History is never quite as real as when it is told by those who lived it. Ruby Thompson, living during the World War ll London Blitz bombing blasts history out of the realm of dry, dusty names and dates and places the reader in the midst of the terrifying events as they unfold. This is very important documentation and will have tremendous appeal to those who have an avid interest in the effect of the war on ordinary citizens.
June 1, 1941 Waiting for Mother. Whit Sunday. It is Dad’s birthday,
born June 1, 1859. Ted is out at his drilling. Here is something telepathic. It is a coincidence and
rather remarkable. All night I seemed to be dreaming
about Jersey City. I was there as I used to be there
thirty-five years ago; shopping at Faust’s and other stores
on Washington Avenue and Central Avenue. I was at the
ferry slip, at Pennsylvania Ferry, and on the trolley in the
ferry shed, waiting for the car to Bayonne. It was summer
time, and the open trolleys were running. Everything
was exactly as it used to be when I first knew Jersey
City, in 1905 to 1910 or 1912.
Then, when I awakened to this morning’s seven
o’clock news the startling item was given out that a great
act of sabotage had occurred in Jersey City. Great fires
were burning, two-grain elevators had been destroyed,
abattoirs, and food stores: the Erie stockyards, and four
entire blocks on the waterfront were burning. Strange I
should have been dreaming so clearly of Jersey City! At
breakfast, of course, we spoke of the Black Tour outrage,
an enemy act of sabotage during the last war. That explosion shook our house on Avenue E and blew our windows
out. It was a terrible act of devilish destruction. Now, for
America, the game begins again. Men making war.
Another item this morning was an announcement of
the rationing of clothes and boots and shoes, as from
today. We are to be issued with sixty-six coupons, which
must provide us all wearing apparel for twelve months.
Well, it was lucky I bought myself all the materials I
did. Three to five coupons will be required for one yard
of dress-goods, so I shall require from twenty to thirty
coupons to get myself one dress or coat. Seven coupons
will be required for one pair of shoes. So sixty-six coupons
won’t go far.
Everything grows scarcer and scarcer. For over a
week now it has been impossible to buy any oatmeal, or
any cereal of any kind. Lord Woolton announces that he
hopes he won’t have to ration bread. Eggs are as rare
as diamonds. Cheese is rationed to one ounce per week,
per head. So Ted and I can get a whole half-pound of
cheese for one month. Jam is more liberal; we can have
two ounces per week, or one pound for two people for one
month. Yesterday I got one and a half stewing steak and
a quarter beef kidney, which is our entire meat ration for
a week. I am making it into a pudding for today’s dinner.
Three of us will dine on it, and what is left must supply
Ted’s meat for the rest of the week. Milk is reduced by one-seventh of our usual supply. So, with all our protein
foods out of sight, no meat, eggs, milk or cheese, to speak
of, our potatoes and oatmeal practically finished, no fruit
at all, what are we going to live on? Ersatz I suppose, like
the Germans. That’s war. That’s how men run the world.
June 5, 1941 This is one of my bad days. From about midnight
we had the raiders over, and there was steady gunfire
until about three thirty this morning, dawn, when the
all clear came. After a period of quiet nights the noisy
nights are much harder to endure. I lay uncontrollably
trembling all the while, though long before the all clear
Ted was able to fall asleep. Apparently no bombs fell in
this district. For once we over slept! When Ted switched
on the early light we found it was already eight forty a.m.,
of course, really only six forty, by sun-time.
Ted had been sick ever since Sunday evening. He
thinks eating a piece of Sainsbury’s veal and ham pie
poisoned him. I think he got a cold in his bowels, by
working all afternoon in the garden barefooted. The
ground was wet, the air cold. Anyway, he has been decidedly out of sorts ever since Sunday evening. I am miserable. The weather is bad, the food is bad, the war news
is bad, and Ted is most trying. I am sick of England, sick
of Ted, sick of the war, and sick of myself. Fine, just fine!
June 6, 1941 It is very dull, almost a November day, and a
drizzling rain falling. Though we had a quiet night, we
have already had one alarm and all clear this morning.
This war gets messier and messier. One thing that is the
matter with me is that I’m downright hungry! I’m longing
for a big juicy beefsteak with a cover of fried onions and
a long drink of brandy and soda. I want something with substance and taste to it. I’m just about nauseated with
our war diet, and want some real honest to goodness
food. I need meat, not, pap and make believe.
Lord Woolton was on the air this morning, talking
to the country housewives about jam. He said he could
issue no sugar for jam making this summer, but asked
the people with fruit to give all their surplus to the
government, who would make it into jam to be added to
the public supply next winter to increase the jam ration.
Our present jam ration is two ounces per week!
Seven hundred people have been appointed to go the
rounds of the women’s institutes, to teach the country
women how to make jam! They will get paid a salary per
teacher per week. This is an outrage. The bureaucrats
are strangling England. The various ministers install
fresh ministries, all carrying big pay rolls, so, up go
the taxes, up go prices, and every “controlled” article
promptly disappears from the markets.
Men, damnable men. Why do we have Lord Woolton
as Food Controller? Not only is he a man, he is a millionaire. Why not put a woman, in control of the countries
food? Then we have to listen to men talking! Woolton has
one of those unctuous oily voices, uttering arguments,
which are much too plausible. Does anyone suppose he
eats only shillings worth of meat per week? Or the King
or Queen? Last week the Queen had the nerve to tell
a group of workingwomen that, like them, she and the
King used their meat ration for one good piece of meat
for Sunday, and eked out the remains during the week!
What rubbish! Who does she suppose believes her? The
blah, blah on the radio makes me sick.
About an hour ago Artie telephoned from town. He
had been at Euston all day, taking various exams for
getting transferred to the R.A.F. We knew this was to
happen today, and he had written that he might have time to make a dash home before returning to camp.
However, this proved impossible. He says he passed
every test easily, except the last one. This was a sight
test. He was found to have defective vision, that is, for
flying requirements, so he was rejected. The boy is disappointed, but Ted and I are not sorry. We are sorry he
suffers a disappointment, but glad he doesn’t have to fly.
After all, one lost boy is enough. Now, we hope, he will
concentrate on his effort to get a commission. Anyhow,
the question of whether to apply for the R.A.F. or not is
definitely settled, he is permanently unacceptable. So he
won’t have to bother his mind about that any more.
