March 25, 2006

We can't return, we can only look behind from where we came …

… and go round and round and around in the circle game.

I was forced to accompany my mother to one of her dull job analysis marathons, which turned out to be at my old school. As I opted to stay in the car I was treated to 2 hours of watching the world go by where once were the preliminary acts of my adulthood played out. As I watched the sixth form car park it was a galaxy away and like no time had passed at all. Here was the outhouse I first met Stephen in, butterflies and sparks for the next 3 years … there was Tim and Tawnie walking out to the village shop in search of any Xtremeness that Guilsborough post-office might muster … there was Adam driving to meet Kieth in the car that would one day be mine … and inside Alice, Dan, Ryan, Lianne, Poorna, Tawnie, the Two Tim's and I sat round our table in the study room and studiously talked about irrelevant crap. And I thought, how I miss that convergent point of geography and history.

And who should come trotting across the carpark but little Charles Sutherland-Kay, the awkward oboe player now 6 foot 2, as genial as he ever was and otherwise unchanged. I believe tonight, on msn, I had the best conversation of recent weeks when he told me about his infectious disease topic in A-level biology.

Little Charles – with all his eloquence and his good heart – and all the other small people now grown up and leading the school orchestras: where has the time gone?

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