Greg
Greg's diary
August 1970
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This page was entered manually from the paper originals between 6 March 2017 and 16 March 2017. Items in italics, like this, were added during this time.


Saturday, 1 August 1970 Bow, etc. Images for 1 August 1970
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Sue's fears that today we might not be able to stay in bed until a sensible hour came, predictably, to nought, and we did not get up till quite late. Problem then was lack of food, so Sue went down to the village to get something, and then we had a sort of breakfast, and decided to go to town and get some neccessaries for life, the Old Grey Mare, and such like. Set off into town, forgetting it was Saturday, along the main road, but then decided it would be better to go to Tedburn first, to see what Mr. Williams thought of the chassis of OTT523G, and so cut across country on a road which I have not previously used, and showed it to him - he did not like it at all, and thought it might be a write-off. Down to the White Horse for gear rods and water pump, but the former were not in much condition, so just took the latter, which in itself was an experience. Then to see Jock Furgeson, on the way getting caught in a queue for Dunsford Hill, served by people selling choc ices!

This would have been holiday traffic on the A30, then a single lane in each direction.

Gave Jock the oil pipe for banjo fitting, then to a Laundrette in Sidwell St., where I left Sue and did a bit of shopping for food and car bits and pieces - also got Exchange and Mart, in which there are several DSs available at the sort of price I ought to realise for writing off the Ami.

After doing the washing, decided to go and see “The Adventurers” at the ABC, so had lunch at the Ganges, then went to the reference library in Castle St., to read the magazines, after which down to the ABC. The book was much better than the film, but then the book is on a scale that could only graphically be reproduced in serial form. The thing that got me was how much Dax resembled Dave Rozalla in appearance.

This would have been Elliot Gould, to whom Dave really did bear a resemblance.

Back home after that, and in the evening did little - it somehow seems funny to be home, and yet in other ways it seems difficult to believe that we have ever been away. Early to bed.


Sunday, 2 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Up late, as befits a Sunday in any case, but I doubt it would have made much difference what day of the week it was; the only real difference a weekend makes to us is that the shops are closed, and that is hardly the greatest of advantages. Finally got up at about 1130, and decided that, as the weather was not too bad, I might as well see what I could do about getting UXO 80 back on the road, and so out to the back room, where Dave had piled lots of furniture - why two beds!), and found myself a convenient stool, and went outside to mess around with the ID cylinder head, which required a fair amount of doing - grinding in valves and cleaning faces mainly. I don't know how these things can corrode so easily. After that had a go at valve grinding, not the most enjoyable of tasks, while Sue got round to preparing something to eat. Finally had the valves ground, and Sue came out to take some photos of me putting them back into the head, and then we went in and had lunch. After that did a bit of messing round with water pumps and so on, and came to the conclusion that I would have to put the flat fan on or cut the nylon one, and decided on the former course;

The flat fan was the old metal one of the Traction, and the nylon one was from the DS.

removed the fan and pulley from my new DS pump and put the damaged pulley from the old pump on. Then messing around with the cylinder block, which is strangely clean after all the time it has been left. Put the ID head on, found I had to lift it to get the pushrods in, and then put the rocker shafts on, and in the middle of torqueing down found I was missing a couple of rocker shaft bearing blocks, so eventually left it and decided to leave it until tomorrow. Still have the problem of the gear rods, somewhat heightened by the fact that they seem to have vanished without trace. Made a list for action tomorrow, and then inside, where we messed round with cameras at some length; Sue seems to be getting rather interested in all this, and I am also increasing as a result.


Monday, 3 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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And on - up as late as ever; we seem to be vaguely settling for getting up round midday, why I know not. Must be some feeling of waste involved in getting up much later. In any case, ate and quickly into town today, and arrived just before lunch. Went first to the Sun and Alliance people, and had to wait until Mr. Wheeler was free. Told him all about the chassis damage, which for purposes of filling in the claims form I decided would have taken place on the road between Keşan and Edirne at about 1830 last Monday. Fellow was a bit confused about what to do with having the car examined, and was rather pleased when I suggested contacting the assessors myself. The only snag in that, it turned out, was that we had to do it tomorrow morning at 0900, which did not greatly appeal to me.

Down to Austin's to try and get some lens caps, also some darkroom stuff, and they seemed remarkably unstocked. Got a lens cap for Sue, and some paper, and Unifix, then looked round Princesshay for the rest, and eventually got most of what we wanted before deciding we were rather more than slightly hungry, and so down to the Ganges, where we had their 5/- lunch, which cost all of 6/6d - Summer is obviously here in no uncertain manner.

After that, up to Dunn's for some piston rings, and they are rather wanting therein, so left it for the time being and back into town and to the library to get some books to read, and then to find Jock Furgeson and get the oil pipe from him - he has managed to get the banjo on at 90° to the angle I wanted it, but twisted it OK. Then to the White Horse (again!) and got a bearing block and oil pipe from the Light 15 (in case I wanted to put one of those heads back in again), and then back home again via Tedburn, which I don't particularly like - if I get a DS, as I am hoping, I am going to have to give up most of these roads, anyway.

Home, had makan and boiled up some soup stock, and read volumes by Somerset Maugham and Wodehouse, and then got down to developing some films, and in a sudden frenzy did no less than 5.


Tuesday, 4 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Had to get up at 0850 this morning to see what I could do about getting the car inspected by the insurance people's engineers. Fellow was rather insistent about inspecting it at Dunn's, why I know not, and finally agreed to get it there at 1400, just as he was suggesting I took it to Exon and saw them - and that on a double yellow line!

Back home and went back to bed, as befitted the time of morning, and then up again round the 1200 mark and downstairs to cut up the film we developed last night, and had a bit of a bite to eat before deciding we had better set off into town and get the car inspected. Went in and left the car at Dunn's for Mr. Stevens to show to the insurance inspector, and then walked into town with thoughts of examining the possibilities as to what lenses we could get for Sue - I still can't make up my mind between the 9cm f/4 Elmar and the 135 mm f/4 Jupiter - the latter new, the former 2nd hand. Had a look around, but came to little conclusion, so back to Dunn's to see what had happened, and as far as we could discover Mr. Stephens (how do you spell it?) had disappeared, and nobody knew what the insurance bloke had done/said. Rang up Mr. Wheeler, and then found Mr. Stephens, who said that the bloke had said he could not authorise anything, and otherwise had made no comment. Then into town again and messed around doing some shopping before going home again, and there seated ourselves in the lounge room and started (or continued) reading today's ration of library books, and paid little attention to anything else; in some ways I wonder if this is a good thing. I should dearly love to have the drive (or whatever it is that is missing) to do what I really ought to do towards keeping this place tidy, but somehow it just doesn't happen, and we just sit here in squalor immersed in books and paying little attention to anything worthwhile. Possibly I would have got on with the car had the weather been better, but it was pretty lousy, and so contented ourselves with intending to develop some more film tonight, though by the time we got in a position to do that we had lost interest in such mundane activities.


