About Me

My photo
Jakarta, Indonesia
Indonesia is the 7th country I've lived in. Slightly gay & in genteel decline, martini at hand, opera on loud. Toujours exil. This is a personal blog under a nom de plume (as it might be awkward if people were to associate my personal views associated with my employer or its work)

Sunday, 27 January 2013

About the author of this blog

The author of this blog was born in England, an only child, in 1969 (so at the time of writing is 301 in gay years: which are like dog years but flamier). His parents divorced when he was young and lived in different places. For a while he was parked at an aunt's in Cornwall... At first, after she was gone (running off with someone else's husband), his father told him his mother had died (& kept this up for four days). The eventual revelation was rather messy. In the end, the court declared her 'an unfit parent'. She was then, for almost a year after, banned from seeing her son. Ironically he now sees his mother a fair amount: the author has not spoken to his father - who lawyers advise is still not dead - since he turned 21. 
My graduation day outside my college rooms
It was an uneventful if slightly lonely childhood spent mostly with books. Living with his father before boarding school, he was brought up by a nanny. He was educated at Charterhouse School (where he was a scholar) and then read law at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge University.  Academically he is proudest that, at age fifteen, he taught himself Ancient History 'O' Level, arranging directly with the examining board to sit the exam at London University (he got an 'A').

About the gay thing he is a bit of a cliché (Roman Catholic) and a product of his generation - that group that blossomed sexually during the height of mid-1980s AIDS panic - so he's never, in truth, been completely comfortable with it (but see 'shy' in last para, below). He got off to a rocky start after being sexually pestered by a fellow pupil and then, worse, assaulted by a school master after he left school. A period of somewhat relentless promiscuity followed in Italy - a 'year out' - between school and university.

Ah. Italy. Twelve months now remembered in Technicolour and vivid detail: first opera (La Boheme); first real lover - a dubious British expat rake and alcoholic (a lot older but with a lovely villa) - and first paid job (barman in a private club). Virtually all vacations, across uni years, were spent in Italy.

The author found Cambridge a disappointment. After three years in the festering fen, he decided he wasn't clever-enough to be a barrister so - not wanting to be a solicitor and banned from the Diplomatic Service (gays were illegal then) - he did post-graduate studies in accountancy and passed London Stock Exchange exams, becoming an investment banker at the start of the 1990s. It was that or management consultancy.

He left banking and changed career tack completely in the mid-1990s, focusing on UK government stuff. In the late 1990s he also spent a lot of time commuting between London and Brussels; with many forays to Washington & New York. A significant moment was his first business trip to Kazakhstan in 1998 which, in retrospect, was to put his life on yet another tack.