I have had a great life. I have lived in six different countries. I have travelled widely and have met lots of interesting people. Best of all, I have shared most of my life with a wonderful woman and a wonderful family. I have not accumulated any wealth, but have got a marvelous library of memories.
I was born in Cheshire in England. I grew up in Kenya and Rhodesia( Zimbabwe). I went to university in South Africa returning to Rhodesia to work as a research agronomist, industrial chemist and teacher. I married a Rhodesian girl, Thora, and soon after we married we bought a coffee farm in the Vumba in Eastern Rhodesia. We spent seven mostly happy years there with our five children. We survived being shot at, machine gunned, rocketed and mortared during the bush war against Robert Mugabe’s men.
Fearing for the children’s future, we left Rhodesia with nothing much more than our clothes, to make a new life in South Africa, me as a teacher and Thora as manager of a printing company. We eventually spent twenty odd years there. Along the way I rose in the teaching world to become a professor of chemistry at a technical university. Our last seven years in South Africa were especially happy, as Thora and I bought a piece of land with a small cottage on it. We turned the place into a successful Christmas tree farm, selling live trees and expanded our cottage.
Increasing violence South Africa, especially when Thora was robbed at gunpoint and shot at, caused us to leave South Africa and move to Upstate New York to be near our youngest son and his family. We bought a business which did not pan out, and in 2008 moved to the UK where we settled happily in a village about twenty miles north west of London. I have lost my precious wife but still have wonderful loving kids and grand kids.
Writers– Steinbeck and Somerset Maughan.
Music- Roger Whittaker (who I went to school with), Val Doonican.
TV shows– Jessie Stone, Magnum.
Food– Either roast pork with crispy crackling or a good curry.
Pet hates– Dishonest politicians ( most of them?).
I can honestly say that I have had a wonderful life so far and have very few regrets. I have been blessed.