Wednesday, 5 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Again not up much before midday, which made leaving the house rather pointless, especially as the weather was still pretty grotty, so spent most of the day at home. Had breakfast round lunch time, and did a bit of tidying up before sitting down again to read further, and spent a considerable time at this, and then found good reason to go back to bed and see how we should divert ourselves there. Thought it about time after that that I should tidy my study out and get down to some work for the chemistry resits next month, but on the way downstairs found a letter from Dad, which on examination proved to be a letter to his bank (copy) stopping my Banker's order until the beginning of October, and he did not even have the decency to put a note on it - just signed his name at the bottom. Very cut up about this, and so dragged out Wolf's typewriter (mine had given up the ghost just before we left for Turkey) and wrote a letter back to him telling him that I should get a job as implied,

What neither of us considered was that my visa conditions did not allow me to work. Things would have been easier for me had I pointed that out to my father.

and since this was going to preclude me doing any work for the resit, or indeed resitting, I should withdraw my application and make arrangements to go back to Australia and get myself some kind of education/job there - not that I would mind. I am getting fed up with not knowing what my financial situation is from one week to the next.

This was only one of the numerous occasions where I had wanted to return to Australia, but it took another 27 years.

Was in a bit of a bad mood after that, and all my good plans to do any tidying up did not get very far. Set to a bit in the lounge room, for what results that had, but felt I should do something in return for Sue doing all the washing up. Then set to making some soup, occasioned mainly by some bones we had bought and the left-overs of the rabbit we had yesterday,

It appears that I didn't mention an incident that had happened, presumably the day before: we had visited a neighbour's rabbit cages, and Sue put in her hand to stroke one of them. It bit her, drawing blood, so we went back into the house to treat it. A few minutes later the neighbour came, apologetic, and bearing the rabbit, skinned, as a present.

and also, by way of a change, had steak instead of anything more starchy, not helped by the fact that we had a power cut just before everything was ready, and I discovered that the CEGB did not have an after-hours number. Finally the electricity came back on, just as we were preparing to cook it on the Primus, and down to the Burston for a bottle of wine, which put us in the right mood for after-dinner activities.


Thursday, 6 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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And on goes life; up round midday today with thoughts of getting myself hold of an “Exchange and Mart” to see what was available in the way of DS 19s on the market, but it was pouring with rain; eventually decided to go down anyway and put on Chris's (my) overcoat

In other words, he had left it behind, and I had decided to keep it.

and exited into the deluge which was quite un-Englishly pouring down from the (presumably exhausted) sky. Struggled down, being nearly drowned by a couple of thoughtless passing cars, and finally got down to the newsagent (near Bow garage) and found that they did not keep any spare, so had none. Back and bought some food on the way, and got back home feeling rather more than slightly frustrated, so settled down to do some reading, which is about all that seems worth doing nowadays.

As the afternoon wore on, the weather got better, though only, I suspect, because it was too tired to rain any more, and I began to wonder whether it was not worth another attempt at getting the old grey mare back on her hooves (or whatever). Headed out into the sunshine (this temperament the weather has been showing is almost tropical!) and examined things, and decided to have the head off again and see what I could do to improve matters. In the middle of all this, the rather odd old lady with the Corgis who has recently been in evidence came out, asked me if would consider moving the OGM, and then started talking, wondering if I would get it going again - she has been there for over a year, but until just before we left for Turkey I had not suspected her existence! Got down to the car, decided there was enough clearance for everything, and that the head was not warped, so messed around a bit more with the gasket and put it back on and torqued down, then changed the distributor for the Ducellier thing with VW leads (which, not surprisingly, are long enough) and fixed everything up and tried to start her - she wanted to, but something (ignition?) stopped her, and so gave it up as a bad job and inside for more pleasant activities.

The exhaust system of the 11CV was quite different from that of the DS 19, and I had an exhaust manifold adapted from one of each. This must have happened before we left for Turkey, but I didn't mention it.

Friday, 7 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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And so we have been back a week! Perhaps because we have not been doing anything, it has seemed no time at all. It is rather a shock in a way to realise that I have been living with Sue in every sense of the word for this time - and have enjoyed every minute of it! What a pity society is what it is, and will look down its nose at us until we are married, when suddenly it will become a great and noble thing to do. Still, I shall have to pay some attention to it, and will probably get engaged to Sue in a while.

Up again round the midday mark, and thought again about what we were going to do today, came eventually to the conclusion that we had better go into town and do some weekend shopping, and at the same time change our library books, which by this time were getting a bit familiar.

Into town, and messed around a bit at the library, reading the magazines and changed our books, getting a book on photography by W.D. Emanuel for Sue's benefit, and then to the Devon Camera Centre to have a look at their 90/4 Elmar, which I must confess to like - the only trouble is that the thing is a bit short. Certainly it is not bad value for £15 with lenshood, yellow filter and case.

That's about $750 in 2017 Australian Dollars. They're still available—as I write this on 8 March 2017, there are over 100 on offer on eBay, and also prices between USD 75 and 175 (about AUD $100 to $230), with a couple of hopefuls asking as much as $599 for the lens or $200 for a lens hood. And I paid only AUD $199 for a new Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 45mm f/1.8 (same field of view, but 2.3 EV wider aperture) in September 2016

To Fine Fare to do the shopping, then back to the car, breaking some eggs on the way, bought the Western Times, and to the Ceylon Tea Centre for some tea, while I looked in vain for a job ad and looked through the motoring magazines I had bought. Changed the eggs and one of the magazines, which had already disintegrated, then back home for some tea, and spent a thoroughly useless evening tidying up - well, if not useless, certainly thankless, though I must confess to never having seen my study quite so tidy. Later on got out my enlarger, though I hate the thing - wonder how much I could get for it on the open market. Printed Sue's film, which was not too bad, then some of the Old Grey Mare from last summer, and of Mike and Chuch. Sue got very emotional about something, so stopped before I wanted to and went to bed.


Saturday, 8 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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And the hundreds of prints to put out to dry this morning! Staggered out of bed round midday and put them out of the way on the living room floor, and then prepared something in the way of breakfast, while Sue gradually came to. After that, decided to complete the outstanding work on filing away the stuff out of my in-basket, but got carried away, and the next thing I was going on further with my EDITOR program, which I have been rather neglecting of late - certainly this study is conducive to work, if only I can keep it tidy enough to know where everything is.

