Nairobi, Kenya Colony.
7 June 45
Its amazing - a week has gone by since my last letter to you. I have been here for a week, tomorrow - 4 days longer than I intended - waiting for air passage. However, tomorrow I am scheduled to be off once more - heading South toward Pretoria. Have to do the far end by train I think, but that always adds interest, altho it takes time.
Our flyingboat from Cairo landed 2 places on Lake Victoria - and at the second we had to stay overnight and take a funny little train next morning which climbed all afternoon and night over an 8,000 ft hump and then dropped down to Nairobi at 6,000 ft. Altho this is very much equatorial, it is the coldest I've been since leaving England, and wet too. The rainy season is on here, and after a long dry spell, all the country is beautifully green - and flowers everywhere - on trees, bushes, shrubs and low down in the grass too. Yesterday I visited the Conservator of Forests, Mr Gardner, and he took me through their arboretum. It was overwhelming. Wish Mary could have seen the Sensitive Plant which grows prolifically along the paths like a weed. You just touch a leaf and it folds up into a shriveled bunch of spines - and the reaction continues all down the plant to the root. Do wish you could have been here to see the lovely plants and gardens.
Had several short runs out into the country round about. One into the Game Reserve where we saw giraffe, Tomi deer, an ostrich, a huge African crane and two Silver jackal, like foxes. The birds like the flowers are lovely too.
Nairobi is a town about the size of Kamloops, perhaps a bit bigger and the social centre of the English people in Kenya. Plenty of money too - lots of "God's chillum" of course and in the towns are many East Indians - rather a problem. "God's Chillun" are most lovable folk - jet black - graceful in build and movement, clean-limbed, but not big people. The women seem to do most of the work in the native social set-up. And of course, White people aren't supposed to do any physical work - just play. It strikes me a bit queer and not too agreeably, but suppose it is best when everything is considered.
Much to my surprise & joy your letters of the 13th & 20th May were forwarded on to me from UK & Cairo and arrived yesterday. Am glad Ruth was able to get up. It will do you as much good as her and of course Mary will be delighted. Just wish Mary could see these black people. They are shiny - practically no hair even on their heads, and the oddest assortment of clothes from nothing to whitemen's. Their native costume is most suitable and looks best of all - just a sheet (originally a skin) tied over one shoulder and under the opposite armpit - open down the side - giving almost a deductive view of a lithe black body, in side-elevation, but really quite decent and adequate - and cool and well ventilated. I may start the custom on Vancouver Island when I get back.
Don't worry about the tobacco. Have enough for 6 weeks or 2 months, so will "live on the country" after that. Will see what I can do about a Camel picture when I get back to Egypt. My hosts often do not give me enough time to myself for just browsing. You could send an airletter to Cairo addressed to arrive there by end of this month.
LOVE TO YOU BOTH.