Topic: 8 January 1940: To Hazel from John Glen McCauley
In which John writes Hazel about his longing for a New Zealand Christmas, the letters from their last trip, Joan's letter which was published in 'The News' and the start of food rationing.
415 The Strand
8 January 1940
Dear Haze & Andy,
Many thanks for your letter received today. I knew you were back at the bank and realised you must have been going like Hell. Letters in such times are a curse I know, so don’t imagine I was annoyed. Also it was good of you to send 10/- but again you should not have bothered – anyway we will probably have a good time at a theatre on the strength of it as the weather is now a wee bit warmer. This damn snow is no joke and combine that with fog and frozen pipes – ugh, give me N.Z. Xmas any day.
There were just the two of us and fortunately I was home all day but had to go to work at night. Out of the 4 days the fella had off I had 3 at home which was not bad. Muv was hoping we’d gone to Moreton, but 24 hours leave is all I get at a stretch.
I was expecting Harry Wood here but his last letter said he missed his ship at Durban. He may have been sent back to Australia Distressed British Seamen. I had written to Eva previously saying I’d look out for him but he fooled me. I think Eva will be quite pleased at the turn of events as she was worrying a bit in case he was called up before she saw him again.
By the way, should you see Jimmy Adcock will you say I received his card two days after I wrote him at his old address and hope he got my letter. Also heard from Mrs Smith the other day – apparently all the family is well – bad luck for Wyn though.
Thanks for the thought re picture Haze and while we like those things much it would be better not to send them, as we hope to return someday and each item here is something extra to cart about. Glad the others sent you letters re our trip – I meant to write you too but just so sick of it that I thought it would save time if they did that – I particularly wanted Unc to have a letter though as I’ve not been a very good correspondent to him. Imagine how we felt too when we learned that the news had published Joan’s letter – her father is a member of the same bowling club as Harold Round of the news and “that started it” – old Ted (the fella’s father) would appreciate the joke. You should have received a card from me from Germany too by the way.
The chap in charge of N.Zers at Aldershop is Duff-Major Duck and I am wondering if he is a brother of Val’s from a description which includes his coming from Chch [Christchurch] suggests it. Had a card from Muv – she still doesn’t seem 100% - it worries me and I wish I could get home, but this bloody war has ruined all plans. I hope your scarf turned up safely and is some use.
Food rationing starts today allowing us ¼lb butter each week and ¾lb sugar as well as other shortages but I guess we’ll pull through.
Well this is just a quickly torn off letter so cheerio to you both with love from us and only the best wishes for the future. God alone knows when I’ll be seeing you again now.
Cheerio, John [handwritten].