I often wonder if Babu realized how privileged and blessed she was. Her teenage life is one of constant dances, experiences, friends, clothes, and comfort. I know, she’s lonely and insecure. She doesn’t understand why she faces constant rejection, but still! I look at her life and feel pretty jealous. This is THE GREAT DEPRESSION for goodness sake and sometimes it reads more like the Roaring Twenties!
Ok, maybe it’s not that exciting, but July 1937, despite The Benny Break Up, is a month to remember.
As she did “last year” (1936) she spends Independence Day Weekend in Vermont with Ernie.
Sunday, July 4th, 1937
Ernie and I rode out to the C.C.C. Camp on Patches and Dan. I get along better now with Patches. I don’t hit him with myself all the time. We covered about six miles. Went over to Willard’s for fireworks and then came back late and fooled around with more fireworks. Then Willard and I put on a show eating.
Monday, July 5th, 1937
Two friends of Ernie’s, Donald Bell and Elmer ?, took us out to Spfld, VT to the airport. We all went up singly. He gave me a thrilly ride. Gosh it was fun! Then we went to Chester to the horse show. Back home and back to Chester for fireworks. There, Mr. Jones, (John) came and took us home. (Chicopee.) We tried to sleep on the way. Got home at 1 am.
Oh my! Look at this gem I found!
Horse riding, fireworks two nights in a row, and getting a private ride in an airplane?!?! Very few of the weekends in my life have been that exciting. (I lead a dull life. Now you know.)
Thursday, July 8th, 1937
Made two errors too many on the official typing test. 81 with 7. Fred Gagne was the only one who passed. 77 with 4. However, I made my 5 day average today. An average of 80. Got the idea of getting Norma a house coat and everybody was enthusiastic. Started the shorthand blackboard contest today. My section of the board is in Benny’s room.
I think of how lucky she is that her parents supported her in going to college. Sure, it’s a secretarial program and a community college, but from immigrant factory workers, this is a special sacrifice. They wanted to give her the chance at the best life. And who doesn’t love a shorthand blackboard contest?
Saturday, July 10th, 1937
We got up early this morning and despite the extremely hot weather Mother and I journeyed to the city. I bought some shoes, a pair of overalls, material and patterns for a dress and got a permanent on my ends at Armandi’s. Jane Wisniawski works there. My report card came and I made the honor roll despite my fears. Mr. Munford gave me an “E” in Developing Executive Admin.
An “E” is “Excellent” by the way.
Tuesday, July 20th, 1937
I’m left with 18 others in the finals of the shorthand contest. Out stunt Committee met this noon and I was acquainted with the fact that I’m to play “Sally” to Dutch’s “Tony” in a scene from “Tony the Convict.” Played tennis and won one set and the other girl one. Went to the show and saw “Paonell” and “Silk and Saddles.”
When she first mentioned her “Senior Stunt” I thought she meant a prank! You know: releasing crickets, stink bombs, covering the principal’s car in sticky notes, that kind of thing. But not so much. It seemed it was simply a performance piece, probably humorous. I guess all traditions have to start somewhere.
Wednesday, July 21st, 1937
The finals are tomorrow in the shorthand contest. Benny did sign his agreement and I’m glad. He spoke to me for a while when I practiced shorthand. Zosh, Nat, and I went to the lawn party. Frankie and I went on the Ferris Wheel and I squealed my head off. We stayed till 1 to see a sailor perform on a swaying pole 120 feet in the air. Ate candied apples that got in our teeth.
Sounds like a blessed life! But what comes next?