Wednesday 24th June 1987

Mostly at home today working but visiting dentist and the garden centre in Eaton Socon later and noting that my old Comart building still displays that name despite the news that it is being merged under the Kode Computers name. Also taking Debbie for her horse-riding lesson on Rumpold and then listening to the Queen’s Speech for the opening of parliament with the worrying rumour about schools charging for extra-curricular lessons.

Awoke to my morning tea and was too slow to escape Daniella, who played in my bed a while pretending to be a ‘baby lion’. Eventually ready for breakfast. We had a rather overdone boiled egg each, which meant that the yokes were rather too hard to dip the toast fingers in. Rather cross at breakfast because Diana and Daniel were against my plans to stop the illegal cycling on the footpath past our house and so I decided that it was not worth bothering if they were going to cycle in defiance! Read the morning paper in the lounge, reviewed the morning mail as well. A press release from Kode – Comart is to be no more as they are merging it with Kode Ltd to be Kode Computers Ltd. Ian Nickson becomes Technical Director, Murray Dolan Service Director and Bob King of Kode becomes the Managing Director. It had to happen one day, but it is sad nevertheless.

Tuesday 23rd June 1987

A better day for working and catching up in my office, buying 40,000 shares in Rolls Royce,  as Di took my Range Rover to Cambridge with Della and then my first fish for a while, a nice roach. George McRobbie, my forester for Thormaid was in the news defending our plantings in the Highlands, there is civil unrest in Liverpool and Leeds, with youths attacking and injuring police and then an actual police death in Belfast as the Civil Service unions are divided over taking industrial action

A good early night and sleep afterwards, but woke quite early to the birds singing and the morning sun. To the shower earlier than usual and washed my hair as well, because it was getting a bit greasy. To my office then for half an hour before breakfast, as managed to start work on my papers in good heart. Breakfast with the others, then briefed Di on a few jobs that I wanted her to do and then let her go in the Range Rover to Cambridge for her normal Tuesday trip. I settled back into my office and worked the rest of the morning. I reconciled my credit card account, querying a transaction by phone, then typed up letters to Fountain Forestry, Alf Congers and the Clerk to Little Paxton Parish Council on a number of issues. This morning there was no play in the test match and it was abandoned as a draw. More rain at Wimbledon as well and so there were no distractions for my work. Made myself a fine salad lunch with the start of the ham that we had bought and cooked yesterday. It had been in the oven all evening and was cooked just fine. Went through to the lounge to relax afterwards and see the news and was surprised to see a news item showing my forest in Caithness and including an interview with George McRobbie of Fountain Forestry, defending the latest attack by the RSPB on the plantation of parts of the ‘Flow Country’.

Monday 22nd June 1987

A visit to Biggleswade in the pouring rain after playing with Della when she came in to wake me this morning and then home via Sandy garden centre and Eaton Socon where we bought some gammon, free of the supermarket’s additives, and then St Neots for some large shows and boots. Fred Astaire died today, aged 88, four men appeared in court charged with possessing stolen M72 antitank rockets for the IRA, another with handling £9m-worth of cocaine and political talks are mooted in South Korea after recent riots

Awoken this morning by a combination of my morning tea and a bouncy Daniella, who sat in my bed with me for half an hour playing ‘peep-bo’, ‘sleeping piggies’ and other childish games, which I had not the heart to interrupt. It had been the warmest night so far this summer, quite muggy and humid. Rather late down to breakfast, but it was only wheat flakes to eat. Out to feed the doves at 8.15am and also briefed Pete about the planting I had done yesterday, and what I wanted him to do today. I decided to go out with Di and Della this morning to do some shopping. We drove in the Range Rover to Biggleswade and first stopped at Jordan’s for two sacks of layers pellets for the ducks and a bag of mixed corn for the doves. Then into the centre of Biggleswade, where it is always refreshingly-easy to park right by the shops. Just as well this morning, as the rain began to pour down again – what a June this has been! We went to the cake shop for a nice morning drink, but I had to eat Della’s chocolate chip biscuit as she did not want it. Then to the butchers and supermarket for Di’s shopping. I had to carry Della with her legs under each side of my jacket to keep the rain off and her nappy.

Sunday 21st June 1987

A fraught outing with the girls to Eaton Socon garden centre and then back to work in the riverside garden as the flood levels subsided and then a sandwich tea in the summerhouse with Daniel, Gary and Jason all joining the family before Daniel was sent to revise some Physics for tomorrow’s exams. The Druids and hen the Hippies celebrate the Solstice at Stonehenge. More trouble in South Korea, Gorbechev criticises the US over arms control and the are two large drugs raids seizing hashish and cocaine

Awoken a little early by Di and the two girls, who brought cards and small gifts for Father’s Day. Sat in bed and read yesterday’s paper for a long while, rather too tired to get up and dress immediately. Down to breakfast in my pyjamas and dressing gown, but was rather disappointed in the fried breakfast. Small mushrooms and thin, shriveled-up, bacon rather spoilt the meal. Soon shaved & washed after, dressed and out to feed the doves. I noticed that we only have three of the original flock now, and none of the second flock, the rest being ones that were born and bred at Little Paxton. Decided to go to Eaton Socon garden centre to get some stakes, cable ties and a few more plants and asked if the girls wanted to join me (Daniel had plans to go off by boat with his friends). Rather regretted asking them at first – the delays, tears and general fuss at doing anything was quite a strain to bear – but it was enjoyable in the end. We had an ice cream and the plants I bought were Box for completing my hedge. Home by 11.30am, having dropped Debbie off at St Neots Evangelical Church for her church service (the Laws are away again).