Got on comparatively quickly with EDITOR - came to the conclusion that the basic number lines and storage sequence would have to become a subroutine, which made everything on Page 0 either subroutine or constants, and Page 1, which I had intended originally to be a monitor to the individual program sections (which it still is, I suppose) had become more like the main program. Still, things were going well, somewhat, I suspect, to Sue's annoyance, since it meant she did not see much of me all afternoon/evening, and dragged me downstairs at one stage for tea, and I read a bit of Somerset Maugham (got another book out now), but it was not much help; I was still thinking about the program and somehow got somewhere; I was particularly worried about the SEARCH feature (like MODIFY in FOCAL), but managed to get it, as far as I can see, OK with only about 120₈ locations, and some, such as the line deletion sequence, were very short indeed - all in all, everything, including the error diagnostics, feel quite happily into place, and by about 2200 hrs I had got everything more or less sorted out, though I had dropped the idea of an initial dialogue rather than work out all the problems associated therewith; though I suppose I could write a separate program for that. All in all the thing uses 620₈ locations, which leaves quite a bit fo text import; now I want to combine it with an on-line PAL-III assembler, for use with 8K memory.


Sunday, 9 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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And on goes time - I am getting a bit fed up with the monotony which, inevitably, creeps in: we are going to have to do something different in the near future, though God knows what it will be.

Up round midday, and got some breakfast ready for a still-slumbering Sue, and then sat down and read at length which wondering where to go and what to do. Decided that we did not want to go out in the car, so collected together some cameras (in my case with the telephoto lenses), and set off for a walk in the direction of Coleford, taking what photos we could en route - though it strikes me how monotonous Devonshire countryside is; or is it just the way I react to having been here so long, or am I out of practice in seeing worthwhile photos? In any case, we managed to get down as far as the Grattans without taking anything more than a scattered couple of photos of each other, and after trying in vain to get some cows into a suitable formation, came back home again, where I decided that I could do worse than try and get the old Grey Mare going again, so out with a timing light and other clever devices to see what I could do to the distributor, and messed around with that for hours before deciding that it was about right, dug up 4 L87-Ys [Champion code for the spark plugs for the DS], and messed around with everything, and eventually got it started, though it made enough noise to wake the dead, or so it seemed; Sue neiither saw nor heard it.

This was a Citroën Traction with a DS cylinder head. The noise was because there was no exhaust pipe connected.

Back inside, and later up to ring up Paul Thompson, but got no reply, so back home for another Sue-cooked makan; she is getting quite good at this, which is possibly just as well if we are going to spend the rest of our days together. Spent this particular evening without doing any thing of world-shattering importance - Sue was worried because her period has not come, and does not seem any happier because it is not yet due; there seems to be no pleasing her.


Monday, 10 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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And on goes life! We have been back for 10 days now, and it seems to have gone like a flash. I really must stop vegetating and get down to some work (both academic and round the house and on the car).

Today, at any rate, I had something to do: decided I had better get my program EDITOR assembled as soon as possible, and so after breakfast (lunch?) set off into town and dropped Sue in town to do various odd jobs, and back to the Uni. To the Chem Eng department, and rather to my surprise found Pete gone; found Alfred the cleaner, who told me that room 107 was being turned into a computer room, and showed me what was in there: all sorts of things, but no Pete, who is presumably elsewhere (in Reading?) having his head examined and memory increased. Saw Jess Jaworski, who is doing his research here, and then over to the Multitest terminal and spent the odd half hour there and got absolutely, but absolutely, nowhere, especially as I had forgotten half the compiler and system commands. Went back into town, where I found Sue outside the library talking, of all people, to Mary Cawthra - which was a bit of a bloody nuisance, though it did not occur to me at the time just how much.

Sue's parents didn't know that she was back in England, which was the only reason that Sue had been able to live with me for the time. But clearly that was now over.

Got some books out, then back home and stopped in to put things away (a bit confusing in itself, as we were running round in circles), and then home with Sue, much to the astonishment of Sue's parents, who were apparently not expecting us home for yet another week. Hung about there trying to look exhausted (the story being that we had come today from Lüneburg), and got fed when the guests staying with the Fortescues came back; after that got thoroughly fed up with the atmosphere, and went home round 2100, only to come back 15 minutes later, having broken my key in the lock of the back door. Back home again and hung around for a while, though it is frantically lonely without Sue, and I sat around at length reading “The Dream Merchants”, typical Harold Robbins.


Tuesday, 11 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Oh, what a bastard, having to get up and rive all the way to North Tawton to find Sue! It is almost enough to put me completely off getting up, and certainly it nearly had this effect on me today. When I did get downstairs found a letter from Mike suggesting that we buy some paraffin heaters of somewhat glorified design instead of storage heaters, as they are much cheaper to run, and apparently have other advantages, though certainly price is not one of them: £33 seems a rather exorbitant amount of price to pay for any paraffin heater, no matter what its virtues.

Off to pick Sue up, and then straight into town to investigate heaters, and first to the SWEB, where we were shown round the range of storage heaters by a very keen young lady who seemed terrified of me, and spoke to Sue rather than me. Then walked round town looking for the Valon [?] heaters, and eventually found them at Wippell Bros & Row, or at any rate a brochure, and the news that they might soon be in stock.

Not exactly a recommendation for them.

Back into town , and Sue to the library, as she was exhausted, and I to the Devon Camera Centre, to buy the 90 mm f/4 Elmar that they had there for sale, and had a bit of fun with this, as I had no money, an the bank seemed reluctant, even on my express order, to tell them how much I had. Finally got the OK, and took the lens and hid it in the car, after which picked her up and went back home, and did a bit of further tidying up, and put the lens on her camera, much to her delight on finding out. Reaction was to immediately put her camera on the tripod and take some photos of me, then take me to bed.

Lying in bed, decided to do something different, and go somewhere expensive for makan, so back to her place to borrow some money, and to Exeter and the Ship, as we had been told that the Castle in Lydford would probably be shut by this time. Had a very enjoyable makan there, though it was rather spoilt by a somewhat drunken wine-waiter, who insisted on immediate payment on delivery of each drink.

This strange custom seems normal in the United Kingdom. I'm surprised I hadn't experienced it before.

Still, our waitress was good, and they actually had Hennesy XO, which was certainly worth the 7/1d that they were asking for it. After makan, got out our cameras and took some night shots - Sue had one of the cathedral with the 90 mm Elmar, 10 minutes at f/12.6,

This suggests that the lens had the old sequence of aperture stops (f/4, f/4.5, f/6.3, f/9, f/12.6, f/18).

though we had fun with cars roaring past. Back home, a little the worse for alcohol, and back to bed again, until I had to take Sue home.

