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19380111 Heather to Betty

10 typed pages from Dorset.  Hunting, hunt balls.

                                                                            Lewcombe Manor,
             llth January l938.                                                 DORSET.

Dearest Duckie,
Millions  of thanks for your letter of 6th Ultimo, matum, etc.   I feel it's about time I answered it, and I have quite a number of things to say, though again I don't think you need get out the Throte Lozenges, as I'm not contemplating writing a bible of a letter just yet.
Now, I think, I'll kick off by answering your letter first, and then go on to my own drivel. By the way do you Still have to feed Gill, I mean to say can't she pick the grass for herself by now. How long is she dependent on you for nourishment, u-rade A., etc.?
Yes, I seem to be quite used to being a grass-orphan now, and have a great feeling of Independence about me - except when I look at my bank account, which isn't all it might be!    It seems quite odd when I go over to Pax, and find No-one sitting at the writing desk typing, and, no one walking jauntily through the barn, with crepe rubber soles squeaking on the floor. And it seems still odder when I think to myself as I ride up the drive, "No, I won't meet them coming round the bend at the top, because at this moment they're sitting on the verandah at the Outspan, and gazing at Mount Kenya."

It is bad luck for you, duckie, that Daddoie won't be fit enough to come and see you in your little grey home in the bush, west
 etc . But I am, except for your sake, MIGHTY glad that they have thus been obliged to cancel the whole tour. You know there was no point in doing that tour, it seemed so unnecessary and really rather unwanted, as they were only in Africa two years ago. I'm more glad than I can say that they're not doing    it.  I stayed behind (chiefly of course because of Jority and Nuts) but also because they were going to Africa on the undesrtanding that it was a holiday trip - their silver honeymoon, - and to see you all and the grandchildren. But instead of that, Mum wrote to people in Africa and said Look Out, we're coming. And naturally, the people wrote back and said What Ho, we'l hold a Rally, and plenty of Local Asses Meetings, etc., and Mum wrote back and said O.K.    with the result that they were going to do a terific Official tour to Joh'burg, Salisbury, Pretoria, Bulawayo, Durban and all these places, and only going to spend about 5 Minutes with you, and Minutes -with Peter.    So I consider that it's jus the finest thing ever that they've thrown over the whole thing. Of course I'm afraid it has meant a terrible lot of letter-writing for Mum; but then she'd want something to do during all her days of leisure at the Outspan.    So on the, whole Daddoie's Lumbago has been most timely.    Except of course for you and for Peter. But as Mum so soundly says in her Portmenteau, Gill and Robert won't be quite Old Enough to appreciate and realise Dad anyway, so they won't be missing anything.    Though of course he will be missing something possibly a lucky escape for him - missing seeing all your Fat sixteen-stone offspring.    (I love the way you put sixteen stone in your last Portmanteau!)
I expect you will have great fun having Mum to stay, and she will be with you for several days. I have written to ask if she

