Welcome to the next post in the series Letters from America 1985 -1987 that I wrote home to my parents in the UK. My father kept them all in a folder and on his death they came back to me with a note to publish them.
It is now coming to the end of August and we are preparing for our first vacation to Hawaii. We are also going to find out in a few weeks if we will stay in America for another year.
Houston, Hurricane Danny andTrivia Pursuit
26th August 1985.
Dear M & D,
Thank you for keeping the letters coming, it’s lovely to have all the home news. I hope your stay at Sonia’s was relaxing and I am sure that you enjoyed some excellent cooking.
Before I forget, here are the contact details for our hotel in Hawaii in case of emergencies (heaven forbid). It is the Sheraton Makaha Resort, Oahu – area code for Hawaii (in BT directory) 695-9511. We will be there from the 3rd to 17th September.
We are more or less ready for the trip, and I was staggered when David suggested we both go shopping to buy HIM some clothes for the trip. He hates shopping and prefers to go alone.. not like me who browses for ages, he is in, gets what he wants, and leaves! We started at midday and got home at 9pm. He bought slacks, shorts, bathers and shoes. He looks amazing in them although he feels that they are bit over casual….. he will get used to it.
Things are so much more relaxed here after England where shirt, tie and jacket is still considered proper day wear! I think he secretly enjoyed the experience, and it was certainly the first time in five years we have gone shopping for him together.
On Saturday we went to a couple’s house ten miles away with some of our friends. They are all air traffic controllers and a lively bunch. We played trivia pursuit until 2.30 am and left them to it. I assume none of them are directing air traffic first thing in the morning!
One of the young FAA guys who lives in the complex has adopted Sylvia and I, and is taking us to lunch this week. He has girlfriend troubles and aunty Sally and aunty Sylvia are good listeners. David thinks it is great and we get to each Chinese and put the guy straight on a few things….
Vicki rang yesterday from Louisiana, sounds as if things are not ideal, she misses us and of course being tied to the apartment with a new baby limits her meeting new people. When we get back from holiday we will try to go and see them for the weekend. I miss her too, she was the first friend that I met here and I would hate to lose touch.
David’s boss is coming over when we get back from holiday as they are planning a big presentation in Dallas. I will probably fly up and join them as we will be discussing if we are to stay for another year. I know David would like to stay as he is enjoying the job and has now built up a fantastic list of contacts. He would be reluctant to have to hand that over to someone else after all the hard work he has put in. And we would be happy to stay here in Houston for another year as we have made lovely friends and there is so much more of the rest of America we want to see.
David is in Chicago at the moment having left on Monday and coming back on Friday. I have plenty to keep me busy with Jane Fonda workouts three times a week, weight training at the gym (nearly killing me, sergeant major of a trainer!) swimming and tennis. I may not have a bikini ready body but at least have got rid of a few wobbly bits!
Funnily enough although I am keeping myself busy, as I hate being idle, I do miss not working full-time. I am not using my brain enough so have decided to buy books on American history and learn as much as I can (certainly before the next trivia pursuit session). I am also writing more short stories and poetry which may never see the light of day, but I am enjoying the process. I have also bought a beginners guide to Spanish, although not sure where I will use that when we come back to the UK.
I am off to dinner tonight with Bill and Sylvia and I have seven coming for Spaghetti Bolognese tomorrow night (your recipe of course Eric). I cannot get over how amazingly hospitable everyone is and how kind. As soon as they know David is going to be away several check up on me and always include me if they are entertaining or going out for dinner. Even the guys ask me to go along when they are on dates and whilst their girlfriends come here with them and we all get on, I do feel that three is a crowd! Anyway, we will definitely take that back with us when we come home. Expect some margaritas and fajitas when you come to us for Sunday lunch in future!
I had my long hair cut off yesterday. It was getting far too tiresome with all the sports and swimming and everyone so far likes the new look… David has not seen it yet but I am sure he will get used to it. At least when we go on holiday it will be much easier to look after and we will also not stick out like a sore thumb now that our tans have developed. Nothing worse that pasty white Brits arriving in a tropical paradise.
We have organised a children’s party at the pool and in the recreation area for Saturday. There are not many in the complex but people are bringing nieces and nephews too. We have games in the pool and then move to the tables and benches for sandwiches, cakes and jellies. I am making some Victoria sponges which is something you cannot buy over here. Hopefully it will not be 100 degrees as it is today.
Luckily Hurricane Danny missed us last week but there were evacuations 70 miles south of us. The only thing we noticed was that the shops were cleared of bottled water and food shortly after the warnings went out. I had done my weekly shop a couple of days beforehand but popped out to get some milk. It was as if a plague of locusts had descended on the supermarket and the queues were horrendous. I left and we managed for a couple of days with black tea and coffee.
Well that is about it now. I will write and tell you all about Hawaii when we get back and then it will only be six weeks until you are with us.
Love and hugs from us both Sally and David.
I hope you have enjoyed this trip back in time.. next week Part one of our trip to Hawaii that I wrote as an article.