Wednesday, 12 August 1970 Bow, etc.

And another late rising. Finally decided I had better go and retrieve Sue from her parents, and staggered out to the car, just in time to find her coming down the drive. There was little else to do at that time of day, so went back into the house again and had some breakfast, for what that...

I started the text above, but then crossed it out. As the real entry shows, I was clearly way behind with the diary, and was having difficulty recalling what I did when. The strange thing is that nothing that came after seems to relate to what I wrote here.

Wednesday, 12 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Got back from taking Sue home eventually - I am every night spending more time saying goodnight to her, and it depresses me, making me thing evil towards her parents. Hardly tired, decided finally to do something about a sorely neglected diary, and so sat down at the paraffin fire and wrote away at the thing for some considerable time before getting bored and sitting down to do some reading. After a while gave this up as a bad job and had a bath, and then had some breakfast, and over in due course to Sue's place, where nobody answered my tentative ringing, so went inside and found Sue asleep on the lounge room sofa, and woke her up - for quite a while she seemed to think that I was her father. Finally she came to, and then down came her parents, who must have at least suspected that I had stayed the night; persuaded them that I had been asleep at home and woken early, then had some coffee while Sue proudly tried to show her photographic equipment to a somewhat disinterested father. Finally off, though not before mother had made us promise to come home for lunch, and as soon as we got home both went to bed. Woke up round 1230, and got back to Dolphin Cottage as everybody else had finished their makan, and had ours for what it was worth, and then tried out best to get home without having to stay there any longer, and eventually managed it - got home and messed about a bit writing a program in FORTRAN for printing out development times - the old promicrol charts for dilution/temperature, but somewhat neater, less erroneous and, hoffentlich, quicker to produce. However, the fact that I had had no sleep last night, and only a little this morning, soon had its effect, and before I knew where I was, Sue and I were in bed again, asleep - Sue still worried about the fact that her period had not come. Come to think of it, I'm getting a bit worried, too. Woke round 1700 and had some tea, and then sat round further, thinking more in FORTRAN than english, for most of the evening - took Sue home fairly early in the end, to save over-annoying her parents.


Thursday, 13 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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These long night vigils are becoming a way of life.

And that after only two of them.

Had intended to do all sorts of things tonight, but somehow they didn't work out. Must find some sure-fire way of ensuring that I write my diary up every day - possibly Sue standing over me with a whip would be a help. As it was, I got a couple of days written up before giving up and sitting down to read a book, and then back to sort out my program, which I have christened DEVTIM. Finally settled down, reading one of the last Somerset-Maugham stories, in which he finally exposes Kuala Solor as Kuching (well, description of the place coming up the river gives the game away). Round about 0700 to sleep for an hour, being unable to keep away until I went to pick Sue up, but of course it did not work out like that, and so ignored the alarm when it went off, and did not wake until Sue threw something at my window; proved she had been brought in by Judith, one of the people staying there at the moment. After breakfast, decided to go once again into town , and so off, first with programs DEVTIM and BUBBLE to the card punch room of the computer Unit, where we punched the former and amended the latter, and handed both in for processing. Tried DEVTIM on Multitest, but it dumped,

Apparently Multitest, not my program.

and after they got it up again there wasn't time to do anything. Went into town instead and did some shopping, which in this case took rather longer because Sue wanted to bake a cake, which involved buying just about all requisites. Finally got home, and messed around at length, until Sue finally got round to baking her cake, though the actual baking was the least of her worries. That came out more or less as intended, which was a Dundee cake (is that correct grammar?) and spent a lot of the rest of the evening eating that. Sue much overjoyed today at the advent of her period, which was just as well - maybe she could have got away with missing it this month, but God knows what her nerves would be like by the time the next one was due. Took her home, once again later, and messed around taking photos downstairs, then back home for yet another late night.


Friday, 14 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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More reading/writing into the depths of the night, which somehow, think what I might, appears to be an unrewarding time to do anything; I always go to bed with little more than achieved than when I came back from Sues. To bed earlier this morning in a half-hearted attempt to get back to a normal routine, but I am beginning to wonder now if anything will help.

Managed to wake up of my own accord today. God knows how, but probably something to do with the absence of other stimulants, as it was, after all, 1330. Decided that, at a time like that, the best thing I could do would be to go straight over to Sue's and pick her up - had just turned the car when she arrived, apparently by foot, with the news that her father's back had given out on him, and he was now bed-ridden. Expressed sympathy, and inside briefly before setting off into town , involving a now-usual pump in the tyre, which I think has begun to leak more rapidly again. In town , first to the computer unit in the Uni, where I found no less than 4 errors in my program, which rather disappointed me; on inspection, 3 of them proved to be due to unnamed and unrelated arrays, and the 4th, just to please me all the more, was due to EFFORT not recognising an implied DO loop. Checked all this with a programmer, and decided that I couldn't stand the thought of working out how to output bits of an array without such facilities, and decided, little knowing what I had let myself in for, to run it on 'J' level, which involved no less than 17 Job cards, which were in turn not simple in their format.

EFFORT was a simplified Fortran compiler from the University of Edinburgh; thus the name. J was the job control language of the ICL System 4. From recollection, it made IBM JCL look simple, as the 17 control cards for a compilation and run suggest.

Typed them all out after a while, along with the corrections to the program, and put that and BUBBLE in for a rerun. Then to town , finally paid for the Elmar, and did a little more shopping before going back for Multitest (which again went mad - I hate Multitest) and tried to get something at the bookshop, but they had just close. Home, and shifted all the kitchen furniture about, and did little else all evening, apart from read about 'J' job cards.


Saturday, 15 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Up somewhat earlier than yesterday with intent to pick Sue up before it was too late and go and do some washing in Okehampton; this time finally made it to Sue's place before she made it to me, mainly, I suspect, because it was looking like rain, and she was worried about what could happen.

Managed fairly effectively to escape from her mother by saying we had the washing to do (and did we ever!), but not without promising to buy some tablets (pills is rather a tabu word now, isn't it?) for Sue's father. Into Okehampton without any great difficulty, and up to the washeteria, or whatever they call the place, where our greatest difficultly was in persuading the car to stay where I left it, and not go rolling down the hill. Put our washing into no less than 3 separate machines, then set off into town with our cameras, getting a rather interesting shot or two of an ancient Austin emitting more smoke than CO₂ trying to set off up Station Road. Did a bit of further shopping in town , though it ended up rather frustratingly in various supermarkets, none of which had what I wanted. Finally consoled ourselves with an ice cream (well, one each), though it was hardly the weather for same, and then back to the washeteria to dry our cleaner laundry - I never fail to be amazed at how dirty things can come out. In particular, there seemed to be a disproportionate amount of mildew on Sue's (comparatively) new green/transparent dress, which doubtless will not please here mother much. Wonder if dry cleaning will help.