Ted is out to his Home Guarding, and I have a special
book to read, and one, which I must finish tonight. It
is the very recently published, Introduction to Proust,
his life, his circle, and his work. By Derrick Leon. Miss
Coppen brought it in to me, as she was sure I should like
it, but it belongs to Dagenham Library, so I must read it
at a gallop. So Au-Revoir, I’m just going to read and read.
June 7, 1941 Exasperated, irritated and bored to the nth degree.
Ted is too silly for words. I think him both childish and
rude. He is kind of having a spell of running downhill
this week. All his polish is off and he is as rude as
Herbert. He looks like Herbert, too. The physical
likeness between them is becoming very much more
apparent; the Cockney boys, the East Enders and don’t
I know it!
Perhaps Ted is worried about something but if so
he gives me no clue. Indeed, he is acting more absurdly
secretive than ever. When he took out his wallet last night
to give me some money, he most carefully arranged the
loaf of bread before him and opened his wallet behind
I am in constant disgrace anyhow. I have been able
to say nothing to please him all this week. However, I
phrase my replies to his remarks I have phrased them
wrongly; either the ordering of my words is wrong, or I
should have said something else entirely, or I haven’t
said what I meant - so he says! If I don’t answer at
all then that is wrong. To the most trivial statement I
must make an audible acknowledgement. No remark is
allowed to fall into the void, as something finished. He
cross-questions everything I say. It is as though he tries
continually to make me look a fool or a liar. He is rude
beyond all limits. He is scathing, and he thinks he is
sarcastic, but it is a very cheap sarcasm. It is merely on
a par with the playground spitefulness of the ten-year
olds. It is so silly. So wearing. I think him a fool, and
a boor into the bargain. I think him conceited, intolerably conceited. For who the hell is he to indulge in all
this criticizing and belittling? To belittle another: that
is Ted’s chief delight. My Saint! How to endure him and
yet keep sweet myself, that is the problem. Not to lose
patience, not to lose serenity.
Here is a typical instance of Ted’s rudeness: He came
home from the office this afternoon to find Miss Owlett
from next door on the premises. She had called in to
borrow a book for her father, who is an old man of eighty-
two. I was trying to think of what I might offer to such
an old man, and an untraveled Englishman at that, and
whose tastes (or brains) I didn’t know, and explaining
mine were mostly American books, very few of them
novels, when Ted barged in with his usual spiel about
how I only read books by women about women, and what
they had for breakfast, etc. and how we had too many
books, etc. then enlarging on the fact that he couldn’t
read what I read, because what I read was rubbish, when
he threw in this remark, to me:
Why don’t you give her something sexy? There was a dead pause. I looked at him straight in
the eye, and he repeated the question. I simply kept on
looking at him until he thought of something else to say,
asking Miss Owlet what sort of book her father preferred.
Now, Miss Owlett is an ugly old maid. Her hair is grey,
her face lined, her mouth full of cavities, her figure
scrawny, her clothes appalling; worse, she gets giggly
when a man speaks to her. She is the typical Victorian
genteel spinster. She probably thought Ted’s remark was
directed at her, as much an old maid might, and in which
case the best excuse that could be made for it was that it
was a faux pas. It wasn’t directed at her, it was directed
at me. It was simply Ted’s life long habit of disparaging
my tastes, and giving me a knock. It was also his usual
show-off of his own superiority. “Sexy” with him is a word
of condemnation, and he applies it indiscriminately to
any work where sex is ever mentioned. For him sex must
never be mentioned, nor even alluded to, no matter how
indirectly. His favorite author is Dickens’s, who wrote
of “the pure” and the Sunday schools, and who never
created a human being. Dickens’s indulged his own sex
to the extent of begetting a dozen or so of children on his
wife, and then leaving his wife for a younger and more
attractive woman. Like with Ted, sex must never be mentioned, but he
will indulge his own sexual needs whenever they cry
out for satisfaction: his satisfaction. As for his criticism
of my literary tastes, that has long ceased to make the
slightest impression upon me; for I know him to be an
only superficially educated person, with no knowledge
of real literature or real art, and therefore with no true
judgments. That was an outrageously rude remark to
make, and not even clever, for it did not hurt the person it was intended to hurt, but the unsuspecting stranger
in our house.
Ted’s tongue again: Ted, who can’t refrain from saying
nasty things: Ted who thinks he’s clever whilst all the
time he is only showing how ill bred he is. Ted who
delights to hurt me, Oh God, I am tired of him!
June 8, 1941 Ted has gone to hear a lecture, given in the church
Hall by a Jesuit, on the Rerum Novarum. What good
will this do? Catholics have been talking about this for
years but nobody else ever pays the slightest attention
to it and Catholics do nothing about it. It becomes just
another case of men talking.
Men talking. Roosevelt is busy now talking the States
into war, whilst Lindbergh is busy talking against war.
Roosevelt, of course, will finally carry the day, for he
is government. I am convinced it is governments that
make war; never the people. The English people don’t
really want to fight this war, but our government talked
us into it, and keeps us to it by talking at us. I listen
to unending talk that comes over the air, and I hate
it. Propaganda. A guiding of opinion and a holding of
the mass will to endure, and to carry on this war our
politicians have committed us to. No political fights. I
am convinced no politician limits himself to rations.
God, how I detest politicians. Today we have been told
that at two a.m. this morning Free French Troops, with
companies of our Imperial Press, under the leader-
ship of General Wilson, marched into Syria. Fine! So
now we’ll have another bloody civil war. Frenchmen
against Frenchmen, and then after a slaughtering from
the Germans, we can make another masterly retreat.
Politics: war: madness: and men justifying themselves.
Fool men: crazy men: old governmental rams driving out the lambs to the slaughter: rich old politician seeking
more riches ordering out the young men to die. I weep.
My heart is weeping.
June 9, 1941 It is eight fifteen a.m., and I ought to be starting to
bathe. Instead I am sitting down to write, because I feel
an imperative need to dis burden myself of inner “dirt”
before I commence on my outer. I have been in a bad
mood for days, one which got progressively worse, until
yesterday and last night I did not know how to endure
myself. My grievances! Of course I know that compara-
tively against the war sufferers, the “real” sufferers,
they are tenuous, thin air. I suffer them just the same. I
suffer. So much so yesterday that when I finally lay down
to sleep I knew I was destroying myself, and had to stop
Yesterday was one of my most awful days. I did not
know how to bear anything. The war news got me down.
Once, when I had turned on the radio in an attempt
to find something to distract my thoughts, I fell into a
dreadful spell of weeping. Evelyn Laye was on the air.
