Isobel Addison’s diary November 1931

Sunday, 1st November, 1931

Wilfred drove Mikey to St. Anne’s, Mike was serving.  Chris and Brigit left about 10.  Mr. and Mrs. Wise came to tea and we hatched revolutionary plots.

Monday, 2nd November, 1931

Got up at 6.15, cooked breakfast for Kate and Isobel.  They went to town in Stella’s Ford, but it took ages to start and they didn’t get off till 8 o’clock.  After lunch and hen feeding and letter writing Pa and Mike and I drove over and had tea with the  Aunts.

Tuesday, 3rd November, 1931

A terribly windy day, screechingly so – beastly.  Dear old Mikey left for school  again.  Wilfred drove him to Reading for the 6.8.  As usual it seems very desolate without him.  I wrote some letters and Pa and I fixed up my hen accounts for the year. Pouring rain at night.

Wednesday, 4th November, 1931

I went along after breakfast to the Bungalow to see Liz about a message from Brigit and found them busy making sweets.  The wind suddenly dropped and the sun came out and it was like a spring day.  Cooked lunch and spent most of the afternoon moving Kate’s things from her room to the spare room and started getting her room ready for Mary who is coming tomorrow. Afterwards, about 6, I went and saw Mrs Willmott to get her final “instructions”.  She seemed very tired poor dear.  Came home and Pa and I had supper.  He spent most of the evening writing and I read   and came to bed in pretty good time.  Had a p.c. from Mikey and wrote him one.

Thursday, 5th November, 1931

I went over to Mrs. Willmott’s while Pa was finishing his breakfast and helped her to finish off – Wilfred took her down to the station for the 9.56.  Came home and fed hens and did a bit more tidying and moving.  Cooked dinner and after feeding hens got Mary’s room quite ready.  Posted Chris and Brigit’s parcel of washings etc., Mary came in about 5.30.  We had tea and she went to practise.  She came in about 9 and we had supper and she worked and Pa wrote and I played patience.   Kate rang up just after 11 about bringing her Russian friend down here tomorrow.

Friday, 6th November, 1931

Got up about 10 to 8.  Gave Mary breakfast by 8.30 and she went off to her practising.  She came in to dinner at one  and was out practising all afternoon. Isobel telephoned that she had a bad cold and Quigley was sending her home. I lit her fire and made her room nice.  She arrived soon after 3 and soon went to bed.  Took her up tea, wrote to Mikey.  Got our tea and after it Mary went to practise again.  Got supper for Isobel and ourselves and afterwards sat reading and talking.  It seems to be a continual round of meals etc.

Saturday, 7th November,  1931

Got breakfast by 8.15 – Mary went by the 9.55.  Took Isobel’s breakfast up to her.  A glorious day, sunny and spring like.  Wrote a long letter to Mrs. Willmott. Got Kate’s room ready.  Cooked dinner.  Mary and Kate got in by 1.30. Isobel came down for dinner. Mary left for Newbury till tomorrow.  The girls and Pa and I had a long discussion on reorganisation of the Labour Party!  Had supper about 7 and more talk – re Kate’s “career” etc.!

Sunday, 8th Nov, 1931

No church. Got up at 8 – beastly day – and pouring wet – very misty.  Spent all morning cooking. Irving came down with two Russian friends of his and Kate’s who could neither speak nor understand English. Spent the day having meals, cooking and washing up and trying to make ourselves understand each other.  Very pleasant really, awfully nice men. They left about 7.30. Mary returned about 4.35.  Spent a quiet evening, Kate and I did some dyeing.

Monday, 9th November, 1931

Got up before 7 and took Kate tea and got her breakfast and she left by the 8.20.  Cooked breakfast for Mary and she went by the 9.1.  Pa and Isobel came down for theirs after I took them their tea.  Fed hens, made beds and doctored  my little sick hen. Straightened up the larder and things generally, cooked lunch and was rather lazy after it.  Sent Kate’s gloves and jersey to her.  Got tea for 4.30 when Mary came in.  After tea Pa changed and went to town for the Labour Party Show  – Isobel sewed and I played patience.  Mary came in from practising about 8.15 and we had supper and continued our various occupations.  Came to bed about 11.30 after a discussion on Socialism!

Tuesday, 10th November, 1931

Got up at 6.30 and took Isobel a cup of tea.  Got her breakfast and mine and she left by the 7.50. Got Mary’s breakfast and she went to her usual practise. Made beds, fed hens and looked to the sick one.  Cooked lunch.  Mary didn’t come in till 1.30, she left again about 2.30.  I fed hens and did up Isobel’s parcel and one for Mrs. Willmott.  Wrote to Michael and was then lazy by the fire.  Welwyn called for eggs. Pa got home by the 5.12 and we had some tea.  Mary   had tea out and came in for supper soon after 8.  Afterwards we played dummy bridge  – came to bed late, had a bath and washed my hair. Pa said the Labour Party Show was a wash-out. I am glad I had enough presentiment   of such a thing and did not go!

