We got up fairly early and after showers etc, we walked, along with the hordes of commuters, over to Barons Court tube station. We caught the District Line to Embankment then the Bakerloo line to Lambeth and walked up to the Red Lion. We yarned to Harry for a while down in the cellar then went up and saw Jen, just back from Africa. We looked at her photos for a while then went down to the office and packed up our tea chest¹, sealed it up and left the paperwork and money with Harry.

After a sandwich with Has next door in the cafe, we caught a bus over to Piccadilly and walked up to Leicester Square and found the offices of TravelMore Limited. It took an hour or so to arrange a return flight to New Zealand for Linda and Jenny Bell2 and we paid a deposit as well.

We poked around a few shops then returned to the travel office to confirm that the booking had gone through. At seven we met a healthy looking Louie and Jenny at Break For the Border for drinks and dinner. We spent a couple of hours there then caught the tube back out to Fulham. We had a couple of drinks at the Carlton Arms then grabbed our stuff from the flat and headed home. 

1A tea chest was a box commonly used for shipping excess stuff back to New Zealand.

2Linda and Jennie were going back to New Zealand for a wedding in March 1991.


We woke up to the sight of heavy snow falling outside but it stopped at about 8AM so we went out and built a snowman. Linda went off to work and at 10:30 Betty rang me to ask if I could take some kids sledging. So I took Gemma, Joanna and Tina’s son Lee over to the hill by Heytesbury roundabout and we spent a couple of hours there sliding down between the trees. Before we left to drive back to the Dove we went up to the top of the hill where there was a wonderful view out over the snow-covered Wylye Valley.

The snowman we built at Cortington Manor on that snowy Saturday.

When Linda finished work we packed some things and headed for London. Going up over the Salisbury Plain, the snow made a lovely picture in the late afternoon sunlight as it threw every detail of the landscape into fine focus. It took us 2 1/2 hours to reach Fulham and after dropping our stuff at the flat we went over to the Carlton Arms to see Lydia and Jenny who were working there. After a couple of warming drinks, Linda and I went down to North End Road for a burger.


SATURDAY 8/12  SNOW! When I got up at 8:30 I pulled back the curtains to see a white and blustery world. Powder snow, driven in by a howling south-westerly wind, coated everything and it looked wonderful after not having seen snowfall for over two years.

We got up and mucked around the house then drove up to Ann’s place where Linda dropped me off and went to work. I spent a couple of hours chopping up wood at Ann’s then walked up to the pub for a slap up cooked breakfast. 

Cortington Manor in the snow.

Later in the afternoon it was still snowing and we went in to see Ann at Betty’s house in Warminster for a while then Linda dropped me off at Adi Hargraves’¹ house. We went up to the Farmers Arms pub and met Royston and Rocky² for a few beers then walked up to the Bath Arms for a few more.

The Wiley Valley Meats Christmas party was the long-awaited highlight of the year but I thought it was a boring piece of shit!!

¹Adrian Hargreaves was one of the boners I worked with at Wylye Valley Meats. He was studying to be an accountant.

²Also boners from WVM.