We are all on a coach going down the M3 and my misbegotten trunk is underneath me somewhere. We all seem to be male, nervous and bluff, though I don’t see how we can be. It feels exactly like a school excursion. The only thing anyone can think of to say is ‘So what ‘A’ levels did you get?’ and I have no more conversational imagination than anyone else. Eventually someone pipes up with ‘So what’s Southampton like, anyway?’ No one has any idea. There’s a silence that lasts until the motorway finishes and we don’t start to find out.

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