6th June 1961

June 6th 1961



Hiya Honey!

Danke fur Ihren Brief.  It’s ok.  I’ve just remembered I’ve got to write to my German pen friend and I thought I’d get in the mood.  (for writing to my German penfriend, of course.)

I’ve run out of my special ‘writing to Alan’ paper so I’ve had to dig out one of my old shorthand books.  There’s not much of it left as in case you start wondering why I keep breaking off in the middle of a sentence, I’ll tell ya now buddy, I’m writing on both sides.  Now I’m sure I haven’t driven you into the arms of a Greek girl (re last letter) or, if it comes to that a ‘daddy’s an officer’ type girl – and I know you want to write again, I’ll buy some more airmail paper.  Even I realise that is a bit of a muddle, but ne’er mind.

Now, what can I write about.  Pause for thinks:  five minutes later…  did you let the ‘daddy’s an officer’ know you weren’t going to meet her or did you just stand her up?  I don’t see how you can safely stand anyone up in a place that size.  Mind you, I don’t even know what size the place is.  Very dodgy business all round I think, cos don’t forget dear, ‘daddy’s an officer.’

Ages and ages ago, well a couple of weeks ago anyway, we were reading this article in a magazine.  I can’t really remember what it was all about but I do know that by some great advanced mathematical–type calculation you could work out the age of the person you should marry.  I was ever so pleased when it turned out that 18 should marry 22.  Well, something to talk about.

Friday night stayed in and watched ‘Hancock’ on tv.  No longer is it ‘Hancock’s Half Hour.’  He has moved from Railway Cuttings and lives in a bed-sit at Earls Court.  He has more or less taken on permanently the role he played in ‘The Rebel’.  Semi- Beatnik type.

Hey!  Y’know that crumby old railwayman’s hut that’s at East Ham station?  Well, actually just outside the station, Upton Park way.  An old brown thing that looks like a sneeze would bring it down?  Well, it’s not there anymore. It has been knocked down.  I’m looking every morning to find out what will go up in its place but nothing has happened yet.  I’ll report on progress.

Saturday morning I had to drag myself out of bed and go to work.  It was a wonder I ever got there.  I didn’t catch a train til nearly 8.25 and I was in the Bank by 9.00.  The driver must have known I was late.  The train was whizzing along.  Miracles do happen, y’see.

Saturday evening went dancing to the Lambourne in Romford.  Got one pair of once white new shoes kicked to pieces.

I think my mother is after my money. I was tearing around getting ready Saturday – I was only half hour late – and went flying on one highly polished bedroom floor.  To prove it I have one elbow with a chunk out of it – I left that on the bed – and one ruddy great bruise – come to think of it, I’m not going to prove that, too embarrassing.

Sunday.  Well, Sunday was quite a laugh.  Mum decided my bedroom needed wallpapering, so Saturday afternoon we spent hours choosing wallpaper which I don’t like now.  My uncle was going to do it – he’s an interior decorator and always does our house – but every time he comes over my aunt sends their kids with him.  So, mum decided that dad could do it.  Saturday evening all the furniture was taken out and put in their bedroom and the ceiling was washed down.  Jennifer slept in their room but my bed was put up again all on its lonesome in the middle of our room.  For days before they had been threatening me that I would be up at 7.30 so they could make an early start.  On a Sunday!  I ask you!.  I was duly woken up at that unearthly hour but, ha! ha! I fooled them!  I got into dad’s bed and went to sleep again.

I learnt a few new choice words that day.  Dad was trying to put ceiling paper up.  He stuck one end and turned around to do the rest and as he was walking along the scaffold boards, it was falling down behind him – the ceiling paper, not the boards.

Three walls are pink with a sorta white flower and gold stripes and the wall opposite the window is grey.  I wanted a very dark grey, to make it all ‘contemptuous’’ – like but these crumby old wallpaper shops have got no imagination.  We’ve got a light grey with stage coaches riding around on it (very noisy at night.)

We’ve got new lino which dad chose.  That is, I told him to get a grey as plain as possible.  I swear that the stuff we’ve got is fawn and beige but either I’m colour blind or everyone else is cos they all say it’s grey.

Last night – Monday – six of us went up to New Change to see the Bank Dramatic Society Revue. It was bad!  The six were Carol, Clive, Carol’s friend Penny and her boyfriend Richard, Michael and myself.  During the interval C and C were moaning about how bad it was and said they were leaving if it didn’t improve during the second half.  Blow me, if they didn’t! after about quarter of an hour Carol bawls out to me ‘we’re going.’  There was an awful clatter of seats and they walked out.  During that minute or so, there was more attention on us than on the stage.

Is  ……  I’ve forgotten his name, still coming to meet you.  Or is that dodgy as it is a Friday?  If you give us some instructions for train journey and if we’ve got any cash left after our holiday, Lena and I would fancy the trip.

I phoned Jean at work today.  It is definite that she is not coming on holiday with us.  So that means we’ll go down by coach.  It’s a flipping good job Lena is coming over or I’d be stranded.  There is just one problem left.  Supposing she and I don’t hit it off.  Fine holiday it’s going to be.  I am having my doubts already.  I asked her what shows she would like to see.  She mentioned My Fair Lady and West Side Story and Covent Garden.

As you might be able to tell from my wonky writing, it is getting late so I had better pack up.

Oh yes.  Don’t particularly rush with instructions for a, um, certain sweater cos I’ve got orders for three from various relatives.  I will do it eventually of course but it was a jolly good excuse to write again, don’t you think?

Don’t go trying to write letters when you haven’t got anything to write about, cos you’ll only get bored as before.  We’ve known each other five months, two days today!  Gone quickly really, hasn’t it?

The office is absolutely swarming with gleaming wedding rings.  One girl came back Monday after her honeymoon.  She was opening post and it was 10.15 before she realised she had signed her single name on every letter.

Latest topic of conversation, which makes a change from weddings – is that two of the girls are pregnant, It’s all quite legal, they are both married.  Not such juicy gossip that way but it’s still a bit different.  The babies are due Jan 1st and Jan 7th.  The girls must feel awful.  Everyone stares at them for signs whenever they walk past.

It is 1 am exactly so I s’pose I’d better do something about getting some beauty sleep.

I certainly do miss you Alan darling but after waiting five months, the thought of two more seems nothing.

Lots and lots of love to you

From Maureen

Letters from Maureen Week 22: 3rd - 8th June 1961

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