I was accepted to have an apprenticeship with BASF Chemical Company, in Ludwigshafen, Germany. It’s the largest production site worldwide and the company’s global headquarters and research centre. I spoke no German, but then, I’ve survived in France and Switzerland without French, so why not? I was convinced I would get by and would learn the language when I was there. I was asked to join the Inorganic Department, producing and analysing some dyes. Herr Raider provided me a name who was also working in the same building, but in a different laboratory. “He’d help you get sorted,” he said. Hence, first thing in the morning, I knocked at Room 602 and a tall English man opened it, some parts of his white shirt still untucked from his trousers. “I am, indeed.” was his answer to my question and that hooked me! “Such an accent,” I thought. He helped me obtain my lab gown and safety goggles that morning and waited for me for lunch every day. “There’s your English man again,” my Laborant would say.
That English man is Him Indoors…and we got married two years after we first met….and we’ve just celebrated our 30 years wedding anniversary last year!