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Friday, February 24, 2017

My Cambridge days

Seatrade Academy Selwyn College, now the Cambridge Academy of Transport

 

Seven days, to be exact! What little I learnt there I've long forgotten but not the carousing and merry-making after a particularly long dry spell in Saudi Arabia. And it still comes in handy today to refer to "my Cambridge days" whenever people like to look down their noses at my somewhat humble primary school education ☺.

Anyway, as I was saying, during "my Cambridge days" I met a great bunch of people who were also in the shipping industry, including Crista (not her real name) from São Paulo, the only female attendee.

Yes, it had been a particularly long dry spell in Saudi Arabia and, no, I wasn't going to waste any time. So, drawing on all my social skills acquired at Barton House, I plonked myself next to her and said,
"Hi, I'm Peter from Saudi Arabia" (pity my name wasn't Lawrence!)

Crista (not her real name) turned out to be a German-Brazilian, one of Brazil's twelve million people of German descent. Her German was a lot better than my Portuguese and so we hit it off really well. Day One went in no time at all, and the remaining six days just as quickly, not to mention the extra few days at the LONDON MARRIOTT in London's Grosvenor Square, before I returned to my cloistered life in Jeddah.

I learnt little about "Practical Aspects of Chartering" but a good deal about Crista (not her real name) with whom I kept in touch until time and distance made it clear that another meeting would be impossible.

I haven't used the "Hi, I'm Peter from Saudi Arabia" line since then; instead, I sometimes mention "my Cambridge days" - and it works! ☺


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