We saw our grandchildren grow and thrive and it was absolutely fabulous for us to have them all together for the very first time here in Framlingham. I do hope that we can do this again very soon.
That day alone was enough to make 2016 a good year.
We also got together with friends in the best self catering holiday house in the entire Lake District (as agreed by both The Sunday Times and Cumbria's Tourist Board)
I'm still working on an excuse for us to get back to Waternook again this year.
Our lovely friends Dave and Jane Haworth took us for a wonderful hotel break to celebrate our Ruby Wedding.
The summer in Framlingham was glorious which meant plenty of metal detecting when the harvest was in. We made the most of the weather with walks and bike rides aplenty.
Sadly we said goodbye to our lovely old neighbour Wilfrid, one of the very last German Prisoners Of War to survive here in the UK (only one, who died shortly after, outlived him). I wonder how Wilfrid would have felt about Brexit.
After a few false starts we've gradually begun to make new friends in Suffolk and we were invited to a great party the Friday before Christmas and had fun dancing into the early hours.
One of my people of last year has to be Jurgen Klopp who has brought some joy back to watching Liverpool. Having watched the joyless performances since the start of the decade I began to despair that my team would ever return to its glory days but in Klopp we've finally got a manager who "gets" Liverpool again. The vociferous Framlingham Branch of the LFC supporters club now meets regularly at our house to watch the matches (now in UHD courtesy of Sky Q).
Another person of 2016 has to be Gary Lineker whose tweets have been a touch of compassion in a sewer of ugliness. I've just deleted my Twitter "Idiots" list as the daily bile poured out by Trump, Farage, Banks and Paul Nuttall from UKIP was doing my blood pressure no good. If you are on Twitter do follow Gary. Other Twitter favourites of mine are Sid Siddiqui, Mary Beard and Eddie Marsan. Each is an oasis of goodness in a desert of hate.
I told you in my last blog about this super (but badly cracked) Spode honey pot I found on eBay and wondered how much it might fetch.
Here's the result. I'm very pleased with that (as long as the buyer is happy when he gets it).
My new novel has some eBay links and it's been a really impatient time for me as I finished it in the summer, had it professionally edited and proof read and then tried to get a publisher. I've only approached two potential agents so far. One rejected it, the other has not replied but the agent recommended by my editor is not accepting manuscripts at the moment. I'm happy with the book, it's ready to go and maybe when we get back from our holiday (off to Bequia for two weeks) I'll go down the self publishing route again if he's still not looking for new writers.
We had a wonderful Christmas in Rochester and then again in St Andrews. It was over twelve hundred miles driving but worth it to spend time with our family.
In my last blog I said that it had been a good year for finding treasure. After I wrote that I had my final outing with the detector for 2016 and some great finds turned up.
|This is probably an escutcheon for a keyhole but it's an old one|
|A late medieval sword belt fitting|
|An unusual fob watch key|
|Excited to find this. Although damaged it is a Colchester type Roman fibula - only the second Roman find I've made around here|
|And finally. What better way to end the year? A Portuguese gold half escudo|
|John V dated 1736 and in nice condition.|
So that's a bit about 2016 - a year that saw us married for forty years and retired for six whole years.
I hope that 2017 brings happiness to everyone who reads this.