Brian Vidler:

I was at Kaptagat from 1954-1959.My parents lived in Mbale,Uganda. I used to join the train back to school at Tororo with pals like Donald Wills and remember those long lumbering climbs up the escarpment in a steam train fired by gum trees. I am still regularly in touch with Rory Thompson who now lives in Auckland NZ ( l live in Taranaki NZ). Your site is a trip down memory lane after all these years. I am the young lad with Archie Fraser at the stamp club. It gave me quite a shock to see it ! I also appear in the school photo of 1958. The names,Chitty,Veal Bax and Jupp are like ghosts from the past. The school made such a huge impression on me. I loved it and I loved Africa,and always regretted that my parents sent me to boarding school in Scotland when I felt I should have gone on to the Duke of Yorks with my mates.
I remember that I was in love with a dark haired ,dark eyed Sally Harris who appears in the leavers photo.
I have a memory of ringing the school bell,an old piece of railway iron hanging from a wooden arch by the games room about 2 hrs earlier in the morning than normal and getting the whole school up and dressed. Needless to say we (cant remember my accomplice) had to own up to a beating from Chitty. Other memories include lining up once a week for sweets bought with my newly doled out pocket money,weaver birds which fascinated me in thier nesting colonies,days spent looking for poisonous snakes by the river,we did spot a black mamba once,exchanging soap brought back from hols with the local african kids through the fence for bows and arrows armed with blunt stunning tips, dens in the cyprus heges surrounding the playing fields,climbing the trees as high as we could until we were swaying in the wind at the top and looking yearninigly back in the direction of home.
I remember the Fosters,the polo ponies and the gymkanhas .I learned to ride there and it has stayed with me since. I became a horse vet and now breed Arabian horses.The kindness of the teachers was immeasurable. Archie Fraser in particular.The polio scare when we we forced to gargle with salt water!!! At least none of us ever caught the disease. My love of art was stimulated by David Jupp,we all thought him terrific but slightly bizarre in an exotic way.
These and many other memories have made me indebted to Kaptagat. Its influence has been with me all my life and I have known it. Thank you for the opportunity of reliving it.
Brian Vidler

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