To go into details of my roller-coaster ride at S Thomas’ would take up too much space and time, but an overview would be interesting, given what it taught me about elite society. After I had withdrawn my resignation, Illangakoon wrote what can only be described as a literary masterpiece. He claimed that he had long wanted to give up being Warden, and now asked again to be relieved, but added that he had nowhere to go and was unable to live on his pension alone. He then went on to say that he found it impossible to work with me.
The Board accordingly decided to accept my resignation. Lyn Weerasekera and my old Chaplain Baldwyn Daniel pointed out that it was wrong to do this after I had been persuaded to withdraw, but the Treasurer produced a lawyer who said I had made conditions, and the Board could therefore reject these. When I got the letter claiming that the Board accepted my resignation since it was unable to accept my conditions, I pointed out that I had made no conditions, I had simply requested the Board to inquire into Mr Illangakoon’s conduct, and their refusal of my request did not affect the withdrawal. The Treasurer, a man named Duleep Kumar, tried to insist, but they then consulted proper lawyers, including Sam Kadirgamar, who said that there was now no resignation before the Board.
So it was decided to accept Illangakoon’s resignation, but he was allowed to stay on in the Warden’s bungalow, and was to be paid till the end of the year. The Archdeacon of Colombo, Rev Gnanapragasam was asked to officiate as Warden. He reluctantly accepted the responsibility, but in effect left me to do the work, dropping in at College when he could, but otherwise working on files that I would take to him as required.