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Chance Encounters

by

Arthur H. Larkman

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As written by the author in early 2005.

“Some months ago I wrote a brief description of the delivery flight of a Malayan Airways aircraft from Singapore to the UK. An old friend, who had been a fellow crewmember, had often suggested that the trials and tribulations we endured on that journey should be recorded and, after almost fifty years, I at last made the effort. To refresh my memory of those events I referred to my flying log books and other items stored away for many years. Browsing through them brought back many long forgotten memories and, by the time I had completed the task, I was reminded of a large part of my earlier life.

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Looking back over those years I was struck by the apparently random course my life had taken. When I pondered over the decisions which determined the path of my future life, I realised that most of the changes of direction owed far more to chance than to careful planning. These changes usually resulted from information or influences from friends and, very often, chance encounters with new acquaintances. The realisation was forced upon me that the course of my life has been largely determined, not by careful and intelligent planning, but as a result of impulsive and, on occasion, decisions taken on the spur of the moment.

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In the course of writing these reminiscences the memories evoked triggered many more and before long a brief record, of the eight years up to 1956, had grown into this narrative. Most of the content deals with the years I spent with Malayan Airways, the newly formed airline which eventually developed into Singapore Airlines. I have recounted in some detail the history and activity of this airline and the people who served it so well.

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This first book also covers the most wonderful ‘chance encounters’ of all, my meeting with the woman who was to become my wife Joy, our marriage and the arrival of my two children Brod and Susie.

My time with Dan-Air will be the subject of a second volume!”

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