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Vicki Washuk World War ll Blitz  Buy On Smashwords    Also   Buy Diary's Here:
I am the great-granddaughter of Ruby Side Thompson. 
Recently I started re-reading the World War ll journals and felt that they were such an important part of a history that will soon be forgotten if not published and shared with the world. These diary excerpts are not the entirety of what is published in print and kindle.
Ruby grew up during a time when education was just beginning to be encouraged for both upper and middle class women. During the late 1890's Ruby explored many radical political ideas of London, England. She met many famous people including the writers George Bernard Shaw and William Butler Yeats. 
5.0 out of 5 stars A choice pick, not to be overlooked, November 6, 2011 By Midwest Book Review (Oregon, WI USA)

World War ll London Blitz Diary: 9-26-39 to 10-9-39

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September 26, 1939
A letter from Harold arrived this morning by airmail. He tells me he and Charlie are seeing the immigration officials, and will both fill out the necessary forms and affidavits, and forward them to me by the next mail. He tells me once over there I will need no money, and I can live in Baldwin with him forever. What a relief!
After supper I showed the letter to Ted. He was surprised, but asked me, was it right that I would prefer to live with the boys, and did I really want to go to America? I said, yes, please. He said, all right, and he wouldn’t put any obstacles in my way. He also added that certainly he would pay my passage, and would see if he could make me an allowance. This, I think, because he was piqued by Harold’s remarks about money. Anyhow, he did make the offer.
September 29, 1939
The neighborhood women considerably plague me. They keep coming here all the time—Mrs. Jude, Mrs. James, Mrs. Archer, Mrs. Lee, Mrs. Stanford—if it isn’t one it’s the other, and I can’t get a minute to myself. They say I’m so placid. If they only knew!
October 4, 1939
It is St. Francis of Assisi. Also, it is old Bert’s birthday. He is seventy-one today. Tomorrow he returns to Arden Cottage, having had enough of Ongar. Ted is telling tales of him with love and admiration. In my opinion, Herbert is a selfish, uncouth, uncultured, cowardly old fool. He is nearly as brainless as Selma, and quite as obstinate. He made his money through shrewdness, cunning, and luck. Ted mistakes him as one of the examples of the fortunate ones who were never cramped in their moneymaking careers by too much education.
Ted said to me, “I think you have suffered through your ability to read and write. If you hadn’t learned how to read, think how much trouble and unhappiness you would have saved yourself, how much better off you would have been! Look at some of the old-timers around here; there are some of the richest who can’t even sign their own names, but that didn’t prevent them making money, did it? Why, education would have been a downright disadvantage to them!”
I said, “I think it is a horrible thing to say.”
“Education isn’t everything,” he fenced. Of course it isn’t; but to say that people are lucky because they didn’t get any is a perfectly abominable statement to make.
I said no more, but I was disgusted. Like one day recently when Ted put up a boost for hypocrisy. We had been talking about Hitler and his absurd speeches, and about cynicism. “Well,” said Ted “after all, there is a good deal to be said in favor of the Victorian hypocrisy. The hypocrite at least believed in a standard virtue, and in truth and purity and honor: he knew he was against the right and tried to hide his wrongness; but these fellows today, what do they care about goodness? They don’t even pretend to hide their vices. They don’t admit the codes even! The hypocrite at least tried not to shock the world. Yes, there’s something to be said for hypocrisy, and I’d rather encounter a good hypocrite any day than one of these modern don’t-care-you-go-to-hell fellows!”
Well, I wouldn’t. I made no reply to this. What was there to say? It simply struck me so “Catholic”, an apology for secretiveness and dishonesty; here is the Catholic who doesn’t demand real goodness but only the appearance of goodness. My God! It makes me sick.
October 7, 1939
Stone’s man came this morning bringing the dark window blinds I ordered on September 4 for the black out. Ted opened the door to him, and then called out to me, “Hi Lady! Did you order these shades for the last war, or this one?” Already we are feeling the pinch in many commodities. Stone’s say they cannot fill their orders for blinds, because they cannot get the materials.
I have been to town, to the warehouse, to buy sheets and pillowcases, and they haven’t gotten any. There has been a scarcity of sugar for weeks. Last week I couldn’t buy tea. This week I couldn’t buy lard. Soon now we shall have ration cards, but it doesn’t follow we shall be able to get rations.
October 8, 1939
There is news from Zurich today of the beating up of Frau Anna Zeigler, the Nazi’s Women’s Leader. She was speaking somewhere in the Ruhr district, and told the women Hitler was very angry with them, because they were not keeping up the morale of their men, and that he would treat them like soldiers. This made her audience so angry, so wild, that they stormed the platform and beat her up and scratched her so severely that she had to be taken to the hospital. The Gestapo police arrested nineteen women. The women shouted that they had no husbands, and they had no food. I should think they would be wild. If a man gave them such a line of talk they would just consider him some fool of a man, let him talk himself out, and pay no attention. For a woman to talk to them in this fashion is treason to the sex and I should think they would beat her up.
I am surprised at what we do hear about the submission of the German women. We were told one day that when the women would be waiting in the food queues to get their family rations, and sometimes having to wait for hours, Army Louie’s would drive up, impress a load of women, take them to the barracks, and make them cook and scrub for the soldiers. The excuse given was that since they had plenty of time to wait in the lines, they had plenty of time for other purposes, so they must work for their country, and do whatever the Government told them. This sort of thing is outrageous but why do the women submit to it? The soldiers, by brute force, could compel the women to go to the barracks, but they couldn’t compel them to peel vegetables, or to scrub; and surely even the Germans wouldn’t be such fiends as to kill them for refusing. I can’t imagine Englishwomen submitting to such masculine tyranny. If our Tommie’s gathered up a load of women from Romford market, I think they’d find they’d got a load of wildcats to deal with.