                                      - 2 -
(I think this just thick enough to be typed on the back too) if
she, if she, what now, where had I got to - oh, yes, if she wants me to come and look after Daddoie at the Outspan when she flies south to see you and Peter.
Yes, I do approve of your mother-in-law, and I had such fun staying there for christmas. I don't think I've written to you since then, have I. No, I fear I haven't written since, um, well, dammit, I'm sure I can't remember. Since I stayed with your fiance, George Carter, or since the Ball, or since the foot-and-mouth outbreak, or when,    usual, I'm all beind.
(Since I began this letter it's now become 13th January. I find it rather difficult to type here, as everyone else is in here Aalidy all day that was meant to be, and i don't quite like to go on making this row in their ears all the time, So I have to Seize Opportunities when they're all out, which they are at the moment, to type.)
Well, to go on answering your letter.    Yes, your ma-in-law is awfully sweet, and I loved staying there for Christmas tho' I escaped Cutting Down Trees because I spent a very busy day editin g your films ready to show to the mylchreests, the Rosie Clays, and everyone, in the evening. Ralph was in very good form, and dared to go out Rabbit shooting on Christmas day, much to Uncle Gerard's  horror, Boor Uncle Gerard was sent to bed early every evening, and was not allowed out, but I believe he is quite  okidoke again now. I didn't tell you all about Christmas did I? No, I don't think I did. Not that there's much to tell, really, except that we over-ate, as usual, and had Crackers at dinner - oh yes, most rude crackers, with fireworks in them, and some of them were horrible fireworks, and when we lit their noses, out squirmed miles and miles of horrid brown worm, growing longer and longer and coiling up on our plates. They felt horrid to touch, all snaky and soft! Ralph revelled in them and thought they were lovely.    We had great Christmas Present giving on Christmas morning, and Uncle Gerard and Aunt Violete gave me a lovely pair of Fur Gloves, a thing I hadn't got (because I'm not accustomed to needing them, not having been in     England for so many winters) and wanted very much, and Ralph gave me a lovely powder puff which shoots out of its holder in a most amusing way. The Mylchreests were staving there too, and they gay G me some lovely Foam bath salts - you know, bath salts called Lauhging Water (Minnehaha, to you) which make the water all foamy like Film Stars always have it. And then I had another parcel, and it was from mum, who had entrusted it to Aunt Violet to give to me on mas day. wasn't that a nice thought. And the parcel was a 3 way photo frame, occupied by photos of my father, my mother my sister my brother, my brother-in-law my sister-in-law, my neice and my nephew,    what a lot of relations I seem to have, begorrah. And to think that I have sent NONE of them a Christmas present. Oh well, they've returned the compliment to me, so we're all square! I gave Aunt Violet a dull present of a red zipper flapjack, and Uncle Gerard I gave a book called 'Turning Wheels', which I thought he'd like, as it is about Africa, and was the Book Society's choice for the month, but unfortunately he had read it already. however he is keeping the copy which I had scrawled in, and the other one I have got at the moment, and am going to send to G. I must tell you a bit about it, it's by a man called Stuart Cloete (Aunt Violet

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Thesiger, you know, was Mrs Cloete before she was Mrs Thesiger) and when I told her that I was giving this book to Uncle Gerard, she was horrified! Because apparently an aunt of hers called Cloete had written to her and warned her about this Terrible, Sensual Book, so fllthy that she hoped Aunt Violet would never have it in her house, though it was written by a relation:    But Uncle Gerard said he throroughly enjoyed the book and thought it exceedingly well written, and has given me the other copy to read, before sending it to you and G. I hope I won't be shocked!    Aunt Violet (T.) says that her aunt is old and very straight-laced and easily shocked, but I'm rather amused by the fact that the aunt apparently said the book is terrible Filth from beginning to End. So apparently she read it throughout! The book is all about the Great Trek by the Boers, and depicts the life they lead in their laagers, fighting Zulus, etc., and all the "filtlay" bits are all the babies being born, seductions (?) that go  on, etc., and remarks like cows should have corks, because they make such 'a mess in the laager!
Now, I have deviated from what we all gave one another at Christmas.  I gave Uncle B. a book called Square Peg, being Masefield's latest.  I thought he'd like to have it as we had met Masefield himself when we ware all staying up in Gloucestershire (I've written to you since then haven't 1?) at the end of November. I gave Aunt Violet a pair of Glastonbury (Sheepwool lined) boots, which everybody wears in England nowadays.    I didn't know what to give to Ralph, so I gave him His Christmas Guinness. Very dull, but I Couldn't think of anything better. 
But to get back to answer your letter. (I knew this would happen; I never can stick to my point, guns, mutton, etc.) I don't think that Aunt violet (C.) is very keen about clothes.     I never like the bridesmaids dresses much, and didn't like Andree Sar at all really, and Aunt Violet didn,t seem to have many ideas - though of course it was a difficult time of year in September to buy clothes. I don't know whether she fitted you up well with your trousseau; I fear I
don't know any of your clothes nowadays, you've had such a variety, what with maternity and all thrown in!  I remember your nice black evening one with white revers, and your flame one of chiffon, and of course, your wedding one which you were going to have made into an evening frock weren't you.    I don't know any of your others though. I can't. remember, did you succeed in getting khakhi (good I had a great turn out of masses of clothes the other day, and now have a few essentials only, and have bought nothing new at all for ages. BUT, I have been given a real genuine check tweed tailor-made, by Aunt violet T., and a lovely green and silver evening dress by Ida Copeland, which I've worn at three Hunt Balls this winter and a London Ball, and it is the joy of my life, and has a Zipper all the way up the back.    I am having to buy a dress for Bunty's wedding - it's frightfully expensive (10 chips) - but very grand, in turqoise velvet, with long sleeves and fur capes, and being made at Handley Seymour, and then for Diana wathen's wedding we're wearing blue and silver brocade coats, which will make lovely evening cloaks afterwards.    So, although I've got to get these 2 things, they're both going to be pretty useful.
But while on the subject of Aunt Violet (C) she has a very odd habit of rather delighting in making people feel Awkward. I don't

