Pete Comley

A few more reminiscences of Kaptagat, for what they are worth. I was there from '59 to '63.
We used to prepare for the end of term train trip home by cutting a few leaves from the tobacco tree a week or so before, and drying them out in our secret tree houses in the hedge. We would cut and roll them to shape, then wrap them in a sheet of Bronco toilet paper. They were truly dreadful cigarettes, (perhaps real tobacco doesn't come from a tobacco tree?), but we bravely coughed and hacked a couple in the train compartments while Mr. Jupp was having lunch. We also made "Montgomery Fuses" for the journey. These were the center page of the Eagle comic, which featured Montgomery of Alemain, and we cut it back and forth to make a long 1" wide strip. You'd stand on the seat holding it up above your head, then someone would light the bottom. The boy that held on longest won. I remember waiting at Kaptagat station in the early hours of the morning for the Nairobi train, being allowed in the stationmaster's office and being fascinated by the instruments, with the large brass section keys in, and the occasional 'ding' or 'click'. Then we'd hear the whistle and could see the train a couple of miles away. My journey home was somewhat complex, train to Nairobi, East African Airways Dakota to Dar-es-Salaam, then a train to Dodoma.
There is an errata in the prefect lists on the boards! I was actually Captain of Sandringham in 1963 and left that year, but they forgot to paint my name on. Afterwards they put my name on the board but in the wrong year, 1965.
My friends there were Paul Townsend, Guy Bailey, Miles Logie and Terry Brick, also Dudu (because he was small, I can't recall his real name).

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