It happened on the second day of the summer term. Was it caused by the smell of lilac, the droning of the bees, or the French incense which Lane-Perkins had set alight? Nobody knew, but that spring afternoon following a heated exchange with a pupil, Sebastian Sermon, a forty-nine-year-old schoolmaster, experiences a brainstorm. Dissatisfied with his life, he leaves his job, wife and children, and takes to the road. In the months that follow, Sebastian discovers that excitement and romance are not only for the young. He does things he has never done before and finds that he has talents which no one, least of all himself, had ever suspected . . .