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January 9, 1997

Aug94 - Jan97

I said I'd fill in the details later. Where do I start? Two & a half years have passed since I last wrote in this & things have changed so much in that time. As I said above, I met Deborah in June 94 about 3 weeks after Mum died. I had the convertible delivered at the beginning of August that year & we took it to Jersey on holiday. Deborah moved in with me & we lived together for almost 2 years. I met her through Zoe. Around October 94 we started to discuss moving abroad. I flew out to Spain to look at property & found out about offshore banking & we started to clear things in the house up. It helped, however, at New Year 1995, when the house flooded while we were down in London, but it took us a long time to get the work completed. We went down to Falmouth that summer & did our Padi courses. Around the 11th or 12th of January 95, however, I was looking through the sports books for something on skiing in James Thin when I picked up one called "Voyaging on a Small Income". I bought it & it made a lasting impression on me. Instead of trying to travel around the world in a BMW with a tent, I reasoned, why not buy a yacht? I persuaded Deborah, who had always been interested in sailing while I had not, but she didn't seem very enthusiastic. I set off to learn the art of sailing. After months of searching, we travelled down to Guernsey in May of last year to look at a Westerly Sealord. This was the yacht, and how pleasant Guernsey seemed.

About a week later, Deborah went down to Falmouth (which she had did several times) to do another diving course. I gave her �1200 to buy herself diving gear for her birthday. She phoned me to tell me she was thinking about leaving & moving down there. Massive shock. I asked her to come home so we could discuss it, but she told me she was going to stay down there for an extra few days after the course to think about it. And so I was left sitting in the shop, about to buy a yacht, not knowing what would happen with this relationship. I unplugged the phone for the next few days. I did not want upset by her any more. She had by this time spent the money on diving gear too. A couple of hours before her train got into Dundee, I agreed to buy Zamindar (this was to be the new lady in my life). I met Deborah at the station. She came home & told me on the bed that she was moving to Cornwall. I tried to change her mind. I still don't truly understand it. Deborah agreed to stay a few weeks to help me get things cleared up here. I called Peter to ask if I could delay the decision on the yacht for a couple of days as things were moving so fast, but he said he had already told the seller. So here I was. About to close the business I had known all my life. About to move away from Scotland. Moving onto a yacht. Stopping working. And now breaking up the longest relationship I had ever had. What was happening in my life?

I could have stayed & carried on working in the shop but it was time to do something else. So Deborah & I started packing our things. I still hoped that she was just having one of her "wierd turns" & that she would stay or come over to join me in Guernsey. I asked her if the caravanette, which she had been driving recently, would make things easier for her. She said it would, so I told her she could have it. It didn't look as if I would sell it anyway, so it would be something else cleared up. A few days later though someone called about buying it. I told him it was gone.

Pal, my best friend through all the years, now started acting strangely. I took him to the vet. They diagnosed a brain tumour. They told me he didn't have long to live. I wasn't even going to have Pal. He would walk around & around in circle & sometimes urinate indoors (which had happened occasionally for a couple of months now). One evening he got really bad & seemed to be in pain. I called the vet & Deborah & I took him down to the Broughty Ferry practice & they put him down. I still miss him. I buried him in the garden that night.

It was only a couple of days later that the stock in the shop got so low that I closed up for the final time & sent the rest back as damages. I still wonder if I did the right thing. Would it ever feel like the right thing? On a Saturday in July, Deborah left in the caravanette. I left the house on the Monday evening (20th July?) & wondered if I would pass her on the road. I haven't seen her since.

I drove down to Weymouth & got the ferry over to Guernsey. The only person I knew on the island was Peter. As I sat on Zamindar's deck that evening, the sun setting as I watched Condor 12 pass on it's way back to the mainland, I thought, "Well, there goes the other half of my day return. Up until now I could have gone back to the life I had more or less." A new life had begun. I heard a voice & looked down. "Have you bought this? what did you pay for it?" It was Paul & Chris, who were to become great friends.