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THE WAITING ROOM by Thomas Milner


by Thomas Milner

242 pages
Memoirs of Englishman in Portuguese Old People's Home.

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Category: Autobiography
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About the Book
These are the fragmented reminiscences of an uncharacteristic Englishman who has somehow managed to end up in an Old People’s Home in Portugal.

The narrative leads the reader from birth in France to childhood in West Germany and from Boarding School in Hertfordshire to the Family home in a stony village in South Yorkshire.

Administrative work in North Africa – Annaba, Algiers and the Sahara desert – during the 1970s is followed by teaching posts in Portugal – firstly in Lisbon then in Porto. Finally the scene ends where the book begins, in an Old People’s Home situated in a little village on the north coast of Portugal overlooking the Atlantic ocean – THE WAITING ROOM of the title.

The book is seasoned with various anecdotes, vignettes, fancies and inventions and is, at times, couched in darkly humorous, irreverent or ironic language.

It contains a unique insight into a Portuguese Old People’s Home as viewed by a (literate) middle-aged Englishman and how he comes to terms, physically and psychologically, with his disabilities and the culturally alien environment in which he has found himself.



About the Author
The author spent his childhood in France, Germany and Britain. His working life comprised of admin-contracts in Algeria during the 1970s, and then Teaching English posts in Portugal, first in Lisbon then in Opporto. In 2002, he was diagnosed with a brain tumour (benign but recidivist) and had to retire to a home on the Portuguese coast.



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