July 2, 2015 – Canada Day and Sheila’s leaving for Europe June 1944

Yesterday was Canada Day.  It rained most of the day off and on so we decided to skip the Parade.  It was at 4 pm and about 3:15 we had a major downpour which took the idea of a parade right off the plan.  But it was a good day. I got some things done around here that were on my list and also got a nap in which is always great.

At 5 pm we went to dinner at the Smiths.  They showed us their new hardwood floor in their living room.  They are another couple that has taken an old farm and turned it into quite the place.  They have radiant heating in the floors and the heat comes from an outbuilding with a furnace in it.  Quite impressive I must say.  We had a good visit with them and then decided to go to Seeleys Bay for the Fireworks.  We did not go into the park but stayed by the docks and had a great view.  They were very good and by the time it was over it was time to head for home.

Some caught a fish at Canada Day celebrations in Seeleys Bay.  Been trying to find some fireworks or parade pictures but this computer is playing games again. Spinning and spinning and showing nothings much for its efforts.

Hard to believe that in two years Canada will be 150 years old and that their flag is 50 years old this year.  We should plan quite a celebration up here that year.    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canada_Day  Some history for those of you who don’t know about the history of Canada.

Canada was always a part of our lives since both our parents were Canadians.  My mothers side goes quite far back and recently we discovered on my Dad’s mothers side the history in Canada goes back to 1647.  That is way back… Interesting that they have all those records going back and easier to find than the Irish or Scottish records.

Summers in Canada were special times for my brothers and I. Spending time with grandparents, grandaunt, aunts, uncles and cousins were so special.  We never lived near family and I was so jealous of the cousins who lived near to each other and who got to visit more often than we did.

So, now I am here and can stay as long as I want in my little house surrounded by family history as well as having relatives nearby.  I also have my house at home where I have been determined to keep constant so my kids always know they  can come home. But someday that will be gone as we will be.  One thought I always have is what to do with this house?  I think we should give it away to the township with requirements attached that it be used as a community building for social events, meetings, classes etc.  The back could have offices for not for profits like the waterway association.  But it will all be decided if any of my kids or grandkids really want it and would use it.  After all in a few years some of them will probably be thinking about retiring themselves.

Sheila is now heading overseas on what sounds like a cruise ship from the 1940’s or 30’s and quite enjoying herself.  It says this is letter number 2 from on board. will have to see if number one is out of order some where.

Hand marked:5 june – 8 June – England – July 22 –C.A. (A.F.) – No 1 + 2 (8 June)
Second letter aboard ship to Europe

Thurs 8 June

Dear All,
I really feel as if this is just a nice sea-journey. Honest. You never saw a more perfect boat in your life. It is a regular holiday, and I’m getting paid $4.25 a day for it too.

We sleep in staterooms. 2 beds in a room with an adjoining bathroom, the beds are narrow one on each side with dressers and bedside tables in between, easy chair and 2 cloth presses and a long standing mirror.

We get up at 8:00 for breakfast and have grapefruit, cereal, eggs + bacon + coffee. Then we have P.T. on deck at 9:30. There are 37 of us and about 30 officers + the crew. We have P.T. for ½ hr then we get on deck chairs or play deck hockey or darts or table tennis. The bar opens at 11:30 so we have a drink before dinner at 12:30. The lunch is soup, fish entree, then a meat dish of beef, chicken etc, with rice. Then you go to the cold cut table. There it is cafeteria style and there are at least 15 different salads, pickles of all kinds and cold meats such as tenderloin (?) tongue, Lobster in the shell and I eat, eat, eat. Then you have fruit – great big bananas, apples or oranges. Then coffee in the lounge upstairs. It is absolutely gorgeous. Then you are free for awhile and I usually go and have a little nap.

You have tea at 4:00 with rolls + jam (gorgeous jam) and cakes – the cook is good. Eileen would go mad at the stuff. Then at 5:30 we have another ½ hr of P.T. I am really getting to enjoy P.T. At 7:00 we eat again – soup, entree, main course + desert, and like desert is rice mange, and it sounds poor but it is rice whipped cream desert with jello top and cherry sauce – Honest I’ve never eaten such stuff. I hope I haven’t made you hungry talking about it but I would love to pop in and tell it all, so I shall write as well as I can – wish I was good in Compositions – don’t you.

Then in the evening we sit in the lounge or stroll on the decks. You certainly have to wear lots of warm clothes – but I have them so it is alright.The lounge is beautiful. Dark mahogany walls and hard wood floors, the music room is the same with a baby Grand piano in it. Nothing is too good for us, right?

I have Jack’s photo sitting on my table and often wish 2 things. 1) that you knew him 2) that he was here – but such is life.

We don’t even have to use our own soap + towels here – they provide all. It is a super set up and I’m having one whale of a time.

The day we left, 2 of the boys got me up out of bed to see us leave Canada. I threw a kiss to you all and said good-bye and hope I’ll see those shores again before too long.

I hope you can make this out but occasionally the ship moves too suddenly and as a result my writing takes a beating.

Let Carmel, Marg, Norah + Madeline read this as I will not have time to write to them in detail too as I am not a good letter writer. Shall add more later. There are two lads on board who know Bill – Clare Robinson + John Swant from Moncton and both went to Mount A.

Also a girl who is a very good friend of Kitty Devlin McCabe’s her name is McKnight. She went with Frank ( Kelly’s brother( for a year or so. She is a cute thing and can really play bridge well. I am enjoying the trip and it is certainly an education all in itself.

The boys on the boat are a really swell bunch and as a lot of them are married, you just mingle in a crowd, though a Dave Relco has taken me under his wing as he is a friend of Jacks and a Catholic. He had been married 2 months. We play cribbage together all the time. I’m certainly glad I like card and play them fairly well as it certainly helps pass the time.

Well dears, this is all for now – shall keep writing and miss you all. Tell little Fergie I shall send him some books as soon as I find them.

Love and kisses to you all, and Happy birthday to Bill and Little Mary,
Love
S

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