The past has been exercising me over the last few days and I have been thinking about old friends and acquaintances I have left behind along the way. Perhaps it is because we have been visiting my wife’s extended family while in Turkey and catching up with a few of her old friends. I tried Googling a few names to see what came back, but was surprised to see so little. I did the same for my family a couple of months ago and found all sorts – the title of my sister’s PhD, her published papers, interviews with my father, my brother’s (incorrect) diplomatic posting. Yet I did make contact with a couple of people I had once known, and it was a revelation. A decade ago I must have had low esteem to such an extreme that it never struck me that those people I had always considered “cool” were actually great bores. How the self-centred soul so obscures reality.