The first night at university, in the student bar in the halls of residence. I feel strangely at home, but adrift. In the student union bar I stand with my pint in my hand, turning this way and that towards conversations I’m not in.. Someone materialises at my shoulder with an olive green crushed velvet t-shirt, and mischievous eyes. “You look like you’re worth talking to,” he says, “can I buy you a drink?”

“Well I don’t know,’ I say, “what ‘A’ Levels did you get?’, and he sprays a mouthful of beer all over the person next to me.