The relationship with Cora continued throughout the first half of the year, with us staying in each other’s house two or three nights a week, and having a week’s holiday at my friends’ house in the Sierra Nevada. But, the reality of our different ages, family situations and daily lives eventually started to cause friction between us, which itself undermined any discussion of a future together. We split up, but kept on seeing each other occasionally. Neither of us - for different reasons - was really capable of constraining our emotions to service physical desires, and our friendship became occasionally mired with insecurity and resentment. Cora had appeared like an oasis in the dry arid social desert of my life, and now, I was back in the desert, but so much less able to walk alone than I had been before I met her. This was not to do with Cora, indeed from the beginning of the relationship I expected it would eventually serve as a catalyst to a breakdown of sorts, not dissimilar to the one I’d had in my 20s.

Early in the year, I was drawn into a ridiculous spat with the council over a hedge on my property which was cut back without proper purpose or permission. I upgraded my online connection to broadband, which made possible my next project - The Diary Junction. This was devised, in essence, to provide my website with interesting and useful content, in order to attract visitors to whom I could promote Kip Fenn. Over many months, I created 500 data pages, each one giving a brief biography of a diarist as well as links to other websites with more information, and, most importantly, actual diary texts. The ‘Guardian’ said: ‘This amateur (in the best sense) attempt to document historical and literary diarists is a great browse. Truly a labour of love by one individual.’ (More than a decade later, the Diary Junction and other diary websites I’ve created continue but have never once led to an order for Kip Fenn.)

In late spring I had a rainy few days exploring Dartmoor, and in August Adam and I spent a week adventuring on Skiathos (Diary 83 - not transcribed). But all too soon, Adam was gone, to live and study in Brighton, and I was back in full depression mode. By way of proving something to myself, I decided on a trip to Morocco (Diary 85 - not transcribed), to engage in real travelling again just as I had done many years earlier. By the time I came back, I was ready to sell Russet House, to downsize everything about my life, and to move to Brighton. I chose Brighton, I should stress, not to follow Adam but because I judged it the most characterful place to go to best re-invigorate myself. (Diaries 81, 82, 84, 86)

Paul K. Lyons (November 2017)


1974 1975

1976 1977

1978 1979

1980 1981

1982 1983

1984 1985

1986 1987

1988 1989

1990 1991

1992 1993

1994 1995

1996 1997

1998 1999

2000 2001

2002 2003

2004 2005

INTRO to diaries