Wed. a.m. [3 Feb. 1954]
(Do you remember that was the salutation which Macbeth gave to Lady M. in the letter. No further context implied of course.)
I am alone in the house today, your mother having gone down to Mrs Auger's for lunch.
Cal wrote from St John's on Monday enclosing a letter 60 years old from Mrs Spurgeon just after Spurgeon's death. You remember Jim was called after Spurgeon though he didn't use the name for fear the St John's school boys would laugh [at] it. That was Cluny Macpherson's suggestion 'For goodness sake, don't have them calling you Spurge.'
His news from Newfoundland is not very optimistic. He finds himself very tired when he walks any distance, and I am writing him today giving advice 'Never fight fatigue. As soon as you feel tired, sit or lie down until recuperated.' Cal has come up to Ottawa not merely to attend the Senate but to get a rest from business. I don't know whether he can make it to Toronto or not. I am having my birthday stag on the 6th and I hope he can come. You know that George Harris died last week and perhaps Floss will go to Nfld early in March to be with Lottie for a time.
Then Calvert is down with diphtheria of all troubles. Cal says it is probably the only such case in Nfld, and little Cal has scarlet fever. That in addition to Jim's illness and Minnie's frailty looks like a casualty list of the Pratt tribe. Still Jim seems to be better somewhat and I supppose the anti-toxin can clear up Calvert's ailment.
We are fine here. Mother is wonderful in tip-top shape and I am getting over the flu though the leg muscles are still weak not serious however.
Our car has been in the garage nearly all the winter except for brief runs to keep the battery in shape. When I try to start her every few days, the motor sounds like the moan of dying swans.
Brockington sent us a year's pass to the Odeon. We shall try to make more use of it than last year as the Hyland Theatre is an Odeon and only a few blocks away by street car.
Let me know if you are in need of funds for running expenses. They will be remitted pronto.