Mon Jan 19 9.40 pm. [1942]

Am just drinking cup of Horlicks malted milk before going to bed. Rene brought it for me. It is not always obtainable now. Have also had a slice of plum cake made off the bread batch. Ran out of flour this week and had to get some at Hall’s, also I got a pkt of Pea flour for soup. Father fetched them before going to A[ir] R[aid] lecture. He has not got sal[vage] money yet. Hallg[arth] said again he is collecting it.

Father started duties at 8. p.m. with J[oe] J[ackson]. He cut his left forefinger rather badly with big axe this morning. Rene and I wrapped it with lint after washing it with “Dettol” in water. I re-bandaged it to-night but did not disturb dressing as it was comfortable. Roy passed his trade test, may have to be ac/2 again but pay will not be lessened. Jean had letter from Ron this morning, he is coming home on Sat. this week. Does not think they are moving after all, at least not yet. He has been put in Servicing Flight and was filling oxygen botts. Does not like the work much as the room is so warm and stuffy, expect he misses working with Jeff too. Rene’s cold seems much better, thinks she may wash to-morrow. I shall not if the weather doesn’t improve. It was bitterly cold to-day with thin covering of snow and is windy to-night. Birds very hungry and tame, my thrush did not sing, but came along with a crowd of sparrows and starlings for food. There were blue-tits too and a great tit too, Mr and Mrs Blackbird also the gulls came down in the garden today and the crows came nearer and of course a robin. I managed to dig up a few little carrots for rabbits and the birds were soon on the freshly turned soil, probably seeking grit, I don’t think worms or grubs would be near the surface. Gave the birds some rolled oats as R.As gave Father more. Mav[is] been to school to-day, she was immunised against diphtheria last week, then had a cold and could not go. Jean says Joy. Belton started again, she has had abscess or mastoid and been away some weeks. Rene says Mr Toynton their milkman told her his little boy had a bronical cold. Dinah Kirk has gastric flu. This bitter weather brings a lot of illnesses. We hardly dare think of the wounded in Russia this terrible winter. Such awful things we hear. Japs are within 100 miles of Singapore, they are like a plague of locusts. Shall we ever stay them?

Joyce Belton was the daughter of Harold Belton, the brother of garage-owner Cyril.

Mr Toynton had a dairy farm, ‘The Beeches’, on Trunch Lane and delivered milk locally.

Dinah Kirk, who attended Miss Norah Gardiner’s private school (see 24 Mar. 1941), was the youngest daughter of Joe Kirk (senior).

Have you read an introduction to May Hill & family (includes photographs) and explored ‘The Casualties Were Small’?

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