From memory, leaving it for a considerably time in a damp clothes cupboard probably didn't help.

Finally home, which was really about the only worthwhile place to go in such weather, and at home, of course, behaved as usual, though in the middle of sitting about downstairs I suddenly had a revelation and swapped the sofa and the déesse seat about, which certainly improves the appearance of the place; now that we are not longer fire-place oriented, possibly further things are possible.

Had makan, which was a little more adventurous than usual - sweet and sour pork, which took its time to make, though it was certainly worth said time. Back to bed again after that, and did not get Sue back home until quite late.


Sunday, 16 August 1970 Bow ⇄ Plymouth
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And again up late; if only I had a phone, so that Sue, when she got fed up with my continuing absence, could ring me up and thus drag me out of bed. Still, I suppose today was Sunday, but nevertheless, I knew that poor Sue had to get up round 0800 to say goodbye to the house guests, and I felt quite guilty at the thought of having left her alone all morning, and not got up until 1430, which scarcely gave me time to do much in the way of breakfasting to get there before 1500, which is a hell of a time to start one's day. Somehow I am going to have to get myself some incentive to get up, though I don't know what would be effective.

When I finally got to Sue's place, proved that she was still in bed, having retired thither (in her own bedroom at last) after both breakfast and lunch. Took some time to induce her to come down again, but then off pretty quickly, and as the weather was rather better than yesterday (in fact, the only good day in a long time), decided to go to Plymouth and take some photos. Stopped in Tavistock to attend to the calls of nature, but finally arrived at Guildhall, where we parked the car, and set off up the Ho(e?), armed with all our cameras, and I took vast quantities of film, and in the process the rapid wind lever of my Pentax threatened to give up on me, and subsequently carried out its threat. For some strange reason, it would return if I pressed lightly on the shutter, but not otherwise. Tried to puzzle it out, but could not, and since it didn't impair the efficiency of the camera itself, gave it up as a bad job. Walked around a bit, and took numerous photos, then round town , and found by the time I got back to the car that I had lost a lens cap, subsequently refound on a bank near the Hoe. Noted a lot of Canon CRF cameras for sale cheaply - how to change a 1,5/50 for a 1,2/50? Stopped in at the Normans on the way home, but the place was in turmoil with no less than 3 foreign visitors (after all, they have do do something with those bedrooms!) and so did not stay long.


Monday, 17 August 1970 Bow.
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Five years! And, come to think of it, what a way they have led me! I have grown up in the last five years; this time 5 years ago I was still shy of even talking to girls, let alone engaging in anything approaching active pursuit, but now not only is this no longer the case, I am actively contemplating getting engaged. Looking back, though, it seems odd how chance the encounters that led me to meet the three girls with whom I have gone steady in this time: Lesley Cannings by the skin of my teeth as the result of a mad dash back from Penang one rainy Tuesday afternoon, Jenny Hallett because Ricky Cookson had house guests already in the middle of April 1966, and finally Sue, the best of them all, by the craziest series of chances of them all - because I couldn't find a house where I wanted it, because I couldn't play the clarinet in the Uni orchestra and had to play the hoboe, and because Philippe Obussier needed somebody to play both Cor Anglais and nth horn in his precious Strawinsky.

Up, once again, very late - it is high time I did something about same - and spent little enough time before setting off to pick Sue up and come back home - had thought about going into town and catching up on the computer stuff, and eventually combined it with a trip to Exeter for shopping purposes; my main worry was my Pentax, which on further examination last night proved to be suffering from a loose top plate, which might be interesting in view of the fact that the bloke in Hamburg replaced it; asked about cleaning, but it seems that I would have to pay in the order of £5 to have the thing done, which sounds incredible; shall wait and see when I next go to Hamburg.

Picked up the computer stuff, though for Sue's sake I did not do any more stuff there; found, as I had feared, that my job cards were not in order, and so the DEVTIM had been rejected, and BUBBLE had gone mad, due, I discovered, to an incorrectly placed line number.

Did little in the evening that was out of the ordinary; for no apparent reason my piles have flared up again, and are rather painful.


Tuesday, 18 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Oh, the agony that my piles were last night! I don't know if they have ever been as bad, and as a result I just lay in bed, whimpering, until about 1500, when I thought it prudent (no, downright essential) to go and see Dr.Dan about my piles, and so over to show a brave face to Sue's parents, then carried on to Okehampton and Dr. Dan's surgery, and bumped into the Shaws (frieds of Sue's parents, parents of a bloke at KCT whom I may have mentioned), who had offered us some storage heaters. In then to see Dr. Dan, after a bit of waiting around, and he had a quick look up my arse, diagnosed a thrombosed external pile and prescribed an ointment which, he cheerfully assured me, wouldn't help much. Then out to the car, to find, in my present incapable state, that my slow flat had become a fast flat, and so drove on it across the A30 to the Shell garage and fixed it, nearly killing myself in the process, and in the meantime Sue went down to Boots and got my ointment, some stuff made by Warner's of Eastleigh with the appropriate name of Anusol, which I suppose is fair enough. Back home after that, suffering from the further problem that my seat in the car, for some unknown reason, had decided to detach itself from its runners, with unpleasant consequences.

Felt like death warmed up at home. Doc Dan was right when he said this stuff would not help much, and I had difficulty in detecting any help done at all. Sue was very considerate, and made makan for us, and we discussed a suggestion Mike made in a letter to the effect that we should come and stay with him for a while - doesn't sound too good, but as long as we don't tell Sue's mother that, we can still make out we are going; of late Sue's parents have been making themselves rather unpleasant, and the thought of getting away from them becomes particularly attractive.


Wednesday, 19 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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And another night of agony! Once again was not up much before 1400, which is more a way of life than the result of any privations, etc., which I might have suffered. Letter today from Mum with nothing of world-shattering importance in it, but at any rate I am hearing from her more often.

Over to pick Sue up, and back home again, and presently decided to go, yet again, to Exeter, this time mainly to get the computer stuff in, and so straight to the computer unit, punched the remainder of my cards (crazy coming all the way to the Uni just for that), handed them in again and back home, where we quickly (far too quickly, possibly) hit the sack, although not for long, and soon up again and had some tea, and in general just sat around, though I thought it prudent to write down some figures in preparation for Mike's phone call tonight - main concern was the fate of his cases, which I had managed to find at Birks - they were in the trunk store just opposite his old room, and I bumped into the Warden, Mr. Cave, on the way down, and he claimed he had found them in the porter's lodge, and had them taken up there, which all sounds highly unlikely, especially as the porters could see nothing like it there when I was there. I don't like that bloke one little bit.

