Sunday, March 09, 2008

Monday 30th May 1938

A mediocre day as regards turnover – neither good nor bad. But considering the number of sound contact calls made, with definite interviews – rather grim.
Business altogether does not seem too good. These War scares? Possibly. I confess they unsettle me.

CHA General Meeting. All the right people were elected for the principle jobs. Lois was Treasurer, Grace was Secretary and Ella Dorken was Programme Secretary (re-election). Pa Shervill was one of those nominated for the Committee. With that fine cleverness of his, he declined, saying that younger men should be put in. In due course Grace proposed myself and he seconded. I was elected, eventually. Among the others, I’m glad to say, was Joan Yeaxlee.

I got into my car, outside, in Hamlet Court Road. The Rogers got into theirs, with Pa Shervill. Being invited to Oakdene for coffee, I said brightly – “I’ll be there first!” “We’ll see about that” cried Lois, jumping towards the Vauxhall. I followed on their tail, along London Road. Lois swung around a tramcar; I passed on the inside. Crazy driving. Southbourne Grove; down hill, across traffic lights (lucky they stayed “green”!) and up to Bridgewater Drive. Down hill. I swung out, switched on the headlights, began to gain on the Vauxhall. 35-40-45… She accelerated! Inch by inch I crept past, swung in front at last. Phew! Nearly at the main road! I left the 30mph limit about 100 yards ahead; drove fast and thought I was safe. Slowed down a little, not quite sure of the turning. Put out the indicator. With a roar Lois’ car came up behind – passing! For a crazy second I thought of continuing to pull out. Luckily I didn’t. She passed me (at 55 she told me afterwards), braked madly and swung around the corner into Bellhouse Road. Dangerous driving, but oh! Very skilful.

We reached Oakdene together, but I was in the rear. “It was awful driving, “she laughed, “But I just couldn’t let you win!” After the coffee, Lois came out to see me off the premises. “Have you ever been kissed against your will?” I said suddenly, seizing her hand. She immediately became a dynamic bundle of living electricity. How she fought! My arms would be about her, then somehow she’d break away, held only by one wrist… At last she was gradually bent into an almost horizontal position and had to let her mouth meet mine. I thought “God! Here is a woman who can try both my nerve and my strength!” And just as I was about to drive off, she put her fair head inside the Zephyr and gave me a quick kiss. So she is rather sweet, too.

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