Friday, 28 February 2014

28 February 1934 - Mary to Terrick


Wednesday 10.45

I have just received a message that a gentleman with a "Z" in his name 'phoned last night to ask me to return my Albert Hall Ticket so enclose it herewith.  I hope that's O.K.  I suppose you didn't get my yesterday's letter until late last night.  How did the rehearsal go?  After the most lovely English lecture I didn't feel like going to Andrew Pears' a bit.  But it was quite nice when I got there - we ate ham sandwiches and talked about me, I'm afraid.  I got back at 10.45.

Masses more Poly. Literature arrived with the post this morning - I should simply love to go to Lucerne - but it'll depend on Norah - and I also can't get rid of the feeling that a Poly. holiday would definitely lack something if we weren't provided with the right "Polytechnic Representative in Residence"! - And I've decided on going for 2 weeks this year - because you're just getting into everything at the end of the first!

- Why I'm expending energy on two nice newsy letters straight after each other, I can't imagine.  So as not to waste a stamp perhaps.

- Shall see you on Thursday, then, shan't I? - Best of luck -

With lots of love to my Poly. rep.


Mary  xxx

Thursday, 27 February 2014

27 February 1934 - Mary to Terrick



Tuesday. 11.15

- I found you last newsy letter somewhat of a whited sepulchre!  But I suppose you're very pressed for time this week.

After due deliberation I think I can manage Thursday - it'll mean skipping French for two weeks running - but I feel I ought to return the compliment.  I catch a tube train from Charing X, do I? to Mornington Crescent - and will wait in the hall for you afterwards.  I hope it won't be over too late, will it?  Because I'm going to see A. Pears tonight - and that'll mean two late nights this week.

Nors came over to tea yesterday - and asked if I didn't find you a bit "dull"? - Because, apparently, you never say anthing interesting to her! - I truthfully replied that I had discovered you to be many things - but never "dull"!

I shall always remember last Saturday and how we became commercial!

Love,    Mary   xxx

Sunday, 23 February 2014

23rd February 1934 - Terrick to Mary


23rd February 1934

Dear Heart,

I don't try to find original beginnings.  I have so many things to call you that rise up in my mind that you may find them constantly different.

If you had not asked for the letter to arrive tomorrow morning I should have written yesterday.

By the time you get this you will have "done your stuff"; the first performance, the worst, will have been got through.  I hope you do it well.  I think you will because you are pretty confident on the stage.

As a return ticket is the same price as a single one there will be no advantage for me in making a third for Norah.  Also probably I shall be thus able to see more of you to talk to alone.

Very likely you intended your postscript about "feeling differently etc" to be quite plain, but I, in the course of thinking constantly of it, have found about half a dozen possible meanings to it.  So I shall bring it up for discussion when I see you.

Yesterday I finished my two scenes very early and went to see the company do "Abraham Lincoln", free.  The fellow who did Lincoln was splendid.

I came to the conclusion a little time ago that our office (room) was such a mess that it caused us a great waste of time in looking for things.  So yesterday I waited till the Staff Manager went out to lunch and then started in on it.  I made files and cleared drawers, finding, in the process, all sorts of things that I never knew existed, some important, some rubbish, and some doubtful.  When in doubt I scrapped and by the time the S.M. came back I had filled all our four waste paper baskets to overflowing and was throwing things under the table.  Fortunately I had reduced the worst part of the room to order and he was very pleased, so I went on.  I made three dusters so black that they made more dirt than they removed.  I had time to do two thirds or so of the total job and shall do the rest to-day and to-morrow.

9.40. at 186.

Now you are on the stage.  If willing you from a distance does any good, you should be all right.

I went down to the Drama League in the lunch hour and changed my books. I got permission to take the one on Play writing out again.  It must be the most detailed book on the subject in existence.  We are allowed three books at a time.  My other two are "Producing Plays" and "Medieval England".  The last is a mine of information for "Robin Hood".

