23rd March 1961

March 23rd 1961



Dear Worried Blue Eyes,

On behalf of Aunt Mary I have the honour to answer your complex problem.  I quite agree with everything you say so in fact you may take my answer as being plainly and simply – yes.


Hello darling.  Thanks a lot for those photographs.  They are mighty good, man.  Had they been a bit lighter they would have been even better but I’m not complaining one bit.  Received your (my) letters on Monday and Wednesday so I’ve been pretty chuffed these past few days.

The weather is becoming quite warm lately reaching into the seventies around mid-day.  Won’t take me long to have a good sun tan now.  Some of the lads have had their shirts off and sunning their Persil white bodies to the deadly heat. This is commonly called panic tanning by the old sweats here and the white bodied erks receive a few wolf whistles from some jokers.  My body still has some of last year’s tan, which helps a lot because the sun won’t burn so much.

This afternoon was spent in a most unusual way.  I did some work!  When I say work I mean manual work of a kind and it was all because I was a bit slow in thinking up a good answer as to why I shouldn’t do it.  Read that over ten times then read on at full speed.

Joining Operation Rubbish Dump was a pleasant change believe it or not.  It was good to get some fresh air for a change.  Especially on such a beautiful warm day like it was.  About 20 of us climbed aboard a lorry, which went on to meet a further 3 lorries stacked with dejected airmen, outside Station HQ.  The officer in charge led our merry band to the other side of the main runway where we had to pull up a two hundred yard barbed wire fence.  We were all issued with gloves (for the use of) and some wire cutters were given out to some unsuspecting airmen. After loading ‘en yards of barbed wire, I decided to have a little walk round, after all, one mustn’t be too keen in the air force.  Unfortunately, I was quickly clobbered by a quick eyed sergeant who wondered why I was walking around carrying a piece of barbed wire and trying to look busy.  Anyway, to cut a long story short, as it were, I did some more work, then I had an inspiration.  I climbed in the cab of our lorry for the remaining hour.

Was really annoyed the other day because I did a stupid expensive thing.  It was just after lunch and I was relaxing on my pit when my mate called me.  I turned on one side to answer him forgetting all about my specs which were in my trousers pocket.  The very worse happened of course and I heard the crunch as the right lens gave way.  It was a silly thing to happen.  I usually keep my specs in my tunic pocket but guess I slipped up this time. Like most things I guess you learn the hard way.  I’ve made arrangements to go down to Limasol on Saturday to see the local optician – hope he is good.

Have just been interrupted for my evening coffee, just the stuff to wake me up.  Johnny Cash is singing Lonesome Blues on the F.B.S.  Sounds mighty good to me.  That record by Matt Monroe namely My Kind Of Girl has been played over the radio a few times recently.  I agree it’s just great. Actually, I was thinking of requesting this record for you on one of the appropriate record programmes on the BBC.  Only thing is I wouldn’t know where or to whom to write, apart from just BBC. London.

The ‘Teddy Bears’ are singing Unchained Melody at present.  It is making me feel a little homesick and sorry for myself.  Sometimes I become terribly depressed thinking about my present plight.  All I look forward to in life is seeing my Maureen once again.  When I think of you I realise how lucky I am to have a girl like you.  Guess life isn’t so bad after all, provided I always look ahead.

Re your ps of letter no 22 16th inst.

Guess you won’t rest until you hear all about it, so it’s no good delaying the inevitable is there?  It goes something like this, if I remember rightly.

She says   –   You married?

I replied    –    Nope

She          –    No?  How comes a nice handsome guy/chap like you hasn’t been

snapped up by now?

Me          –     Didn’t meet the right girl until recently.

Not quite sure of the exact words because I had a few drinks that night.  But they were words to that effect.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

My mate has just walked in.  He has been telling me about El Aden, Libya.  He went over there 4 months ago for duty with our detachment out there.  He didn’t like it at all.  He carried on about sand, sand and more sand.  Torbruk the nearest town is over 20 miles from the camp and apparently is a right dump.  At least he can say he has been to Africa which is more than I can.

Must close now darling.  I long for August when we can have the happiness we deserve.  Maureen Brown, I love you.



Letters from Alan Week 12: 22nd - 25th March 1961

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