Document 860

Correspondence from Canada: Letter 12 - 13.10.81

Author(s): 852

Copyright holder(s): Name withheld


The Maggie
13th Oct.

Dear Maw & Paw,

No, the drink & drugs addicts haven't got me - tho' I've met more people who can shoot acid, smoke dope, or eat 'shrooms ("magic mushrooms") than I did even in Glasgow. There was quite a bit of narcotic activity in Glasgow, but it seems to be accepted on a much larger scale here. Don't worry, I have absolutely no intention of joining the hallucenogenic hordes.

The slight 'flu bug has almost completely passed away now, thankfully. It did feel like the 'flu - upset stomach, dizziness, blocked head etc - but it really only lasted 2½ days.

This weekend was, as I mentioned, I think, in my last letter, Thanksgiving Weekend - everybody went home for a turkey dinner. There were about 10 left out of 50 in the Maggie. It was quiet: on holidays everybody & everything seems to go underground. Fredericton is far from the rootin' tootin' fun capital of Atlantic Canada! Mind you, Long John Baldry - remember him? - is big here still, and is playing locally later this month.

I'm going to have to do some work for my Teaching Assistantship after all. I found out on Friday I'll be marking some of Dr. [CENSORED: surname]'s freshman English grammar exercises. The first-year standard at Canadian universities is poor compared to the U.K. - they don't seem to have rigid entrance requirements here - and some students are almost illiterate. I'm not joking. Anyway, with the aid of "Hodges' Harbrace College Handbook" I'll be correcting grammar exercises and handing them back to classes, explaining and discussing mistakes. I keep telling myself it'll be really valuable experience for me.

On Saturday morning I went out and bought myself a "ski-jacket" - ie an insulated anorak. It cost me $50 - about £25 - and is really nice. It should, with the aid of Auntie Mary's jumper, keep me snug up top, and I'm going to get some long johns for my legs. That will be me set for winter!

After a longish miserable period, the weather's brightened up again, and after some frosty mornings it's been fairly warm again.

Time's flying in. I don't feel too badly pressured work-wise yet. In fact over the weekend a guy from England, Nick, and I tentatively started thinking about forming a small drama club, which I christened the British Empire Drama Soc. or BEDS for short. There are a few people doing Creative Writing Drama courses in the English Dept. who should be interested in doing something. So far our numbers have swollen to four! We'll see how things develop but it could be quite good fun to get something going.

My presents haven't arrived so far. The card you forwarded to me is from Uncle John & family. You can tell him it's OK - he can use my room. (Cynic!) Honestly, it's a good job I'm not home, or how could you accommodate all these people?

Sorry to hear the painting's going so slowly. Hope your spell of rain has cleared up, too by now.

"Julia" is a good film - I've seen it 3 times, more by accident than design, and it holds up under repeated viewing. I really liked Jason Robards as Dashiel Hammett - "Dash" - but Vanessa Redgrave I thought was a bit airy fairy in it.

I've spent a bit of time reading about Egypt this week - I was shocked by Sadat's murder. I don't know Carole's reaction to it yet, but I doubt if it will alter her plans. I've had no further word from the various places I've written to yet, about next year.

No, I don't kow what Morag was getting at with her idea of a flight to Glasgow via Amsterdam, from Halifax. I think it would be a better idea travelling from Montreal when I come home.

I'm glad Al's getting on well at good old G.U. She'll settle in fine. I wrote to her last week.

Well it's now the witching hour and Mark here's trying in vain to sleep while I write. I'd better go. Take care, & send my regards to all,

[CENSORED: forename]

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Information about Document 860

Correspondence from Canada: Letter 12 - 13.10.81


Text audience

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

Text details

Method of composition Handwritten
Year of composition 1981
Word count 716

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