This week, Grandpa wrote individual letters to each of his four sons. The first two were posted yesterday and the last two are included here. As usual, each of his sons got copies of all the letters.
So, you get your electricity from Eklutna, hey? Well isn’t that just great. I would never have imagined it. Do the Eklutnains live in igloos? How
the hell do you expect me to know where Eklutna is? Is it a hydroelectric plant or a steam operated unit? However, I must not be too harsh with you because your note of the 9th gave me some very interesting facts regarding this mushroom-growth city that you are making your home. Barbara showed me some newspaper clippings regarding your first snowstorm. We have not had snow here yet but today, it felt almost cold enough for snow.
You have been very good about writing lately and I really do appreciate it and enjoy your letters with their pungent comments on events and people. Keep up the good work and when you don’t have any news of an extraneous nature to write, it is always interesting to have you lift the curtain on your inside thoughts and let us hear what your impressions are of the future of your job, plans for college, new lines of endeavor which interest you, etc. What, for instance, has induced your present enthusiasm for Anthropology, Ethnicity and Sociology? Have you met and talked with any interesting people who started you thinking along these lines? You remind me of the saying, ”The world is so full of a number of things, I’m sure we all should be happy as kings”. Only kings are not happy these days. And the very fact that the world is full of so many different and interesting activities that we are apt to leap from crag to crag like the nimble mountain goat and develop the habit of leaping indefinitely instead of saying to ourselves, “Well, I’ve leaped enough. Here is a nice, green valley that I can stay and browse around in long enough to get acquainted with the flora and fauna. It even looks good enough to adopt permanently.” So don’t leap so far and so often that you leap right over the right spot without noticing it.
If this letter reaches you in time, here’s fondest birthday greetings to my little leaping amphibian.
I was just wondering what you do Sundays without the funnies, or maybe the Anchorage paper puts out a Sunday magazine section and you are able to follow the adventures of the Gumps, Wimpy, Joe Palooka, Li’l Abner et al.
Certain words of advice of yours have been hounding me for the last few weeks and today I finally got around to doing something about it. I referred to the motor which operates the stoker in the furnace. I had left and order some time ago for Mercer’s service man to call, and then your letter arrived with its very sensible suggestion as to the advisability of my having a regular motor man make the repairs, and thus save money. The serviceman had not showed up, so today I thought I would go down, get under and detach the motor so as to take it down to the motor repair man tomorrow. I turned on the switch and got only a little “hum” but no action. Off with the switch and down and under to see what sort of tools would be required unscrew the motor from the base and disconnect it from the blower. I pushed aside the lead-in wores (hand-written note – this should have been an “i”. you’ve got a nasty mind) to see better, and, fearing I might have disturbed the connections as they seemed pretty wobbly, I tried the switch again and this time got absolutely no response at all. This made me a bit suspicious so I checked the lead-in wire’s connections to the motor and found one wire off
entirely. I put it back on, screwed up the holding nut, turned the switch, and away we went as strong as ever. So, unless I am greatly mistaken, that was what the trouble was toward the end of last season and not worn brushes or burned-out parts. I felt just like Dan when he found his luggage was not under tons of baggage as he had at first believed.
You have several times mentioned how pleasant and thoughtful the Bragaws are and how much you enjoyed visiting them. I don’t need any more hearsay evidence. I have definite proof. A coffee tin filled with the little red berries arrived this week and are now in the refrigerator waiting for culinary treatment. They are smaller than I imagined. Rusty has mentioned them as being similar to the Swedish cranberries and I am looking forward to tasting them. In fact, I should have cooked them today, were it not for the fact that this is been a very unpredictable 24-hours. Things both inside and outside are getting ahead of me, what with all you boys away and me being extra busy and moving activities. To cap it all I have been feeling somewhat indisposed with a cold. I did hope to get some work done outside yesterday, perhaps some of the screens taken down and storm windows put up, or leaves raked up, or driveways smoothed out, or incinerator cleaned out before freezing weather, but I just didn’t feel ambitious enough to tackle the job alone, Dave having been invited to visit Bruce Lee in Westport for the afternoon, so I cleaned up the kitchen, cleaned up downstairs a bit and puttered around on a few odd jobs and before I knew it Bruce drove up with Dave and stayed for several hours talking as only Bruce can talk. Dave, in the meanwhile, had developed suddenly a very hard cold and had gone to bed. The poor lad did not sleep much during the night so, what with getting his breakfast, carting up wood for a fire in his room, vacuuming and cleaning it, straightening it out, getting dinner, washing dishes, getting more wood, etc., I did not accomplish anything today either.
It looks as though I may have obtained a new tenant for the apartment — a reporter from the Times-Star, who, with his wife and seven months old child now lives in New Haven, has all but decided to move in on November 1st. I am waiting for final word as soon as his wife has given the place the once over.
Tomorrow, we’ll have another Tribute to Arla and on Sunday, the next installment of Mary E. Wilson’s Autobiography. Next week, we’ll be looking in on 1943 to find out what is going on with Lad’s engagement and what the rest of the boys are up to.