December 11th 1944


I manage to fail my decompression test and so get five days leave before going to Andover on the 13th. I say farewell to the Pauls again, having tried unsuccessfully to get Barbara to come to town with me. I arrive on Friday and stay at Nuffield House. I join the ‘Wings Club’ and go round there for a drink and meet an RCAF type, who promises to fix me up with a party on Saturday night with a CWAC. (JDW: Canadian Women’s Army Corps). I then go to ‘Shepheards’ (Hotel), round the bars and to bed, after going up to her room with some tart and then managing to escape because I pretended not to be able to find the necessary £2.

Saturday I hang around “Wings” Club 6.15 to 7.30 but this RCAF aborts, so I go in a furious temper to the “Brass Arse” (JDW: the Queen’s Brasserie in Leicester Square), where I meet one F/L Dudley Greenaway and get talking to a couple of Wrens, but they have to go at 9pm, and I seem to remember we all make a date for Monday night. He then takes me to the “Rye and Dry” and then to the “Brevet Club”. By this time I am a bit tight and have some mistletoe in my breast pocket and give everyone the Croix de Guerre. I meet one Vera Barnes, disguised as a “Driver U.S.” and steal her away from her escort and take her home, to her flat in Bayswater Road. Another Canadian is there with her girl friend and we all have some supper around 1am. We then get busy, but with no success, but she gets busy on me alright but throws us out at 2.45am before the worst has happened – thank God!

That morning I had lunch with R.B.T Morton, Major in 2GR on leave from Italy in his club, the United Services. I recognise him in Nuffield House at breakfast. Sunday I go to the Overseas Club tea dance and collect one Agnes Hutchinson, quarter French, and in the French equivalent of the A.T.S. After it finishes I take her to “Shepheards” where we meet one Clarisse, a friend of hers, and the rest of the evening is carried on in English, Flemish and French. We then adjourn to the Archery pub off Lancaster Gate for sandwiches and beer after lunch. I then take Agnes home across the park, but I might just as well lead a duck home. We all arrange to meet in the pub again today and she gives me her phone number to ring her about taking her out this afternoon first. However, she seems a sexless dame, though God knows why, and only drinks spirits, so I am going to abort myself this time. (JDW: an expensive investment with no chance of a dividend?)

So I am now no nearer my goal than when I came here. Tonight I shall wander round the bars I suppose and home to an early bed. I don’t seem to have any luck at all since Joan. I shouldn’t have concentrated so much on Barbara. I always say to myself that the day will dawn, but it never seems to do so!

 

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