                                      - 4 -
say this with prejudice, because she doesn't do it to me! But, for instance, Mrs Mylchreest was remarking that she liked my christmas card, and did I get it done by an Animal Photographer whereupon Aunt Violet went off into shrieks of mirth and said Why do you think it should be taken by an aniimal photographer, and went on yelling with
laughter and saying why do you think Heather needs photographing by an Animal Photographer. And poor Mrs Mylchreest sat there feeling more and more awkward, and not knowing what to say next, while Aunt Violet went on rocking with laughter at her!  And another time the Clays were all coming to dinner, and they were late, but instead of waiting for them 'in the drawing room while we sipped our sherry, Violet herded us all into the dining room, and said 'Come on, lets sit down quickly and get on with the dinner, so that they will feel awkward when they arrive'.    Which of course they did,  and came in expressing abject apologies and all Aunt Violt said was, "Well, it's a11 so inconsiderate to the cook.  Quite right, of course, but rather odd to say so to one's guests!)    
Oh, I don't think I told you that Christmas Day we went over to the Rosie Clays for tea, - at their lovely house. It did seem so odd, though, in a strange house, suddenly to see a photograph of YOU on the piano ! Very nice photo too, one of the smiling Stewart Hamilton ones.
Oh, yes, and then, of course, again on Christmas Day, was the Great Excitement    - Evie's engaged!  A day or two before Aunt Violet
had surrepticiously (better spelling than ever!) been saying Evie has got a very nice new young man who takes her out to dinner in London; I wonder if there's anything in it. It would be so nice if Evie got mariéd. And, by jove, she is going to be married,    Next week! I expect Aunt Violet will have told you all about his merits, beauty, good looks, lovely voice;    and that he is commanding the Rifle Brigade    the battalion that's in India, and that they're going out there right away.    Evie's mother and Charlie (but not Patty) came over to tea the day after, and she (Evie's mother - Aunt What? ) was most queer and not at all cheerful about the engagement, in fact Most Damping, Aunt Violet and I thought her. She sort of muttered about 'Oh, but Evie's going to leave me all alone.' Which I    think was rather a selfish view for her to take, when Evie has been with her for what thirty (?) years.    However, she must be pleased really I think. They're having  hurried wedding next Saturday Week, and I believe sail for India almost right away.
Yes, I'm having a lovely time dashing about England. I came down here - and Jority and Nuts and Green, too, in a train - in Juno, at the beginning of this month, and I'm staying down here till the 28th, hunting 3 days a week with the Cattistock which is great fun, and they go like blazes. This weekend, actually, I'm going up to Warwickshire to stay with the Worralls to go to the Warwickshire Ball with Bill. And at the end of this month I'm gong to stay with the Bate's at Basigstoke, for the Garth Hunt Ball.    Then I'm going back to the Thesigers again, for a week, as they apparently liked having me there and persuaded me to come 'back :-again. Uncle B. has got less fierce now that he has found that I'm not quite so wild as he feared I was going to be. I think he was a bit afraid that they'd never know where I was, or what I was up to, and when I was coming back, etc.    As it is, I never stirred out of their house except to go out hunting and was always back by 5 in the evening!

