5th December 1942

Howling S.W. wind, with low scudding clouds.  Joy and Parry went off to London today, on business.  Caught the bus, rain just beginning, and came on harder every minute as we travelled towards Colchester.  For some reason I did not feel very apprehensive, perhaps because we have never been bombed on a Saturday.

About 10 o’clock there was a violent cloudburst.  The sky went quite black, as dark as 6 o’clock at night, and the rain fell in one gigantic cataract.  However, by 11 the rain stopped, and the clouds gradually cleared, so that at lunch time there was nothing but blue sky and sunshine.  Home to lunch.

Hampshire helped me with hay and straw.  Then I bought rations, and got an extra pot of marmalade this week, which I was not really entitled to have.  As I walked past Winnock’s Almshouses, the sun was shining all over the spires and towers of the Borough churches, the gilded weather-cock on Holy Trinity swinging glinting in the wind, and a few fat grey-blue clouds sailing over the town.  I could hear the Town Hall clock chime half past three.  Every church in Colchester should have a chiming clock, so that the sound of their bells would drift away down the valley.

The streets crowded with Saturday shoppers going home to tea, and soldiers going up town for an evening’s amusement.

Bought a cake from Rose, and went to catch the 4 o’clock bus.  St. John Street was packed solid with soldiers, sailors, country people, WAAFS, ATS, etc.  The bus was not very full, so I managed to get a seat.  Walked from the Harwich Road across to the farm buildings.  The land looks very well, although all the stubbles are not yet ploughed.  Looked at Robin, who seems very well.  I must do something about him.  Caught Roger, made tea, and had a very comfortable and pleasant evening.

Wrote a few notes on the “Appearance of Roman Colchester” for the “Prospect of Colchester”.  [Rudsdale's collection of old photographs and illustrations of Colchester]

Joy and Parry came home at 9.  J. rather sick from the train journey.

Rain began again about half past ten, but not very hard.

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