Sunday, 22 January 2012

Margaret Robinson to Tom Critchley 21.1.1942

(This letter is about queuing for food and the price of luxuries such as tobacco and chocolate. One of the Tobaccos which is like one that Tom's friend Ron has asked Margaret to get is available in a sealed tin which makes me speculate about a possible added ingredient. There is also a note about the Brains Trust on the wireless. B.C.)
Thank you for letter received this morning. When I arrived back from lunch, I found your letter in the post tray. It's lovely getting it so early.
I went shopping for you at lunch time, but I'm sorry to say was not successful with either the blue Gillette razor blades or No:8 torch battery. Things are sometimes very difficult to get here, but I will try again later. I could not get Cut Golden Bar tobacco anywhere, but at one shop the girl showed me a sealed tin of Kilters Cut Bar tobacco – that being the same price as Tom Long. However, I did not get that, but if you think Ron would like it, just let me know. I'm told it's a good substitute. I've managed to get some chocolates for you which will make your mouth water, I have been collecting since last week so have quite a bit now, not too much because they just won't let you have more than 2 bars at a time. But I was extremely lucky this afternoon (this lunch time) I went into one shop and asked what chocolates they had, so much to my surprise they said you can have 1/1d worth, that is 2 Mars, 2 packets of Maltesers and 2 Milky Ways. I managed to get another bottle of tonic – a large bottle 3/2d – it's awful don't you think so? 8d purchase tax – anyway I don't spend much on my hair in the way of setting etc, do I? So I think I can spend a little on a tonic. I have been trying to get some fresh fish for Joyce today, but there is none to be had without queuing and I can't spend my lunch hour buying food like that. Its very difficult to know what to give the poor girl these days, as delicacies are very hard to get. Mother gets an extra pint of milk for her every day, so that's something.
Well my letter seems to be nothing but food and the general difficulty in buying things. I must change the subject. I have written to Megan and Freddie, chiefly thanking them for their present. I thought I ought to write as we used to go round there quite a lot and its nice to keep up with these people. I am stuck for just one thing I don't know the number of their house. I believe the road is "Cheval Place". Perhaps you can tell me the number?
what a lovely long walk you and Ron had, it certainly sounds an interesting one and looks so from the pictures I have seen of the Gower Peninsula. Anyway, I shall see for myself. I hope you won't walk me off my feet.
It seems to be getting colder every day. Today I'm told its 16 degrees (farenheitt).
I will certainly bring my boots but really, do you think I can walk about the office in those heavy boots!!!
I have just been speaking to your mother on the phone. She says Bob rang up about his case and clothes, so she told him he could fetch them anytime. He apparently went to Wigan last weekend and had rather a hectic time. If you are writing to him, tell him to call in here anytime, we can most probably make up some tea or something. I expect he feels a bit lonesome out in the wilds and after all as he said, Whetstone is not far form Stanmore. I expect as you read this you are longing to be posted nearer home, never mind you are far better off from the point of view of fresh air, walks etc, at Swansea, and I only wish I could join you and lead a life of leisure instead of doing sums at the office.
You say Ron is going to show you how to play poker, I hope you like it, but I think its more of a game for gamblers – am I right? And please don't start that until I've been down to see you – what about my hotel bill??
Did you hear the Brains Trust? On Tuesday (last night) they all seemed to stutter exept Eliot and Campbell. I think I liked Eliot the best. He seemed to think more clearly, excepting old Joad. Hogben seems to spend all his time saying he really does not know where to begin etc. The Duchess is quite good and on the whole it was not bad, but as usual I have forgotten practically everything that was said – isn't that awful?
Well I must be stopping as I'm going to have a bath tonight .
Goodnight, I long to see you,
All my love,

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