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Letter from John Cawte Beaglehole to his Father, 12 September 1929

page 1

My dear Daddy,

I have had three
letters from you at Australian ports —
thank you very much. I would
have replied before but could not
have caught a mail sooner than
the one that goes to-morrow. It
was very cheering to get the said
three letters, & to learn that you
were getting over a bit of the
physical strain. I can’t say how
glad I am you are slinging in
Shanland’s; I do hope something
easier will turn up soon.

About my homecoming I
page 2
share your feelings — I shall be
very glad to meet you face to
face & have a yarn. I am not
too keen on the fatted calf stunt —
if I had my way I should
prefer to be met simply by you.
But no doubt Auntie will feel
cut out if she can’t turn on a
fruit-salad, & it would take a
bolt from heaven to keep Joe off
the wharf. I suppose there will
be a mob of people to meet Elsie
too who will also throw in a
word to me. As for the glory
of new wall-paper, I blush with
unworthiness. I am sorry to bump
Auntie Win out, but trust her
genial presence won’t be removed
for long.
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You will know by now of
course that Elsie has come out
by the Osterley too. I can’t think
how I omitted to mention that for
so long — the general uncertainty
of our plans, I suppose. I think
we may take it that Singapore has
definitely faded out for me. — I
won’t enlarge on the trip at present,
as I shall be seeing you a week
after you get this, & I am rather
tired after knocking around Sydney
all day with Jean Harvey &
Eileen McGrath & Hemming’s sister,
who represented him on the wharf
page 4
(he having a lecture) — they all
came down to meet me, while
friends of Duncan dropped in or
wired, so that I had quite a
large reception this morning. We
lunched with H. at the University &
came back to the ship for dinner;
we are staying on board till she
leaves for Brisbane & then going to
the Hemmings’. I will just say
about the trip that it was middling
to good, & that I am in the best of

I am booked to Wellington by
the Makura, leaving here on Friday
week, the 20th; so we should
meet in less than a fortnight. So
till then good-bye. Elsie sends her
love & so do I.

with much love


Poor P. J. S. — I am desperately sorry for him.