The Land Girl

THE LAND GIRL A COMMITTEE MEMBER’S DAY Oh, dear, time to getup! However, I needn’t hurry for once 1 have got a perfectly free day, except for the Club this evening. How shall I spend it? I want to write a few personal letters, do the flowers, and, if it doesn’t rain too hard, perhaps find some primroses. But whatever happens I must mend some stockings! Not too big a post, thank Heaven! Three Land Army letters. One from the County Secretary: Dora Dash has left her job without notice, would I go and find out what has happened? H’m. Mr. Smith of Sunnydale Nursery would like three really' good girls by Monday, thank­ing Theme. third is the type of letter every Representative likes to get: a friendly little line from Edith who has just left my district to tell me how happy she is in her new job. As I finish breakfast the telephone rings —Will I p.ease goat once 10 Windy Ridge Nurseries there has been a spot of bother. Windy Ridge is quite close, so after a brief interlude spent in deciding what pudding can be made with no milk, no fat, no eggs, no jam and no fruit, I rush off. It is one of those tiresome af­fairs where it is difl.cult to find out exactly who is to blame for what. However, we reach some sort of a solution and I go back to ring up the Office to tell them about this, about Mr. Smith’s require­ments and to ask for a few more particu­lars of the wretched Miss Dash. I dislike disturbing the County Secre­tary in the middle of a busy morning, but as usual she is perfectly charming and makes me feel that she has nothing else in the world to do but answer my questions. Now for Dora Dash. As I get out of the bus a strange sight meets my eye: a girl with a tartan skirt and saxe-biue jum­per topped by a Land Army overcoat and hat. She is not one of my girls, but I accost her in horror-struck tones: “Is that HALF a Land Girl that I see before me?” “Oh. I’m sorry.” she replies,“ I don’t approve of it myself, but I got wet this morning and as I'm on leave I haven’t got anything else to wear." Dora Dash seems to have behaved pretty badly but it is onlv after I have left the house that I think of all the cutting and telling phrases that I ought to have used. The sight of Marjorie from the Duttington Rabbit Farm bicycling home to dinner cheers me u d .“Hullo, Marjorie, how’s Adolph?” (Adolph is the large buck rabbit that used to be Winston till he bit Nance). “Oh, Adolph’ fine,s Mrs. X, but he’s living up to his name he looked soever mopey the day the Scharnhorst was sunk.” In my homeward-bound bus I notice a girl whose face seems familiar. “Yes,” she says, “you interviewed me six months ago. Don’ t you remember me telling you I was terrified of cows? I don’t mind what I do with them now, and I’d HATE to have any other job.” Another cheering encounter! Now for a quiet afternoon, complete with stockings and work-basket. But when I get home I find a message: Could I please move the two girls who are billeted with Mrs. Jones as she has togo away to nurse her mother. Out again in the rain and it is getting dark when I return to find two girls who “want to join the Land Army, please.” A late tea and then I settle down to scan rapidly the middle pages of “The Times ”and have just started on the Crossword when Mrs. Brown comes to see me. She fancies herself as a Hostel Warden, provided that she can be assured that all the girls are nice girls, she would not care to deal with any but really nice girls. Heartlessly, I fling our dear girls’ reputations to the winds: No, many of them would not beat all nice, she would find them rough, noisy and troublesome. So Mrs. Brown departs and I go back to my crossword: 3 Down ---------Tele­phone: “Please my new breeches are much too small.” I suggest rather shortly that she sends them back to the Uniform Office with a note of her pre­sent measurements. But I have hardly rung off when the bell rings again:’ a brand-new Representative is in a com­plete fog as to w’ages. sick pay, etc. I remind mvself how complicated all this must be if one hasn’t grownup with it and try to explain nicely without letting the patient note creep into my voice. Then a thresher rings up to say they none of them understand about their money (do threshers ever understand about their money?), it doesn’t seem to be enough, somehow. And now for the Club—I am a trifle tired and it is afoul evening but as always I enjoy every minute of the Club and come away convinced that nobody in the world has such a lovely life as 1 have or such delightful girls as my girls. And to-morrow—well, perhaps not to­morrow. but anyhow the day after I will tackle those stockings. 4 March, 1944
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