Alfred Duryee Guion (Grandpa)
Feb. 25, 1940
It is quite fair, I suppose, that no letter from you arrived this last week, in view of the fact that I received two from you last week – the laws of compensation working out.
There is not much to record in the way of local history. By contrast with the big happenings that are going on in the world today, local events seem of very minor importance. There is still much snow on the ground and last night the boys went over to Fairchild Wheeler Park to do some skiing. Dave sat down on a ski and is quite sore today having landed on the end of his spine on the ski.
Last Tuesday I played hooky. Rusty (Rusty Huerlin, a family friend who went on to fame as an artist and painter of Alaskan Life) had accompanied me to Bridgeport to get some paints. On the way from the Algonquin Club where I had parked my car, to the office, we got talking about ”Gone With The Wind”, ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gone_with_the_Wind_(film) which neither of us had seen, and as it was raining it seemed a good opportunity to spend some hours indoors. I proposed he and I take in the picture, and on his agreeing to the proposal, we went up to the theater, obtained good seats, arriving just as the picture started. It was in Technicolor, and in my opinion the best movie I have ever seen. We sat through the entire four hours without realizing it was so long. When we came out a little before two it was raining hard. Rusty invited me to lunch and we had a very good steak dinner.
Rusty has been with us all the week. He expects to leave tomorrow to go to Philadelphia and then on to Wakefield again. He has been trying to persuade both Dan and Ced to go to Alaska, but I have not heard yet that either of them have made up their minds, although I guess they both are thinking about it. Dan, I heard say, wants to get a job for the summer in order to earn enough money to go up there possibly to school. Rusty is quite a champion for the Russians, thinks all the stuff we have read in the papers about the bad things Russians are doing is not true and is inspired by the English capitalistic-minded people. The Russians are really wonderful people and are much misunderstood here, etc.
One day last week I was eating lunch in Howland’s when somebody bumped against my chair. I looked up and there was Ted (Uncle Ted Human, who hired both Lad and Dan to work with him for Interamerica, Inc. on the road building project. When it was discovered by the Venezuelan Government that the pictures of the “road” were actually smooth sand, the company did not get paid and neither did any of it’s employees. It took a long time to settle matters.), with Helen ((Peabody) Human, Grandma Arla’s next younger sister) in the background. They had come up to Bridgeport to see Dr. Laszlo about Ted (He was in a terrible car accident in early 1939, within six months of arriving in Venezuela, Lad helped tremendously getting him help, acting as a “go-fer” and eventually helping him get back to the United States). He said he had been feeling much better and he did look better than when I saw him last. He said his case was coming up in the Compensation Court in Caracas within a day or two, and if, as he hopes, the court down there decides the control of the company had come from New York, the case would then be transferred to the United States where the Compensation Courts here would have jurisdiction and then he could get somewhere. It seems to me this is all going to cost him a pretty penny although he will have the satisfaction of getting even with Max (Yervant Maxudian, owner and President of Interamerica, Inc., who had the contract with the Venezuelan Government to build the road), which is probably a big factor with him, but it seems to me he will be paying a large sum in lawyer’s fees for this satisfaction. He seemed a bit peeved because he had not heard from you, claiming that he had written you several letters to which he had received no reply. He said, “In some ways you have a queer set of boys”. I asked what he meant by that and he mentioned your failure to answer his notes and Dan’s neglect to notify him when he expected to arrive in New York. Just before he said goodbye, he said not to say anything to you about his remark, as perhaps he was peculiar and admitted he was not so good in corresponding with others himself and please not to say anything about it to you when I wrote. I told them I would jack you up as it was probably because you were pretty busy and that I myself had not heard from you for the space of a month a while ago. He seems to be the sort of person that appreciates very much being appreciated by those for whom he does something, and I have found that people like that respond very quickly and thoroughly to a little attention. I think this hint will be sufficient.
Tomorrow I will be posting the second half of this letter from Grandpa to Lad, his only son away from home at this point in time.