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Intensely shy

I was sorry to read that Chris Matthews had died. It was the likes of Chris that made Reuters such a glamorous, exciting place to work all those years ago. Iain Smith and I were earnestly discussing some Chris-related administrative hiccup with the late Bob Taylor, his boss in Brussels. "Chris isn't arrogant … no, no just shy, intensely shy.”


It was par for the course in those Gerald Long days to fix largely pointless meetings with presidents of Italy and the Pope. Although Chris declined to use it, André Villeneuve and I used to call John Stephens, also on the trip, commendatore ever after. Alecco Joannides, another factotum on the trip, made good use of his papal medal (it was said) when getting son Dino into the Oratory School in London. ■