                                      - 5 -
I was always very careful not to be late for anything, and 1 typed out a list of my plans so that they would know when I was going to stay late the Clays, when I would return, which day I was going to London, etc., and kept them absolutely level with my plans, and so Uncle B. found I wasn't such a terrible Responsibility after all, In fact, I think he quite liked me on the whole (said she, flattering herself) because one day, he came along to my room, and said May I come in. So I nervously said 'Yes, do, Uncle B.' (expecting to be told to Get Out of his House the next day) and instead of that, he said You will come back here whenever you want to, won't you. Just let us know when you want to come.     Which I thought, was jolly nice
of him, because he had been very dubious about having me there. He is really very kind and used to come out to the garage to help me start Juno in the mornings, etc.    He's somtimes quite fierce in conversations, and says "I don't agree with you, I think you're utterly wrong." But still, it makes good argnments at meals, and Aunt Violet always keeps the balance and agrees with both. One great argument that he really got worked up about was that I said (jokingly really but he took it seriously) that I thought it was far safer to drive across a cross-roads at 70 miles an hour, than to slow down, hesitate, try and make a dash for it, then decide to stop and let the other thing go by, etc., and in the end get smashed. He got frightfully worked up about it, and went on spluttering about people who drive their cars so fast on the roads ought never to be allowed a licence, etc., and I thought he'd never stop.
But to get back to rushing about England. I'm going back to the  Thesigers for the first week in Feb., and will use them for a springing off place to go to London for Bunty Soames' Wedding, etc. Then I'm going to stay with the Waltons for one week, and taking Jority, to hunt with the Old Berks for a couple of days. Then to the Impeys (don't know quite when or for how long) to hunt with the Heythrop.
Then back to Hampshire to stay with Rosalind, and then to Ann Killick I think, but I've not really focussed as far ahead as that. But I've got a list of 15 people who have said Come and stay with us, people like Aunt Ba, the Maudes, Plum Monck, Dorothy d'Engelbronner, Rachel Soames, etc.    No, I haven't got Twm with me, actually. I took him over to Clerks several times, but he felt quite miserable over there, I don't know why, and crept about the house with his tail all down, and didn't seem at all happy.    I didn't like to bring him down here as the Digbys have two of their own dogs, and I'm out hunting a good deal of the time and wouldn't be able to look after him then and he might go off and get lost, and they've got foot-and-mouth disease restrictions very near here, and if he was found wandering in restricted areas, they might Confiscate him.     So I've left him with Annie and Shawgm and Long, and I think he really is very happy there.    Shawgm, by the way, is still horribly well ,and I don't think he will die this winter after all!  He is in very good
condition and has a very elegant figure and nice slim waist, and he goes for lots of walks every day with Geoffrey and Scofield. It would be rather fun if he's still going when you bring Gill home. I am sure he would entertain her beautifully, and he Never licks.
I'm glad you enjoy being married, I mean to say it's just as well, and you certainly do sound just about the ahppiest couple that ever was, living in your own little kingdom, with horses, dogs, off-spring, garden, etc., and no worries, and everything paradisal.

