We arranged to meet in Paris at 1:30pm. J chose the venue: a beautiful white stucco-fronted hotel, opposite a formal park. When I arrived (just a couple of minutes late) J greeted me enthusiastically. Although we hadn’t seen one another for years, we soon slipped into the pattern of our old friendship.
I had expected that we would eat at this hotel, but J had other plans. He led me to his car and then we crossed the city to where he was staying. At one point I got the impression that we might be dining at the Pigalle restaurant just named “best in the world”. J confessed that we’d arranged our meeting at too short notice to get a table, but perhaps this could be arranged for next time.
He spent the rest of the trip complaining about Teesside accents. I pointed out that he would have to get used to them quickly now that my school friend M had been appointed to chair all the important meetings of our main professional body.