It was the first re-union of the Corps of Pakistan Signals, in March 1954, and the finals of the Inter Regimental Hockey were being played at the GHQ Signals Regiment Rawalpindi hockey ground. General Muhammad Ayub, then the C-in-C Pakistan Army, was the chief guest. It was customary then, and may be in practice still, to detail a local ADC from the unit. I, a Second Lieutenant, was detailed to perform this onerous task and was introduced to the General on his arrival. I felt a heavy weight of these duties on my shoulders but at the same time I was looking forward to the riding in the Chief’s car, after the match, sitting in the rear all by myself, and directing the chauffeur. After a while the General turned his head towards me and asked for a cigarette. I cranked my body and signaled the Chief’s chauffeur for the cigarettes. He immediately produced a tin and the General taking a cigarette lit it. During the interval a mess waiter brought the tea for the General, while the General was helping himself I, without even getting up from the chair stretched myself a little and pushed the coffee table by the side of the General to place the teacup. The match came to the end and the General was chatting affably with the players when Brig. Zaman started slowly closing in upon me. With a menacing look in his eyes, in a low voice but certainly in a harsh tone, he chastised me, “Since when have you started behaving like a butler in public?” “Beg your pardon, Sir?” I stammered. I did not have the foggiest idea of what I had done. “Don’t push the table yourself ask someone around you to do it. You are an officer and behave like one.” Having scolded me well and proper he melted away, leaving me aghast. Oh my God! I forgot all about the prestigious ride, in fact I did not have the heart to ride in it anymore. That evening we had the Corps Reunion Dinner in the Signals Officers’ Central Mess, Rawalpindi. General Ayub was the Chief Guest. Army’s entire top brass was there and so were all Signals’ Officers. Cold drinks were going rounds before the dinner and everyone seemed to be enjoying the evening. Only, I had not recovered from the reprove of the evening and was mulling over it quietly in a corner, suddenly I noticed Brig. Zaman, glass in hand, weaving through the maze of the officers as if looking for someone and lo; sure he smiled as he spotted me. Seeing him making for me I lunged forward and wished him ‘Good Evening, Sir’. Putting his arm round me he pressed it lightly and patting me on the back affectionately said, “Jaff, look after your guest (the General). Do anything you wish here. This is your home and you are the host.” Brigadier was clearly compensating for the reprove he had administered to a subaltern earlier that evening. LT COL S RIAZ JAFRI (R), Lahore, June10.