Boat Maintenance


This morning I printed some pictures for Christmas presents, which it would be premature to publish here.

This afternoon I scanned another batch of colour negatives from early 1986.

Matthew, Sam & Louisa 1.86

During that prolonged winter, Sam’s and Louisa’s expressions show quite clearly how cold it was when Matthew, dubbed by Louisa ‘the best big brother ever’, took them out for a buggy ride from Gracedale Road.

Matthew reading to Sam & Louisa

It was clearly much more cosy when he read them a story.

Sam and Louisa (bouncing) 1986

At 10.19 one morning Louisa bounced up and down, possibly trying to dislodge her mother and brother from bed. Sam was not impressed. The bedside lamp was made from a stone hot water bottle gained from our ‘Mudlarking’ days.

That year snow lay on the ground for the first three months. It would have been after that when Jessica, Sam, and I spent a week in Mary Dewsberry’s holiday home in Haslemere. The evidence for this is the farm track up which we walked on a recce. Last year’s bracken and autumn leaves lingered in the country terrain.

Jessica, Sam and Louisa feeding ponies 1986

This may have been the occasion when we discovered that the two children both had allergies to horses, the touch of which caused their eyes to swell up alarmingly.

Under the cloak of a little coppice, Louisa made a diving effort to reenter her mother’s womb. Sam insisted that there was room for two.

Mary’s son, Nick, and his children Jack and Dora, welcomed Sam and Louisa into their boat maintenance crew. Louisa made a quick recovery after her early tip-up, and everyone set to with gusto.

This evening, Jackie produced succulent roast duck, suitably reduced spinach, boiled potatoes, and crunchy carrots and cauliflower. She drank Hoegaarden and I drank Western Cape Fair Trade shiraz 2015.