That Autumn I discovered that I was pregnant and went about the harrowing business of organising an abortion. I knew that had I gone ahead that would have meant no degree and I couldn’t face hurting my parents. At the doctors I cried and after the operation I felt deeply sad/bleak but also relieved. Babies and me! I’d never even held one or wanted to.
‘Cousin Jack’ is another of dad’s many cousins.He was a magistrate and gave my dad £2 yer to cut the grass on his mother’s grave , something my father would have done for nothing .I didn’t warm to him …far too grand. Our family graves were always trim. When dad was almost eighty he was on his hands and knees cutting his father’s grave and some youths threw stones at him. Dad was such a gentle man!
My Dear Joy,
Here I am once again writing to Joy my Friday letter. ‘Fraid I shan’t get very far today though. Cousin Jack and Kitty [Tickner] from Cranbrook , Kent, gave me a call just as I was settling down. He was staying a day or two at Uncle Frank’s , but I only half expected he would drop in. and we enjoyed a pleasant half hour chat. He asked about you and I told him you were in your final year at Liverpool. It appears that he’s a magistrate and said that it kept him busy three times a week on the Bench. He went on to tell me that he had to go to Cambridge to take course in law. Auntie Sylvia had called earlier so that pegged your letter back too. Not that I’ve much of interest to relate.
I’ve been busy tidying up for the winter down the garden . Finished all the hedge cutting , given the lawn its last cut for the year and last Saturday mam and I stripped the tomatoes in the cold frames. Tomorrow I hope to cut the graves for the last time and that’ll be that, unless Chris clears the ground of his beans for a winter dig like a good gardener should. I’ve cleaned and oiled my mower and tools and put them away for another year. You, of course , will still have some rough stuff to do if you take on that allotment[ part of] and it will pay you. I wish I was a bit nearer to lend you a hand and advise but you should make it OK and enjoy it too.
And now we are getting ready for the Harvest Festival. Mam has been busy all day at the OAP centre this morning and decorating in the church in the afternoon. Chris, as always makes his contribution by taking across a wheelbarrow load of marrows, carrots, turnips and parsnips.
Its been a busy day for me too. I was off early this morning to gather a basin full of blackberries for a pie then I went across to the churchyard to give the graves a last cut. In the meantime I found that four sacks of potatoes had arrived so I had to tip them out and sort them for bad ones and stow away.
About yourselves. I suppose you are getting ready for the tempo of another session. We wish you and Mike the best of luck and that you’ll be off to a good start. By the way, anything further about your Japanese prints you spoke of? I often think of Ernie and wonder how he is faring. If you see him give him my best regards.
Well love, it’s been a sultry, busy day for me and now a thunderstorm has come along to cool the air. Chris is off to Bosworth for a peel and its me for a bath and a spruce up.
Best of love and Safe keeping always, Dad.