To be working at the thing I like best and to have you not only encouraging me but helping me is my idea of happiness. (It is not so egoistical and one-sided as it sounds.  To do the same to you at the same time would double the happiness).  So if you have good reference books there I will gladly accept your help.  It won't have to start "after Robin Hood", because the references I shall have to consult before a chapter of  Robin can be written are legion. In a play all the "period" is the job of the stage-manage, in a book the author has to put it in himself.

I am going to keep as close to history as possible, and as close to the legends as possible.  Where the two clash I shall fix things as I like.

My notes on the history and life of the time already fill pages and pages of exercise-book sheets.

Yesterday I definitely refused the black slave part.  I suppose really I am going into the production of plays rather late for the moment, now that Edwy is practically finished and the next job is a book.

It was very interesting watching "Oberammergau" being re-set by the producer after it had already been done badly by her assistant.   I was privately bucked to see that two alterations that I had kept saying should be made, were done, of her own accord, by the producer.

You will not miss anything by not seeing "Oberammagau".  It is a bad play, and it might easily have been a good one.  The author seems preoccupied with sex and so misses a deeper point that the play should have made.

Nor is the final "catastrophe" properly led up to.

I'll stop now, - till this time to-morrow when I shall be watching you.  I am glad I am not sitting next to anyone I know.  I'll do my duty through the intervals.  I suppose I'll identify the two Vicaragians by their being two young girls together and by one of them being the prettiest girl in the gallery.  You had better warn them that you have told me to speak to them.  Otherwise they'll be simply too thrilled!  Will they be in uniform?  You can't answer now, so I'll use my ingenuity.

I say, old thing, can you lend me some articles of make-up?  Because if this is the only play I'm going to be in this spring, it will be a waste of money for me to buy a complete set.  If you can lend me some of the things I can buy the rest.  Your grease-paint - if you have any - will be a womans, but rouge and the haresfoot etc. do fine for both.

Something has happened that may spoil the Reunion for us.  We are having the champion Swiss Yodellers over for it and as they do not speak any English and I am the premier German speaker of the firm I have got to look after them from the time of their arrival in England to their departure, including of course their time at the Albert Hall.  However, I'll slide out of it as much as possible.  There can't be much that I can do for them there except translate "bier" into "beer" or "wein" into "wine".  One day I have to take them twice to the B.B.C. to rehearse and perform.  That should be great fun.

Well, I must stop now.  I have to write to an aunt and forward a letter from Eileen to Renny.

Till to-morrow night, dear.

Love & Kisses


Friday, 21 February 2014

21st February 1934 - Mary to Terrick

Face gets spottier and spottier.


Wed: 3.0 p.m.

You know where the road turns off down beside the school.  Well, I'm sitting on the window ledge with my feet out on the parapet - looking up the hill - just basking in the gentle spring sunshine! - Also writing with my fountain pen - hence different writing.

- Thank you for this morning's letter - what will happen when you run out of original beginnings? - I suppose you'll start all over again.  What did you write it for? - the letter, I mean. - just to keep up the current?  I was going to write to you yesterday, too because I've got your ticket to send you - apparently it's the last one in the front of the balcony - but now I believe Genevieve & my little German girl are both coming on Saturday - so I've got to try for two tickets for them.  They'll probably be somewhere behind you - so do see to them in the 20 mins interval - will you?  -

- I think I must have got out of bed the wrong side this morning- the children were dreadful - in the first place I could have sworn you spelt "Pharaoh" - "pharoah"! - & they all fished out their bibles & proved me wrong! - Wherewith I blushed becomingly - because I also made a blunder with "vallies" last week! - perhaps spelling isn't my strong point. - and then the babes nearly wore my patience through with asking silly questions & getting their arithmetic wrong! - & Jean nudges Daphne in the middle of lunch to show her the bud she's fished out of her onion on the end of her fork - my lunches are absolute purgatory unless I've been to see a new "Mickey Mouse" the day before!  Anyway, I feel better now - the window ledge & sun is restoring me to my original state!

