This morning saw me seated in a GP's surgery waiting for the aged pater familias to escape the clutches of his doctor. In the row of seats in front of me and slightly to my right a father and son sat down. I didn't pay them any great attention although the elder gentleman looked vaguely familiar. I caught the son glancing over in my direction a couple of times but thought nothing of it. He then rose to his feet and came round to me and named me. He had clearly recognised me and seemed to know me. Thankfully he introduced himself before I had to admit that he had me at a disadvantage.
It transpired that he and I had been at school together between the ages of eleven and eighteen. We took the same subjects at O-level and at A-level we shared the same classes in three of our four subjects. If truth be known I suppose we were in competition with each other for the top place in our year. The last time we had seen one another was in June 1976, - almost forty years ago. Since he graduated from Cantabrigia he has pursued a career in teaching mostly in the Middle East including Syria. He has certainly clocked up a lot of air miles. His travels have provided him with the background for three books. One deals with the schism in Sudan, another with the Yemini island of Scotora and the third with the Turkish Baths of Damascus and Aleppo.