August, 1939: Don’t Judge a Month Before It’s Over

When I began reading August, 1939, I panicked a little.  Babu was down on Jakey and I worried that this blooming relationship wouldn’t really be the fairytale I always heard it to be.  Maybe, in fact, I never heard it that way, but added my own spin on it.  I reflected a lot about the heroes and perfect lives we build in our memory, or for some people, the miserable ones, but nothing is ever 100%.  My worrying seems to have been pointless anyway.  As the month wore on I saw that Babu was simply continuing her love dance that she has put herself through with all the boys.

The month of August, 1939:

On the second she says that they “don’t know what it means to rain” and on the forth it rains.  The girls gets every thing she asks for.  Ice cream almost every day and a month full of playing tennis, swimming, parking, she even gets chop suey for dinner that her mother makes.  She is on vacation from work for most of the month but when she is there, it’s quite tense.

Monday, August 7th, 1939
Vi and I work at the office alone as Emmy is on her vacation. We are both glad when the bosses go out. Vi lives in fear that the buzzer will ring and she will have to answer to Mr. Hitchcock.

Then, by the end of the month, Emmy comes back:

Monday, August 21st, 1939
Emmy came back looking tan and healthy from her vacation and bossed around. I knew something was afoot at the office but I didn’t know Vi had decided to leave and stay home. She wants to have a baby.

Now girls, I am just highly suspicious that Vi’s abrupt departure had something to do with Emmy’s return.  Oh how I wish Babu was less of a lady and talked more junk!

Speaking of babies, Babu is at that age that all of her friends are settling down, getting married, and having babies.  There are two wedding showers, one where Babu will be a part of the wedding party and meets her usher, and both brides seem to be full of tears.  She also goes to visit Jeanette:

Wednesday, August 30th, 1939
Stopped in to see Jeanette and find out how she was feeling. She was pressing out a maternity dress. We talked about going to the world’s fair this weekend but can’t swing it I guess.

Ummm, maybe because she’s pregnant?!  Haha, Babu has no sympathy.  But I am stellarly excited for Babu to go to The Worlds Fair!

OK, OK!  I know what you’ve been waiting for.  What about Jakey?!

The month with the two of them begins like this:

aug 2 39.jpeg

Thursday, August 3rd, 1939
While I was in church Jakey and Billy came in too. I went to see Zosh and Nat came there too. We went for a walk and had some ice cream. Came back to sit on my back porch and talk. Jakey came to park the car and stayed, talking to us. The girls left about quarter of 12 and we lingered for a sweet, breath-taking kiss.

No wonder I had such high hopes for nothing but romance and Babu being swept off her feet, etc, etc.  (By the way, whenever Babu reads “etc.” she says it as “and so forth.”  I think that’s wonderful!)  Yea, but no.  The month kind of spirals down to:

Friday, August 4th, 1939
Jakey says he thinks I’m wasting my time with him.

And then:

Friday, August 11th, 1939
Lately I’m getting skeptical about Jake and I getting along. I think we’d scrap too much. As I’ve known all along, he doesn’t have much respect for girls. I really would like to know what he thinks of me.

And then:

Saturday, August 12th, 1939
I wonder so much if Jakey and I would get along all the time. He hurts me so often by things he says. Tonight it seemed he took it for granted we were to wed some day.

Now that doesn’t sound good!  I do wish Babu would elaborate.  How did he hurt her?  She never says.  Also, what’s important to know is that in between all of these days of doubts we have:

Saturday, August 5th, 1939
Tonight Jakey came up for a while then said he’d be back. He took Billy and Edmund to the show and returned. We spent the evening looking over pictures and liking each other

Are you tracking the dates?  It’s such up and down with her!  And then:

Sunday, August 6th, 1939
It dawned a hot, glorious day, and after church, Ernie, Billy, Jakey, and I started for Westerly. Jimmy’s girl was still sleeping so we went without them. We spent all day in the sun, slapping sun lotion all over ourselves. I don’t think this business of showing Jakey I like him is going so well. Will try the opposite if I can do it. We all agreed it was a perfect day, well spent.

I dunno Babu, maybe don’t do that!  Can’t we just be honest when we like someone?  I think the playing hard to get only leads to miscommunication and distance.  I swear, she must be reading some advice magazines.  Well, I think they’re giving her the wrong advice!  Even still, the month ends:

If this feeling is love, I want more of it.

At first I had that unexplainable feeling when I want to hold him close but it leaves after a while – still I like him.

Afterwards I held a coke in my hands while we drove to Mt. Tom and I didn’t spill much of it. We stayed on the edge of the cliff there for a long time. Never want to go home.


I have a feeling that the ups and down will never stop, certainly not just because they manage to agree for long enough to eventually get married.  What a beautiful love affair to get to look in on from afar!


2 Comments Add yours

  1. R.S. Williams says:

    This is just lovely. What amazing fortune that 1) your grandmother kept a diary, and 2) that it’s in legible shape today. Blessings to you both. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know!! And that she took so many photos and labeled almost every single one with at least a date on the back. I am definitely grateful. Thank you for stopping in.

      Liked by 1 person

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