Back in the days when the Resident IT Consultant was not yet the Resident IT Consultant, we once went to the pub. Well, maybe we went more than once. But there was this nice one, with good food, in a garden setting somewhere in Oxford.
We were just settling in over lunch, when one of his research colleagues turned up, accompanied by a full complement of family; Mother, Father and Sister. They joined us at our table and we chatted.
Before long Father discovered I sounded a bit odd, so asked where I was from. ‘Sweden,’ I said. To which he replied that his daughter had recently been to Norway. (Somehow people have always been to Norway.)
Trying to be polite, I then interrogated the Sister a little on her trip to Norway, because you have to at least try. She was a bit stiff, but gave the conventional answers people offer.
Then she turned to her embarrassing Father and told him not to be so stupid (and they were such a proper and well behaved family, too), because ‘she (that’s me) said she’s from Swindon!’
That explained it. I had to break it to her very gently that unfortunately Father had been right. He, on the other hand, was very happy pointing out that he might be old and hopeless, but that didn’t mean he’s always wrong.
And that’s where we are heading. To not-Swindon.