Monday, 27 June 2011

Amanuensis Monday - letter from Bill Hudson to Peggy November 6th, 1941.

My grandfather Bill Hudson worked as a prison officer in Hong Kong from 1921 to 1941. He was still in Hong Kong in December of 1941 when the Japanese invaded and occupied the colony. My grandmother Peg and my father Peter had been evacuated to Australia in July 1940. Peg kept the last couple of letters Bill wrote from Hong Kong prior to the Japanese invasion, along with the letters he wrote immediately after liberation.

Most of the letters are long, so I'm going to serialise them over the next few weeks.

The first letter is dated Thursday 6 November, 1941, just over a month before the Japanese invaded Hong Kong. This is page 3.

Page 1 is here.
Page 2 is here.
Page 4 is here.

I am a bit ashamed of setting you to buy that Pipe, at 25/- they are now $15 here, of course some of the "Comoys" cost as much as $35. When I wrote you they were only $13.50, so you see how the price of things are going up. Precious, I am on a Curry Prawn tonight, used to be 60 cts a pound, today I had to pay $1. Went out last night, the three "Must-get-there's" paid my Boyebay Store Bill (will leave it to you to argue about those stockings) anyway I bought three Tootal ties for $4.50. Alf bought three and John six, over $20 would of trade he got out of us yet no 10% slate.

I hope Ada has found a place for M.G., wouldn't it be nice if Vi would get out, and have the place for all of you, maybe I am expecting too much! True we were lucky in getting Abbott St, a place like that would do you fine. I have yet to buy the bag for Mrs Bard, yet there is plenty of time left. Fancy Peg Hudson remembering the Cabin in George's garden, anyway I never took you there on dark nights but it's only because I did not know you! I used to give sin all a big bunch of flowers!

Of course now that Frank (my heart is getting soft) is going down there for good, why not try further afield! What about asking the Nolly's if anything is going in their district, you could all muck in together, of course different Beds, naturally if would have to be! 

How is that bad tempered son of mine, I hope the ear trouble has gone, it can be very painful at times. I feel sorry for you Peg, in having all these troubles, it's a shame I am unable to share them, I missed him as a Baby, now I am missing his boyhood days. And still those headaches, I do so wish you could shrug them off, I get worried about them, also these head colds of yours, I suppose because I don't get them, I can't understand why other people should. Here I am sitting in my undies, and not a wee bit cold.

Last night I or we went to the flicks, I wore a heavy coat, yet I had to take it off. "Mail Train" was the film, Gordon Harker, and very good it was, a English picture. I bought some more of my beloved Bandman, I got four tins, so I am ok for weeks.

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