                                      - 6 -

I;m very happy, too, and much enjoy spinsterhood, although the only Single Survivor of the Family. But you see, the bother is, I can't
find any man (nice or nasty, it makes no difference) who has his birthday on 1stJune.
No,your lettes to me aren't the least bit dull, Duckie, I love getting them and hearing all the things that don't go in to the Portmanteaux. I am glad yóu like mine, as I'm afraid they are very  few and far between, but I simply can't get myself into the "scrappet" habit, and I go on putting off, and putting off writing to you till I see a clear space of several day ahead of me to do it in, and gradually the time nips by, and more and more things accumulate that I want to tell you, and and then sometimes I begin to grow quite frightened of ever beginning, because I doubt if I'1l ever be able to end!    I see a good 2 hours in front of me now, with everyone out of the house, so I do hope I manage to get through. As tomorrow I start off for Warwick at crack of dawn, and don't get back here till next Monday, and will be hunting on Tuesday and Wednesday. And that's the way the time slips by!  I'm afraid my typing's very bad., but it's got terribly out of practis of late as I do all my other letters by hand, because I don't like to annoy the Digbys with all this clatter.
Oh, I told you the Sad Tale of Juno's pistons,    did I.  He    quite likes his new ones and goes more smootly on them, and I give
him Oil in his Petrol for Upper Cylinder Lubricatin.  He had a slight bother the other day when he broke one of the springs on his clutch-plate, which involved havthg a whole new clutch plate, it was pretty worn anyway and would ultimately have started s1ipping, and so it was just as well for him to have a new one put in when he did. The garage people asked me if I wanted to keep the old clutch plate, and when I lookede at it I thought not, as it looked as though it would make such a lovely piece of ammunition to blaze off at the Japanese (if ever we get the chance).     Juno is in very good form now, and enjoying being down here, though he hasn't very much to do.  He had a terrific load when we came down here, what with my luggage (trunk and suitcase) and Green's luggage ( one Abe Bailey bag!) and Jority's and Nuts' luggage, which took up most room of all, all their rugs, saddles, blankets, and a suitcase of their own, which was packed - stable rubbers, bandages, curry combs, hairbrushed, etc.!
Now let me think of the latest Hatch, Match and Despatches to tell you. I don't think I can think of any acutally, though there must be enough of them if I concentrate on what everyone's been up to of late. I think Bunty Soames, Diana Wathen and Evie Clay are the only Matches I can think of, oh yes, and I went and had tea with the Robertsons the other day and met Struan and his faince fiancee I mean, and they are being married in April.  But I can't think of any hatches or dispatches. Oh yes, one dispatch wa poor Keillour Graham, which
Peter told me about, he was keilled (sorry) in India, in a snow avalanche in Kashmir.
Let me think what new boy-friends I've got to report to you. I
don't think there are any new ones. I told you about Robert Watkins didn't I, the pick-up on my way down from Scotland. He's going out to be A.D.C. to the Governor-General of South Africa, in Feb.  Basil Alderson, another Navy, who was with us on Coronation Night, and I met again in Northumberland, and is now down here, at Weymouth. And

                                      - 7 -
    Hisch, the Dutch chap, who came to Australia with us; he's taking me to a play next week, I mean the week after, when I'm    in London. He's v. rich and consequently very spoilt and rather annoying and it's great fun being rude to him ( said she unkindly, but he does deserve it!). But still he's rich {as 1 said before) and dances well, and is quite beautiful (Charlie Croasdale hates him!).    I had rather a nice chap staying here last weekend for the Cattistock Hunt Ball, called
Douglas Thomson, who dances very well and is also a very good rider. I lent him Nuts the next day and they went absolutely crackers and left Jority and me miles behind!    Nuts looked so smart carrying Douglas who was aiso very smart in top hat black coat and white breech. I wish    I'd got a photograph of them. I haven't got any photographs of Nuts at all. I musit send you one if ever     I achieve one.  She's so ducky and has come on marvellously, and will jump anything and is very handy and changes feet when cantering, and goes along with her face nicely bent and flexed.  She is more liver chestnut than Jority, with hogged mane and nicely pulled long tail, andwhite blaze and two front white tennis sox.      Of course I like Jority miles the best of the two as regarda Charater    but to ride, and hunt, it's not much in it; which is the nicest. They're both going extremely wellband we've had some marvellous hunts down here, and jump gates and all. Also we have quite a lot of banks, and Jority knows all about them.    They are quite easy really, the horses have to jump up on to them, and then off again, and often there is a ditch to clear as well, and sometimes thorns and brambles along the tops of the banks.     Nuts has floundered one or two, but we've never actually come down YET, and I think she is getting to understand how to tackle them more now.
About the Blue Box. I certainly think you ought to return the blue box to Peter as he wantsit.  After all, it is his, Mum gave it to him as a present for passing into $andhurst (What an achievement!). Although he gave it to you to take up to Northern Rhodesia with you to take photos of your home, etc., he didn't Give it to you, if you see what I mean. I think it'ss rather cheek on your part to imagine that he gave it to you as a wedding present, if you don't mind my saying so.    I know he didn't give you anything, but I don't think you gave him anything, either did you I certainly don't think he meant to give you his camera anywyay. I mean he thought (quite justifiably), that you'd return it to him after you'd had time to take some movies with 1t. One doesn't give away cine-cameras for nothing you know. Apparently in one of your letters you very kindly offered him the money, to buy a new one for himself, which is quite fair to him, and he could accept. But, duckie, cine-cameras are not cheap things you know, I mean it might cost you any-thing up to £30, though I don't quite know how rich you feel these days.    So wouldn't it be better if you sent him back his blue box. After all, we've got yards and yards of Gi11 now, quite enough for    the present, and besides that some excellent photos of all your baby wild animals, the natives, the barges, and fa11s, etc., (but not any of your Horses as yet).  Altogether you've sent home well over TWO THOUSAND feet (that is 5 of those big 400ft reels, and we never have time to show them all to everybody)    So, If I was you, I would be very civil to Peter, send it back At Once, and say you're terribly grateful to him for lending it to you, and will he please lend it to you again sometime when Gill is older.     I do think most certainly that you should let him have it back.    You say that it's odd that he should have gone    without it for a whole year. Yes, it is odd,

