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These summaries of the year 1963 were written at the end of my diary for December 1963 and at the beginning of my diary for January 1964.

Comments (December 1963)

Well, after the 3rd attempt, I finally managed to finish it. I wonder if it was worth it, carrying a book about with me all the time, writing my opinion of things, places, people, times, 1963, etc. I suppose it was, and, being the bloody sentimental type that I am, I will probably get untold joy out of it when I read some of it on 4/IV/1984. Still, it has already come in handy for verification of fact up to a certain bias point, and alas, as the year's doodling in the back will prove, somewhere where I can write down my condensed thoughts, clean my pen out, excercise [sic] my handwriting, etc., and also, as overleaf, get some money (or perhaps loose [sic] it), and dispense with a “little black book”.

No doubt when I am 87.6.15*

Footnote: * 13/V/2035

In fact, this date is wrong. It should be 13 April 2036

or some such age, I will look back at this, and realise what a bloody fool I must have been on the 6/VI/1963, or how much more fun I could have had on the 15/XII/1963 or some such thing, or tell all my great grandchildren what a hard life we used to have in those days, when only 5 people had been more than 100 miles off the earth, and nobody had been to the moon, and to count themselves luck that they were going to Uranus next summer, or wherever it was.

Summary (January 1964)

1963 marked almost a new era in my life, although the pressure really began when I came to King's in September 1962. However, as it took a bit of time to have an effect, it was not until the new year that it became noticed. No longer, I hope, was so childish as before, and I think that the effect can easily be noticed by looking at the style of my diary for last year, which was, by the way, more successful than either of the previous 2. It started off being prep-schoolish in lookout, but I feel that my outlook broadened considerably in 1963, although it is doubtless by no means yet finished. I am sure that my association with Callow, Green and Rees had plenty to do with this. Also, perhaps, the fact that I learnt german, and so, with Tyson's method of teaching, learnt much about german folk customs, etc.

In the Christmas holidays [1962-1963], I started keeping very late nights, which was possible because I slept (or perhaps I should say did not sleep) in the coach house,and I was seldom disturbed. Mrs. Baudouy also hardly discouraged it.

The lent term was hardly eventful - I became almost a recluse, and devoted more and more of my time to the design and construction of a cathode ray oscilloscope, and also of a transmitter, and did buy a canadian 52 receiver , being the first real communications receiver I have ever had (the PCR2 could hardly count as this, as it lacked many refinements.) Apart from that, Callow & I developed a habit of spending half days in the tuck shop, but it was rather hard on the resources, although pleasant.

In the easter holidays, I carried on the tradition started in the Christmas, but this time I let Bev come down with me, which was a much wanted restraining influence on me.

In the end, I fell sick, and was dragged up to the house, where I quickly recuperated, but stayed over a week past the beginning of the term. Mrs. Baudouy insisted that this was due to my keeping such unusual hours, but I completely disagreed.

The summer term was one of the most unpleasant terms that I have ever had, and I got an absolutely astounding number of punishments - well over 10, anyway, and enough to give Kochanel [?] a chance to exercise his cane. Mum came over before the end of term, and took me out pretty constantly for the last few days of term.

Then the Summer holidays, like the fresh wind after a storm, although I continued to have rows with Mum about all sorts of things. Nevertheless, Germany really pleased me, and before we left I had 2 invitations to come back for the Christmas holidays. Then we made a bee-line for Spain, which I did not think much of. Had a bit of fun with the train robberies, especially as a couple of the suspects were caught at the Hotel Royal, Valencia, while we were staying there.

Finally, we headed back to England, going across France in 2 days, and having to sleep in the car in the intervening night, on which we met a poor old sailor, who wants us to write to him. Poor fellow. I feel rather sorry for him.

We stayed almost a week in London, quite near Lisle street (this had been my choice), and then headed down to Taunton, where we had an appointment to have our teeth seen to, and then down to Netherton house, where I discovered that, owing to my habits in the coach house, I was no longer permitted to stay there. Also got a good talking to about this from Dad. Fortunately, Mum gave up in disgust or something.

Did not do too well in the Michealmas [sic] term as regards punishments, but it was a great improvement on the summer term. When I got back, I discovered that I had been moved to Gatcombe, and also I was in the upper common room, which was rather convenient.

Redoubled my efforts at various subjects, and did quite well in Deutsch - Tyson reckons I can take 'A' level Deutsch while I am in the removes, and Clod recons I could take 'O' level chemistry whenever I liked, and pass with flying colours.

At half term, met a beautiful blonde from France, Régine, and fell head over heels for her. Spent a lot of the second half term writing to her, which seemed to please her as much as did her replies me.

Left school early for the Christmas holidays, mainly to see Régine again before she went back to France for Christmas, and had a wonderful time. Kirsten, aus Deutschland, also seems to be getting interested in me.

When Bev came back from School, Régine, I, Kirsten, Van, and a few others were having tea in the cottage, and she came down to see us. Admitted that Régine was hardly another Devi Nyar. I should say not, too. Then off to Germany on the next day, and, apart from getting drunk at regular intervals, it was rather boring.

Christmas was more the 24/XII/63 than the 25th, on which day I was just temporarily kicked out of the house for a “Lüftung”, and only got 1 glass of Sekt. New Years eve was more fun. At least a chance to drown your sorrows.

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