A few months after the launch of the website friendsreunited - which seeks to link up old school friends who have lost touch with each other - I wrote a personal piece about it for the Scotsman newspaper.
I lived in Kirkcaldy in Fife between the ages of eight and 13, and beyond the age of 15, I'd never spoken to anyone I'd known from those days. Until my article appeared. After which several former pupils and one teacher got in touch with me.
I thought about this article and those days after I'd heard the first minister Alex Salmond proclaim, among a load of saltire-waving school kids, "they don’t need any encouragement to celebrate their Scottishness." Quite right. As the only kid with an English accent in my class, I can well remember the really big Scottish celebrations. Like on 14 June 1970, after Germany knocked England out of the World Cup. They didn't need any encouragement then. I was nine, but I thought I'd died and gone to hell.
I've changed some of the names in the article which was written in 2001. You can read it in the next entry, 'Let's all meet up ..." The photo above must have been taken in 1971, and the picture below is about the same time. Since I wrote the article, friendsreunited has spawned many imitators, notably http://www.convictsreunited.com/