Back to bed later, and as a result only just got up and dressed in to to go and ring Mike - weather was appaling, and so ended up covered in raincoats, etc, Rang up, reversing charges as usual, but it seems that Mike was not in the picture on this, to judge by the surprised “Eh?” that appeared at the other end of the line;

In those days it was perfectly possible to reverse charges to a telephone box: the operators had no way of identifying them.

hadn't got 2/6, and so off back home again after waiting for a while, and had trouble with agonising piles, which, if anything, were worse than last night, and somehow got Sue to persuade her parents to let her stay...


Thursday, 20 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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... the night, and look after me - though I doubt they knew she was doing to share my bed!

Woke up at various stages during the night in a fair semblance of agony; the activities which Sue's presence virtually forced me into did not agree with the condition of my piles, and though curtailed did not help my comfort.

Finally woke up at about 0930, and lay at length in bed - more mail today, this time from Dad, congratulating me on my proposed engagement to Sue, which I mentioned in my last letter to him, and asking me for details about her. Read that at length, then Sue's mother arrived, so Sue down to let her in; she thought she was going to pick Sue up there and then, but we thought otherwise, so got dressed after she had left and Sue drove me over, not not without smashing the car into a gate - good thing the wing was buggered already - and there sat down to write some letters to various members of the family, though my piles seem no better today than they were when I went to see Dr. Dan, so after a while off to see him again, and this time there was quite a queue waiting to see him; spent the times trying to write bits of a program about storage heaters, etc., as related to the environment, and then in, and he seemed not at all happy to see me, just about swore at me when I suggested Nupercainal, etc, . so off, pondering his claim that the stuff is dangerous.

Home, and had a bath, then to Exeter, I driving this time, and to the bar at the Northcote Theatre, though I first off to the maths building to get printouts; both once again giving trouble owing to the format of the data. Had a bit to eat, saw Alison, who looks grottier than ever, then in to hear the NYO attempt to beat Pete for precision in playing - they were pretty good, but played mechanically and without feeling, and we were very amused at how they were marched all over the place like prisoners.


Friday, 21 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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And again slept in this morning - not that it made all that much difference: if I had got up earlier, I would have had to put up (or at any rate make polite conversation) with the Shaws, whom Mrs. Fortescue had invited over for morning coffee this morning.

Finally over round midday, and spent quite a while there, as Sue had to help with the washing up; spoke about sundry problems which would doubtless beset us this afternoon: the Shaws had offered us first choice on the heaters, but wanted an answer by this weekend, and wanted to be rung up in any case, so did so, and Mr. Shaw, in effect, said wait and see what happens on Sunday.

Off eventually, after raiding Sue's fishing line (!) for some catgut for my typewriter return (Alison said she would send me some),

My recollection is that Alison played the viola.

and then off home and shortly after into town to punch yet more cards - this is becoming a full-time occupation, and a rather thankless one at that. Put the same old two back in to run again, and into town to do some shopping - I am gradually getting worried about the possibility of being done by the police for not having a tax disc; mine expired at the end of July.

Back home after that, and once again prepared to establish contact with Mike - this time, he was to ring us. Just as we were leaving, we found a letter from him telling us to ring him on Sunday noon, and up, were rung up on time, and it seems that he, too, had only just got our letter. Strangely enough, he was not all that dead set on paraffin heaters, and said go ahead on the storage jobs, which pleases me; also seems that his has been kicked out of the house as the result of an argument with his father, with whom he does not get on very well.

Back home again, and carried on thinking about my storage heaters program, which will be by far the biggest FORTRAN IV program I have ever written.


Saturday, 22 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Got up very late again, which doubtless rather irritated/upfed Sue, as I did not arrive there until 1530; this is obviously going to have to stop in the near future, or I shall never be awake when she is. Somehow got her away from her parents, though only for a couple of hours, as we had to be back comparatively early for makan with the Cawthras.

Back at home, settled down into the usual nothing; we rally have been doing rather little lately. Finally got undressed and the usual, I had a bath and dressed up for makan, and finally, none too early, back again to Sue's place, where Mrs. Fortescue seemed unduly excited about the impending arrival of the Cawthra's; so did Alison, who, after a while which I spent examining a Science Journal article on human reproduction (fascinating), dragged Sue into the music room and started playing the overture to Zampa arranged as a piano duet, and they were still hard at it when the Cawthras arrived, David in very high spirits, making me wonder whether he was sober. Finally he persuaded (that's what he thought, anyway) Sue to let him play her part (primo (prima??)), and, with all due respect to Sue, did a much better job of it.

Then in for makan, which under the circumstances was surprisingly grotty; maybe there is something in the fact that the English are not particularly fussy about what they eat.

Managed to get away pretty early after that, and Sue, who was feeling a bit fed up at staying at home all the time (and, I suppose, rightly so) suggested we went somewhere. Thought of all sorts of exciting places, but ended up at the New Inn in Coleford (which, I am told, is 13th century), which, in fact, is not at all a bad place.

Then off, eventually, in the direction of Barnstaple, but my piles started playing up again, and so we went off home again and hung about there at great length, taking of the the fact that Sue's mother had actually said she could be late home.


Sunday, 23 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Woke up, madly penitent, at about 1140 this morning, not at all a good time to wake for a drinks session at the Shaws in Sticklepath at 1200, so quickly dressed and set off, flat out, and encountered Sue's father, only recently in a condition to drive again, and Sue and Alison just the other side (west) of the Burston Inn. Changed passengers and managed, by a combination of mad driving and luck, to be at the Shaw's house only a couple of minutes after 1200.

In March 2017, Google Maps gives driving times between 22 and 25 minutes, so that's really impressive, though Google Maps seems to have difficulty knowing where Bow is. The start location chosen is really Nymet Tracy.

Nobody else (apparently quite a few people were coming) had arrived by that time, and so had a chance to look at the heaters, and in the process discovered that the 3 kW ones are 8-hour heaters, which is convenient;

From (vague) recollection there were also 11-hour heaters (i.e. heaters that required to be running for 11 hours to fully charge), but these were not (or no longer) compatible with the electricity supply in Bow.

as a result of this, thought at length, and eventually decided to buy two large and a small, which only leaves the Shaws with two small ones; they didn't seem to mind, however.

