If the country seemed to me to be doing better in the early nineties, the British Council was a much more depressing place. John Keleher had left in 1989, changing jobs with Clive Taylor who had administered English Language Teaching in the region from London. It was, as John put it, a silly exchange since John and his wife Chris loved Sri Lanka. They lived in the house Geoffrey Bawa had developed for Druvi de Saram in Ward Place from an old rambling family house, and they enjoyed it thoroughly, entertaining often and lavishly, for any group suggested to them, visitors, young trainees at the Council, the various English Language experts in residence, writers in English.
Clive was much more traditional and he and his wife Judith found living in the East difficult, but they did their best to cope, and he proved a delightful man to work for. Unfortunately, in 1990, Rex Baker also left, and was replaced by someone who consciously saw himself as representing the new Council. I was on the ship for the first part of 1990, and therefore not there when he arrived, but I do not know that I could have done much for Clive. Neil Kemp made his life a misery, obviously relishing the fact that he had been promoted swiftly to head a country representation while the much older Clive was his Deputy. By the time I came back Clive had resigned, from Colombo and from the Council. Not entirely surprisingly, John in London followed suit soon afterwards, finding London and the new directions the Council was taking quite unbearable.