Sunday 31st December 1989

To St James Church, it being the 5th Sunday of the month and the day for a Family Service but it was poorly attended at this time of year. Some efforts to try and find a new livery stable for Debbie and Sundance without result so far and plans to go to the Earls Court Boat Show on Friday.

Panamanian Bishops are pressing for General Noriega to be turned over to the Americans, but I do not think that the Vatican will allow it whilst at home the political New Years messages abandon the centre ground.

Today was a rather poor day for achievement and satisfaction. I was the first to awake and I came down to get the morning drinks; Coffee for Diana, tea for me and Daniel and orange juice for the girls. In fact, Debbie was already awake, reading, and Daniel was at his Archimedes Microcomputer system. Della was asleep but, before long, they were all in our bedroom (except Daniel), and then in our bed until we got up. Today was the fifth Sunday in the month which means in Little Paxton that we have a family church service. We went to it this morning, but first Daniel had to clean the car, and I had to tend the fish and doves before finishing reading my book on navigation. Di had cooked us a nice fried breakfast.

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Saturday 30th December 1989

A warmer and more comfortable night after which I got the television working. We set off early and stopped at my mums house for a while in mid-morning, finding her well, and then were home in Little Paxton by 1 PM, having dropped Debbie off at the riding stables with Daniel on time for his driving more relaxing afternoon and evening studying navigation on VHF radios.

A peace demonstration in Jerusalem was broken up with undue brutality, injuring 55 people and President Bush admits searching the home in Panama of the Nicaraguan ambassador was a mistake. The USSR has called on the United States to withdraw its forces from Panama immediately

We slept quite well, with the benefit of our mains-powered fan heaters. I had gone to bed a bit later after working on the TV aerial. I had managed to deduce the correct installation from somewhat ambiguous instructions, and, to my amazement, I actually got the amplifier working for the aerial. We showered last night to utilise the hot water and save time. This morning, we had an easy job to wash and dress, load up the car lock up and set off by 9:30am. We arrived Mum’s house in Stanton at 10:30am and found her happy and with Doris, her home help. I made coffee and we stayed an hour to an hour and a half. The children behaved well, although Della was a bit rumbustious!

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Friday 29th December 1989

A poor cold night and then the need to get up first to put on the boat heating and boil the kettle but, after dressing quickly, whilst I was at the helm, the others used the nice hot water in the shower and then I got Daniel and Di to steer as I did the same thing.

Some time struggling to get back to Horning in the dark and to make the TV work but I took Diana across to the Swan for a nice meal this evening. It was our anniversary event to mark yesterday; 21 years married!

We had a very poor night and I was not ready to go to bed early with the others and so just lay there for most of the night. I did sleep eventually but then overslept with the others and we were quite late up. I was the one that was brave enough to get up and put the heating and kettle on. We had our breakfast after dressing roughly and then un-moored and, whilst I was at the helm, the others use the nice hot water in the shower and then I got Daniel and Di to steer as I did the same thing. We cruised steadily upstream from Great Yarmouth, stopping at Acle Bridge for water, Stokesby to off-load litter and then we carried on until we arrived at Wroxham.

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Thursday 28th December 1989

After unsettled night on our new boat, we cruised to Acle Bridge for water via Horning village for supplies and then on to Great Yarmouth for the night to work on repairs and improvements.

News of a large earthquake in New South Wales, Australia, where many were killed and much damage done, the USA are hounding deposed Panamanian President Manuel Noriega, who is hemmed in at the Vatican embassy and news in Romania of three of ex-president Ceausescu relatives being arrested and his brother committing suicide

We had a rather disturbed night, with both girls coming to see us with the need for reassurance. It was a very still night apart from that. This morning, we slept in a while and woke up late. This rather spoilt our plans to get up early, but we just adopted these new timescales and cruised to Horning village for our supplies. I managed to mop the boat down as we waited to get on our way. Then the long cruise to Yarmouth, stopping at Acle Bridge for water. It took ages for the tanks to fill and we used the opportunity to swivel the davits are secure them in the correct position. Once in Yarmouth, we went shopping and had lunch at the Wimpy. I bought a new fuse for our TV, two new mats to match our carpets, DC power plugs and a new multi-meter – all so as to do some improvements to our boat systems.

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