Back to the Fortescue's for a lunch a little more presentable that Sue's mother's usual standard, and after that somehow managed to persuade Sue's parents to let us go off again - of late they are getting really snaky about such things. In addition, it hardly helps that Sue herself feels somewhat guilty about the fact that she sees so little of them; otherwise there would be little her parents could do to make themselves so unpleasant.

At home, once again did nothing: poor Sue - she never gets much enjoyment out of just sitting about - if only there were something interesting (and inexpensive!) to do round here.

Had makan and worked at some length on the storage heaters program, and then to bed, after which took Sue home, and back again (considerably later) to finish writing my program (haven't thought of a name for it), which took me well into the early hours of the morning, and then did a bit of diary- ...


Monday, 24 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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... writing, in which I am falling sadly behind.

Had a bath later, as much to soothe my still-aching piles as anything: say what Dr. Dan will, I can't help thinking that there must be something better for piles than this stuff of big Jim McGibbons.

Until a couple of months previously, Jim had been the European manager of the manufacturer.

Had breakfast, then early into town and straight to the Uni Computer Card punch room - sat down and punched my program, all 150 odd cards of it, with surprisingly few mistakes, and was then lucky enough to find Dave Joslyn (who has apparently just returned from holiday), who was able to tell me how to compile them: each subroutine had to be compiled separately, and as a result of all that, all the job cards, just for compilation, numbered in the order of 30. Handed that in, also redid BUBBLE - left a statement out! - and DEVTIM, where I had got everything except the format right, and then over to the Chem. Eng. department, where I found Pete alone, so started typing in EDITOR, and had managed about 140₈ lines by the time John Boyle came in and desired to use same. Into town , where I went to the Insurance people and asked them about the car, and found that they had authorised repair on the 11th August, and I had not been notified; also, the engineer who ‘inspected’ the car had not been within 10 ft of the car.

How did I establish that? I had suspected as much at the time, but the insurers were hardly likely to have informed me.

Greatly annoyed, arranged for further contact with the engineer, and then back to the Uni, where John Boyle was still on the computer, and so off back to pick Sue up, and home to sleep it all off, which did not please her greatly, and in fact bitched all the way until I went to sleep (and quite possibly for some time after). Woke up later, and had a bite to eat and a bit of an argument with Sue, and then took her off home and back myself intent in changing to saner hours.


Tuesday, 25 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Supposed to ring Mr. Fisher of the Sun and Alliance early this morning, but somehow when the time came it seemed considerably more important to stay in bed, and so not up until round the 1000 mark.

Over to Sue's place, and found her alone in the house, an took advantage of the occasion by ringing up, first Mr. Fisher, who told me the interesting news that this Hopkins fellow from Wiltshiers still maintains that he inspected the car thoroughly, and that he would not examine it more carefully until repairs were already under way - would be interesting if he subsequently found that repairs came into the £800 bracket.

The issue here was that the car was more badly damaged than Hopkins had thought, and I had hoped to be able to write the car off instead of repair it.

In any case, decided to have Exon examine it, and keep Fisher informed.

Then rang Paul Hallett to see what he had been up to, and found, rather to my surprise, that he was in Jugoslavia, which is a little more adventurous than the Paul I used to know. Asked his mother to get him to ring Sue's place when he got back, and then went home, where we stayed but a short time before going into town , and first to the Uni to see if the PDP-12 was in use, but it was, and so down to Dunn's and thence to Exon, where they said to leave it at Dunn's and they would come and examine it, so off to look (in vain!) for lunch before going to see “The Italian Job”, with Micheal Caine and some of the most interesting driving I have seen in a long time - certainly a good film, though I have my doubts as to its plausibility.

The other film was “Monte Carlo or Bust”, making no pretensions at plausibility, but nevertheless a very good sequel to “Those Magnificent men in their flying machines”.

After that back to Dunn's to pick up the car and spoke with Colin, who said that they had decided that the car was quite repairable and only needed a new chassis! Curse these modular construction cars! Had that been a Mini, it would have been a write-off. Back home, and did little of any great significance.


Wednesday, 26 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Over a bit earlier to pick Sue up this morning, and without any undue difficulty managed to extricate her from her parents and get off home, though of late her mother has been getting rather snaky about the short duration of time that Sue is spending at home - not that I altogether blame her.

At home, it became evident that I should have to do something about food or starve, and in any case I had things to worry about in town , and so set off and to see first if the PDP-12 was free, and on it was loaded the the rest of the EDITOR code, which I had made on Monday, and tried to compile it, and got no less than 27₈ error diagnostics - also made a printout, and left it at that. Then on into town to do some shopping, and that none to soon, as early closing was threatening in no uncertain way.

After that up to Dunn's to try and work out what was going on, and got very little sense out of anybody, with the result that I ended up ringing Mr. Fisher, who suggested a 3-way meeting between myself, Mr. Stephens (at the moment on holiday) and Mr. Hopkins next Tuesday sometime. Swore a bit at this added waste of time, but there was obviously nothing else for it, and so agreed, suggested they named a time, and then off home again, and there sat and had tea with Sue and tried to puzzle out my error diagnostics - if only fewer had been real mistakes and more typing errors, or something! In any case, managed to sort it out, and then sat round further, reading our various books, and decided to get a bit of work done, but what somehow hindered therein, and so gave it up again and made some makan again, and then went to bed - poor Sue - as a result of all this, she has been sore for some considerable length of time.


Thursday, 27 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Sue very tired this morning when I went over to pick her up, and as a result thereof decided to leave her at home and myself go into town , where I rather hoped to get some computer time - though obviously this is not as easy as during term time, as John Boyle is spending all his time, it would seem, on debugging some LINC-mode programs; I can't help feeling that LINC must be a hell of a sight more difficult than 8-mode. Got a bit of work in, though pitifully small it was, before John came in and took over - enough to discover that there was something pretty drastically wrong with the read and type subroutines, and in particular typing ↑C [ctrl-C] gave an endless series of CR LFs. Was left to ponder this, and marvel over the wonders of new, improved, FOCAL 2, and to note that there is now another FORTRAN compiler for use on 8K storage, which bears more relation to FORTRAN than the pitiful attempt that 4K represents. It even looks the same as real FORTRAN, and has some debugging help.

In came Tony Palmer and expressed his intent to buy a 2CV, as money no longer sufficed for a Dyane - that makes 3 people I know who are on the lookout for one.

John Boyle left for a while, and I messed around to little advantage, and then off back home, stopping in Crediton to buy some much-needed food, and then on to wake Sue up, but found her already awake and scrubbing out the oven, much to her personal discomfort.

