Margaret to Tom 7th April 1942
It was lovely seeing you again this morning. I am now on the train and this time your idea doesn't seem to have worked. We did not go off at 10.45, as I expect the extra portion is not running today, unless we part a Cardiff. I arrived at the Station in very good time at 10.05 and had to airt 15 minutes before the train came in. I managed to get a corner seat all right. The train seems packed. Thousands of people standing in the corridor. I managed to get the daily Sketch this morning, so I have been devouring the news from civilization. I am thankful I did not have to travel yesterday as I see thousands of people were stranded and had to look for accommodation. If I had not had leave, I had many ideas of a wicked nature ready. I was going to ask mother to phone the office and say I had a terrible cold, then I need not have gone back to the office until Wednesday or Thursday. Anyway it was well worth the 2 days leave wasn't it? In spite of the weather & I can never feel depressed in your company whatever the weather, especially these times when I see so little of you. I am still wanting to climb that hill, and perhaps we may in the future years when we are gadding about on our own, Gadding is hardly the word is it? I think we can also learn things by getting around the country and seeing the condition others llive in besides going for lovely country walks. In fact it makes you think!! I hope, if the weather is fine this week end and you, Bowen and Thurley will climb that hill above Swansea, the one I very much wanted to climb, and make up a poem for me from that very hill because I feel sure that besides looking across the sea from those regions and Mumbles you will sea Swansea industrial beneath you and all around, it will simply be inviting you to write a poem for Margaret. So I implore you, on this, your last weekend in Swansea to do this for me if you are inspired in memory of the lovely times we have had together there.
It's now pouring with rain again so please tell Mrs Dowling & Esme that I shall really be thankful when my bag has been searched & I am safely passed the customs across the frontier. But I must say that this train is very insistent in staying over the frontier as this must be the 3rd stop we have had and we are not far passed Neath. Anyway I suppose I shall get home sometime, though I don't mind if we turn round and come back. But I suppose I must not delve into your pocket again. I don't mean this literally although perhaps the hotel manager seemed to think so. I am sorry darling I quite forgot to give you the 10/-, so I am enclosing it in P.O. form in case you are in great distress, though heaven knows what you will want to do with it in the course of the next few days, unless to tip Mr George or someone, perhaps even Dr Starkey.
1.55 pm We arrived at Cardiff at 12.55 pm and the train practically emptied. The platform was quite packed there, and also at Newport, and I wondered if those people were stranded last night. There certainly do not seem to be many people traveling to London, so once again I'm traveling in comfort. I believe i told you that the man I was traveling down with (I mean the one in the same carriage) was relating his difficult journey from Paddington to Swansea, well I did not tell you that at Christmas time, or one of the holidays last year, he tried to catch the 8.55 train and, although it was in two portions, it was impossible to get on either, so he though the would wait for the 22.53, but wondered whether he would be able to get that one even. So he had a brain wave and caught a train which was going to Bath and from there a connection to Cardiff and at Cardiff caught the 11.55 which emptied at that station. I thought I must tell you this in case you ever have any difficulty in coming home, but I'm sure you will not. It's lovely to know that you should be home tomorrow week, so I do not feel so sad about going home.
I'm always saying and hoping this war will be over soon, aren't I, and i only feel it is wasting our time, as we could find something better & much greater to do with our lives. It seems such and utter waste that young fellows like you and others with such brains & deep thinking minds should have to waste all these years on such a beastly war. Still, you tell Bowen to stick to his ideas of doing something good in this world. I think everybody feels something should be done to change this wicked world and each one feels, sometime or other, that they should be the ones to carry out that work and there are many who have the gift and do not use it. I think it all boils down to the fact that we are lazy and get so settled in our normal routine and surroundings that the thoughts of youth lie untouched and left in a musty old box which has lost its key. (This reminds me of the old antique shop which we saw yesterday). Have I been talking nonsense or is it the substance of a muddled mind that you have just been reading? But forgive me please. I am not as young as I was as you informed me yesterday. This marriage business must be the cause of it. I must say that I have many things to thank you for. You have helped me since the age of 17 to form opinions of my own & question many things which are only really conventional ideas.
We have just arrived at Swindon It is 2.55 pm and still raining. We have just heard a loud clap of thunder as I think the weather we have had seems pretty general though may not be so in London.
Well all the best for your exams. You have simply got to do well and certainly beat the professors.
It's simply pelting with rain and more thunder and lightening and I'm simply longing to get home.
I don't think I can write any more trash and use any more of your paper, so please remember me to all the boys and Mrs Dowling and Esme. I don't know why I want to be remembered, I suppose I don't want to be forgotten. Just one of these conventional ideas. Anyway tell them I'm very pleased to know you have been looked after by such nice people and I hope when we are down there, one day in future years, we shall be able to call on them.
How is George's romance going or isn't it? Those cakes and buns I bought were lovely. I don't wonder you have 2 buns every day.
Well I really must close now. I must post this as soon as I arrive.
All my love,
P S Please do not write if you have not much time during the next few days. But I shall expect an account of all your doings next week.