29 June 45
I see No 5 is dated 10 days ago! It seems like 4 days since I last wrote. My stay in Cape Town was from Monday eve to Sat evening. It was a very busy week - Col. Whittneydale is Director of both Civil and Military Survey in S.A. He is a fine old chap - retires next month - he made a very fine host, assisted by his wife & family - had several meals, a "[?]" [?] detail [?], and one overnight in his house. He is English [?] been out in SA & the [?] since he was 20. Miss W. is a Dutch, Africaan side, but quite anglicized by long annex with her husband. They have lost one son in the war, the widow & daughter live with the old W's. They have another son in the S.A. Air Force (Egypt) and a grown daughter (at home) It was nice to have a taste of family life with them - real solid folk.
It was my business in Cape Town to look over the Civilian Survey Dept - it is a very well organized & close knit concern - we could take a leaf or two from their book in BC. They gave me a days trip by car to there [?] station at Hermanns - close to but not quite at the extreme southern tip of Africa. Cape of Good Hope is not the southernmost point. Another day I drove to Steffanbosch - and to a Forest Exp. Sta run by my old college friend Dr. Micht of [?] days. He is married to a fine wife - They have 3 daughters - it was interesting to see him & (& in Le Roux in Pretoria) - Then there was a few [?] - I slept at the Wynberg Garrisson mess - established in the last century by the British Army. There is a hospital there - where they had a number of Cdn men [?] till had recently left except one, Mrs Hoan, an Ottawa girl who has married a Cdn boy from Abbotsford, B.C. where they expect to live when demobilized. I told her about Harold Andrews - and if you see any of them you might mention them, because the girl will be glad of some kind & helpful acquaintance when she arrives out there. She seemed like a very fine person.
"The Cape" is lively - picturesque mountains & sea - of course it was mid winter and the weather was cold & wet, very much like our winter weather at Victoria - however I could see what a delightful place it was - I remember your first visit to Butcharts Gdns - and how appreciative you were - in spite of it being off-season. I reacted much the same to Cape Town & vicinity. Some of the old dutch farmsteads there are very picturesque & charming. Had 3 days back in Pretoria before taking off yesterday am at 3:50. We stopped last night at Kisumy, where I stopped about [?] a month ago, on Lake Victoria. I am stopping off here at Khartoum till tomorrow, to visit the Survey of [?] [?]. Then on to Cairo - and East. Am hoping there will be some mail there from my wife. The last caught me at Nairobi 3 weeks ago.
When in Pretoria saw a color print I liked - by an Africaan artist, and Le Roux is making me a present of it - is sending it direct to you - is from me - You might write him a short thank-you note - Dr. H. H. Le Roux, c/o Forest Dept., Box 334, Pretoria, Union of S.A. he has a [?] wife & boy 4 Â½ whom I met. There will be odd packages of books, pamphlets & official stuff coming for me to 20 Marlbor' - just keep them till I come. If they don't make me return to the UK - will plan to get 30 days leave in Victoria before preceding to Ottawa.
Have spent longer in Africa than originally intended, but it has been well worth it. Our route break month was close to but not exactly the same as the one south - getting back here is like getting into the furnace, after being in the ice-box. S.A. was bitterly cold. Will be rather glad to get a leg farther on in my trip - then will feel I am that much nearer home
- Heaps of love -