In the afternoon we held a farewell ceremony for a number of colleagues leaving for well-earned retirements. These are always bitter-sweet occasions. It can never be an entirely happy occasion to lose good and much-appreciated colleagues. On the other hand, it can never be an entirely sad occasion to know that such colleagues are going off to enjoy themselves. One spritely lady, for example, has taken up scuba diving. (Instead of gazing at grey and blue files, she now gazes at many-coloured corrals!) I am always impressed on such occasions by the longevity of some colleagues’ careers. This time we said goodbye to two people who began work in the European institutions in 1975. 1975!