Page 2 1/20/46
Family activities: I was able to obtain on the q.t. From a friend of mine in the G.E. Co. (General Electric Co.)., just before the strike, one of their automatic electric blankets which I had been promising Aunt Betty for two years. This was a personal favor by the head of the department with the understanding that I would not broadcast the fact, so please respect the confidence. Aunt Betty is delighted with it. Lad has been continually active with household chores, fixing this and that (a list too long to mention) in the electrical, mechanical and general repair field, so all household appliances are working more smoothly and quietly and efficiently now than they have for years. Both ex-soldiers and wives went to New York recently, Lad to interview Socony (he has to go again) and Dick to get his trunk which Jean had sent off to Brazil when she left to join Dick and which has all this time been awaiting shipping instructions in New York. They brought it home with them. Dick has had his aptitude test and goes Monday to see what it reveals. Paul is home. He, like Lad and Dick, is quite enthusiastic over government educational opportunities but from all reports schools and colleges are even now overcrowded. Even Junior College here in Bridgeport has had to overflow into Bassick (High School) to accommodate enrolled service men. As for me, I am busy at home on my income tax when I get thawed out enough to feel like doing anything, and with the office income tax in Bridgeport, figuring out profit and loss with one hand and turning the mimeograph handle with the other, while I run the Addressograph with one foot.
News from abroad: A postcard from Dan while in Nice, France, on December 15th, kinda snooty in tone, at being a visitor at the Riviera, and a letter from Passy, Jan. 4th, which says: “Startling as it may seem in the first dawn of comprehension, this letter contains no requests for fur coats, baby shoes, pianos or Aqua Velva, but is being written for the avowedly simple purpose of reporting on the normal work-are-day existence of your Continental relatives. To whit: We spent New Year’s eve in Dousi, where we engaged in the pleasant act of visiting the “in-laws” who represent some half dozen or so of the population of that city. Despite the levity of the words above I have been victim of a deep attack of nostalgia and for a few paltry million francs I would chuck the whole thing. However, things are going as well as can be hoped – – our “Jean-Pierre”, as Chiche (Paulette’s nickname) insists on calling our impending event, seems to be doing everything that a normal child of his (or her) age is expected to do. The corse has arrived as have two other packages containing cigars, towels, soap, etc., all of which were most joyously received by those for whom they were destined. On the survey front, I can report that tomorrow we leave for Epinal, southeast of Nancy, where we expect to encounter no small amount of glacial weather, alas. I received Christmas greetings from Aunt Betty, Jean and Dick, which pleased me more than you might think. Incidentally, the Senechal’s (Paulette’s parents) have received a card from Lad and Marian which has been well-night worn out from being shown to friends and relatives. Mme. Senechal threatens to write you one day, Dad, altho’ she knows no English. Papa Senechall has written another letter to you, Dad, but his daughter Chiche, who was charged to mail it for him has failed to do so, according to latest reports. She has all the conscientiousness of a Dick Guion where letters are concerned. It becomes increasingly difficult to say good-by to Chiche each time we get to see each other. Perhaps destiny will relent soon. Chiche sends her warmest regards and hopes that she can share in the ups and downs of Trumbull life before many more months have passed. Love to all. Dan.”
He encloses some interesting snapshots of Chiche in her younger days which I was very glad to get and shall of course preserve carefully in a special folder in my new filing cabinet.
Tomorrow another segment of this 5-page letter.