chapter  17
15 Pages

Ingrid, court again

Three weeks after separation-day, I set out for Beijing, a solitary traveller showing signs of good resolution. At the airport began what would maintain my inner equilibrium during the flight, the writing of paragraphs of retrospective diary. The conference had to do with Logical Positivism, and was in memory of the Chinese Freddie Ayer. These official facts did not constrain all of the delegates, some of whom brought along whichever of their papers was closest to fitting in. Mine was the one already tried out in Tokyo, against the doctrine that actions are right because of special facts about the agents who perform them, rather than because of certain consequences of the actions. I did not deliver it especially well, mainly because of the difference in time zones, for which life in Keats Grove had not fully prepared me.