Port of Spain, Trinidad. September 24, 1947

khus khus

Hi Betty,

Have you ever heard of “Khus-Khus” perfume? It’s from Jamaica, and supposed to be quite good. Expert judge that I am of perfume. I got you some to try. But, you’ll have to wait until I get home, as I wouldn’t want anyone else to get all the benefit of it.

I hope I didn’t say anything wrong in my letter yesterday. I’m only trying to help you. You seem so confused in your letters of late.

This will probably be a very brief stay in port. We got in early last evening and are already discharging our cargo. I expect we shall be back to sea again tomorrow on our next trip into the jungle.

Commewijine River

I expect Jim will be home in a few days, the lucky dog. He’ll probably be halfway through his next voyage by the time I get home again.

I’ve really missed you these last few months. It’s a terribly hot, monotonous voyage, and hardly worth going ashore on, either end of it.

Oh, thank you for the clippings! All the Irishmen on board enjoyed them. But, gosh, I thought those two envelopes contained letters. “Oh Well! What do you want Shields, Blood?”

I met an officer from a Dutch Cruiser down here, and we had quite a talk. He was surprised to find that I had been a navy officer in the Pacific, and I in turn was surprised when I discovered that we had both been in some of the same air raids together.

I have seen one or two good business opportunities ashore here in Trinidad. But, most of the money would go to “Limey Parasites”, and in no case could you take much of it to the states, so, the devil with it.

According to the Alcon office, we are the next ship to be sent home, having been on the jungle run longer than the other ships at present. What with temperatures of 110 a daily occurrence and the Bauxite dust all over everything, it gets rather difficult for a mate to keep a crew in line after two or three months, so the company tries to relieve the ships and send them home regularly, before the crew gets wild.

The second mate on the “Snake Head”, a sister ship, died at Moengo last week. Too much heat or a recurrence of some tropical disease. He’s being sent to the states on a “C-1” for burial.

On the “Span Splice”, another sister ship of ours, last trip, they had a wild crew. One night a few of them shot and killed the purser, and to make matters worse, the purser was the skipper’s son.

But, I think the “Hawser Eye” is lucky in having a good crew this time. Either that or the mate’s just get along with them better. This is about 30 for now Betty, I’ll write again soon.




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