She said, I will now sing something to you which I sang
a little while ago to our boys on the you-know-what. I say
this most reverently, and I sing it for those boys again from my heart.
Then she began the song from Bittersweet, I’ll see
you again. When spring breaks through again. Evelyn
Laye is in charge of entertainments for the Navy, and she
herself is the wife of a naval officer. She was eluding to
H.M.S. Hood, destroyed off Greenland so recently, with
thirteen hundred men aboard, all lost. Even over the air
one could sense the tension, which came over her visible
audience. How she managed to conclude the song I’m
sure I don’t know, and here, just to write this morning makes me cry again. War, death, loss. It is Eternal loss
and eternal grief. For what? Glory? Glory be damned.
Anyhow I recovered myself before Ted returned from
his lecture. He was very late coming in; so late, indeed,
that I thought he was staying somewhere for tea. After
tea, and the six o’clock news he went out into the garden,
where he stayed until time for the nine o’clock news.
My whole day was a lonesome day. There is a lack of
communication with Ted, against which I continuously
chafe. More, there is a lack of friendliness towards me
that chafes me more than anything. I thought yesterday,
practically alone all day, that what we need is more social
contacts. Congenial society. Social fellowships. Ted and
I have no social life at all. We need to mingle with other
married couples, and we never do. A few young girls
came here to see me and a few old women but none of
our contemporaries, none of our equals, ever come to the
house, nor do we ever go to anybody else’s house. I can’t
remember when Ted and I paid a call on anyone. I can’t
remember being in anyone else’s house together since
we were last in Bert’s, before Tillie died. Oh yes, we were
there a few time before Dorothy left Bert, but that must
now be three years ago. I felt yesterday I wanted society.
Not the young girls or old maids who come around, but
men and women of my age, my experience, my world. I
thought of the good times we used to have in America
with the old crowd, our friends. Here we have no friends.
I wanted a man to talk to. Yes I did. Some old friend like
Ted Taft, some man who would treat me with unaffected
friendliness, and with whom I could be easy and natural
There was nobody; nobody at all. Directly the nine
o’clock news was finished Ted began making up the bed.
Then he asked me, quite casually. Do you want to be
loved tonight? I was revolted. I answered, No.
Well, early breakfast at six thirty, tomorrow, he said,
and laid himself down for the night. It was broad daylight,
real time only seven-thirty p.m. I was not ready to sleep. I
was not ready for anything. I could not read, and because
he wanted to sleep I could not have the radio. I went
upstairs, because I felt I could not stay in the same room
with him but I had to come down again. I had to undress
and lay down for the night. There was nowhere else to go,
nothing else to do. I lay awake a long time, completely
and utterly bored. Not crying, not even sorry for myself,
but utterly bored. Now this morning today began badly.
Whilst I was preparing Ted’s bread and milk he called
out to ask me did I shut the middle window upstairs last
night. Yes, I did, at the bottom only. He fumed:
Afraid of a little fresh air I suppose!
Not at all. Afraid the rain might come in, Well, don’t close any windows again when I open them. Leave them alone, will you? There’s no air in this place.
Too bad you should feel a draught! Now, I hadn’t said a word about a draught, but I didn’t
bother to say so. I didn’t say anything. I let him get on
with his breakfast. Then off he went, at seven-twenty,
rushing away to be in time for the seven-thirty mass.
He left the whole room impregnated with his feeling of
hostility toward me. Why? Because he found a window
closed which he had thought was open, and I had closed
it. It was open at the top anyway, but I had interfered
with his window. Ridiculous, isn’t it? Ted is so petty,
and so childish. So unbalanced. For his immediate
urgency was to get off to mass, to practice his religion.
His religion! His love of God? It is to laugh.
Brooding about Ted and his increasing peculiarities one day in this past awful week I had a flash of
insight about the persistence of his church going, and
of his nagging. From long knowledge of this Edward Thompson I would say that his most fundamental most
basic trait is timidity, and it is this basic timidity, which
has conditioned all the behavior of his life. I think his
whole conscious life is an unceasing effort to overcome
his unconscious fear. This explains the excessive caution
he has always displayed, this coming from where he
recognized his fears. But from deeper down in his ego it
is his unrecognized fear which compels him to bully all
his inferiors and all those in his power which compels
him to evade not only those whom he recognizes as his
superiors, but even his equals, in case in some way or
other, physical, mental, or moral, they should expose his
ineffectualness and his defenselessness. The is why he
nags, reprimands, criticizes, disparage those who can’t
answer back, gives him some feeling of superiority he
can’t get in any other way. This is why he talks, because
he can’t punch. This is why he is so religious, because
religion “saves” him. He believes literally in hell and
the devil, and the whole theological bag-of-tricks. He
believes in damnation and salvation, and his is afraid of
hell, afraid of God, afraid of God’s judgment, so he’s got
to save himself. Basically, again, the crude evangelical,
because timidity is the root of his soul as well as of his
mind and his body. Well, if he was made that way he
can’t help himself; but just as equally I can’t help myself
despising a timid man.
My own basic characteristic, what is that? I don’t
know. Whatever it is it is probably just as glaringly
evident to Ted, and to my whole world, as his is to me,
and probably just as glaringly a fault, a drawback, or
even a vice. What is it? What sort of woman am I really?
I smell a nigger in the woodpile. Which means I
suspect there is a woman in the case. Various little items
are falling together again, which totaled create suspicion.
Item: Ted is getting fussy about his appearance of
late. Yesterday he took a bath before he went out to
his lecture, and carefully arranged himself in all new
clothes. He went out very soon after at two p.m. and did
not return until nearly six p.m.; an extraordinarily long
time to spend at a lecture in the parish hall.
Item: At his evenings at the Home Guard he always
goes in uniform. He has gone tonight, but not in uniform.
Item: He is extra late in returning for luncheon on
Mondays, especially the Mondays he does Marks Road,
like today when he did not come in until two-twenty p.m.
Item: A pair of hand knitted gloves, very elaborate.
I found these in his over-coat pockets a few weeks ago
when, as is his usual on laundry days, I go through the
entire coat pockets, his and mine, to collect all soiled
handkerchiefs. I did not remark on them nor did he.
A few days later I abstracted them from his uniform
overcoat and hid them in one of my handbags. He has
never remarked on their loss, nor asked about them, in any way.