October 9, 1939
Can a leopard change its spots? I don’t think so. Ted was born and brought up in a mushy mawkish Evangelical atmosphere. His parents were Methodist Salvationist fundamentalists, and very ignorant people. His father was a drunk, alternating soaks with repentance. They went to Chapel and they had family prayers in the parlor every night, when everyone in turn had to pray aloud extempore. It must have been awful for violence and crudity of emotion and belief, and for lack of knowledge and dignity. Ted absorbed it all, and has never gotten over it. He can’t disbelieve the lurid Christian story. That’s why Catholicism fits him so easily, and that’s why he is not revolted by the materialism of the Catholic religion, for it is only an extension, and another facet, of the sort of religion he was bred to.
As for me, I never was a Christian. I’ve spent thirty years trying to believe the Christian religion, trying to hammer it into me or me into it and I can’t accept it. I think I must have been born a skeptic. As for my father, he was a skeptic. Born in a good middle class family, educated at Charterhouse, he became the gentlemanly conservative agnostic and skeptic of the brilliant nineties. My father had an exploring mind, and an appreciating one. Brought up in the Church of England, he was intrigued by the High Church movement in his youth, but by the time I could remember him, he had stopped going to church, and had, instead, become interested in The Theistic Church, and Charles Voysey.
He became tired of that, too, and had ceased going there before I became a regular attendant about eighteen ninety-nine or nineteen hundred. When I became interested in Theosophy, my father came with me to Theosophical lectures in Albemarle Street; and later when “Higher Thought” gained my interest, he used to come with me to The Higher Thought Center in Kensington High Street. When I think of Dad now, I realize that he never condemned any kind of thought, or any kind of thinker. He was interested in all thought. That’s why he was interested in all the arts, as well as all the philosophies, and that’s why he couldn’t endure a fool.
So with me, I think Ted such a fool, and he bores me so desperately I don’t know how to endure him. I listen to his fool talk; talk about politics, about America, about religion, about art (of which he knows nothing!) and he sounds sillier and sillier. Ted has always been talkative, but now he is becoming downright garrulous. I listen to him because I can’t help myself, but inside, my secret woman is exclaiming, you silly old fool! You bloody silly fool! So these past few weeks I have been turning back to some of the old books, which at different times sustained me.
When I have to live in this world that men have made, especially this Europe, run by male maniacs, I feel most vehemently that I have no use for men, and I will not agree with them about any of their affairs. Why should I pay attention to what men say? That’s why I am feeling so absolutely anti-Christian, swinging back to what I was in my beginnings, anti-Christian. What can a man tell me about God? What’s a priest, but a man? I have produced men, brought them to birth, suckled them, brought them to maturity, through every indignity of the flesh, and no man can tell me anything, unless it is the rare man like Emerson or Whitman, who are talking about spirit and principles, not about other men.
That’s why my mind turns to Mary Baker Eddy. I know she did not live an impeccable life. I know her literary style was atrocious; but in spite of all her ignorance’s and defects, she was saying something that set women free of men. An American woman, with an American religion, and I can understand and appreciate both. In the same way Adela Curtis was saying and doing the same thing for English women, only she wasn’t clever enough to get into the limelight. The same things with Mary Austin, trying to work free in art and plot maps of genius, religion, and psychology. Mary Cady Stanton, trying to free women submitted to men’s dictums. They felt they were themselves, in their own woman pattern, and so will I.
No man can speak for me, or think for me, no matter how renowned he is in goodness and cleverness. I will think for myself and speak for myself as much as I dare. I have even been reading old Harriet Martineau. It’s one hundred years since she asserted herself as an independent being. I want my Mary Beard. I loaned her book, Concerning Women, to Dorrie Stanforth more than a year ago, and she hasn’t returned it yet. I suspect she can’t read it.
That’s why I want to go to America, the country where people are not narrow-minded in traditions and religions of the past, and where women are accorded equality with men.

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