14 July 45.
My 7 was written at Baghdad on the 6th, but was not able to post it till I got to Karachi, India on the 8th. Was lucky and got away from Baghdad on the 7th. There wasn't much to do there, and it was frightfully hot. Had to drive across the desert from Baghdad - 2 hours by car. The lake (Habbaniya) to meet the flying heat - However we made the drive before lunch before it got too hot. Stopped for the night at a place called Bahrcia in the Persian Gulf - [?] at sea, land, hot & sticky however we got away from there early the next morning. Bahrcia is a world famous pearl dishing centre - and would have been interesting to see them at it, but only noticed the little boats in the harbour. Went to an open air movie that night at an R.A.F. station - noticed quite a few U.S. lads in the audience. We flew from Bahrcia to Karachi in one jump, and the visibility was a little better than the previous leap from Baghdad (Habbaniya) to Bahrcia, crossed the Omen Peninsula - where there is some weird topography - like the Mountains of the [?], The coast of Iran & [?] facing the Arabian Sea was dry desert country - with huge rollers running up into the sound bench.
Karachi is the western gateway to India for air travel - and quite an important shipping harbour, as well - It is way flat & desert like round about - Had to spend 4 days there, but in an excellent BOAC Hostel, waiting for a plane on toward Delhi. Monsoon weather was there [?] - most flying stopped. However had a look around at an Indian Town - my first. The cheapest commodity in India is humanity. The crowding in the towns is shocking - almost worse than Cairo. Altho there are some frightfully dejected specimens, and beggers are a recognized profession the natives are not as cheeky & "fresh" as the damned Egyptians in Cairo. Many of them - the [?] - make no attempt to bother you especially if you ignore them. In Cairo nasty boy hooligans in group will bother you in blocks to try to force you to buy obscene picture cards - there real object is pickpocketting.
A conspicuous picture of the Indian scene is the sacred (Hindu) cows and bulls - They wonder at will all over town - on the sidewalk - in the bazaars - on the [?] - in the main rotunda of the local railway station. Nobody dares molest them - and funnily enough they are very peaceful & well behaved animals.
We flew from Karachi to Jodhpur Thursday - and took off from Jodhpur after some tea the same afternoon but couldn't get through to Delhi so were forced back to Jodhpur by a Monsoon storm. The monsoon seemed to be at its peak in this part of India just now - terrific thunder storms & rain showers. We had a good supper in the RAF mess which is in the Maharaja's former palace - we could see the [?] in the distance - a mammoth wedding cake structure with domes & towers. Caught a train the same evening & got there to Delhi last night. The weather looked bad for flying all day - and I was quite happy to be travelling the old fashioned way - and get a look at the people e& country side. Quite a lot of it rather arid - but quite a lot of effort at farming it too - most [?] ploughing with bulls - camels - or camel - Here & There are herds of cattle & goats - tended often by boys in varying degrees of undress, - they are cold - but happier & more wholesome looking then the town children. As usual the children are the most attractive - most of them darling little things - little rolly poly brown babies - unclothed - in the arms of their often very young looking mothers, and the little tots who come run around - also frequently minus clothes. The adults generally wear at least a loin cloth or more, but I saw a man in Delhi today wandering around with a singlet short on but no boots at all - quite unconcerned - although this display is not uncommon. Most of them are lean, but fairly well built - and when not around with dust & filth - smooth brown skins - varying from light to almost black. Am off tomorrow by train to DehraBun & return here in a week.
Mary is 6 on Monday - God bless her -