Now: if a friend knitted him a pair of gloves, why didn’t he show them to me when he brought them home,
and tell me they were a gift, and who from? Further,
since they disappeared, as they have done, why didn’t he
inquire about them, ask me had I seen them? This is a
very damning item I think. Item: his crankiness of late and his coldness.
Item: He isn’t looking me in the face.
Item: He is having trouble with his urinating again. I
can hear this in the night.
Item: Miss Coppen told me a queer little story this afternoon, about going into the Tryst one morning last
week for coffee, and being greatly surprised by seeing a
man there she knows, a married man, who was having
coffee with a woman not his wife, a man she has never seen there before, and would never expect to see there.
Nor expect to see with such a strange woman, whom,
she is sure, his wife does not know. I think she handed
me this story as some sort of a warning. I don’t know, of
course, but that was the impression she gave me. So? Is
Lothario gadding again? I surmise, of course but I think
this sum wants explaining.
Something is amiss. I am sure I do not know what,
but something much more than one of my mere moods
of misery. There is something definitely wrong with Ted,
in himself. He is much more secretive than usual, and
unusually silent. I will not say he is shifty, but he is not
looking me in the eye. What is his misery?
Last night when he returned he sat separately in
the parlor. About ten o’clock he made up his sofa for the
night, undressed, and then gave me his first remark of
the evening. Do you want to be loved tonight? he said. I
shook my head.
All right, goodnight then, he said, and laid himself
down, turning his face to the wall. He did not sleep,
and after I had put out the lights, about eleven and laid
down myself, I knew he was awake, too, for a long time.
Neither of us spoke. Married love!
True, I am an old wife, and old woman, but I still
need to be wooed and if I were ninety, I should still need
to be wooed. To me, last night’s approach to “love” is
repulsive. No name given, no endearment, no caress,
only a curt and brutish question asked. No, I cannot
respond to that approach. What a question! Do I want to
be loved? I shall never say yes to that query. I have been
tortured much and often by unappeased desire, but I
have suffered inscrutably.
These diaries have been my only confidants. Many
years ago I learnt not to offer Ted my love, nor never to
ask for his. Once, in the early Bayonne years, I went to him in his own little room. He would not receive me. He
got up and put me out of the room, and closed the door.
What a humiliation! Never since have I offered my love
and never will I. It is for him to seek love and never will
I. It is for him to seek love, since he will have it that way.
Most certainly it is not for him to bestow it. I am not a
female in the harem, waiting for the favors of a pasha.
He must show that he wants my love, that he wants me
to love him. Not only suddenly, and on occasion, he must
treat me with daylong friendliness with openness, with
geniality, with ordinary daylight affection.
Possibly I am a very trying woman. Probably. Very
likely. I am still a woman, a flesh and blood woman,
and I require true civilized (sentimentalized if you like)
romantic love from my husband, not just the functions
of the beast. I require ordinary every day politeness. I
cannot be disregarded continuously, or acknowledged
only to be reprimanded or disparaged, and then be
expected to melt into “love” on some sudden casual
instant. I cannot do it. That is too brutish. Impossible!
I must be wooed; and not only for some preliminary ten
minutes; I must be loved steadily through out the day
and all our days loved with the affection of the mind and
heart, and with the manners of a gentleman.
June 11, 1941 Derby Day, or should be. Still in the doldrums, though
the sun is shining this morning, and there are bits of
blue sky here and there, so, if the weather improves our
dispositions may do so also.
Yesterday I got up and went off to the movies. Rain
was falling, but I simply could not stay in the house any
longer. Noticing yesterday that some Strauss waltzes
were playing between twelve-fifteen and twelve-thirty
p.m. I switched on the wireless at twelve-twenty. Ten
minutes later Ted came in from his rounds. Instantly
he said, When ever I come in that bloody row is going on!
Sounds just like a cheap Italian ice-cream parlor! So of
course I switched it off at once.
Nor did I say anything, nor, I hope, show anything
but I was certainly irritated. We ate lunch in silence. I
hurried with washing up, fixed the fire, put on my old
Burberry, found my gas mask, and went out. I went down
to the Havana. Suddenly I was sick of moping about
in the house over this blasted fool acting Marguerite -
He loves me, he loves me not. I felt - to hell with Ted
Thompson, to hell with the war, I’m going to be happy
for an hour, somehow or other. I had not been to the
cinema since last July.
The picture was Ginger Rogers playing Kitty Foyle,
a dramatization of Christopher Morley’s last novel. Not
true to the book, of course, but a pleasant diversion all
the same. At least I wasn’t thinking of my own disastrous love affair. I left the theatre without waiting for
the second picture, and was back in the house before
teatime. In the evening Ted stayed at home, but we had
no conversation whatever. It was a wild cold night, with
much wind. About ten o’clock Ted began to arrange the
room for the night, but after he had switched the furniture around, he surprised me by saying, I think I will sleep upstairs tonight, so goodnight
Lady, and upstairs he went! This is another item for my
Eros-Sum, I think. The night was quiet, but the siren giving the alarm
at six-forty a.m. this morning awakened me. Ted came
down soon afterwards, ready dressed for the day. He
gave no greeting, no good morning, no enquiry about
the night and after the seven o’clock news he went off to
church in the usual way. What a man! What a completely
When I was in Tenafly in nineteen thirty-three, John
and Eddie agreed together one day that they admired
Ted for getting his own way. Anyhow, Dad did what he
set out to do, they said; meaning, of course, his retirement from American business and return to England.
Yes, he did what he set out to do all right. Who pays
for his fancies? We do, his wife and his children. His
children have escaped him now, except for that much
of him, which they must inevitably carry in their blood.
How much is that, I wonder, and how many? How many
of our children will be destroyed and disfigured for the
sake of their dreams? Will they put a god before their
wife? How many will put a mistaken idea of patriotism
before their family and their blatant personal responsibilities? I wonder.
Well, here I am, still simmering in resentment about
the past; still resenting the husband I chose to accept.
Oh, I must stop it. Au-revoir. I’ll go and make pastry.
Sitting in the corner, waiting for Ted to come into his
tea there suddenly dawned on me one reason why I’m
getting so depressed; viz. the fact that for a whole twelve
months of my life, day and night, had been lived entirely
in this one room, and it’s a room without an outlook.
Practically I never see the street, and for a person
confined to the house as much as I am, such a deprivation is a serious one. I need to see the world passing by.
