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Friday, 6 August 2010

1947 October

October. No fight in Russians for 15 years. Milk, half pint a day. World Food conference at HGS. 75 and never seen a film. Nothing so tiring as being polite.

Saturday, Oct 4th
Last week has been beautiful autumn weather and this morning we took our dinner out to the lane past Nettlebed on the Oxford road, making a fire and cooking it in a billycan. The lane is always lovely with berries in the autumn and we got some fine branches of spindle.
    The date of the last meeting (probably) of foreign ministers is drawing near and it seems most unlikely that will succeed in unifying Germany, and so we shall have a frontier drawn across the country on which the U.S. and Russia will confront each other. Calculated that the Russians cannot fight any major war for 15 years, but the division of Germany will give the Germans endless opportunities of further bedevilling the relations between East and West if they think they can profit by it. Reading (Edward) Crankshaw’s Russia and the Russians.

Monday, Oct 13th
Milk still very short. Getting half a pint a day. Not enough for a cup of tea when you want it. Eating our porridge with honey, but this will not last for ever either. Had some bangers made of whale meat, worse than usual, but whale stew quite good. Should get satisfaction that in the social revolution we are going through more milk is being drunk per head of population and the children are getting more, but should like to have enough milk to have it with my breakfast all the same.
              Still no rain to speak of; noted particularly the brilliant colour of the hawthorn leaves this year.

Sunday, Oct 19th
Palestine to be petitioned under U.N.O. scheme. We say we are not going to enforce partition but shall withdraw. Whereat the Arabs have said they will fight the Jews.…. Here the U.S. and U.S.S.R. agree - possible because U.S.S.R. hopes to see maximum disturbance in Middle East.
              Nora has been to Dorothy Wade and thinks she may borrow a milking goat for next winter. Reserve judgement on this.

Sunday, Oct 26th
Molly and Margaret Burton came for weekend. Molly full of her farm at Roel Hill, Winchcombe. Margaret full of hatred for government and very cranky. Said if general election went for socialists intended to leave country, England nothing but a concentration camp; but as Nora says if she left England she would have nothing to grumble at! Molly has bought a pony and harness at Broadway and had a wagonette thrown in for nothing. We had a great bonfire and burnt hedge clippings; I creosoted fowl house.
              On Thursday the school was closed and we had a teachers’ conference on the world food situation. First an economist from Oxford on the economics of English farming; then old Sir George Stapleton, the biologist, on world fertility, the dangers of mono-cropping etc etc, a grand old man, 75 yet planning for 60 years ahead; never been to a cinema in his life. He arrived in the middle of a film called 24 Square Miles, a survey of an area in N. W. Oxfordshire and examination of rural depopulation, but would not go in. I acted as chairman, told the assembled teachers that when the VI Form heard they were all coming they remarked that there were good cellars and it was near Nov 5th.
              After this we had a Dr Frost to supper and took him to the Town Hall for a “Doctor in the Wireless Box” evening. It went off very well. How different from the distinguished top-hatted medicos of my boyhood. Very exhausted after all this. Nothing more tiring than being polite to masses of people.

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