Visiting Mum today with flowers after her operation

Daniel and Gary off boating first thing on a fine sunny morning as I continue with investment correspondence and then I drive the family via Horningsea Garden Centre on Mother’s Day to visit Mum at The West Suffolk Hospital in Bury St Edmunds where we visit Mum and hatch the idea of a Koi Carp pond with Dad as Nigel calls, concurs and asks me to be the Godfather to Kate and Ashley. This as Thatcher enjoys the stage management of her Moscow visit, a scandal emerges over cervical smear test delays,  19 Zulus die in South Africa and Iraqi war planes attacked the Iranian oil pipeline terminal at Ganaveh after repeated recent attacks on the Kharg oil terminal


Later to bed than Di and then awake to my morning tea on a fine morning, with sun streaming into the room through the curtains. Showered and dressed in time for our nice Sunday fried breakfast. Gary had awoken Daniel at an early hour and they were both anxious to get out to the boat as soon as they could. I read the Sunday paper and then went out to feed the ducks and doves. 5 more duck eggs for the larder. To my office to actually complete a little work – mainly composing and printing a letter to my forestry accountants, with copies to all else. Time for lunch, which Diana had prepared in the breakfast room, as we had no time for the Sunday ritual. Soon we all piled into the Range Rover and set off.

First to Coton, near Cambridge, to drop off Gary Skinner at his home. Then on along the A45, stopping off briefly at the Horningsea garden centre to see the conservatories and water garden supply shops. Onward journey to the West Suffolk Hospital in Bury St Edmunds, with an hour left of visiting time. We were visiting my Mother on Mother’s Day. She is now in her third week of traction, but has recovered from the setback she experienced with a probable blood clot. Dad read stories to Della in the waiting area and Daniel and Debbie played scrabble with the patient, who was in good spirits. Afterwards, Dad joined us downstairs as Di produced the vacuum flask full of hot drinks and tin full of cake and crisps for us to enjoy a meal together. Dad thinks my idea of having a Koi carp pool in a conservatory is a very good one. Nigel Smith also liked the idea when he phoned before lunch. He is coming over tomorrow to advise me on the idea. He had phoned today to ask me to be a godfather to his children, which I said I would be pleased to do, but with the impediment that I am not an actively practising Christian. A fair trip back home, as we dodged the worst of the rain storms that were causing black clouds to curl down earthwards in their wake. Once home, Daniel took the girls down to see his boat (what else!) and I tended the ducks and doves again. We had had our tea and so I locked up and alarmed the house and Daniel and I watched a second world war documentary on ‘D-day’ for his modern history and then a murder film together. The news today is of Mrs Thatcher’s visit to Moscow. It is being staged managed with her symbolic gesture of lighting a candle for ‘solidarity’ in a church, then being mobbed by enthusiastic crowds during a Moscow walkabout – all good television! Dennis Healey, the Shadow Defence Secretary, who had accompanied Neil Kinnock during his meeting with US President Reagan, denied emphatically today the suggestion that he said that Labour’s policies would endanger the Geneva talks. A man and a woman were killed in a light aeroplane crash after it had taken off from Bridlington. Criticism for the delays encountered by the government in implementing the cervical smear screening campaign, with many health authorities as yet unready to implement computerised checks and follow ups. In South Africa, 19 Zulus have died in ‘inter-tribal’ strife and a government minister has ‘committed suicide’. The lead in to the election in South Africa is to be unsettled by a number of such incidents and will be far from an automatic return of the governing National Party. Iraqi war planes have attacked the Iranian oil pipeline terminal at Ganaveh. This follows repeated attacks on the Kharg oil terminal on Sunday and Monday of last week.