Worse, what my eye falls oftenest on is the depressing
large oil painting of the sinking sun in the gloomy Welsh
mountains. It is large, and still framed in its original
heavy gold frame, now chipped and tarnished, the whole
thing an ugly and valueless eyesore. It is one of Ted’s
“pets”, so, of course, here it hangs, and will continue
to do so, unless, perchance, a bomb destroys it. Only a
bomb ever will destroy it, or remove it from the wall. Ted
loves it, so I will have to live with it as long as I have to live with him. Ted and his oil paintings! How preposterous they are! The tale of his pictures would make a
funny chapter all to themselves in the story of our life.
Old Mr. Brace died yesterday. He was another of
those talkative egotists who was heartache to his family.
In early life he was an ardent freethinker, preaching
atheism both in public and in private, and thereby, of
course, grieving all his respectable Anglican relatives.
Then he was converted but not to Anglicanism. Oh dear
no that would never do. He was converted to Catholicism
and joined the Romans, thereby grieving his family just
as much as before, if not more so. His wife, I believe,
finally grieved herself to the grave. He used to complain
to Ted, occasionally, about how unsympathetic his
daughter was, and how she stuck out against the true
religion. Nor would his sons have anything to do with the
church. He used to say how prejudiced they were, how
ignorant, how un-enquiring, etc. but I noticed he had an
unfailing topic to talk about. Yes, I have yet to meet the
convert who is really sane and balanced person. In the
last war the intelligentsia wrote and said Christianity is
dead. Somebody, I think it was Dan Inge, replied: No,
not dead. It has never yet been tried.
In this war I should think it is more evident than
ever that Christianity is deader than ever. No known
form of Christianity as it is expounded today is going
to stop the war, or save the world. No parson, no priest,
no pope, has any effectiveness what ever. Last Friday I
tuned in to a Roman Catholic afternoon service. A father
Macquire, O.P. gave an address. Everything he said was
as dead as a doornail. The apologetics are as familiar as
Mother Goose, and just about as impressive. They are
all out of a book and have been said before, thousands of
times, and more.
June 12,1941 Last night I was interrupted by the arrival of Mary
Bernadette and Doreen Biel. A pleasant evening followed.
Ted came in before nine, very amiable when he saw the
girls. At bedtime he retired upstairs, but at about two a.m.
I had to call him, because an alert had been sounded.
Gunfire followed, but we fell asleep. Then, some time
later, I was awakened by a terrible crash, a bomb falling
somewhere near by. Others followed it, either smaller or
not so near.
We have not heard yet exactly where these were, not
immediately near, anyhow, or we should know by now.
The wireless news reported fairly heavy raiding all over
the country last night, with heavy casualties in one place,
not specified as yet. Perhaps we shall be told before the
day is finished.
Today I have Mrs. Prior working on the premises.
I met her in the town on Monday, and quite casually
asked her did she happen to be looking for any work.
She replied all her week was full except Thursdays. So I
asked her would she “do” for me on Thursdays, and she
said she would be glad to and here she is. I hope she’ll
continue. She is both a pleasant woman and a satisfactory worker. Right now I’m sitting in the parlor whilst
she “does” the dining room. Am now going to read the
paper, so Au-Revoir.
June 13, 1941 It is warmer. Went out this afternoon, to the Food
Control Office, to see about transferring my card to
Wallis’s. When I came back I met Mrs. Thomson on the
street, who told me she would come in tonight, whilst
daughter and husband are at the dance in Ilford. I groan.
John Cassell called, and stayed for tea. Now Ted has
just left for his Home Guarding. The tension between us relieved, thank God. Last night he went to church at nine
p.m. for the reception of the corpse of Mr. Brace. When
he came back he kissed me and then with passion, until
I thawed. Queer, isn’t it? He came from a corpse to the
body of desire? I smiled to myself.
In the afternoon Mrs. Prior had been talking to me
about men. We spoke of a young woman whom we both
know, whose husband has had to join up, and go to
Scotland, and this young woman has taken a young man
lodger into her house.
And you know what that means, said Mrs. Pryor. Men
are men, aren’t they? Nature! There isn’t a man alive I’d
trust, not one! They’re all the same. Silly fool she is. Where
do you suppose she’ll end up? In trouble. In the Romford
Recorder, I reckon. Shutting her up in a house with a man!
Nature will have its way, won’t it? Stands to reason. Trust
a man? Not me!
I agreed with her; all men are the same. This is what
I think the scriptures mean by the flesh. The world, the
flesh, and the devil, always the same. The world, I think,
means work, making a living, maintaining us alive;
the flesh, sexuality in every form, particularly concupiscence; and the devil, I think, stands for all cruelty,
June 14, 1941 Today all the women born in 1918 are registering.
Also every one must register for eggs today. The likelihood is, that we shall be allotted two eggs per person
per week. We are also informed that our milk ration is
to be cut again; to what we do not know, but we are told
that the British Medical Association recommends that
the allowance should be half a pint per person per day.
Hitler’s blockade is working all right: our rations shrink
June 15, 1941 Surprised this afternoon by a visit from Father Bishop.
We talked of the war. What else is there to talk about? I
found myself shocked by his appearance and manners. It
is just about twelvemonths since he sat here in this room
chatting with me, friendlily, face to face. It seems to me
he has aged a lot. He is not as old a man as Ted, about my
age I should say, but he looks twenty years Ted’s senior.
He looks an old man. He looks to have neither flesh on
his bones or blood in his veins. He is as dry and as color-
less as a dead leaf. Repellent. He fidgets continually.
His talk, is not peculiar, but in some indefinable way not
grown up. I thought to myself: here is an anachronism.
This is the celibate, the priest, the parasite and what
earthly good is he? This is a completely useless value-
less human being: now wonder he looks like a withered
mummy, because that is exactly what he really is.
June 21, 1941 It is eleven p.m. A quarter of an hour ago Ted was
called out by the Home Guard! Is it scare, practice, or
real invasion? There has been much air activity today,
but no alarms given in the neighborhood. Planes have
been going overhead all evening and are still up. This
evenings nine o’clock news reported us making day
light attacks on Northern France, and the destruction
of twenty-four enemy fighters and bombers: our losses,
three fighters and one bomber so they say. I don’t
believe any of the reports. The news is juggled, and also
withheld. The British public is treated as one irredeemable fool, or a tiresome child who must be given doses of
soothing syrup. The government is a huge muddle and
Hitler goes on winning and winning. All the men keep on
talking; in the homes, in the pubs, in parliament. Their
self-righteousness is nauseating. Meanwhile the infernal destruction goes on and on. Syria looks to be shaping
into another glorious retreat. America is on the verge.
