Vietnam Letters #23

Postmark 19th February, 1970

Myack St.
Berridale

18/2/70

Dear Jock,

Well I have eventually got around to writing. Received your letter about 3 or 4 weeks ago and pleased to hear from you. I have been kept rather busy hay carting for Ellis wood for myself and now back on the farm and next week to stick into the crutching. I done a week over at Frying Pan gasing rabbits, Charles bought one of those little smoker engines that runs on zoom and diesel she really sends the bunnies out of the burrows. Of course with the help of Big Nick and Soot I thinned a few out. Done 3 weeks with Ellis carting hay that’s when the $ were rolling in 15/- an hour and 14 to 15 hours a day. I suppose you are putting a few bucks together over there saved past $1000 yet. Have you been posted to a unit yet? That’s when you be able to mow a few of those V.C. down and earn yourself a couple of stripes.

Everything over here is quite OK. Everybody in good health and working hard except for (Sughter?) she’s still having a merry old spree. He gets crook from the booze and comes up to Charles for a few days medical care from Stella then back on it again just when he’s getting right again. He told me he wrote you a couple of letters I bet they were full of bullshit telling you how hard he works and so busy he is.

What’s the weather like over there? Here it hasn’t been too bad, a few hot days around the 90 degree and we have had some good rain the last couple of weeks.

Sandra and the kids haven’t come back yet from Canberra. I thought they might come up last weekend with Rex and Mrs for the Dalgety show but I didn’t see them there. It wasn’t such a marvoules¬† show bout the same as it always is. Stella had a letter from Sandra a few weeks ago saying that she’s been a bit crook but I guess you know about it she soon get on the mend.

The Mrs has got a job. She’s looking after old Pop. He is that Yanky Robinson father in law you know the fellow that bought Cliff Scarletts place. We have been staying up here for about 5 weeks now. Not a bad job $26.00 and all the tucker you can eat. So it’s a big saving on my pocket.

This Yank and his Mrs are in England. He’s having an operation on his nose for Cancer. The only thing I don’t like about being here is that they have got 2 cats and a dog that sleep inside of a night and shit and piss everywhere. If you leave anything laying on the floor the bloody dog chews it up boots, cigs and etc. It’s a real mongrel but I trim it up with a few hidings and have just about got it broken in now and takes notice what I tell it to do. One cat sleep on Pop’s bed and the other on the lounge. Its costs then about $5 a week to feed all these mongs. Christ this bloke got some bloody good gear. Shotguns, rifles, radios and cameras usually two of everything. I try them all out and use his Toyota jeep and go spot light shooting. I think he’ll be coming back in about two weeks time if he’s well enough after his operation.

Richard is just started walking he crashes quite a few times but hes very determined to keep going. He can say car, gee gee, and lots of other words and likes pulling everything out of cupboards and making a bloody mess but he’s a dear little man.

Well it’s about bedtime so I’d better finish up 11.30PM. Hope this note finds you fit and well and you can read it.

Stella is doing a great job caretaking watering the lawns, dusting and sweeping the flies out, anyway it’s something to keep her amused and keeping an eye on the place.

P.S. Please write soon lets know how things are going . Good Luck from your fond brother Sandy.

P.S. Don’t think I’ll bother about tape recorder haven’t got enough $$$

Postmark 20th February, 1970

25 Blacket St.
Downer
A.C.T. 2602

(Thurs) 19-2-70

My Darling Jock, 

How are you my Darling? Dad is feeling a bit better to-day and has been sitting up in the chair as he is sick of lying down and he has been able to have some soup and some ice cream to eat, and has been drinking cocoa and lemonade. It’s about time too, as he went for about 3 days without anything to eat.

Mum, the boys and I had our injections yesterday and the boys took it quite well, John and Mike didn’t cry but Brian did a bit but not for long. Michael was very good he just sat there and didn’t even move. But the after afftects weren’t the best our arms were very stiff and sore, although it seems to have effected my arm more than anyone elses. Mum said that hers wasn’t too bad, but mine was acking like mad in bed last night until I took a tablet to ease the pain and it is still fairly sore and stiff to-day. Mike had a very restless night last night too so his arm must have been hurting him.

