August 1989

A very sunny and warm month to top a great summer, which was perfect for our Norfolk and Cambridgeshire cruises aboard The Lady. The family are fine except for my Dad, who is in constant pain now that his ear cancer has spread to the lymph gland and is now incurable, but Freda arrived from Cornwall to help attend him after I had taken him to hospital for an opinion.

Daniel has been pleased with his new speedboat, Debbie was relieved to see Sundance after our long holiday as they both had to share leisure time with their schoolwork. We still managed to fit in quite a lot of family events and two long boating holidays; The Norfolk Broads and locally on the Great Ouse. Despite our searches, we could not find a boat that improved upon Lady Martina but we bought Heronshaw in Horning.

The financial state of England’s economy was parlous, with frothy speculation inconsistent with signs of recession, a record trade deficit and closure of coal mines and factories causing industrial unrest. IRA bombing and police corruption additional factors causing riots and making people seem unsafe. Several environmental scares come to a head with a massive oil spill and toxic waste ships are turned back by civil action.

The largest civil disaster left 265 people killed in the sinking of the Marchioness Thames passenger boat. English sporting rebels plan tours to South Africa despite anti-apartheid rallies, there are fights to the death in The Lebanon between Syrian backed Moslem and Iraqi backed Christian militia which kill civilians as hostage taking and ransom demands are rife but Solidarity leader, Lech Walesa, forms a Polish government. Trident missile launches fail but the Voyager space probe sends back pictures of Neptune after a 12-year voyage.

The glorious month of August has now come to an end. Already we have had the sunniest and warmest summer that I can remember and certainly the most enjoyable by us on the boat and it has been truly remarkable.  This month saw the end of our epic Norfolk voyage and culminated in my decision to buy a property off the River Bure in Horning. If every August, and with it every summer, is as enjoyable as this one then we should live out our days in bliss and enjoy the weather as fully as anyone. We are thankful that my financial circumstances allow such enjoyment without any worry or distraction. We did have some unsettled nights because of our high sleeping temperatures, and other days were windy and there was the odd heavy rainstorm. Some nice warm, sunny days were spoilt by widespread straw/stubble burning which seemed to continue unregulated.

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