July 15, 2015 – talking old times

Today was all about the old days.  I went up to Kitley to visit the Toops who are a retired couple who have been doing a lot of research around families in the area.  They were both college professors after graduating from the U of Toronto way back in the day.  They were lovely to have me up to their house.  She had done some work at a local adult home for the government and part of what she did was to collect information about the old days from the residents. Several of whom went to our school and one who was a teacher.

The woman who taught at the school in 1918, Miriam Sheffield,caught the flu and her landlady caught it as well and died from it.  That must have been quite a traumatic time.. It would be interesting to go through the death records from 1918 of this neighborhood and see how many folks died out here. Another project I believe.  The other teacher was Mae Hollingsworth who was one of 11 children 10 of them became teachers.

One of the other women that she spoke to was one of the Tye’s who lived down Long Point Road, Edna Tye who married Ken McCrae and lived down on Warburton Road. And Marie Slack Heffernan was a student and I believe she was a cousin of ours on the Joanna O’Connor Slack line.  I think she had more to tell me about the school folks but we got distracted with stories of her family which were fascinating.

So that was an adventuresome afternoon.  You can tell they were well educated by the books, every where books. They have one section that is all local history books. I could have spent a long time there going through what they had.  Libby on one side of her family is descended from the VanVliets of Dutchess County NY. Dutch founders of much of that area. She also told me great stories about her Grandmother who was quite the character.  She has written stories about the fun members of her family. I plan to go back and visit them again.

We also had a tree guy come to give a price on taking down some dead and dying trees and some dangerous ones.  Much more pricey than I thought it would be.  Will have to think on it. Although I think if we got a guy at home for the same number of trees it would be much more expensive. Have to get another estimate to see if this was just a lot or if it is in the ball park.

Now for Sheila.   She is not doing the kinds of training Pat was doing or the constant meeting new guys etc.  I think the more I read the more I see how different their personalities were.  But we shall see what is to come.

Thurs 29 June ’44,

Dear All,

Tuesday was a simply grand day for me, I was so gosh darn happy, I received your cable and it just seemed to raise me right up to the sky and I was so gosh darn happy and then I go on duty and about 2:00 the phone rang and I answered it, and from the other end came “ Good-day Shelahs” was I ever thrilled, there was Pattsy, we talked, talked and she came up at 4:00 Tues afternoon as I was off at 4:00 and we sat in my room and talked and talked. She met all my friends, she ate here, and spent the nite, so we crawled in one bed and talked till 2:30. It was so perfect, then I crawled back into my bed and we slept. Doylie was on night duty. Then I got up for duty and left Patt sleeping. Doylie brought her, her breakfast and then I was off at 13:30 and we ate and I took her down to her bus, and then came back.

Jack had got me a bottle of Rum in Debert, so I gave it to her, as I figured she would need it more than I would. Also saved 3 oranges from the ship, and gave her those plus 24 choc. bars and her Max Factor make-up, so she had a good lot to carry, so she took my haversack with her.

She just phoned me and she is coming back up to-morrow, as I have Friday off. We get a day a week off and 3 hours each day and the day before your day off you have a 4:00 off, so you really can make something of your day off, only it is restricted that you can’t travel more than 20 miles so till the restriction is raised we can’t go anywhere as every place is just more than 20 miles.

Mary Kennedy is off to-morrow also so the 3 of us shall do something. Mary is a sweet thing and awful thoughtful. I’m glad she is along with us.

I gave all my letters to Patt to read plus all the magazine I had saved for her. She is just the same old Pattsy.

I have not received any letter so far from anyone but then I have only been here a week so they will probably all catch up to me someday soon. I hope so.

By the way will you send me the occasional Whig-Standard and Register as it is funny how you just love to see papers with just anything that relates to Canada let alone Kingston. Also any June or July magazines as there are no Canadian camps near us so we will probably have lots + lots as time to read, but the girls here are really a swell bunch.

Well must close for now, I miss you all but I’m certainly glad I am here.
Love + kisses, Sheila


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