If someone had told me in the late 1970s as I struggled with my first full-time teaching job, on a temporary contract in a department where I was the only female member of the teaching staff (with nine male lecturers) that some thirteen years later I would be nostalgic about that period I would have laughed. Nevertheless, now I am quite nostalgic about those 'good old days'. There I was: relatively young, terribly enthusiastic, ready to take on the world and fIghting for any crumbs I could get. My main allies were my first two postgraduate students. (There were only three female postgraduates in the whole department.) They were mature students, not much younger than myself, and committed feminists. They were peers and hierarchy seemed irrelevant in our relationship. The battles were clear and the targets obvious: creating space (any) for women, by increasing women's access to higher education and by drawing attention to women's oppression in research and teaching. We were discovering the delights of collaborative work - its tabooed nature increased our pleasure. Our pure hunger for mutual support and for new knowledge about the neglected half of the species kept us buzzing. Of course it is easy to romanticize, but looking back on those years now, I am nostalgic for a period when the 'we' and 'them' seemed so clear, when the strategies in the classroom seemed so obvious. Just to mention 'women' or 'gender relations' or to get a course on the curriculum with some Women's Studies content seemed achievements, particularly in teaching like mine which was mainly about science and technology. Indeed, remaining employed in higher education was itself an achievement.