I was never any good at staying awake all night and in his letter my father refers to my first and last all night party. The morning after, my eyes were sore and my skin felt tight.Because I was constantly insecure about my appearance and the underground toilet near Pultney Bridge had a very flattering mirror, I had been a frequent visitor. Over time I had become friendly with the attendant; she had her own room with fresh flowers and a kettle. That morning I went down to splash cold water on my face and was invited into her inner sanctum and the subsequent chat and cup of tea were much more enjoyable than the party.
Dad mentions The Selecta. This was an old Nissen hut down the Leicester Road converted into a record warehouse. I had worked there during several school holidays collecting the orders from the shelves. The hits were easy to spot because they were stacked in boxes on the floor …a Neil Sedaka and a Helen Shapiro clogging up the ‘S’ aisle.
Friday,December 3rd 1965
My Dear Joy,
It’s a miserable, cold , wet and blustery morning. Chris and I sit enjoying the only cheery prospect in view- a warm , cozy fire, listening to the wireless. Mam was off early to the church with Miss Reynolds to do a spot of charring-scrubbing the pews down. That will take some cleaning after the awful mess the plasterers left. Chris is threading monkey nuts for the blue –tits. We keep them well supplied with food and they are most entertaining to watch. They keep up a regular shuttle service and their antics and gyrations, swinging and twisting in the wind make a most fascinating spectacle.
Chris is off to Leicester after dinner to see the City play west Bromich Albion- a local derby match but as things are its me for home and the fireside.
Coming home from work at seven o’clock last night I had a quick supper and turn around and off again just after eight o’clock to entertain with the hand –bells at a big church stewardship dinner at the Working Men’s Club. It was an ‘orrible night-great slobs of sleet as big as half-crowns slapping in ones eyes, and although we gave a well appreciated show I was glad to get home and snug between warm blankets.
Had a surprise-I won’t say shock as I am placed just now but the works manager told me that there was over production of our line of work and that I and about five more affected would be in the dole next week. In my position I wasn’t unduly perturbed and in fact I’m constantly on the look out for a nice little light job to augment my pension which would be quite adequate and comfortable. I tell you this so that you yourself won’t be perturbed or under any duress. Anyway, yesterday-Friday, the manager again informed us that the dole decision had been rescinded and that it is as was for the time being. I give it until just after Xmas and then I think that the line of work that we make and the machines will be obsolete, but by then I hope there will be a more concise clarification of my position. Even so-as I’ve always asserted, I aint worried-rather thankful for my blessings and that I am so fortunately placed.
Advent 1 tomorrow ‘Stir Up’ Sunday and hardly a thought yet of the inevitable Xmas puddings and the other host of Xmas preparations. We do hope that you get your Post post and failing that a job at the Selecta. How did the all night party go? I’m afraid that even in my wildest young days I wouldn’t give it a thought. I had always the rule to keep fit and trim, bright of eye with plenty of rest the better to enjoy my pleasures.-and I did.
‘Fraid that’s the extent for this week –and now here’s mam back from church with a tale of stress and damned hard work-Yes, listening mam!
Best Wishes to Sue and all. Meantime love and safe keeping ever, Dad.
PS The answer to the University Challenge question is ‘Out.’