Had some lunch of sorts, and then thought about various things and wrote to Mike Hadden to ask him to send us a postcard of St. Ives so that we could send it back, written to arrive in North Tawton with a St. Ives postmark, and thus convince Mrs. Fortescue that we had, in fact, been to St. Ives, instead of, as intended, spending a (dirty?) weekend here.

Little in the evening - sat down and conscientiously tried to learn some physical chemistry.


Friday, 28 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Up early enough this morning and over to North Tawton to pick Sue up, still with all Mike Hadden's junk in the back of the car, which was not too wise; spent a while trying to pick Sue up; her parents have apparently started getting at her again, which annoys me somewhat, especially as they have been saying nasty things about me. Mrs. Fortescue asked about the junk in the back of the car, but we just said that I was taking it back to Mike. Note also that the Fortescues are having car problems; seems that their cylinder block is damaged, and they will need a new one, which virtually means a new engine, and it strikes me that they out to sell it while the going is good, but they are now apparently looking for a new engine.

In those days mechanics still repaired engines rather than replacing them.

Letter from Mum to answer when we got home; she is delighted about the fact that Sue and I are getting engage, and offered to donate her sapphire ring (enormous job that many years ago Tony Soliano mistook for a diamond), which rather shook me - I had been thinking in terms of a little thing for about £5, and I shudder to think home much this would be worth; still, so be it, and so I wrote a long letter in triplicate to that effect, and got Sue to append thereunto; described her in fair detail, though I don't know what point there is therein, as it doesn't help much. Suggested that Mum and Dad come over for Christmas, though on reflection I don't know that I wouldn't rather go out to KL/Kuching with Sue; she obviously would rather it.

The day passed easily and serenely enough; went into Crediton to do some shopping, got very little, and bought a Wireless World to keep me going; once again, I fear, I am thinking computers/hi fi, and am thinking, after all, of building the central processor myself, though I have my doubts about the peripherals. Did quite a bit of work on chemistry, which befits the fact that there are only 2 weeks until the exam.


Saturday, 29 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Nothing at all pressing to do today, apart from learn chemistry, and it is nice to be able to start the day without having to go and pick up Sue - everything is so much more tranquil, so much happier - I want Sue to stay with me for ever, and not have to go home at some ridiculous hour.

Up in mid morning, and had a bath and breakfast, and sat round thinking about hi-fi- stuff, reading in Wireless World an article about building hi-fi speakers out of concrete and things, all of which seemed remarkably efficient. If I can spare the time and afford the speaker units, may well do it this way. On the amplifier side, considered everything, but it still looks as if the Sinclair project 60 is the obvious choice; the distortion figures are claimed to be some of the lowest of any, and the prices are not exactly high.

Outside after a while to work on the Old Grey Mare, and got her started with no great difficulty - for about 5 minutes, until an exhaust rocker shaft sheared off a stud, causing the valve not to open, and consequent spitting back through the carb. Swore a bit, back inside and thought, and decided to try using Araldite,

Reading this caused me to laugh involuntarily. Araldite does not handle high temperatures.

so back out again and removed the head and washed down the offending area with paraffin and subsequently with meths, for what that was worth, but it did get everything a lot cleaner, and so left it to dry and still later out to Araldite it, which went easily enough, and back in for another day's physical chemistry, which is going quite well, and at this rate I should be through the syllabus by about the end of this coming week.

Also our love-making habits are becoming somewhat more regular of late, presumably as a result of Sue not going home at night; means at any rate, that we can get a lot more done in the daytime.


Sunday, 30 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Up still later today - somehow things like bank holidays depress me considerably, and I would much rather be without them - at least in this mode of life. One of the most depressing things about this particular holiday is the number of people participating therein; admittedly, Bow was not quite the solid traffic jam yesterday that I had expected, but it was pretty close on it, and the people all seem to have the same idea, to move house to Devon or Cornwall for a weekend, then to move back - all the cars seem to be full of people, children, animals and kitchen sinks, etc - in the words of the song, “And they're all made out of ticky-tacky, and they all look just the same”. But then, this is the trouble with England generally - and then the English have the gall to talk about the “teeming hordes” elsewhere in the world, who, by virtue of their poverty, don't seem to move in the same vast Exodoi that the English do.

Did little in the morning - feeling full of love (though physically, by rights, Sue should have been), got up and brought Sue breakfast in bed, and then both of us downstairs. Out to have a look at the ID head, and the Araldite seemed to be hardening quite satisfactorily, so left it, bearing in mind the 3 days required for complete hardening before doing anything further, and back inside, noting various advertisements for hi-fi equipment, and in particular that Henry's offer the stuff for cheaper than Sinclair themselves, so wrote off to them and asked them for their catalogues, etc., which in itself was quite a job, as they have two, and offer all sorts of other things as well; in any case, it looks as if I could get a full project 60 amplifier thing for only £19 with power supply, which is not bad going, and with any luck I can persuade Mike to get himself hold of a transcription unit [turntable] and a couple of loudspeakers.

Did little else, apart from revision.


Monday, 31 August 1970 Bow, etc.
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Merdeka

And on goes the holiday! I think I would enjoy it considerably more were it not for these resits coming up in the so near future, but still, it is rather idyllic to stay here with Sue and have, if no worries, then at least a temporary relapse into oblivion.

Up even later, and once again Sue got breakfast in bed, after which, heartily fed up of hanging around here doing nothing (especially Sue, who has spent all her time reading or washing up or cooking), decided to go for a drive somewhere, and to combine this with a pre-lunch snack/drink, and so headed in a beeline for the New Inn in Coleford, being as it is so much more pleasant than any pub in Bow, and there sate ourselves down and had a couple of drinks, Sue even rising (or sinking?) to spirits, which made us rather happier by the end of it, and so decided to have lunch here as well, which was possibly a mistake, as Sue wanted scampi; and I joined in, as I have never had it before, but the 8/- worth we had delivered to us in a basket, though quite appetising/tasty, seemed rather unfilling, and we could easily have eaten as much again.

Back home to contemplate various possibilities, thought of cooking something, but then decided that we could wait for a while, and so sat down to read, yet again, through Wireless World, and came across a serious of reprints of old articles, including one of the Wireless World Computer, an 8-bit machine which looks as if it might be really interesting; if people are doing that sort of thing themselves, it would seem easy enough to build a 12-bit machine with machine code compatible with the PDP-8 code - or possibly even a dual-mode system with 16/12 bits - all sorts of possibilities are open. In any case, decided to order this reprint, and while I was at it, also another for a low-cost loudspeaker system, which looks, in the present circumstances, as if it might be useful.

Did little in the evening; as a result of the excesses of the last couple of weeks, Sue has been feeling rather sore, which has us both somewhat worried.


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