How much longer she can balance there, God knows.
This week Roosevelt has frozen all the German
and Italian consulates, travel agencies, etc. and given
their staffs until July fifteenth to leave the country. No
German or Italian is to be allowed to go to any South
American state; all have to return to Germany or Italy.
Roosevelt talks, Halifax talks, Churchill talks. The
radio is a curse. Hitler says nothing. Nor does Stalin. All
week there have been rumors that Hitler is now going
to attack Russia. From Finland to the Black Sea both
the Russians and the Germans are mobilized along the
boundaries, more millions of men waiting to war on each
other. Finland is calling up all her men to the age of
forty-four. The supposition is, that Finland will now join
Germany in an effort to get her own back from Russia.
So more Finns will die. For what? Politics. Greed. Hate.
It is the infernal hatred, which saturates our world, the
Artie is home on a forty-eight hour leave. He arrived
in the middle of yesterday afternoon. He is out this
evening, taking Mary Bernadette to a dance.
June 22, 1941 Have just listened to the midnight news. Damascus
has fallen to us. The news came from Cairo an hour ago.
King Peter the second arrived in this country today.
As I was writing the above last night Artie came in
bringing Mary Bernadette with him. She had no key and
could not get into her own house; either Doreen was deep
asleep, or had returned to her own home. So Mary came
here. She is upstairs in my bed right now. Artie and Ted
are at church. Ted did not return until after three this
morning; but he was up at six-thirty this morning just the same, silly fool! I see his boots are entirely covered
with thick dust, as they must have made a long march
somewhere. Playing at soldiers. There was no invasion,
and Ted had known all the time that the Home Guard
would be called out last night, “for maneuvers.” Why
didn’t he tell me? This is another instance of his absurd
secrecy, and a most inconsiderate one too, I think. It
might have been a real call out, for the real invasion, and
I might have worried myself insane, about him, about
the town. But no, he wouldn’t say a word!
When he switched on the news at seven a.m. the
announcer said: An hour ago Hitler marched against
Russia. Goebbels made the announcement in Berlin an
hour and a half ago. Hitler is impelled, he says, to save
Europe from the perfidious Russians. The Finn’s and the
Romanians will help their true friends, the Germans.
Fine! What irony! Ted says Hitler will destroy the
Russians in a few weeks. The communists can’t fight, he
says. We shall see. They fought in poor Finland all right,
and even more savagely than Germans. Well, I must get
breakfast, so Au-Revoir.
Eleven p.m. Artie left for camp after tea. He went for
the six-nineteen train, and Ted went to the station with
him. Ted has been talking theology at the boy most of the
day. I’ve listened and said nothing; but the more often
I listen to Ted talking the more I see the depths of his
ignorance and innateness of his bigotry; and his complacency. Artie, of course, tried arguing with his father. He
is too young yet to realize the futility of argument with
a closed mind.
Most of the day Ted has been lying on the sofa, and he
has now gone upstairs to bed. Last nights “maneuvers”
tired him out completely. Naturally. He is an old man.
Home Guards indeed! An old mans club, that’s what the
home guard is: old boys playing as soldiers. Against the young foe they would be useless; worse than useless, in
my opinion, because having overcome an old man the
young man would instantly secure for himself the old
man’s weapons. The Home Guards are anther example
of English waste, muddle, and sentimentality, and just
about as effective for real usefulness as the evacuation of
mothers and children.
At nine o’clock tonight Mr. Churchill made a broad-
cast, which was relayed to the world in general. It was a
declaration of British policy in view of the new situation
created by the German attack on Russia. He promised
Russia that all possible help would be given to her steadfastly to the end. He said that he would unsay nothing
he had ever said about Communism, But all this fades
away before the spectacle now unfolding. The past with its
crimes, its follies and its tragedies, flashes away. I see the
Russian soldiers standing on the threshold of their native
land, guarding the fields, which their fathers had tilled
from time immemorial, and I see them guarding their
homes where mothers and wives pray. Ah yes, for there
are times when all pray.
A great speech. He went on: My mind goes back across
the years to the days when the Russian armies were our
allies against the same deadly foe, when they fought with
so much valor and helped to gain a victory from a share
in which, alas! They were from no fault of ours, utterly cut
out. I have lived through all this... now I have to declare
the decision of his Majesty’s Government, and I feel sure
it is a decision in which the great dominions will in due
course concur. We must speak out now at once, without a
day’s delay. I have to make a declaration. Can you doubt
what our policy will be? We have but one aim and one
single irrevocable purpose. We are resolved to destroy
Hitler and every vestige of the Nazi region. From this,
nothing will turn us, nothing. We will never parlay, we will never negotiate, with Hitler or any of his gang.... Any
man or state that fights against Nazism will have our aid.
Any man or state that marches with Hitler is our foe....
We shall give whatever help we can to Russia and to the
Russian people. We shall appeal to all our friends and
allies in every part of the world to take the same course,
and pursue it as we shall faithfully and steadfastly to the
end. And lots more. Oh God help us!
June 23, 1941 The alert sounded soon after I had put out the light
last night, and I had to waken Ted to call him downstairs.
He fell asleep again at once, he was still so tired, but I
lay awake until dawn, and the all clear. Much gunfire.
Two land mines dropped in Collier Row. It was a terrible
night. It is Very hot too. Summer came in with a rush
yesterday. Elizabeth Coppen was here this afternoon.
Miss Owelett calling this evening, and Dorrie Stanford
also. We are so used to the war by now that we pursue
our lives as usual: read books, pay calls, gossip, drink
June 24, 1941 I had to call Ted downstairs again last night. Not as
bad as last night, but pretty bad enough. The heat has
moderated thank heaven.
I have been reading Julian Duguid’s new book. It
is entitled, The Journey Back. It is an account of his
re-conversion to religion, by which he understands
Anglicanism mostly. It is interesting in places, but to
me somewhat irritating. Another man concerned with
religion, and expressing all the time a definitely restricted
masculine viewpoint about everything. He speaks of his
wife as the female principle, who “ministered” to him, by bringing in flowers, and switching on the light. Yes,
she for man only, and so on and so on dear old Milton
and the old school tie etc. Duguid is a Scotchman, and
it is as fundamental to his mind, and feeling, as it is to
an Englishman that woman exists for man, that man in
primary being and woman the secondary. So he explains
God and religion for men.