Wednesday, 11th November, 1931

Mary had breakfast about 8.15 and went to practise.  Pa and I had ours after and he went to town by the 9.56.  I went over to Mary’s and listened in to part of the Armistice Service at the Cenotaph.  Came home and got lunch and she went out to practise again.  As we were finishing tea Nell came and we had a nice chat by the fire.  Mary came in again about 8, we had supper and she wrote letters and I tried to make up a speech.  Pa got home by the 9.26 – here about 10.45.  We were rather late to bed – Pa had much to tell about his visit to LL George but there was not much in it and I feel more than ever that in spite of all his friendliness it would be fatal to try to work with him.  A great misfortune that he is not to be trusted because there is no doubt that he could lead.

Thursday, 12th November, 1931

Mary went to town by the 9 a.m.  After all my chores with hens, beds etc., I prepared a speech for Chalfont St. Peter.  Pa was busy writing.  We had a light lunch and I then went to Women’s Section meeting which I succeeded in addressing – rather simple I’m afraid but I can’t yet attempt very deep  matters.  Got home about 4.45, had tea, Mary went to practise and came in at 8 when we had supper   and played dummy bridge.

Friday, 13th November, 1931

Up at 7.45, cooked Mary’s breakfast and had my own and left Pa to sleep till just after nine when I took his breakfast up to him.  Read papers, fed hens and saw to the sick one –   made beds etc.  Got dinner ready.  Tried on my evening frock which I haven’t worn for about a year.  Mary came to dinner at one and went to practise at two with a friend.  Pa and I arranged ourselves and left about 3.15 for Swindon.  Got to Mrs. Beck’s and had tea. Isobel arrived about 8 and we all went to the baths.  A huge crowd, all very welcoming. There was a band, dancing and speeches.   It was really exceedingly  pleasant and happy.  We had some tea at Mrs. Beck’s again and left for home about 12  and arrived about 2.30.  Wilfred had sat up so that Mary shouldn’t be lonely. We all went up to bed about 3.15.     I had a bath and got to bed by 4.

Saturday, 14th November, 1931

Got up in time to get Isobel off by the 8.20, then gave Mary her breakfast, had mine and took Pa’s up to him about 9.15.   Mary went to practise. I did my usual jobs and cooked dinner.  After dinner Mary left for Hemel Hempstead.  Fed hens and did a few odds and then both Pa and I settled by the study fire and had a most gorgeous and satisfactory sleep. Pa got tea about 5.45 and spent most of the evening writing.  I went on being thoroughly lazy  Kate and Isobel got home about 11.30 and we had tea and sat talking till rather late.

Sunday, 15th November, 1931

I hadn’t the   heart to make Wilfred get up and take me to church.  Kate and I had our breakfast about 9, took Pa his at 10.  Isobel slept and I took her tea etc., about 11.30.  Cooked dinner, fed hens, wrote to Michael and Mrs Willmott. Mary got home about 4.30, she went to practise afterwards and we played bridge. Isobel very busy with laundry and dyeing.

Monday, 16th November, 1931

Got up in good time. Cooked breakfast. Kate and Bel went by the 8.20.   Mary and Pa and I had ours and she went by the 9.1.  I did lots of chores and Pa wrote and then we went and spent an hour or so at the bungalow.  After dinner and hen feeding etc., I got the tea ready and then lazed until Mary came in at 4.45.  Played dummy bridge in the evening.  Mrs. Wise rang up at lunchtime.

Tuesday, 17th November, 1931

All as usual, same old round.  Welwyn called for eggs. Mrs. Morton of Great Kingshill called after lunch about Labour Party jumble sale.  Played bridge after supper and sat up far too late over it.

Wednesday, 18th November, 1931

Usual day – nothing exciting – meals and chores – hens, letters.  Wrote to Mike and Brigit.  Played bridge after supper.  Mary out to tea.

Thursday, 19th November, 1931

Mary went to town by the 9.1 and Pa by the 9.35.  I did some tidying up this morning and started on making my old winter coat into a housecoat – don’t know whether it will ever be finished!  A very nice mild day with quite a deal of sunshine.  Mary got home about 3.35.  I wrote to Mrs. Hedley Morgan re my cockerels  and after tea when Mary went to practise I wrote to Mrs. Hilton and Mrs. Easeman.  Played patience and did  crossword with Mary after supper.  Pa got home soon after 10 p.m. he had been paying many calls in town, Lansbury (?) etc.,   B?, Daily Express    and Daily Herald.  Rather satisfactory on the whole.

Friday, 20th November, 1931

Had a very busy day cooking, made pastry, boiled  bacon etc., for the weekend.  Mary did her usual jobs.  I spent a good deal of time over the hens.  Pa left by the 3.57 for London and is staying the night there.  Kate got home soon after 10 as she has tomorrow off.  She has had her £1 rise these last  three weeks.

Saturday, 21st November, 1931

Mary went to town by the 9.1.  Wilfred met Daddy at Reading at 9.50.  A lovely day, bright sunshine.  Mary came home for dinner and then went riding.  Kate and Pa did some gardening.  Isobel got home about 3.30.  In the evening we played bridge.  Ordered poultry food today.

