3 May 1942
The week brought airgraphs from you, dated 13 April, from Gertrude, Apr 9, and a letter from Mickey Trew, and a Vancouver Province. Tell Gert that I do appreciate her airgraphs very much, even if I don't seem time to write to anybody except my wife.
Poor Jean, our daughter is something of a problem child, I guess one cant avoid the issue too much either, as that is probably just putting off trouble to accumulate. I guess "kind, but firm" is a safe rule, that is what they used to tell us at Normal School. Whenever she is ready to go to the Sisters' kindergarten I think it is a good idea, as her mind is getting active, and should have something to bite into. As you know, I do not approve of sending children to formal school till they are about 7 or 8, however there are a lot of things she could learn informally before that age. I think a child should be encouraged to reach out and take on all kinds of different things, according to their inclination and aptitudes. As for a violin, I think that is a fine idea, as soon as she develops enough. If she should be musical, she certainly must learn to play some instrument. It has always been a regret to me that I was not encouraged to do so. I am looking forward to helping out with her, before she becomes too old. She will probably teach her old man a lot too.
Glad you went to see Mrs Bones, it would please her, and she is a wonderful little person. She must get lonely too, when Wilma is away. They sent me a card at Christmas, with a nice little note, but I never seem to get down to answering Christmas mail now. Gertrude still seems to be able to hang on to her job, I hope she and Rap can carry out their plans in June. She seems to love Victoria, and I'm glad she has been able to see it at the best time of the year.
My Col. had his wife come down here for the week end, as tomorrow she starts on a course, and I suppose will be pretty busy. They invited me to walk down to Mickleham with them for lunch today, and I enjoyed it. Mrs M is very nice. Some of the buildings along the walk which follows the river, are very old, and quaintly ornate, mostly made of flint and brick. One house has gargoyles with bat-like wings staring out at you from the gables. Both Lord Beaverbrook and Viscount Bennett have large country homes in the vicinity, and Lord Nelson used to spend week ends with Lady Hamilton not far away. The leaves are nearly all out now, even the oaks are beginning to show a green tinge and the early flowers are very pretty. Morris' garden in the Tyrellswood is very nice now. Mrs M has not been quite up to scratch this last week, but is holding to a very rigid diet, so hopes to come around to normal soon. They have invited me up there for supper again this evening.
My talk to the Islington Public Library went off alright, I felt much more happy about it than the one to the Royal Geographical Society. There were between 125 and 150 people there, and they seemed responsive, and found it interesting I think. As usual, I talked too long, but not much, and let them get away in plenty of time for one or two at the local pubs before closing time. Stayed in town overnight, and did some army business the next morning. Am not going to promise to do any more public speaking through, as I feel that all my energies should be put into my army work. The talk at the Islington library however took no preparation, except the time required to round up slides from the RGS, the Imperial Institute and BC House.
It was nice of Mrs Pass to write. Am afraid she was not too well impressed with this part of the Andrews family. The news that Frank Swannell has at last got some service work to do is great. I am curious to know what it is, and if he is working as a civilian or in uniform. It should cheer him up and make him feel in the swing once more.
We have been having glorious weather. Almost too dry, no rain to speak of for over a month. The gardens are getting a bit thirsty. Hope to get in a bit of tennis, but have not found a place to play yet.
Well there is not much else. Give my best to Dorothy. By the way, I'm not quite clear about where she is living. You told me once, but it has slipped my mind.