The consequence of such a book to me is that it
arouses all my sleeping Americanism, and makes me so
homesick for America where every woman is naturally
recognized as a one hundred percent human being, that
I do not know how to endure existence here in England
Again, I cannot follow the transition of the argument.
The argument for “natural” religion, yes but the jump to
the thesis that Jesus Christ was God, no, I can’t make
it. Fundamentally I remain the same rock bare theist
that I discovered myself to be under Voysey’s enlightenment. Nothing changes me, the same as nothing changes
anybody. We are all what we are. We recognize ourselves,
more or less; and to which I would add, I the more, Ted
the less. Duguid gives me an exposition of a deep inner faculty,
which he names, The Helper. This was a discovery
for him, but it is nothing new to me. I call it my inner
woman, my deep self and I found it when I was in my
early teens, or perhaps even before. When I was very
young I found the power of the will, of deep resolution,
of the psyche and the secret inner life, and of how to
draw up from my depths what I needed for my surface
life. Myself, I say: my inviolable secret self. Sometimes
I forget my secret self, and then my top life is parched,
like a plant without water; but directly I remember that
self, then I am refreshed, renewed. It is from that deep
inner woman I draw all the power and all the knowledge I really have; it is my creative self, in which and from
which I most truly live.
June 25, 1941 There is trouble in the house. When I was showing
Mrs. Prior through this new little house we conferred
together about a better arrangement of the furniture
upstairs, and she said she could move it, if she had the
assistance of her husband. So it was agreed between us
that on Prior’s day off, he should come here to help her
shift wardrobes, etc. The job was done today. Mrs. Prior
arrived at lunchtime and started to take the beds down.
Prior arrived at two o’clock and with her finished the
Ted is very angry with this. I hadn’t told him what
I arranged to do. Why should I? The house is my affair.
As for moving furniture, I’ve had enough of his nastiness about that. I don’t forget, and I’ll never forget, his
ill temper and unkindness over the old red wardrobe,
when he refused to move that, or to let my stand where
I wanted it to stand. I vowed to myself then that as long
as I lived I’d never again ask him to move a bit of furniture and I never will. So he had a surprise when he went
upstairs at dinnertime today and found Ms. Prior taking
the beds apart. He came down in a rage. That wasn’t
woman’s work, he said. Then explained; if Mrs. Prior
hurt herself she could sue us for damages. We didn’t pay
insurance for her, so we’d have to pay, but that I should
be the sufferer in the long run, because that would mean
so much less money for me to waste. Very nice!
Well, I listened to his timidity and caution expressing
itself, but I noticed he didn’t go and assist Mrs. Prior.
Then he put me through the third degree as to why I
wanted to move the beds, and so on. He said that he
should have been consulted first. I didn’t ask him, but
asked myself how much he consulted me about any of his
movements. He never consults me about anything, and
only tells me what he can’t avoid. Anyhow, the house and
its arrangement and care is my job, not his. He carried
on in absurd style and when he stopped for breath I just
quietly told him, that I had the idea of switching over
the bedrooms for some time; that I knew he would be
disagreeable about it; that I wasn’t asking him to move
anything and that I had agreed with the Prior’s about
the job and that was that. If he hadn’t been so angry
I would have explained to him just why I wanted the
furniture moved around. He didn’t ask for my reasons.
He just assumed I was unreasonable, and fumed accordingly. You might have thought to hear him that I had
committed a crime and a sin by daring to re-arrange my
As a matter of fact I had seen when the R.A.F. boys
were here, and I had to put them to sleep in my own
bedroom, that the middle room was the better room for
family use. That is because of the peculiar layout of the
house. So I was determined to move my bed and bureau
etc. out of the front room before I had more strangers
billeted on me. For certainly all strangers and guests
might use the front room. When Mary Bernadette was
here last Saturday I had to put her into my bed, and also
keep awake to warn Ted when he came in that the girl
was in his room and in his bed.
Well, I have an aversion to other people sleeping in
my bed. When I had to put the air force boys into my
bed, I hated it. My bed is my bed and I feel very strongly
about it. One of my cranks, of course, but it’s a fact. Also
I wanted to eliminate the single bed in the anteroom,
and to get the white wardrobe back in there, which is
the most fitting place for it. Sometime ago we had to fill
in forms about our houses, number of rooms, number of persons we could billet, etc. Ted wouldn’t fill in the
form, but made me do it. So I stated two bedrooms only.
I do not intend to have any possibility of a third. I don’t
intend to have either refugees or factory workers billeted
on me. If I have to have anybody I will take service men,
two of whom can share the front room, but I don’t intend
to have factory workers, nor any munitions damsel in my
Ted didn’t wait to hear the reasons, with which he
would have agreed at once had he heard them, but
simply raved at me for having the audacity to move the
furniture without first getting his permission. Silly fool.
I wonder: is this my home or isn’t it? At teatime he was
morose, quite miserable. You’d think I’d killed the baby.
Rita Pullan came calling tonight. I took her upstairs
and showed her the arrangement. She thought it a vast
improvement all around. It is. Anybody could see so,
without having to have any reason why. It is a better
disposition of the pieces themselves. For one thing I now
have my dressing table beside a south window, instead of
in a dark corner where it had to stand in the front room
and this south window is freed, instead of being blocked
by Artie’s big desk, as it was before. Altogether there is
much more space and light in the middle room. As it
was before it had two huge wardrobes in it. Now it has
no wardrobe at all; one has been transferred to the front
room, and the other to the anteroom; and the room has
two cupboards anyhow, so doesn’t require a wardrobe.
The rooms, all three of them, look better but Ted simply
gloom's and says, Horrible! He returned from his home
guarding before Rita left, but he couldn’t overcome his
gloom to be cheerful even with Rita. He was polite, of
course, but obviously downcast. Silly idiot.
June 26, 1941 Ted is still in the gloom's. Mrs. Prior came today to
do the usual cleaning. When he spoke to her at dinner time he gave her a long harangue about shifting furniture about, and women never knowing their own minds.
She simply laughed at him. Why not have a change if
you like it? She asked him. But no, with Ted nothing
must change. Listening to him talking and talking
about women’s vices and inconsistencies and inconsiderateness, really, the German attack on Russia pales into
insignificance. Men! comments Mrs. Prior.