                                      - 8 -
but now that Robert is at a more interesting stage to film, it has just dawned on him that he wants the camera.    And, if you don't mind
my saying so, we've got Such a lot of Gill already, that it would be rather a relief to have a rest from her till she's a size larger. And besides, although We're um, not exactly Fond of Peter, I think it would be nice, and people would like to see pictures of The Chief Scout's Grandson, as well as his grand-daughter.    You do see, don't you duckie.
I had a letter from Jane Plunkett (Thornew111) the other day, and she says she loves Patricia Jane almost as much as she used to love her terrier-dog! I think she is terribly pleased with it now she's got it.    I didn't know Oomar and Albus both had girls too. You are in the fashion.    I think there is some wqy of arranging whether you are going to have a girl or a boy. Mrs Swan,(you know, wife of Captain Swan and Helen) has some theory, which I wouldn't understand, being a Spinster myself, of how to fix it, and she has been most successful in getting what she wanted herself.  You can't arrange what the first-born is to be, but after that I think you figure it out by saying to yourself That would have been a boy or that would have been a girl, alternately, every time you are indisposed. But I wouldn't know what the Husband has to do about this.
I haven't seen Jane Nelson late1y as we've both temporarily deserted the H.H. She and her husband have taken their horses up to the Midlands to hunt grandly somewhere, and I've got mine down here. Another of your Westonbirtian friends I've met, hunting down here, is a girl who I thought was about 30, and when she Said she was at school with you, I was aboslutely staggered. She has bloody finger-nails, spectacles and is Fat and her name is Lady Mabel Fox-Strangways.    Do you remember her.  I don't know whether Barbara Phipps is  nice, I just talk to her out hunting and she seems quite pleasant and rides quite well, Husband, Peter Worthington, is a very good rider, and whips in to the Bordon Drag-hounds.    Sheila Digby, cousin of these Digbys I'm staying with here, was at Downham, and is a Crawfurd lover, and knew Mary Rose Fitzroy, Will Strutt, and all that crush.
I hear from Charlie in Nigeria about once a fortnight or sometimes only once in three weeks. But, like writing to you, I'm rotten at writing back, and the more things I think of to tell him the more I put off writing.  He sent me a telelgram on Christmas Day, all in German, but I find my German so forgotten that I couldn't send a snappy reply, and so just left it, and wrote solemnly in Englsih a few days later! I've come to the conclusion that I definitely don't love him, but I think of him a lot and am fond of him in the way that I like hearing from him and of the funny things he says and does, and I do love his motorcar!     He loves it too, and I think that    where we meet! In his letters he doesn't write Sob-Stuff drivel at all, but just about life in Nigeria, and the natives, and the other people on the station, etc.  He is a very genial chap and seems to have lots of friends out there; at the moment he is at quite a civilised places, the capital of the Southern Provinces of Nigeria, called Enugu, and he's Scout Commispioner, and he's just invested in an Electrolux, like yours. Only when he first tried his out he had a much worse result because everything that he took out of the frig. afterwards wreeked of paraffin or whatever the oil is, as the little lamp had overflown!

