Return home to boiled duck eggs for breakfast, cleaning jobs for ducks and doves, and many industry phone calls and negotiations to try and broker a LAN compromise before more press interviews and an evening BBQ for Daniel and his friends as the Popplewell Enquiry proposes draconian restrictions for football spectators and the Anti-apartheid demonstrations in South Africa escalate

A better night’s sleep and, when Diana woke me with my morning tea, my headache had completely gone. Diana’s also improved today after a poor start. The morning paper followed by a boiled duck egg, which we were all pleased to get again after the holiday. As I washed and dressed, I insisted that the children tidy their rooms and then play outside to give Joan a proper chance to tidy and clean the house. Out then (with my office cordless telephone in case of calls) to tend the birds. The doves feed well, but the ducks had only laid two eggs, which reinforced the need to change their bedding urgently, as they will only tolerate so much and no more. To the office where I find that there had been one call from the MD of STC Network Services and so I find my BMMG/DTI LAN files and start to refresh my memory on our proposals. I then called Bill Unsworth to discuss tactics and report on my conversation with Geoff Knight of the DTI and Rob Wilmott yesterday and then do the same with Chris Shelton, who is sending me a new proposal. Unfortunately, Chris does not seem to be taking (or wanting to take) the point about plumping for an existing LAN technology and so I asked him to phone both Geoff Knight and Bill Unsworth to convince them of his proposals. It seems the earliest opportunity for a LAN participants is September. For my part, I undertook to try to get ICL and ACT to send delegates. Before lunch I managed to get hold of the STC Network MD, who briefed me further on the VAN licence consultations. I also raised with him as a quid pro quo the BMMG LAN meeting and he promised to attend or send a colleague and so we shall cooperate to try to avoid IBM monopolies.

Late for my trip to St Neots with Diana, we set off at 12.00 midday, leaving Daniel on a dinghy boat trip up river with Paul and Gary. By now the sun was high and the morning mist cleared to bring a really hot day. I completed my tasks and purchases, collected Diana and we set off for lunch at the Little Chef with the two girls. After, I left Diana and the girls to attend another swimming lesson with Nigel and Lynne’s friend Janice (Debbie is awarded two more gold stars for submerging and also swimming a width) and carry on with my update of our investment summary. Eventually it is done and I print out five copies for my accountant, solicitor, two stockbrokers and one for myself. I just have time to set out my papers for my consultancy income tax return when Neil Thaper of Computer Business calls and interviews me about my views on the Cambridge Phenomena (which are lengthy (!)) and then I also speak to another freelance journalist who has left messages recently. Out then to light the barbeque and we treat Daniel’s friends with us to charcoal grilled sausages and hamburgers, with ice cream to follow. Early evening cleaning out and disinfecting the dovecote and then doing the same thing for the duck house; then I sit by the river and read the local papers. In to hear the news and details are reported of rather draconian recommendations from the Popplewell Enquiry report on football ground safety regulations. He recommends identity cards, curbs on wooden stands and manning of safety exists on a large scale. More news also of the child battering trials and a mysterious triple murder at a sewage works. The emergency in South Africa continues with over 660 arrests reported under the emergency rules, while shops losing large proportions of black trade through a boycott, and France announcing the withdrawal of their Ambassador and a ban on new investment there. The weather forecast, fine for the days to come, with the showers staying to the north.