I went up to English yesterday evening - (thinking all the way "this time last week") & was dashing for my train at 8.17 - (the first time I've had an early Tuesday this term) when I ran straight into Andrew Pears.  He was running for the train too & said he had a "secret mission" in Richmond so we came down together - when I first ran into him I thought he must be quite mad - but he'd apparently done the same thing on Monday - only missed me because I left early for rehearsal.  Poor kid! - I'm tremendously sorry for him - he's in a rotten state & terrifically worried money & a job. - so now he's worried me too!

I'm going to rehearsal early this evening to do my dead man bit. - I shouldn't be a black slave unless you can help it - you'd catch your death of cold on that draughty little stage & besides, you haven't got the right kind of hair!

Can't you possibly manage the Old Girls dance next Saturday? - Or is it because you know you wouldn't enjoy it? - or because you think you've been to enough with me lately? - I don't mind, of course, if you honestly can't come - but if you don't I shall go with Jack & I hate wasting 4/6. - and it would be horrible after going to Hansel & Grethel in the afternoon - but it doesn't really matter - (in case I sound 'come-hitherish'!)

- This is a horrid weekend - I've got a horribly stupid inside -

write to me - please- 


Thursday, 20 February 2014

20th February 1934 - Terrick to Mary


20th February 1934


Yesterday (Monday) evening our real producer, Miss Pezano, appeared for the first time.  She had been ill.  She is a tartar.  Only about thirty, rather nice looking, with a voice like a machine gun volley.  She has altered the set of the play, cut pages and changed all the business.

In "Good Friday", which she set on Monday, I have go the part of a black slave who wears nothing, I believe, but a loin cloth.  At its next rehearsal I am going to find out for certain how much I wear, because if I have to black myself nearly all over, it is not worth the trouble for only three lines, particularly in view of the rush on the bathroom here at 186.  The play is by Masefield and is in only one act.

All my work on biscuits, coffee and paper cups has been for nothing.  We have been successful in arranging for breakfast to be supplied at Basle.  Still I have learnt a lot from my investigations.

I got "a medal" today for discovering the maker of the bakelite tops to Woolworth's salt and pepper pots.  I spent about an hour oat the telephone in finding out.

This is not a very nice letter because there are stacks of people all round talking.

I must stop now too because I have two three other letters to write in quarter of an hour.

It seems a long time till Saturday.


Terrick  xxx

Sunday, 16 February 2014

16th February 1934 - Terrick to Mary



16th February


I will come on Saturday but I think that two week-ends running is a tall order, so tell your mother that I'm coming this weekend instead of next.  Perhaps I'll come and have tea with you on Sunday week if you are all alone.  I'll come to the play of course.

I hope you will recognise me when we meet, but as I have just got a new pair of glasses perhaps I had better wear a carnation in my button-hole.  My new glasses have no metal in them.

It is a wonderful day to-day.  Too good for office-work.

Have you started the orange psychology book yet?

And - 

When are you going to read - "The Life of the Bee"?

You will love it when you do.  I shan't get you a birthday present till you have read the Christmas one.

I'll be outside Richmond station at 9.15 on Saturday, you know how I am looking forward to it!


Terrick xxx

Saturday, 15 February 2014

15th February 1934 - Terrick to Mary

"The Devonshire" Pub.

Lunch Time

15th February 1934


Last night I went to dinner with my father & mother at the Tasc.  We took two hours and a quarter over it and I suppose it was jolly good.  We did not go to a cinema as neither of them was keen, but we went to Mummy's club and sat and talked about the wedding.  Just the evening my f. likes best!

Did you see the photograph in the "Daily Sketch" of the couple and the account of the wedding in the "Morning Post"?  There will be fuller accounts in the Northern Papers which I will show you when I get them.