June 27, 1941 My new room looked so nice and inviting last night
that I nearly went up there to sleep, but didn’t. A good
thing too, because soon after one a.m. flashes and heavy
gunfire awakened me, and this was twenty minutes or so
before the alarm was sounded. Ted, of course, who had
gone to bed in the front room, had to come down here
to his sofa. He fell asleep again at once, but I cannot
sleep during a raid. Whilst it was going on I thought of
another good reason for the change around upstairs; it
has removed a lot of heavy stuff from the room immediately above this one where we sleep. Most people have
removed all heavy furniture from upper rooms about the
downstairs sleeping apartment, so that there is less to
fall upon you if your house receives a direct hit. When
the Peel’s house was destroyed Mary Bernadette had
an escape from certain death. Had she remained for
the night with the Peel’s, as they wanted her to do, she
would have been crushed to death because the divan on
which she would have been sleeping was buried by the
ceiling falling upon it, and a huge wardrobe which was
standing on the floor immediately above. So here with
us, the room alone contained a bed, but two wardrobes, one big desk, and two large trunks, filled with the boy’s
This morning when I went up there to dress I realized
that today was the first time I had dressed myself in this
house with pleasure. I sat before my dressing table and
really saw myself, and without moving I could look out
of my sunny window tint the full length of the garden,
which is now a blaze of color, and onto all the beautiful
trees which stand in between here and Eastern Road.
They are very long gardens of Eastern Road and Western
Road, meeting, making a large open space, full of trees
and flowers, really beautiful. As a matter of fact, when
I surveyed the middle room this morning, all clear and
clean and sunny and bright, I thought: Why, this is the
most pleasant bedroom I’ve ever had since we came
to England. It is. Gee, I’m jolly glad I carried my idea
through. Ted can keep grousing I don’t give a damn. I
had a good idea, I carried it out, and result is excellent.
It is seven twenty-five p.m. and a lovely summer
evening. Ted has gone out to his Home Guards, and I am
hoping to be left alone for a while. Mrs. Thomson was in
this morning, and this afternoon Peggy Thompson and
her two children were here. Ted was quite amiable at
teatime, so, I know what to expect later on tonight. Men!
as Mrs. Prior exclaims. Anyhow he brought me in a box
of Muratti and Mrs. Millin’s book, from Boots. Last night
he was talking about Carlyle, Ruskin, and Macaulay, and
wondering why nobody wrote like them nowadays. This
was an attempt to approach friendlily, but I was so bored
with his topic I only made bare responses. I have heard
him on this subject before. It was one of his specials.
I got through with these old Victorians before I was
twenty, but Ted has never got through with them. As he
admired them in his adolescence, as he admires them
today. I never admired them. Indeed, I resented them.
I wanted to know, forty years ago, by what right these
old writers put themselves up to lecture and scold the
British people: by what right they suckled us with their
standards and their pieties. Ted always liked them; their
very instructing and dogmatism was what most deeply
pleased him, I suppose. But not me, I never could stand
being preached at and now he is wondering why people
don’t read them today. I should wonder if they did.
Macaulay might be readable today. I don’t know, and
certainly I’m not going to try and find out. I should guess
both Carlyle and Ruskin were practically unreadable for
any adult mind today. That’s the important thing, the
adult mind. Has Ted got an adult mind? Often I don’t
think so. He seems to me to be completely stuck fast
in all the fantasies and crudities and ignorance’s of his
boyhood mind. He has never got beyond the eighteen-
nineties. Poor Ted and poor me, who find myself so often,
too often, exasperated by his inadequacies, inadequacies of both mind and manners. Here stand out again
in our inescapable backgrounds, I suppose. Ruskin
and Carlyle avowedly wrote for, and wrote down to, the
British workingman, which is what Ted’s father was.
Ted grew up in a working class home, a “respectable
home,” with the working class culture of the late Victorian period. I didn’t. The unfortunate thing for me is
that Ted had successfully erased all signs of his origins
when I met and married him. He had only achieved
a temporary erasure; had he remained in America he
might have remained a good American; but alas, coming
back here to England in the way he did, he returned to
all his origins, and they express themselves in him more
and more markedly with every year that passes. He is
showing himself to be the kind of man his father must
have been, and oh my God, what an aversion I have to that kind of man! But there it is, and there is nothing I
can do about it. Now Au-revoir; I’m going to read awhile.
June 28, 1941 Ted has gone up to bed. This has been a bad day for
me, one of my very worst. I have been in misery all day.
Why? Because having Bertie’s children here yesterday
made me long for my own little grandchildren, particularly Sheila. Was it a Reaction from the stress of furniture moving? Was it Boredom arising from the fact that
Ted was home all day? Or Euphoria? Or some simple
alteration in my glands? I don’t know. All I know is that
I have found the day unendurable.
June 29,1941 I am not in quite the same misery as yesterday, but
am still feeling decidedly antisocial. I expect mother to
arrive about eleven and I don’t want her. She is coming
to see me now every other Sunday and I am finding it
is too often. As ever, Mother’s company fatigues me. I
can’t help it. Perhaps if I could ever feel that she came
because she wanted to see me I should feel differently
about mother. It is never like that. So obviously and
frankly she only comes to please herself, to give herself
a day’s outing.
Oh God, what is the matter with me that I suffer
because people don’t care for me! I’m weepy this
morning anyhow. Ted went out to mass soon after seven,
and did not return until nine-twenty. I had the radio on
for the nine a.m. news, and was about to listen to some
Corot records, Weber and Chopin, which were to follow.
Immediately Ted said something against the everlasting
wireless, and turned it off. No by-your-leave or, do you
mind; no enquiry as to what was coming and did I want
to hear it. No civilities what ever. I was hurt. I felt the tears coming, but luckily was able to keep them back.
Two hours church for him, but not two minutes of music
for me. I said nothing, what is there to say? So, I’m
feeling anti social, to use Kay’s word. I don’t want to see
anybody, or talk to anybody. I don’t want to cook a dinner,
or to bother with the house in any way at all. I want to be
alone, absolutely alone. I’m tired of myself.
The day is sunny, but windy and cool. What I should
like to do is to go up and lie on my bed in the sunny
middle room and browse awhile in Mrs. Millin’s book
and fall asleep, and sleep warm and deep until I was
slept out; then wake up refreshed and renewed, sane and
sensible once more, my own woman. Instead I must now
go and prepare fresh coffee, ready for Mother’s arrival,
and then be her daughter and Ted’s housekeeper for the
rest of the live long day. Oh I groan, but there it is, that’s
got to be my day. So Au-revoir.