Letter from Donald Baker to his mother



Letter from Donald Baker to his mother


Writes that he is still doing operational training on the Hampden which he describes as safe. Mentions visiting Bicester which is closer that Oxford but has two picture houses. Writes of different terminology between English and Rhodesians. Mentions doing reading in spare time and recent ENSA concerts. Explains why he had not sent many telegrams recently. Mentions acquaintances at his camp and catches up with family news. Postscript that he had four teeth removed.




Temporal Coverage



Six page handwritten letter and envelope


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[two postage stamps]
Mrs C. Baker,
S. Rhodesia
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[underlined] 1 [/underlined]
c/o Officers Mess.
Upper Heyford.
Thursday Aug 7. 1941.
My Dearest Mother,
Thanks for two letters received today one written on the 21st June and the other the 18th Aug very glad to hear that you are all keeping very much and please don’t worry about me.
Am still doing Operational Training and am now flying the type which I shall fly on operations. The Hampden is a very nice machine to fly and very reliable indeed and everyone who has flown them
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has nothing but praises for the type.
Apart from flying and lectures there is practically nothing to say. Have been to Bicester, which is much nearer than Oxford, a couple of times during the six weeks I have been here. It is only a small place but there are a couple of picture houses there.
It is rather strange that nobody here [deleted] understa [/deleted] understands you when you say “Bioscope.” There are quite a few other words that we use which are quite foreign to them. And we can’t help using the occasional
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kaffir or Dutch word such as “maningi” “Ikona” or “dorp” I didn’t realise that we used so much adopted language at home and apart from that we have rather a definite accent which the people notice.
Have been doing a lot of reading in my spare time and have at last got hold of O’Henrys “Cabbages & Kings” which I enjoyed very much indeed.
There have been a few variety concerts here since last I wrote. They are arranged by E.N.S.A. and are very good. I expect you can hear them at home now & then
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You will probably wonder why you have had so few telegrams from me recently. Well this is very far from the regular Post Office and it is rather expensive to send cables from camp.
Did I tell you that my old room mate was here He was on the course before me and has now gone to operations [deleted] Her [/deleted] He was a very nice chap Reg Smith and doubtless you heard me mention him while we we [sic] were in Byo.
A letter from Uncle Jack says they are all very well. Also had one from Mr & Mrs Forbes Gatherum,
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[circled 2] [sic]
who have invited me up to Warrington when I feel like it. They are very nice people and are very cheerful as you will no doubt remember.
Well dear Mother must close now with very much love to you all and hoping this finds you all very well & happy.
Ever your loving son
P.S. Had 4 teeth out at the dentists last Thursday which was not very pleasant and my face swelled up terribly but
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is O.K. again now except a bit stiff & sore
[indecipherable word]
P.P.S. please continue to address mail to Rhodesia House


D A Baker, “Letter from Donald Baker to his mother,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed September 24, 2023, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/25583.

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