We saw Ron and Rosemary over at the shops yesterday and Ron said to take the car around last night and he will have a look at it, but he doesn’t know just when he will get the time to work on it as he is fairly busy. So I went around at about 7.15 and stayed for a while and then Ron drove me home at about 8.30 but on the way home his car kept breaking down. He couldn’t understand it. It just kept stopping and then after about a minute, when he tried it, it would start again. It happened about 3 times on the way home, so I suppose it will be a while longer before he gets my car done now as he will be working on his own. I just said my car but really I mean your car.

When I was over the street yesterday I ran into Ron, I can’t remember his other name, at first I couldn’t even remember his first name. You know him well though, he is a Surveyor he used to work for George Hamm and you used to work with him, when you were working for the Council in Cooma. He is working down here now (still surveying) there isn’t enough work around Cooma for him now and he and his men are living in a Caravan park down here and he goes home on weekends. He said that he just couldn’t bear to be away from home as long as you are as just being away for a week is bad enough for him.

Well Darling I must close now as I had better put tea on as Mum well be home from work soon, hoping to hear from you soon.

Your everloving wife,

Sandra.

xxxxx. I love you.

Postmark 22nd February, 1970

25 Blacket St.
Downer
A.C.T. 2602

(Fri) 20-2-70

My Dearest Jock,

How are you my Dearest? I haven’t had a letter from you for a few days, but I guess you are busy or have been out in the bush. I had a terrible fright last night when I heard that two soldiers were killed near Nui Dat (on the news) and they announced one soldier’s name but not the other one and I was afraid that it was you. They also said that 37 were injured and I hope that you weren’t one of them. I went into the bedroom and cried my eyes out, for I just couldn’t bear anything at all to happen to you Darling.

We all had the Hepetitis injections for nothing, for when the Dr. called to see Dad to-day he said that the blood test didn’t show Hepetitis and he said that he has got a Gastric Flu. Which we were all relieved about of course, because Hepetitis is quite a bad thing and sometimes takes 1 to 2 years to get over. My arm is still quite sore from the injection, but not quite as stiff as yesterday.

Mum has been sleeping with me since Dad has been sick and she has had to walk to work too as our car is around at Ron’s and I don’t think I would like to try driving the Nissan as I’m not the best at driving our car, which I am used to. Oh! Darling, sometimes I wonder how I am going to get through the rest of this nightmare (being without you I mean). Although sometimes I wish it was just a bad dream and I would wake up and find you here with me. But I suppose there are hundreds of other wives feeling the same way I do.

I had a letter to-day from the Family Liason Centre of the Army giving me their address here in Canberra and their phone number for if I ever needed their help or advice and they also said that someone would be calling on me soon to see if they could help in any way. The letter was readdressed from Berridale so if they call there I won’t be home, but I don’t seem to be able to do much work, without having to rest after it.

21-2-70

To-day is Ann Cameron’s birthday and Mum rang Dubbo this morning for her birthday and to see if John was coming down for the Canberra Show which is on next weekend. But Shirley was the only one at home, the others had left early this morning to go to Armidale, where John is shearing in the show there to-day and Shirley said that they won’t be down for the Canberra Show as there is another Show on somewhere else next weekend that they are going to.

Bev and Dick called here this morning. Kelly is a dear little thing and gets around very well and I don’t think it will be long before she will be walking on her own and she is only 9 1/2 months.¬†

Brian isn’t doing too badly with his toilet training, but he has a few accidents. Both John and Mike have been out of nappies completely for some time now, and we only have a wet bed about once or twice a week.

Gee I love you Darling and am so much in love with you that it hurts, but it is a good hurt though and my love just grows and grows for you and I’m sure that you know that I will always be faithful to you my Darling. It make me very happy to know, that you know, that I belong to you completely. Because I think that trust is the most important thing between two people who are in love, as we are.

Well I must finish up for now Darling and write a letter to your mother as I have owed her a letter for quite a while now.

May God Bless and protect you,

Yours forever,

Sandra. XXXXXX

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