Carl is sat on a grassy slope at the side of the M4 motorway, while his taxi-driver deals with a flat tyre.
“Beautiful irony; the guy looks to be really ... ‘shirty’ in his idiom.”
Carl is Brechtian Professor of Literature at Bonn, and is on his way to a seminar on German poets at UWE. He makes a mental note to bring up 'Radwechseln' in his talk, then looks at his watch.
“I’m late already: no matter, they’ll wait.”
Carl’s reputation is such that many host universities will reorganize their programmes around his availability. He lies back and thinks of the meal Greta will have ready for him when he flies back home late tonight. He knows he is very lucky, and reminds himself that on Sunday it would be nice to join the rest of the family in giving thanks to God at the Minster before lunching on campus.
Carl knows where he’s come from, and is pretty relaxed about where life’s leading him.
"The driver needs to chill: it's only a puncture."