                                      - 9 -
One thing I am terribly keen to do, on condition that Charlie remains Platonic which I think he will do, is to make the trip across the Sahara which I think I told vou about before. Rosalind and the Impeys and one or two others are keen to do it; and it would be the greatest fun. The idea being to go out to Nigeria in April 1939, and join Chariie and some more people coming home on leave from Nigeria, and Motor across the Sahara and, if time, round by Palestine, through Turkey and right across Europe.    Charlie has done it before, and so have a lot of other people for that matter, and is wiling to do it again, with Big Feet and other motor-cars from Nigeria, if some of us are keen.    He put forward the brilliant suggestion the other day that you and G should come and do it with us. Couldn't you, duckie? Don't you think you could dispose of Gillian on to some kind friends coming homeby sea, and then find your way to Nigeria somehow, you and G., and we could do the trip home all together    It would be the greatest fun ever, and so much more Unusual end Exciting than going in a dull ship! Last time it took Charlie 80 days - which included 10 days in prison! That was because Big Feet went through by himself, instead of in convoy with other cars, and so they kept him in prison for 10 clays until another party was going through, and they were allowed to join on with that.  Apparently you're not allowed to go through the desert alone.  We'd see lovely places on the way, and drop in on Cairo, Jerusalem, Budapest, Angora, and millions of lovely places (Charlie went to Tim-buctoo last time too!) on the way, and it would be a terrific party all together.    And I expect after you've been sitting still at Mankoya for another year, you'd be just about ready to do a bit of Globe-Trotting again.
I'm so glad you approved of my choice of nighties. 1 must say I was pretty envious myself. 1 hope they are nice to wear, and aren't too Seductive.
The Aertexes are my Christmas present to you and G. and I'm afraid they're rather dull aren't they. But I hope they'll do. They will always be appreicated by Musonda and co. later on won't they. So there is no bill for them.
Yes, I do wear the lovely silver fox fur you gave me a lot. I wear him in the evenings too, very superior, across the shoulders over evening frock, and he is so lovely and warm-making. I really do love him and greatly appreciate him, and always feel highly Indebted to you for him.    I always feel that I must be respectably dressed - whatever rags I may be wearing - when I've got him on!
Yes, I have tried Tattoo Lipstick, both Coral and Hawaiian, no I don't mean Coral, Exotic they call it.     Do you remember mum's lovely remark when she saw the advertisement Tattoo Your Lips, and said What will you girls do next? ! Wasn't it sweet!    At the moment I'm
using rather s superior and somewhat Orange coloured Lipstick called Mary Dunn, it's very pleasant to eat, and goes on very nice and smoothl and has to be rubbed in. It lives in a very smart white holder with gold bands round it, and is nice and short and fat and the shape of a bomb.
The people I'm stayidg with down here are called Digby. She's Lady Lilian and is Guide Oommissioner for Dorset and is old and very keen on gardening and needlework.    He's old too, very nearly an oxo-

                                      - 10 -
genarian, and was Navy and has a White beard, and hunts 3 days a week and shoots one. He's absolutely marvellous,he really is. One of his horses is a perfect pig to him, bucks furiously always when we start out, and the other always runs away if it's a windy day becoz it hates the wind!    Then there is a daughtr, Theresa, aged 30 and awfully nice, very country; hunts hard all the winter, is unmade up, but enjoys parties and has one or two boy-friends floating around, but has a Moustache, rather a visible one.  She's nothing much to look at except when on a horse, and there she look fine, rides side-saddle, has two very heautiful hunters, and goes like smoke and wears a toppe and spectacles.
There, now I must stop, as I've got to go out.
Miles of love, many thanks for your letter, and I hope this hasn't necessitated a Throte Lozenj.

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