slide showing Brad Pitt in all his, er, glory. Quite the eyeful.