152 University Ave
Kingston
Thursday [12 Aug. 1948]

Dears:

In a week from today I shall be wending homewards and glad to get back to you.

I was out with George Herbert last night to dinner and afterwards went to a movie with him. Tomorrow I reciprocate on a dinner and then we go to see Joe Schull's play 'The Bridge.'

I have exterminated two bats in the last two nights.

At 7 p.m. precisely I heard Mrs C shouting 'Bat, bat.' I rushed down and after about 70 swipes with a towel knocked it on the floor and flung it out of the window inside the towel.

But last night things were worse. Another bat after 100 swipes, followed by Mickey the cat. Dr Shephardson, the veterinary was called in to extract a canine tooth from Mickey. He arrived three hours late, at 10 pm. Mrs C held the neck and forepaws while I held the hind paws while M struggled with his claws out, and Shephardson yanked out the tooth. Then when that was done, Mickey made for the door and wouldn't come back in spite of all the coaxing.

A bat and a cat in one night was a bit trying and Mrs C, Dr S and I had to sit down and recover our ourselves at the table with some of Mrs C's port. I think I have learned a new technique in dealing with bats, outwitting them before they complete their curves around the room by striking just 1/10 of a second before they reach a certain point. You see it is so easy.

How Mrs Cartwright does scream when one comes in! I asked her what she does when she is alone in winter. She calls the Min[...]s' boy next door.

Well, I'm still on the bacon and eggs, but would like an odd glass of buttermilk.

Love to you. Claire I have two cheques for you when I return and Vi I'm going to get a watch for you. That's secret of course.

Ned


Dears
Viola and Claire Pratt.

so easy
On 17 August, in a post card to Viola he wrote: 'no more bats since, though my fingers are crossed each night as the alarm signal, Bat, bat. is worse than the swiping.'