Document 856

Correspondence from Canada: Letter 08 - 19.09.81

Author(s): 852

Copyright holder(s): Name withheld


[CENSORED: address]

19th Sept.

Dear Maw, Paw, & Al,

Good news: I'm allowed to keep my "job" as house monitor, so I'll be back on the desk tomorrow!! So I have managed to halve my residence fees after all, and hopefully I'll be able to save some for the flight back 'ome.

Classes have started, with "Methods", which looks dry but necessary, and "19th & 20th C. Canadian Poets", which looks good. The course-work will be quite heavy, but the exams seem to be pretty lax and rudimentary, the emphasis being on how well you perform in seminars, and essays. Naturally, I'm a bit apprehensive about a new system of assessment, but I'm hopeful it'll work out well, and, in theory at least, I'm happy about the system.

Oh, by the way, I loaned Neil [CENSORED: surname] "Lyrical Ballads" three years ago when he was doing English as a third subject. I'd despaired of getting it back again, but there you go.

I was feeling a bit tired and miserable yesterday evening so I went with some people to see "The Four Seasons" - my first film in Canada!! It starred Alan Alda (of T.V. M.A.S.H. fame, also "California Suite") and other notables, and I really enjoyed it, partly because it took me out of myself. I can recommend it, although some of it is ludicrous and towards the end it drags a little. It's a good American comedy with some teeth.

I was cheered up more to come back to Al's letter of 11th Sept, and 2 letters and a P.C. from Carole. She's delighted I'm planning to go to Cairo too, and seems fairly confident I'll get a place there. She's been to Switzerland now and will be sorry to leave Freiburg.

Thanks for your letter, Al. I'm glad Drew got a reasonable day for his wedding. Talking about matrimony, I got a letter from Mary [CENSORED: surname] the other day, and she's got engaged to her Ken, and plans to marry him in August '82. Like flies they are dropping.

I received a letter from Amnesty, giving me their Canadian address. They're going to stop mailing stuff to my Ayr address, so if you want to get involved, Al, you'll have to join yourself, I'm afraid. It was a nice letter, wishing me luck in the colonies, and ending "I'm a lumberjack and I'm alright"... They're really hooked on Python.

Don't worry about Glasgow - you've a lot better idea what's what than I did, and the change isn't as bad as the culture shock I've had here. It just takes a bit of getting used to, but it's amazing how fond of the place you get. Remember to check out the Theatre Royal & the Citz (student discounts!), the Apollo, and Tiffany's. That's what studying's all about! And don't be out yourself at nights, Al. I didn't see too much trouble, but you're better safe, than sorry.

So Dad's down to get back in touch with himself on the transcendental plane? Hope it isn't as bad as James Joyce's "Grace" in "Dubliners". Fatima House isn't run by Moonies, is it?

Well, it's wet & miserable in Fredericton this Saturday. I'm sitting here writing odd letters to you, Carole, and various Middle East educational institutions - and listening to an awful country music show on the radio. Compared to Fredericton, Glasgow was the social centre of the universe! Apparently they have a major drink and drugs problem here, especially "up the hill" at the Mens Residences. I'm not very surprised, the place offers little else to do. I'll have to look around for something healthy and interesting to do - like following the ice hockey team or something. The problem just now is I don't know how much time I'll be able to commit to outside pursuits. Just now I'm spending most of my time writing letters. (I also received one from Roberta - she's been refused an SED grant and is now unemployed.) Anyway, regards to all, and keep in touch,
[CENSORED: forename].

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Information about Document 856

Correspondence from Canada: Letter 08 - 19.09.81


Text audience

Adults (18+)
Audience size 3-5
Writer knew intended audience

Text details

Method of composition Handwritten
Year of composition 1981
Word count 713

Text medium

Other airmail

Text publication details

Part of a longer series of texts
Name of series Correspondence from Canada

Text setting


Text type



Author details

Author id 852
Gender Male
Decade of birth 1950
Educational attainment University
Age left school 17
Upbringing/religious beliefs Protestantism
Occupation University Lecturer
Place of birth Ayr
Region of birth S Ayr
Birthplace CSD dialect area Ayr
Country of birth Scotland
Place of residence Bridge of Weir
Region of residence Renfrew
Residence CSD dialect area Renfr
Country of residence Scotland
Father's occupation Insurance Broker
Father's place of birth Auchinleck
Father's region of birth S Ayr
Father's birthplace CSD dialect area Ayr
Father's country of birth Scotland
Mother's occupation Dental Receptionist
Mother's place of birth Ayr
Mother's region of birth S Ayr
Mother's birthplace CSD dialect area Ayr
Mother's country of birth Scotland


Language Speak Read Write Understand Circumstances
English Yes Yes Yes Yes In most everyday situations
Portuguese Yes No No Yes When trying to communicate with my in-laws
Scots Yes Yes Yes Yes In domestic/activist circles; reading literature