I had lunch with our Czech members. I have had similar lunches with a number of such ‘national’ groupings (our members do not see themselves as belonging to national delegations). It’s my ambition to meet with all 27 of them. It’s a chance to discuss matters freely and amicably and for me to get to know my members better. But I have to admit that the Czech members have a special place in my affections. In 1989 I got to Prague whilst the Velvet Revolution was under way (see 13 March post). Later, when I was managing the Tempus Programme, I began to realise that such higher education exchange programmes were two-way affairs, particularly when it came to the Czech Republic. Last but not least, my younger brother is married to a Czech doctor and I have two Czech nephews and a Czech niece. I remain convinced that we ‘oldies’ (I mean from the EU15 member states) have not yet understood the full consequences of the 2004 and 2007 enlargements. Our new members (if one can still call them that) are full of dynamism and energy and expectations and ideas. It is a privilege and good fun to work with them.