H.M.S. Dido British Sailor's WWII Letter 1942

This letter was written by a British Sailor, who was serving aboard the H.M.S. (Her Majesties Ship) Dido, November 8, 1942. The letter has a censor’s stamp on it. From the letter….

Dear Folks,
   Only another three weeks now have we to put up with this wobbly writing. To go ashore in blues I have had an old jumper split up the seam inside the right sleeve so that I can get it on over the P. of P! So you can see apart from stopping my swimming it has had little effect on my normal activities.
   Since I wrote you last week we have returned to what I shall call our “July base” and have received mail among which I got Dad’s 3rd Sept. letter, Mum’s cards of 4/10 and 11/10 and Alan’s 11/10 card. Now and again I forget to acknowledge Stanley news but they arrive with every sea-mail. In one, I read this week I saw Bert Hook’s picture-I’m surprised he didn’t come to see me; I should’ve if I’d known which ship he was in.
   You have certainly appreciated my accounts of the tours better than I had expected, but my style must suffer greatly alongside the author you mention, although I know I could do much better if we could write whilst it is fresh in our minds giving place name, etc. There are on or two copies of the book you mention on board but I haven’t’ got round to reading it yet.
   The only thing being read and discussed on boards today is the latest invasion, that on the coast of North Africa- and the continued advance of the 8th Army in Egypt. We have already decided that the Navy will make a hash of the evacuation they will attempt- and from there some have worked out the end of Italy and the end of the war!! By the time this reaches you at any rate I hope you can be thinking as optimistically.
   It’s a coincidence you should mention not having any spice loaf this year, Alan, we each had a piece for tea today. It’s the first for months. Of course it’s sawdust compared to “home cake” but with a bit of butter on it is edible. I don’t know where I shall spend Xmas this year but we should have plenty even though it is not first class. I hope you manage to get just a bit more than you want! I’m very much afraid I shan’t be making it this time but we shall surely have a celebration some time in 1943.
   I knew by sight that fellow King you mention, Mother, but that was all. Of course if I’d met him here we should know each other!! I’m not sure but I think I once met him at Fareham
   I‘ve been ashore once this week. We had leave til 11:30 AM so I nearly went down to see Mitch but it would have been a case of hitch-hiking which meant a doubt about getting back in the morning, and as there had been a special notice about being adrift I didn‘t risk it. We stayed the night at a S.A. Hostel, a nice comfortable little bed with clean sheets yet the next morning I awoke at 6 o’clock as usual and couldn’t go to sleep again! A cup of tea in bed, a leisurely breakfast and a walk along the sea front before coming off mad it a very nice morning. I left some snaps ashore so next week I shall be sending you one of myself in hot-weather rig.
   It is hot still during the day, but in the evening it is cool enough to wear a white suit or blues. By the way I know now where flies go in the winter time, they are partly responsible for this bad writing!
   Not only is it poor but I start after supper to just make it by  “pipe-down’! I have written one or tow letters besides these I send to you but  very few and everybody else will have to wait for a right handed one now.
Good Night,

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