Sunday 20th September 1987

More rotavating today after a late start before and after changing to join Di’s relatives who had gathered together in Bedford as a huge drugs raid arrests 11 men and seizes £4million-worth of cannabis across Europe, a Leicester rapist is arrested after over 4,000 men were genetically-tested and the Arab League grapples with the problem of ending the Iran/Iraq war

Stayed up very late to see the end of the old war film, ‘A Bridge Too Far’, but was allowed to lay in for quite a time this Sunday morning. Most of us came down to breakfast in our pyjamas and enjoyed a nice fried breakfast. Soon dressed after and I put on my old clothes and did some more rotavating on the drier and new patches of earth. In late morning we all had a drink together and then got ready for a trip to a social gathering of Diana’s relatives in Bedford. We put on some best clothes and drove there in the Range Rover. Daniel and I had hoovered it out and washed it this morning and it was a more practical choice than the Daimler. We needed the air conditioning by this time, as the sun had broken through the morning mist & low cloud and was now quite warm in the humid atmosphere. These events are always a bit dry – so many obscure relatives, many of which are scarcely known to us – but there was an agreeable buffet lunch to savour.

Saturday 19th September 1987

A serious attempt at rotavating the area for my planned games lawn during the drier spells on a day of rainy intervals which made it a wet and muddy task with the girls ‘helping’ by picking up stones. Daniel was off with Paul by shuttle bus to see Louise and Di was at the unfortunate ‘Scouts Jamboree’ that was rained off.

Awoken fairly early again, but stirred a bit more enthusiastically this morning and just about made breakfast with the others. Fine rain first thing that soon cleared up and so I went out and used the rotavator to do some more on the games lawn. I managed to extend the cultivated area up to the slipway and cross-rotavate it as well to undermine the previously turfed area. Later, Debbie and her friend Amy came to pick up stones and earned 20p each. Little Della was not to be left out and had the largest bucket from her sandpit to do the same thing. Quite tired by midday when it was time to give up and prepare to collect Daniel on the way to lunch.

Friday 18th September 1987

A historic day marking excellent progress in the Nuclear arms talks with massive reductions on both sides now within reach and a test ban treaty to follow. I was occupied keeping the peace with Della this morning as we made our customary trip to Bedford and I was able to buy a new suitcase and video camera set for our forthcoming holiday in Anaheim. This afternoon collecting my newly-repaired rotavator from Gibbs and Dandy Gale in order to start cultivating my prospective games lawn area

Slept well enough, but awoke a little weary from the chores of tending to the children lately. Showered and washed my hair, then went down to breakfast in my dressing gown and was still too late to see the others at the table. We had croissants this morning and only Della was still there to help share mine. Soon dressed after and then ready for our shopping trip to Bedford. There then came the first of a series of outbursts by Daniella, who was to do her best to make the trip as trying as possible. Eventually away and arrived in our new coffee place in Bedford, but the drink was somewhat spoiled by the mite’s antics again.

Thursday 17th September 1987

Working on my correspondence inside in my office for most of this rainy day, accepting that Council candidature and pursuing many other matters and then managing to get an undercoat on the balcony rails when the rain stopped before helping a local girl with her Little Paxton project and taking Debbie horse-riding again. The Shultz & Shevardnadze talks are extended as hopes rise for a bigger arms treaty and the Liberals vote overwhelmingly for merger with the SDP but the miners’ overtime ban is still on, the Gulf still burns and another UDR man is shot by the IRA

Slept well enough, but was awoken very early this morning, as Di ensures that we are all ready for breakfast. Cereal and fruit juice and Di took Debs and Dan to their bus stop, as the overnight rain was still continuing. This morning, I settled down in my office on some paperwork, whilst Di took Della to playschool. Little Della cried when Di tried to leave her again, but was all right once she had gone. She later brought me home a nice snail she had adorned with little pieces of paper stuck on. I had been reading today’s paper and then writing a whole host of letters. Acceptance of the SDP candidature for the Little Paxton Ward, seeking updating of conservatory quotes, making my claim for compensation over damage to the Blue Peter and other things. After lunch, Di went off to post the letters and I got on with the painting of the balcony again.