November 24th 1939 – Madras


Dined with the Wilts in the Fort the other night. Did us very well on Pate de Foi Gras, asparagus and champagne. Played darts afterwards and I defeated Jack Newton, their QM and champ. Colonel Freeland observed doing a very smart hornpipe with himself. Last night dined out with Jimmy Smythe and Mrs, who are going to U.P. (Uttar Pradesh) as Military Secretary.

More hornpiping by the Col. ably supported by the others, and Rangru was made to conduct the band. I let off a brace of marriage bombs, which didn’t go down too well.

Went up for half an hour on Thursday morning. Started off to do landings and take offs, but I mucked up my turns on the preliminary circuit, and spent the morning doing turns instead. Tyndall-Biscoe is a Yogi I beleive, and dines on orange juice and spring onions or some such combination. As long as he doesn’t go into the 7th transportation at 2000 feet.

I look after the feeding and its some job keeping the Consamer up to the mark. He sabotaged last night’s dinner, by making oyster patties out of oyster paste. Am getting a bit bored with this job. How I shall ever last 20 years of it I shudder to think. And what the hell will I be like at the end of it – heaven forbid that I ever become a ‘typical army officer’, especially an Indian army one. Waziristan was alright – and it didn’t much matter where your puttees ended – but here, Christ! The Navy’s the place for me – I always was interested in ships and its a skilled job, whereas what I do now – its useful value is approximately nothing!

We go off to camp on Wednesday, so that might shake my ideas up a bit. We never got that dinner out of Tingle, the Cement King, as he rang up and said the Vamp was ill with fever – like hell. Jerry and I went and called on Westmoreland-Woods the other day – one daughter by the name of Elizabeth. With great difficulty obtained a whisky and soda and left.

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