Here is the entire history, sordid though it may be, of Peter Lloyd-Davies. First, let me explain that, yes, I do know that this is unforgivably narcissistic of me. But it is fun for me to watch, and the rest of you can... well, you can just click somewhere else.
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|I was born in 1943, during the war while my father was in the Royal Navy and my mother had been evacuated from London because of the bombing. Not long after I was born, he was sent to Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) to help decode Japanese communications. The closest he came to combat was getting his hat blown off when one of the ship's big guns was fired while he was on deck.|
|In 1945, after the war, my Dad was sent to the British Embassy in Washington DC. We stayed there about 3 years and my sister Virginia was born there. Here I am with my parents, around 1946. My God, they look so young! Actually, I guess they are young - in their mid thirties.|
|Here I am in 1951 on vacation in Wales. We returned to the same house several years in a row on Rotherslade Bay, a rather pebbly beach not far from Swansea. Wales was chosen, I suppose, because of my father's origins there, although his family actually came from Denbigh, in the north.|
|Another pic from 1951, sitting in a tree at the bottom of our garden in Harrow, clutching my trusty rifle. Our house was a four-bedroom on a small lot in a suburb about a 30 minute train ride from London. We lived there until 1956, when my father was posted to Paris, and we returned to the same house when we returned to England in 1960. A year or so later, we moved a short distance to the somewhat posher suburb of Pinner.|
|This pic, taken in 1954, shows me being a big brother to my little sister Virginia, who was (still is, actually) three and a half years younger than I. All of this was to change rather dramatically two years later when my family moved to Paris and I got dumped off at an English boarding school. Virginia went to a local French school, where she soon excelled and I was left with a huge case of sibling rivalry which lasted for the next 20 years. Poor Virginia was quite bewildered by this sudden shift for which she was not at all responsible. I am happy to say that I finally came to my senses and we became and now remain good friends.|
|My first camping trip as a scout, around 1955 when I was 11. I was actually trembling in my boots because I had heard all kinds of sinister stories about what 'they' did to tenderfeet on their first trip. (Not much, actually.) However, I never really enjoyed the scouts and didn't get into camping until much later when I could do it with a few people I liked rather than with a boatload of hyperactive hormone cases. My one lasting achievement of the upcoming trip was to use a hatchet to cut firewood for the first time - I became so tired from swinging it that I missed the wood and stuck the blade in my shin, where I still have a scar today.|
|Here I am, also around 1955, with my paternal grandfather in front of his house in Muswell Hill, in northwest London. He is in his 80ies here, in excellent health, and eventually lived to be 101. His secret of long life? He smoked and drank, but kept active into his 90ies, playing golf several times a week. He managed to stay away from hospitals for the first 100 years of his life and, when he did enter one after falling and breaking his hip, look what happened to him! My secret of long life? Have long-lived grandparents.|
|In 1956, when my father moved the rest of the family to Paris, I was consigned to a boys' boarding school outside London. Here I am, characteristically sneering at the rest of the world, outside the school bike sheds. I didn't enjoy boarding school much - teenage boys are not the ideal companions even when you are one yourself. I did envy the boys who seemed so supremely self-confident and who appeared to have a bang-on time|
|I was admitted to Oriel College, Oxford, for the fall of 1962. This left me a full year to do something interesting with my life. After some dithering around, trying to compare a year of carrying the white man's burden in Africa to the delights of learning auto mechanics, I decided on the former and went off to Mali for 10 months to teach school under the sponsorship of Voluntary Service Overseas. It turned out to be much less glamorous that I had imagined and my students, instead of revering me like a god, well, they were just students, high-spirited and obstreperous. This is me driving a camel.|
|On my way back to England, I stopped off at Timbuktu (which is in Mali). In order to prove that I really have been there, I enlisted the help of some former students who were on the same flight to prop up a sign at the airport to have my picture taken beneath.|
|At the end of my first year at Oxford, I went on a trip to Europe with three friends. We drove through France, across the Alps, into Italy, across Northern Italy, Yugoslavia into Greece. After Greece, we took the ferry from Confu to Brindisi in Italy and returned up the West coast of the boot. Here I am lurking in the vapors in the crater of Vesuvius.|
|The name is Bond, James Bond. There were several occasions at Oxford to wear a tux, and I actually inherited one that I could fit into that was owned by my great-uncle Edward. My beard makes an appearance in this photo, and has only been shaved off a couple of times since then.|
|Finally, in 1965, I graduated from Oxford and decided to explore graduate studies in the New World. At first, I signed up for a one-year Master's program in economics at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario. Back in those far-off days, the price of flying to Canada was about the same as taking the boat, so I decided that a leisurely 5-day crossing on RMS Franconia would be just fine. Here I am about to embark.|
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