What time can I see you this Sunday?  If you are free I shan't go and see Joan and Rosemary.

My mother said you look a nice girl and a jolly girl.  I believe she said very nice and very jolly.  She said you had a high colour.  I told her that was merely shyness that gave you that.


Later                                           Office

I have just taken my watch back to Benson's for overhaul.

I have refused Aunt Katherine's invitation for the 23rd, but the reason why I can't go to that is also valid for not going to "Dangerous Corner" that evening.  I have a rehearsal.  I shall have to make it the 24th and go to Shepperton by train.

In the bus going to Benson's I have been reading up on the subject of Make-up.  I shall have to buy some soon and practise every night making myself up.

Spending Tuesday evening with you made the day perfect.  I enjoyed the wedding so much that anything else would have been bound to be anticlimax. 

I expect you only got my Valentine about midday.  I tried two boxes but the last collection had been made at both of them.

You are the dearest of the dear.

Write soon.

All my Love

Terrick  xxx

15th February 1934 - Mary to Terrick



Have just phoned you up but you arn't in - the number of 2d I waste is terrific - but who cares?

I get off about 9 p.m after dinner on Saturday until Monday morning.

When will you come and stay with me?

If you can't come at all I dare say I shall bear up.

But what I'd like best would be to meet you at Richmond Station at 9.15 p.m, Saturday, February 1934 - and you come home with me until Monday morning - just to make up for half-term weekend.

But it does a woman a tremendous amount of good not to be given in to on occasion - so think twice.  But I thought perhaps you could go to tea with Joan on the Saturday instead of Sunday.

If you think that's too late on Saturday I could stay at school until Sunday morning & then go home with you.



and I'm sorry I'm such a nuisance

Sunday, 9 February 2014

9th February 1934 - Mary to Terrick (postcard)

The Old Vicarage School,
Richmond Hill.
Richmond, 0922.

I phoned Mums yesterday and it'll be quite O.K. to Saturday afternoon - if you really haven't got anything more important to see to.  I'll probably catch the 1.50 from Shepperton and get into Richmond between 1.30 and 1.40 p.m.  I do hope the sun will be out.  Mummy says if you do happen to want a home for the weekend come back with me - as, you'll be glad to hear, your bedroom is now so full of furniture (from Saunton) that you'll have to climb over odd pieces to get into bed!!  But I expect you'll be with the family, won't you?  Anyway, looking forward tremendously to Saturday - I've got a new frock. 

Monday, 3 February 2014

3rd February 1934 - Mary to Terrick

Revered Sir

I realize my brooch is still in your pocket, and, in effect, will let you know every time I want it.

I shall be unable to get off rehearsal on Wed 14th owing to the proximity of the actual performance on that date.  

However, let it not be thought that I am oblivious to the great honour you intended to bestow up on me. I am deeply grateful - but the knowledge therefore that the expenditure thus saved will would enable us to spent two three evenings like last Thursday, cheers me considerably.  (Unless, of course you are attending the Ball anyway).

 - I also regret Tuesday 13th, but as we have also arranged a Shrove party here that day - personal disappointment is avoided.
I prefer to exhibit my unimpeachable facial beauty in person - perhaps from a feeling that no artist can do justice to it.

My condition has so far improved on the receiving of your letter that I feel the "powders" to be unnecessary as yet - but I will immediately notify you of any relapse.

Your subtle discovery about Peter Standish is highly commendable - it hadn't struck me either.

- I feel that the time while the Staff Manager is at lunch might be more profitably employed - from the point of view of "progress" - but doubtless a day of casement cloth and cretonne needs a little light alleviation.

In case I am not favoured with your company before the wedding, allow me to wish you unqualified success in all arrangements - and Eileen every happiness.

Yours respectively

Mary P Ormiston

P.S. have "Hearse" and "Rehearsal" any connection?