»  Letter: Sunday, July 14, 1974

    J.R. Derbyshire to John Derbyshire

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J Derbyshire
62 Friars Avenue
Delapre Northampton


62 Friars AV: N.TON

    7 - 74

Dear John,

Thank you very much for your lovely card & your generous gift on my birthday. I have put the money in the bank Pro: Tem: till I get my breath back & find out what most. I did get a bottle of whisky & Sherry to start with as I like a nip sometimes to make me sleep better & you may bet I shall find something to account for the rest. It was nice of you to think of me on my birthday & as you say many more qualifying that with good health. I am now only living on borrowed time but trying to keep fit & active with walking & doing odd jobs about garden & house. I dont want to live & be a burden to Mum. life is sweet but not if one is helpless & can't look after myself, or are in constant pain. Just now I feel fit & healthy for my age & just keep carrying on. I think the worst thing is realising ones services are no longer wanted & never will be again its a bit of putting. I hope you dont think I am being morbid, its just I like facing facts & having the time to think. I have no complaint I think I have taken more out of life than I have put into it much to my regret but its to late to alter anything now. I am & always have been mentaly lazy & I couldnt live my life again in present circumstances, but you can take it from me that I did live every minute & wouldnt mind doing it all over again but not in the world as it is today. One cant make comparisons so its only by looking back that one can form a judgement & asses the future (not always right) I know. Its a well known saying that idle hands will find mischief. I often sit & think what will the future be like, its very bewildering, & looking back to what life was & what it is now only brings one conclusion. it cant last. the advance of medicle Science & the lowering of the infant mortality makes a surety that will meet & bust its perhaps a good job we cant see the future. In 25 yrs half the population will be M.D.[1] In my youth the example to the world of perfect manhood was the ZULU tribe of Africa & thier code was if a child was not near perfect it was'nt allowed to live Perfection asks a heavy price.

Well enough of my prattle. The weather here is more like March. Cold winds & rain every day I bet we have a hard winter. Judith & Family are expecting to leave us at the end of the month I dont know how we shall cope missing little Tessa. I am worried Mum will go into a decline. My sister, your Aunt Polly is coming to stay with Aunt Cissie for a week. She is 79 yrs in August so we shall have a lot to talk about.

Well fancy you ringing it was lucky I was up if I hadn't been writing this letter I would have been in bed I am glad I was'ntI dont know if I dare tell mum she will say why didnt you waken me up it will take her a while to forgive me. She went to bed at 9 P M but it will be no excuse to say she was asleep, but it was lovely to hear & I am sorry now I didnt waken her never mind there is always a next time. Well all for now look after yourself you are always in our thoughts

love Dad   X  X  X



  1. I.e. mentally defective.