England 40 Years Ago — October 18, 1981

Lisa says she’s quoted the old saying, “Curiosity killed the cat.” The reply came back, “Satisfaction brought it back.”

John $ had such a good time on his second birthday. While I was making his cake, he pretended to be a chimney sweep. As I went looking for him, he slipped upstairs to play with his dad’s pipes. The best mess was the licking of the spatula from his cake batter.

John $pencer with his birthday cake
$ opening gifts with Kate holding his new outfit

$ loves real telephones as well as toy ones. He can even have a pretend one in the bath! As the water was going out, he used the stopper on a chain as the ear piece and the over-flow fixture as the mouth piece to send important messages in the Evisneps language.

Loraine (John’s good friend and former secretary from NY whom a few of you don’t know) arrived Tuesday night. She’d had a week’s coach tour of Scotland and told us about the marvelous weather and lovely sights. Wednesday she met some new friends in London for an ALL DAY tour of the city and came back with her tongue hanging out. Sights included Madame Taussaud’s or however you pronounce it and spell it, changing of the guard, a brewery, an embroidery or tapestry works, the Tower, St. Paul’s and Westminster Abbey. Of course, they got out at each place and had a thorough tour with lots of walking.

Thursday and Friday she elected to stay with me to see how daily life moves in the suburbs. We “did” Walton in the rain, going to the butcher shop, green grocer, Cullen’s, the bakery, and looking at everything in between. Friday we went to Redhill to see Co op, Woolworth’s, Boots, and the freezer store. Reigate got a quick walk up and down the high street. When Kate came out of school, we drove to Godstone, doubled back for Lisa, went to Dorking, Box Hill, and home. That night the next door neighbors came for dessert so that we had a nice sit-down visit.

Our children, John, neighbors Catherine and Phillipa and gift to $ from them

Saturday Catherine (neighbor who is Lisa’s age) went with us to Heathrow (emphasis on the “row” of that name) to take Loraine. Kate was at Philippa’s delayed birthday party seeing, or rather crying over, Charlotte’s Web. It seems they were all nine crying when they emerged from the cinema. Beefburgers, baked beans, sausages, chips and a thickly coated chocolate cake soon had them in high spirits again.

We put Loraine to work professionally while she was here. John’s and her former boss called from NY to give John an order, but he couldn’t hear me on the phone, being hard of hearing. I shouted to him that Loraine was here, so he told me to give her a pad and pencil and put her on. I did. She took the message in shorthand which fascinated Kate. I was so glad she was here at that particular moment!

One night the funniest thing happened. I’d prepared a Christmas pudding the week before so that she could have one here with us. I mentioned what was coming, so John put on a Christmas record. As the flames were dying down, Loraine produced the crowning touch with a Christmas gift for each of us! She’d brought Smurf Christmas tree ornaments! What a laugh we had!

Loraine more than earned her keep. She kept $ out of untold numbers of things, refereed several sibling fights, and I found Kate in bed with her one morning reciting poetry for school! As you can imagine, we were very sorry to see her go.

23 thoughts on “England 40 Years Ago — October 18, 1981

  1. Until this minute I never believed anyone has ever had a Smurfin’ Christmas, Especially mid-October. I know you’ve probably already heard this but just in case, it’s Madame Two-swords.
    Waxwork Hugs

    Liked by 2 people

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