It was difficult to tell, looking back, how good a summer that had been. The records gave a statistical answer – at Kew, the century’s fourth best for dryness, the third best in hours of sunshine. But all those previous seasons, that had matched this one or even surpassed it, were blurred in the memory by other springs, other summers. This was different, a C Major crescendo that lingered in the heart, a recollection of love across the dry divide of age. There were brief spells of poor weather, one in July, another early in September. For the rest, what breaks came in the continuation of warm blue days were no more than pauses, preparing for still more brilliant skies. From Sicily to the shores of rocky Norway, Europe basked in the heat.
In Andrew’s life, too, as he saw it at the time, it was a season of brightness. His job filled the three criteria for satisfaction: he enjoyed it, he had confidence in his ability to do it well, and his work was appreciated in the right quarters. Behind this lay a family life which offered him, he thought, all that a man needed.