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February 2002

A Wayfarer

In the early years of my sobriety, I did contract work, as I had in my drinking days--oil refineries, power stations, etc. It was what I knew best and I wanted to be responsible for myself and my family. When I was three years sober, I was offered a contract in Cyprus, and after much thought and discussion with my AA friends, I went for it.

An old seagoing friend of mine, Archie G., told me about the AA Loners network, so when I got to Cyprus, I wrote to New York and was given a contact: an army captain and his wife who lived twenty-five miles from the British army base. It was very hush-hush since they didn't want the army to know about them, and they were leaving Cyprus soon. They gave me a book, The AA Way of Life (first printed in 1967 and now called As Bill Sees It). By that time I was getting the Loner newsletter, Loners-Internationalists Meeting, and that kept me going.

When my job in Cyprus was finished, I went to Wales. I was grateful for my LIMs, since it took about five years for meetings to get going. By then I'd gone back to the Middle East, to Saudi Arabia. I was given a contact by LIM and I traveled almost four hundred miles every Wednesday to spend some time with this AA member. Then we heard about some AAs in Dhahran, and we got a meeting going, and that was good for my sobriety.

All the Loners I've made contact with have helped me to grow in the program and to face life on life's terms, and for that I will always be grateful. In my sobriety I have come through a lot--deaths, illnesses, and more. I shudder to think where I would be if I hadn't made contact with the Loners. I keep all my LIMs and try to pass them on and let people hear about it.

I'm a member of the Wayfarers group which meets here in Glasgow. I've been in that group all my AA life, if not in person, at least in spirit. Wherever I was, on Mondays I would have a quiet time to myself and think about that meeting.

I've had wonderful experiences in AA. I've often thought about putting them down on paper and I hope that what I have written today will help someone. All I have to do is not take one drink for today and ask my Higher Power for the strength to stay sober and accept his will for me, and he has done that all these years.

I pray that this finds all of you as it leaves me--in peace and health.

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