Smorgasbord Posts from My Archives – Letters from America 1985-1987 – September 1985 – Curry Parties and Booze buys by Sally Cronin


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.

29th September 1987

Dear M & D,

I hope you are well and my long missive about our trip to Hawaii has arrived safely. We are more or less back to normal, although it has taken a little while to come down from the high of our holiday. We have had a lot of visitors since we came back all wanting to find out how we got on, and most of our friends have never visited the Islands but I think they will go now. We brought back a fabulous post of Hanauma Bay and have just had it framed. It is in pride of place in our dining area. We have collected a number of these posters to add colour to the apartment and will bring them home as a reminder of the places we have been.

There are hardly any Indian restaurants here in our part of Texas, and to be honest we have not found many on our travels except in Las Vegas. However, David has got out his famous curry recipe and it has become a hit. We are off to a party tonight with a giant pot full and a large container of rice for about 20 people. I have spent all afternoon chopping tomatoes, onion, and hard boiling egg to go with the other bits as garnish. It was almost impossible to find mango chutney so have had to substitute with some pickle. Dessicated coconut is available and I will chop the bananas and sprinkle with lemon juice last thing. Some of the guest have not tried curry before, but if they have eaten spicy Mexican food they should be fine.. if not… then tomorrow will be interesting.

To dampen the fires, we are also taking along a gallon bucket of Mai Tai. Rum, Rum and more Rum with a sniff of pineapple juice! We may end up sleeping on their floor rather than driving home.

I start French, Spanish and shorthand revision on Monday so that should we come back in the New Year, I am employable. I love the leisure time and the chance to travel around the States, swim and play tennis but I don’t want to get too mentally lazy. I am writing short stories and articles about our trips and that is keeping me occupied.

David’s proposed trip last week was cancelled, but next week he is going to Seattle and I am going with him. Due to all the mileage he has clocked up with one of the airlines, he has been awarded a companion ticket. Seattle is the furthest north point in the USA and it is $500 dollars return so we would not afford for me to go normally. We leave on the 7 a.m. flight which will give us most of the day sight seeing before David’s meeting the next morning. The temperature in Washington State is already 40 degrees, so it will mean getting out my tights and winter clothes for the first time in 7 months.

Yesterday we went and bought all the booze for your stay. I am not implying that you drink a great deal, but we are planning on several parties while you are with us. The prices go up here by 15% from Tuesday so a good time to buy. We bought the fixings for all kinds of exotic cocktails including margaritas and Chi Chis… more about those when you arrive. I hope you enjoy Canadian whisky Mollie since they don’t have much Scotch in the store, and we did get 3 litres!

Today we are going to the cinema with one of our friends and his girlfriend and then tomorrow we have a water volleyball game. However, it has been raining and it is only 75 degrees….brrrrrrr.

It is only five weeks until you arrive and getting very excited.. some road trips are booked and our friends are really looking forward to seeing you.

lots of love Sally and David.

©Sally Cronin 2018

I hope you have enjoyed this letter from our adventures in America and will join me next week for our trip to Seattle.. thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Letters from America – Houston 1985-1987 – Curry Parties and Booze buys.


Over the last couple of weeks I shared our trip to Hawaii.. and two weeks later we are back in Houston.

29th September 1987

Dear M & D,

I hope you are well and my long missive about our trip to Hawaii has arrived safely.  We are more or less back to normal, although it has taken a little while to come down from the high of our holiday. We have had a lot of visitors since we came back all wanting to find out how we got on, and most of our friends have never visited the Islands but I think they will go now. We brought back a fabulous post of Hanauma Bay and have just had it framed. It is in pride of place in our dining area. We have collected a number of these posters to add colour to the apartment and will bring them home as a reminder of the places we have been.

There are hardly any Indian restaurants here in our part of Texas, and to be honest we have not found many on our travels except in Las Vegas. However, David has got out his famous curry recipe and it has become a hit. We are off to a party tonight with a giant pot full and a large container of rice for about 20 people. I have spent all afternoon chopping tomatoes, onion, and hard boiling egg to go with the other bits as garnish. It was almost impossible to find mango chutney so have had to substitute with some pickle. Dessicated coconut is available and I will chop the bananas and sprinkle with lemon juice last thing.  Some of the guest have not tried curry before, but if they have eaten spicy Mexican food they should be fine.. if not… then tomorrow will be interesting.

To dampen the fires, we are also taking along a gallon bucket of Mai Tai. Rum, Rum and more Rum with a sniff of pineapple juice! We may end up sleeping on their floor rather than driving home.

I start French, Spanish and shorthand revision on Monday so that should we come back in the New Year, I am employable. I love the leisure time and the chance to travel around the States, swim and play tennis but I don’t want to get too mentally lazy. I am writing short stories and articles about our trips and that is keeping me occupied.

David’s proposed trip last week was cancelled, but next week he is going to Seattle and I am going with him. Due to all the mileage he has clocked up with one of the airlines, he has been awarded a companion ticket. Seattle is the furthest north point in the USA and it is $500 dollars return so we would not afford for me to go normally. We leave on the 7 a.m. flight which will give us most of the day sight seeing before David’s meeting the next morning. The temperature in Washington State is already 40 degrees, so it will mean getting out my tights and winter clothes for the first time in 7 months.

Yesterday we went and bought all the booze for your stay.  I am not implying that you drink a great deal, but we are planning on several parties while you are with us. The prices go us here by 15% from Tuesday so a good time to buy. We bought the fixings for all kinds of exotic cocktails including margaritas and Chi Chis… more about those when you arrive. I hope you enjoy Canadian whisky Mollie since they don’t have much Scotch in the store, and we did get 3 litres!

Today we are going to the cinema with one of our friends and his girlfriend and then tomorrow we have a water volleyball game. However, it has been raining and it is only 75 degrees….brrrrrrr.

It is only five weeks until you arrive and getting very excited.. some road trips are booked and our friends are really looking forward to seeing you.

lots of love Sally and David.

Thanks for dropping in and hope you have enjoyed our Hawaiian adventure…All the letters are in this directory: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/letters-from-america-1985-1987/