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Date: February 1st 1944

England, 1 Feb 44

Dear Jean:

Was away for the week end, just got back this noon, hence the delay in getting your letter on its way. My cold seemed to be getting such a firm hold that I was feeling punk, and not doing my work as I should, so I phoned Ecila to see if it would be OK for me to come down Friday evening, and stay possibly till Monday night or Tuesday morning, You can imagine the response, so I had army business in that vicinity by car, in time to stop off at Shoelands for supper. This morning a car picked me up, it was down on other business. It was just what I needed, went to bed early, slept late in the mornings and even had a nap after lunch. Was able to do a few useful jobs around the premises outdoors in the fresh air, Result, I feel 100% better, and with luck should be OK now. I guess I'm not as touch as I used to be, and really, London is a hell of a place to live for any length of time. However, we won't be here so very much longer, and soon the days will have more sun, and we should be able to get out in it more. Also, am aiming to get more rest each day too.

Your [?] letter of 16 Jan made wonderful time, reaching me on the 24th. Looks as though the one for 2 Jan is still wandering around somewhere. Your last is a fine long one, and I enjoyed it so much. Thanks for getting me the shorts, but I must say, that it has indeed come to a pretty pass, when a fellow's wife has to use her husband's underwear as an excuse to flirt with the salesman at the haberdashery. Well I guess I shouldn't kick, as two pairs of prewar quality shorts are not to be sneezed at. I have a fair stock of cigarettes again, as the FB ones are coming through once more, so you needn't bother with them in your parcels. Have just about used up all the Klim, and its nice to have for coffee when we have to work nights or week ends.
Am so pleased to hear that Roger John Garman has arrived and that Mary is OK. Congratulate them, and tell Eric that I will want his formula for boys. Am glad you were able to be there and take things in hand for them. You sometimes have remarked about the fine friends I have, but really dear, you have widened and intensified our friendships. As I've said before, a man's wife is his greatest compliment.

Have been thinking about your ideas on the house. You think we could net $4000 to $4500, does that mean we could sell for about $9000 now? And could we be sure of a good buyer who would pay a good initial payment, and keep up the terms. If we did liquidate our investment in the house, and bought an older house, a little larger, would we not have to pay a top price for it just now, and take a real loss when we wanted to dispose of it too? I feel that we won't lose on our little house, as you really built it before the high prices came about, It boils down to the question, should we pass up an opportunity to take a profit now of say $4000. The only way we could really make that profit would be to sell only on a most attractive price, and reliable buyer, and to put the money not in another house, but in War Bonds, and rent some place to live until building was cheap again, or until we could pick up a suitable ready built home at a low price. I agree too that our Marlborough house is not just what we need when I come home, but it would be very satisfactory for a couple or three years after the war, and it would be very economical for us to live in during that time too, I could build an extra bedroom in the basement, which is light and airy and dry, we don't need so much room for sawdust fuel then also I could build a garage. Then it is a location where we could do without a car for a year or two. Think it will be uneconomic to try to buy a car for at least two yrs after the war has ended. We have put quite a lot of extra money into the house too, to get it fixed up just the way we want it for ourselves, and no doubt any house we bought would call for that all over again, and no doubt considerably more in repairs and renovations. To sum up, I would only recommend selling at a price and on terms that were extremely favorable, and only if you and Mary could find a rented flat or place which was suitable, and reasonable rent. Putting all our negotiable assets in War Bonds, I would certainly not advise investing a nickel in an older house at this time. Finally, it is hard to put a cash value on what it means to me to have my wife and baby in our own home, a nice one, a healthy one, in a excellent district, where our running expenses will be very low for a while just after the war, at no real disadvantage. Let me know what you think of my remarks.

You will be glad to know that the War Office, after 4 yrs, have begun to show quite a bit of interest in my plotter. Nothing definite yet, but they are nibbling. Am in a position to send you another £40 as soon as I can get down to the Paymaster, within a day or two. They finally kicked through with an expense claim which has hung fire since October. Bert Hayward & I had a Turkish bath last week, he returned to my club for dinner after. Dick Farrow was up for a night too. Letter & cake from Haggmans this week. Well dear,

LOVE to you BOTH, .................................GER.

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