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Hanger Hill

The Goodlet diaries: Week 34

“After dinner took an hour’s stroll over Hanger Hill and was amazed at the busy, brightly lighted community where I remember a country lane.” Week 34 sees Goodlet’s return to Ealing from Hampshire…’a poor exchange’, he thought. See the history section for the previous 33 weeks of our serialisation of his diaries from 80 years ago.

August 1936

Saturday, 15.8.36

And so home once more, and TG to find them all well.

Actually rose in time for breakfast this morning and thereafter until lunch lay in a deck chair in the garden and basked in the truly glorious sun. Today, the day my holiday ends, would of course be the finest of the whole year.

In the afternoon accompanied Miss Grundy to the station to meet Miss Wild. How I envied her arriving on such a beautiful day.

Then, after tea, I bade a most reluctant farewell to the party and set off for the station, Grundy very decently accompanying me.

Arrived in Southampton, I duly boarded the 6.30 which was late and we set off well, a heavy 12 coach train headed by Sir Persant. I must say I like the looks and feel of these big Arthurs at the head of a long train. We were getting well into our stride when we were checked outside Eastleigh and, after a long delay, shunted back into the platform road there and all the Winchester passengers turfed out to wait for another train. We were told that there had been an accident to an up boat train from Micheldever.

We then set off again and to my extreme pleasure took the Romsey road through Chandler’s Ford. Son hour and three quarters after we had left it, I passed through it once more, and an unusual sight it must have been for that station to see a great 12 coach train with an Arthur go tearing through. The place looked fine in the evening sun.

Greatly to my surprise we did not take route up through Andover, but continued due west to Salisbury. This was indeed a treat, as I have never been there before. We arrived at 7.55, when Sir Persant came off one end and Camelot came on at the other and we set off towards London. The sun was setting over the plain magnificently as we left at 8.2 and the engine made magnificent running. Times were: Andover 8.41 pm; Whitchurch, 8.49; Basingstoke, 9/9.11; Woking 9.24. From here our run was spoiled by constant adverse signals and our arrival at Waterloo was at 10.24.
And so home after a glorious holiday to find all well.

Sunday, 16.8.36

Put in a fair spot of routine work last night, so that it was 5.40 when I got to be on the couch. The latter, by the way, has returned from the renovators and is marvellously improved. Was wakened with breakfast in bed, and the news that Bob Rice and his wife were coming to spend the afternoon with us.
They duly turned up, and he does not look a day older than in 1917. His wife is charming. The Aunts were here also, and so were Kidd, Joan and all the family together with Ruby (MacDonald); so it was a jolly social afternoon.

Wrote Miss Grundy and also a letter to Jeanette and went down to Ealing to post the letter. It was brilliant sunshine and I thought the place a poor exchange for Hampshire.

I see the cause of the upset on the SR last night was that the up Channel Island boat express, the train immediately ahead of us, took fire and four coaches were completely gutted.

Monday, 17.8.36

The Boys who have volunteered to run the house this week gave me breakfast in bed and was up and dressed by 11.30, which was quite good. Buzz unfortunately cut his hand rather badly after lunch, which handicaps him very much poor chap.

After tea I saw Ruby off to Brighton, where she is to spend a few days with Ine. Went round to the Aunts’ and had a second tea there. Then on to the library and so home. After dinner took an hour’s stroll over Hanger Hill and was amazed at the busy, brightly lighted community where I remember a country lane.

Not much news save the usual bloody doings in Spain, where the fortunes of war continue to oscillate.

I forgot to note yesterday the lamented death of Sir Henry Lytton, the great D’Oyly Carte actor. Now, all this is a curious coincidence: when I have returned in the train from S’hptn after seeing Jeanette off in 1933 I read a long article by him in the Star on his life; and today she lands from another journey. And tonight on the wireless they gave The Man from Toronto the first play I took her to in 1928 at the Leas Cliff Pavilion.

Tuesday, 18.8.36

Did not make quite so good a start this morning in spite of having breakfast in bed. The Youngsters have bought a fine dart board and I spent the early part of the afternoon teaching them how to play.

At four took the Mater round to the Davies’ and thence took the train to Earls Court, from whence I strolled via High Street, Kensington and the Round Pond to Paddington in an endeavour to recapture some of the 1928 (second half) spirit; bit for once it did not come off. Saw little of interest at Paddington, save the novelty of red District coaches running through on the new service to Barking, and 2-4-OT 3592; one of this class is a rara avis these days. Walked home via Queen’s Road and did it in 90 minutes; not too bad.

Much darts after dinner and then took home Miss Hodges at 11pm.

Spain is just as bad as ever, and three people were murdered in Jaffa last night. What a generation.

Wednesday, 19.8.36

Again slept until lunch time, despite breakfast in bed. Afterwards was busy preparing, with the Mater, for the Rices’ visit. They duly came to tea, but did not stay to dinner, owing to a pressure of engagements.

Tonight after dinner went over to Kidd’s and spent a very jolly evening with them.

Today the Doc. rang up and invited the Mater and Pater to join the all at Steyning for a week. This is very jolly, and will give them a change from this place.

Thursday, 20.8.36

Made a fairly early start this morning and was down at the bank by 12.30. Home to lunch and busy on routine work and shopping for the Mater until she and the Pater left for Brighton at 4.15. If this weather last they should have a very jolly party at Steyning.

Fuzz and I went shopping in Ealing after tea and I received my snapshots of Romsey. I fear they are very disappointing. After dinner Kidd, Howard and JD arrived for yachting, and with Fuzz we sailed one very good match which I was fortunate enough to win. LH then rather cramped things by turning up with his fiance. She is, all the same, a charming girl.

The company left early. Buzz came in from paying some visit about twelve, and so ends an eventful day.

Friday, 21.8.36

The Boys brought me tea at ten, after which I slept until lunch time. Lay on my bed and read a detective story until about 6, when I went to the Library and had the misfortune to pay 1s in fines. Then on to the Aunts’ for supper. Home by 9pm and wrote the Mater and Jock and went down to Ealing to post the letters.

Called on Kidd on the way home and spent a pleasant hour with them. Home by twelve to find the Boys’ friends, whom they’ve been entertaining all day, just leaving. I think they’ve all had a good day.

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