October 1987

A very wet month at home with constant flooding after my extensive landscape gardening during which confinement I made good progress in my History of Little Paxton project, which attracted publicity and heralded my candidature for the local council. Di and the girls struggled but overcame slight ailments, Daniel finds a girlfriend and the children do well at schoolwork with me on their tail! Well prepared for the start of our Californian holiday against the background of collapse on the world’s financial stage and revelations of corruption, threatening Thatcher’s free market approach and worrying conflict in the Gulf and persecution of Tamils in Sri Lanka; offset by some optimism on East/West nuclear disarmament talks. Fiji leaves the Commonwealth as a newly-declared republic and the Great Cello player, Jacqueline du Pre, died of multiple sclerosis

And so we bring the month of October to an end in the our favourite place of Southern California. It was a wet month. The wettest English October since records began, with several occasions where the Ouse broke its banks. In fact, the highest the water had got since 1974. Then, over here in Los Angeles, where the rain had continued to follow us about. A month where I also got back to writing my Little Paxton History, the project re-awakened by my speech to the St Neots Local History Society and also the publicity in the local newspapers. A month also of colds and coughs, but we are thankfully over the worst now. My poor Dad has had a recurrence of his kidney stones and awaits his hospital treatment. Then, of course, we had the hurricane force winds. Not to forget the Stock Exchange share price crash, after some 13 years of a Bull Market. In all, a stormy and unsettled month that brought to an end the fragile and poor summer. My conservatory plans are in trouble. We have chosen the preferred design, by Frosts of Tempsford, after an enjoyable visit to Jordon’s Mill in Biggleswade to see a fine example he had built for his in-laws but now the planning authorities are dubious about its scale and position.