Sunday, December 28, 1980

Sunday December 28th

The Times magazine had an interesting photographic review of the year 1980; all the famous names who’ve died is amazing – Tito, Lennon, Hitchcock, Beaton etc……..

I sat about in the dining room reading the ‘paper until after a cooked breakfast when, at about eleven, we all set off for Bolton Abbey. There was me, Robert and Carol in Robert’s Renault and Andrew, Mum, Dad and Nanna Peale in our car – it took us about an hour. The weather was quite drizzly and permanently overcast and soon we all rolled into Cavendish Pavilion car park. Bolton Abbey is permanently popular nowadays, there are always large crowds of “holiday-makers” even in poor weather. The place is so familiar and so popular, we always go there.

Leaving Nanna P. sat reading the newspaper in the car we crossed the bridge and went up the road to the lodge-house where we turned off for the Valley of Desolation. Robert and Carol hung back bird-watching (they saw a Goldcrest) and shortly we approached the Valley. The trees are superb around there, gnarled and like something from a Tolkien novel. Ahead of us rose the two bracken clad hills, topped with dark granite, and I decided that I wanted to climb them.

I soon left everyone else to carry on down into the Valley while I struck off the right, through the soggy bracken and peat and very soon I was climbing straight up the side. I was really tired by the time I reached the summit and after admiring the view I carried on towards the triangulation point 200 yards further over on the moor. The wind was quite strong and the views around were really impressive – black ominous moorland, with the sharp outcrop of Simon’s Seat away on the horizon, partly shrouded in mist. In front of me, the moor directly above the Valley was sporadically illuminated russet brown by the sun.

After wrestling with my cagoul and feeling quite out of sorts, at the trig point I plunged straight down into the Valley where I met up with Mum and Dad and, later, Andrew, Carol and Robert. We wandered back, wondering what the oak trees that were planted in April 1980 to commemorate the Golden Jubilee of the Yorkshire Rambler’s Association will be like in 50 years – I’ll be 66 then, in 2030, on about volume 100 of my journal!

We all had some tea in the Pavilion before returning at three. I felt rotten when I got home, a heavy pain above my left eye, deep in my head, which was really acute whenever I bent down. I eventually felt so bad that I went to bed, where I feel asleep, Carol waking me up at five thirty for tea.

I spent the evening lethargically either upstairs playing darts with Robert or downstairs listening to Hendrix. Later on, there was a programme on about visions between 1961-65 in some small Spanish village called Garabandal. This led on to a discussion, mainly between Robert and Dad about religion, todays alleged loose morals and the future in general and Robert was in one of his argumentative moods. I feel sorry for Dad – all his beliefs, and his principles are being undermined and flaunted nowadays – he despairs of mankind sometimes.

Neither me, Andrew or Robert believe in God – we’re all confirmed atheists – Andrew thinks like me that God-worship is so pagan and basically primitive and Robert says too that he just cannot come to terms with the entire idea. Dad however, says he does believe.

Tomorrow, Robert and Carol are going back home and Andrew and I are going into Easterby. I intend ringing Lee to ask if I can go down there to do my Art – I’ve thought a bit about that lot – I wonder if we’ll get together?

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