February 28, 2015 – Flowers, sunshine, weddings

What a lovely day here today. It is sunny and looks like it is going to warm up a bit. Nearer to 32′ than we have seen in a very long time.  But there is snow coming again tomorrow.  I think if we look back at the calendar we will see that it has been around 7 weekends of snow or ice.  My brother John taught me that weather goes in about seven week cycles. Ever since he talked to me about that it has proved true over and over again. 

Denis received his first check from his publishers this week so we are going out to dinner tonight to celebrate. Nice to know he has sold a few books since it came out.  What he needs is some professor to require all his/her students to read it. That would be good now wouldn’t it.

I have been in a terrible funk this week. Lots on my mind I guess.  Decisions to make about what direction I want my life to go in. I hate it when I feel like this.  Cannot wait for decent weather to get out in and walk and walk. Things might fall into place then.  Also am waiting for a grant to read for one of my favorite groups that I use to work with. I offered to read their grant to let them know if I see any huge flaws in it. 

So here are a few more of Pat (Patt) letters. She had fun fracturing her various family members names. She spelled Mary as Marye. She called Eileen, Liz, which I guess was her nick name.

March 17,1944

“Top of the Morning to you” but it won’t be the 17th when you receive this however I wish it anyway. I am getting “spring fever”. The sun is very warm and shines often in fact this is a dry spring over here they tell me.

The view around our cottage isn’t very picturesque. Too many soldiers but I like it anyway but I am looking forward to my leave. One of the girls came back today from the …. Isles and brought back boxes full of flowers she had picked. I have never seen so many daffodils, narcissus and blue iris, the most perfect blossoms. She didn’t pay for them just went out and picked them, I can’t get over it.

I had a letter from Sr. Hughes today. She said to not let on I had received it because they shouldn’t write letters in Lent. Maybe Sheila would get her something for Easter (out of my money, nuts or candy if possible)

I am still having a wonderful time. I guess I told you most of the men I go out with are infantry officers and they are the cream of the crop I think. Most of them in the last four years have come up from privates and they make such good field officers. Of course they are dying for action even though they feel it will be the end for them. Such courage, they are so good, never grumble about a thing, good sports and gentleman.  They are perfect to me.

I have no idea about when or where we will be going. There is a lot of talk but everyone is guessing of course after all they have to keep these things quiet but every time I mention going anywhere in the summer the man or men say “this summer, I wouldn’t count on it.”   I want to see so much more of the country though that I hope I stay for a while.

March 19, 1944

On duty and things are quiet. This is the day of the big football game. They expect 70 thousand people and I had five invitations to go but I have to work. However it is a cold, damp day so it isn’t too bad. I have a few bets on so the Canadians had better win.

Last nite I was at a marvelous dinner and dance at the Engineers Mess. General Roberts was the guest of honor and Matron _____ was there. There were twenty four at the dinner and then we went on to the dance. Had a very good time. The food was perfect. Fresh fruit cocktails, fillet mignon, etc. things you don’t get over here very often. I was talking to Major Gus McKerraher at the dance. Asked about Dad and Ferg.

Yesterday I had the day off so at noon Margo and I took the train to Hanley to No 12 CGH for Betty’s wedding. The wedding was at four p.m. all the N/S’s and M.O’s went to the Church in lorries. It was a dear little English Church. Ideal for a wedding. Better looked perfect, she wore her blue silk with veil, white gloves and carried white roses. Her brother George gave her away. I presented the white silver horseshoe after the ceremony which is a traditional part. The reception was lovely. They have a marvelous mess, very modern and up to date. The flowers, cake, drinks, refreshments etc were lovely. She was their first bride because the six months was up on Mar 17 since No 12 came over.

Hugh Gibson called me the other nite. He is only 10 miles away. Ed had written him that I was here. As the crow flies 10 miles is a very short distance but it is hard to get connection with trains etc. He is coming over next week some nite. Eileen Hanson is here. She is one of my good friends here and I knew she was engaged to an air force officer and never connected her with Edward. I nearly died when it suddenly struck me, she is the sweetest thing. Very pretty and a lovely girl. He is coming down next weekend so I will see him. Well this is my most current news. Lots of love and kisses

March 27, 1944

The weather is simply beautiful, the sun is so warm. Sun p.m. I had off so we went paddling on the Canal and it was perfect. Everyone was strolling along and the flowers are gorgeous. The violets and primroses and the almond trees are in bloom. The tree itself looks fragile but the blossoms are a vivid pink and absolutely beautiful. A little like our apple blossoms only both the tree and the flowers much smaller. The whole setting reminds me of stories I have read of Cambridge students out on walks with a volume of Shakespeare or someone to read sitting on the banks. Everyone says that down south (Torquay) that it will be tropical and we will probably be able to bath in the sea. I think we can go but we haven’t heard for sure.

I saw Ed Gibson the other nite. He looked fine, lost a little weight. Eileen, he and I had dinner together then I had a date so I left them. Did I tell you Lib Madden is here also? We are good friends, she is very sweet and a lot of fun. Our cottages are next door so we are in and out. Of course Margo is perfect to me. Every time she goes out she buys me flowers so our room is usually filled with them. She knows how I love them. She does many nice things for me as I do for her so we get along as well as ever and makes everything much nicer when we have to live in the same room under not to good conditions. We have to make the best of everything.

Our food still is very good. Mostly a starch diet though bread, potatoes, and puddings. I have to watch my weight. I feel wonderfully well but I am taking Vitamin tabs. A,B,D and C.

I hope Dad has a lovely birthday on the 1 April and that Marye buys you a big box of cigars from me. Patt.


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