Sunday, 22nd November, 1931

Mary and I went to St. Anne’s at 8.  After breakfast she went for a walk and came back about 2. Stella and Mrs. Mack came in the afternoon and left about 4.30.  The Unwins and Cheshires, friends of theirs, came about 4.30 and stayed till 7.50.  Very pleasant afternoon and evening.  Foggy damp day.

Monday, 23rd November, 1931

Kate and Isobel left by the 8.20 and Mary by the 9.1.  She is staying the night with friends.  It took me half the morning to make  beds and tidy the rooms.  Pa and I had sandwiches and coffee by the study fire for lunch.  I’m afraid we both slept after it!  I fed hens and wrote to Mrs. Willmott, May, Margaret and Michael. After supper we went along to the Bungalow and spent a couple of hours by their fireside.  Home about 10.30. Had some tea, played patience,   had a bath and am now at 1.30 a.m. getting into bed.  Pa has been busy all day writing an article on the Wheat Quota for the Daily Herald.

Tuesday, 24th November, 1931

Pa and I had breakfast about 8.30.  After hen feeding etc., and bed making I lengthened my best black frock and machined it up.  Got lunch.  Welwyn called for eggs and bought poultry food and took away my two cockerels for Mr. Hedley Morgan.   Mary came in about 2.30 and we had tea at 4.30.    I then pinned up my coat ready for sewing.  After supper I fell asleep in my chair, most enjoyable, while Pa was writing his Daily Express article.  When I woke it was 1.30 and he had just finished copying it out.  We adjourned to the kitchen and over tea and bread and butter I read the article and we made several improvements.  Came to bed and had a bath – result – just getting into bed at 4.40 a.m. and very wide awake!  Pa is now asleep! Mary was out for supper and sleeping the night with her friend at Prestwood.

Wednesday, 25th November, 1931

Pa went to town by the 9.1.  I spent a good deal of time with the hens and attending to the sick one – also cooking.   Mary and Rachel came in after breakfast and fetched wood for Mary’s fire.  After lunch I got Chris and Brigit’s room ready – wrote some letters – had tea.  Chris and Brigit arrived in the Austin about 5.30 and I made them some tea. We had supper about 8 and Pa came in by the train arriving at  8.30.  Mary was very busy writing letters and ironing a skirt and we played bridge.

Thursday, 26th November, 1931

Mary went to town by the 9.1 and came home for lunch.     Brigit and I spent a good time in the kitchen.  After lunch and hen feeding we sat by the drawing room fire. Chris spent most of the day cleaning up the Austin.  After tea we played bridge while Mary was away practising until supper time and then Pa read  and we others played bridge again.  About  midnight I made a fish pie for breakfast!  A very wet day.

Friday, 27th November, 1931

Got Mary’s breakfast and took tea to the others.  She went to practise and we had our breakfast – fed hens and saw to the sick one.  Machined my coat, Brigit pressed it and my black dress.  Pa and Chris went to town after a sandwich lunch and I fed hens and we went to Wycombe to do a little shopping – very wet day – home soon after  4.  Wrote to Mikey and sent him 10/-.  Tidied and got supper.  Pa and Chris and Mary all came home by the 6.27.  After supper we played bridge   and Mary went to practise till about  10.  Pa had a letter from Lord Muddybuggerbrook saying he wouldn’t publish his articles at present.  This is “honour” I suppose – but socialists are not supposed to be dealt with honourably.

Saturday, 28th November, 1931

Mary went to town by the 9.35. She meant to go by the 9.1 but didn’t get up in time.  I got up and woke her at 8. After breakfast and hen feeding and all the other jobs Brigit and I got dinner ready. Mary got in about 2.15 and had some dinner and went riding. I saw to the hens and we had a cup of tea and then played bridge.  Mary got in about 5 and had some tea and then we played more bridge.  I cooked supper and Mary went out to a show in the village and we again played bridge till bedtime.  Katie and Isobel stayed in town for a party  with their Polish pals and are coming tomorrow morning.

Sunday, 29th November, 1931

Didn’t go to church.  Mary went to Prestwood.   I got up at 7.30 and took tea round.  Got breakfast and cut sandwiches for C and B and did up their provender.  They left just before 10.  Foggy morning but the sun won through and it was a lovely day till about 3.30 when the fog came down again.  Kate and Isobel arrived at 1, Pa met them after going to Mrs. Wise to get some paper witnessed.  I gathered wallflowers and violets and marigolds this morning.  Katy had a cold and felt seedy and went to bed early.  Mary out to tea at Mrs. Bonquet’s.

Monday, 30th November, 1931

Got up before 7.  Kate stayed at home, Isobel went for the 7.50 but missed it owing to difference in clocks.   I gave Mary her breakfast and she left for the 9.1.  I did her laundry and made all the beds.  Took Kate’s breakfast up to her.  A very foggy nasty day.  The hens outdid themselves by laying 48 eggs.  Wrote to Mrs. Willmott, Mrs. MacIntyre and Meg.  Kate and I had tea about 4.30 and sat by the fire a bit. Got supper ready and tidied ourselves.  Mary came in about 6.45 and Pa and 7.30  After supper Mary went to bed and we played bridge and came to bed about 11.30