27 July 4th Okanagan Mission B.C
My dear Tony
I suppose you are back in England by now. I hope you had a good trip and are not finding the change of climate too unpleasant. What a frightful time the parcels took to reach you! I sent them off in Jan. and Feb! The one with the shirt and buttons must be still chasing you! We were very amused at your efforts to foil the ants. [RAS450615] I was telling my sewing ladies about it today and Mrs Collett whose sister used to live in the Malay Strait [?] said the thing to do is stand each leg of a table in a saucer of coal-oil and then anything on it is safe, but its [sic] a bit late to tell you that now. Their chief surprise was that there was any candy left to protect after 3 days!
My chief piece of news is that Peter [Mallam] may be back any time, and this may not be news to you as its [sic] possible you may have seen him if you are back in England. Mrs Mallam phoned me last Friday in a great state of excitement, to say she had got a cable which said, as near as I remember “Stand by! Flying back. Hope arrive soon.” She was in such a dither she didn’t know what to do next. I pictured her hanging up the phone and rushing off to make Peter’s bed, but, according to Mrs Burdie what she actually did do was order a fruit cake from Mrs Farris, wax the worst patches of the floor and make an appointment to get her hair permed! They have heard nothing more so far but on the news this morning it said a lot of soldiers had arrived in U.S.A. en route for Canada to take up instructors jobs and we wonder if Peter is one of them. Archie [Stubbs] and Beryl [Archie’s fiancee] were at the Mallams one night last week and they had heard nothing of Peter’s engagement to Patty, in fact they thought he was still engaged to Nancy! They are blaming the rumour on you, I think, but it did not come from us as I heard it from several people before Archie got your letter. They now think you must have told the Hawkshaws who passed it on to Winifred Baldwin.
There was a picture of one of your girl-friends in the Province yesterday—Verity Sweeney. She is a C.W.A.C. lieut. in an army show—Leicester and wife are here on leave and went to see the Hays last night. Amy was out and Bill still working so Jane entertained them. Sometime later after Bill came in she said to Leicester “You had better go now—You have spoilt my evening!” He enquired what he was supposed to have done and she said, “Well, Bill and I were going to have a bath and go to bed early!” What a child!
Dr Knox is stuck in Chicago or somewhere because he cant [sic] get a sleeper! They are nearly all reserved for the services now on the main lines and have been removed altogether from the branch lines. May and Anne are toying with the idea of going to stay with Susie when Anne gets her holiday in August, but dont [sic] much like the idea of sitting up all night in the train. Yesterday Mary [Stubbs] and I had some time to fill in in town and went to tea at the Aquatic. They have made a lovely pool for the kids now, but the lake is so high there is no sand for the little dears to bask on, just a small gooey looking patch. There was a girl diving beautifully right off the top.
What a fortune you are piling up in War Loan. Pop got a fat registered parcel yesterday containing $500. and a note from Mr ?????? asking him to let you know of their arrival at once so as to alleviate your anxiety as to their safety!! I hope you haven’t been too worried!
Best love from Mother—60 yrs old day after tomorrow!!