16th December 1944
Still not sure that I am doing the right thing. It would be a small thing indeed to change my tune towards Sam Blomfield, and to ask humbly if I may go back to my own job, the job which is still mine. Wondering whether Father really wants me to go? Feel that my time here is up – Hull wants me to go, and I feel too ill and too tired to go on with the battle of the last sixteen years. But how reluctant I am to leave my own home.
Fine and cold at first, but came on to rain about 11. Meant to catch 1.15 to Wisbech, but so great a crowd at the station could not get a ticket. Went home. All well there. Father genuinely anxious for me to “better myself”. Called at Holly Trees. Poulter says Sam is making difficulties about my release, saying the War Agricultural Committee can’t let me go, and that he doesn’t think the Museum Committee can either. Too late, dear Sam, too late. You should have thought of that before.
Caught the 4 o’clock to
Cambridge. Rain gone, and a huge crimson sunset over the
fields at Marks Tey. A jolly girl
with a soldier and 2 school girls going to Haverhill got in.
Train dragged slowly through all the little stations along this line, and at last crawled into
Much too dark to see the Bartlow Hills.
Just caught a Wisbech train, which was apparently very late, the guard
cursing me for the trouble of getting my cycle on board. Train went via Ely, and then across the broad
flat Fens, silent under the stars – no
aircraft, no ‘divers’, nothing. Wisbech
at quarter to 9, and walked through the silent shabby streets, the sound of
church bells ringing. Hardly anybody
about, and most houses with lights in their bedroom windows. Trying to think what it will be like to make a
home here, perhaps for the rest of my life. Bed in a cold cheerless room at the “White
Lion” after a surly welcome by the land-lady.
Lay in bed listening to the noise of drunks being turned out of a dance
in the Town Hall opposite, streams of filthy language floating across the black
river among the glittering gas lamps, most of which were put out at about 11