"Thurs. Sept. 5th/40
Just leaving Chippenham for London
Please excuse this Woolworth pen; it is practically worn out.
Well here I am just pulling away from the station. I have enjoyed my stay with Mim and the Gliddens so much. It has done me the world of good and feel that I have a few real friends in this green world. They practically opened the house to me as a home and insist that I make my headquarters there. They have even gone so far as to suggest that I should be dependent on them but you know how much I am likely to avail myself of that offer. I shall walk or fall in my own strength which my love for you has given me. You are responsible for my being here and you are the only dependent I want. This old train is very wobbly. I got to know Mr. Glidden very well. He does resemble Frank in facial expression and Mrs. Glidden and her son Arnold are very delightful indeed. All in all we thoroughly enjoyed our days together.
I do wish you could have joined me in some of the walks I had. In any direction one beholds quaint, old scenery so refreshing and delightful that I'm certain together we would have been spellbound. It just required you to be here Sweetheart and all would have been perfect.
A heavy air raid nearby disturbed Mrs. Glidden somewhat during the night but she is very brave and does well to conceal her nervousness. Personally I don't hear anything once I'm asleep, which rather amused the family this morning.
Mr. Glidden drove me to the station and saw me off.
W......(wobbly train)....whatever ......... we notice that most men in uniform carry pistols or rifles wherever they are.
I just heard the conductor say our next stop is London. Evidently we are not going to stop at the local stations but go straight through. We have over an hour and a half run yet.
While visiting one of the old churches yesterday, I copied some very old inscriptions from the walls. This pen is acting up so I shall have to write them out later and send them on to you.
All my love Dearie and I'm more 'nurtz' than ever. I ever think of you and dream of you coming over here to be with me.
A big hug and what did I hear you saying '-----'
At last. Bill Jones is in London, ready to do battle with the RAF. By hook or by crook, he will join them. Ready. Set. Go.
Written on letterhead from Cranston's Waverley Hotel, Southampton Row, London, W.C.I.
"Friday, Sept. 6th/40
Here I am at last. Several thousand miles from you that is the worst of it.
I made some enquiries yesterday re the party I am to see am now awaiting a call (telephone) from his secretary. She informed me that he left the city yesterday afternoon for an unknown destination, but that she expects to see him back at his office sometime today. I am worried lest he has taken it into his mind to take an extra long weekend. I would be very sorry indeed if he has done so as it will throw me out of my calculations. But I shall hope for the best.
The weather is perfect here Sweetheart. My what a time we could be having if you were only here. That I am very lonesome is no word for it. I gets an awful sick feeling at the ...(sorry, illegible) ... for (?) below my tummy every now and again. 'T'aint no fun no how.
We had the longest air raid from Jerry last night ever experienced. He caused the warning to extend to seven and a half hours duration. A record so far. The extent of damage was I believe very small. It was almost unbelievable to see the entire capacity of Lyons' big restaurant, the dining rooms of many of the largest hotels, and the entire premises of most restaurants entirely opened up to the public, free of charge of course, as air raid shelters. Most of these buildings are concrete and reinforced steel. No serving is allowed and all tables are cleared of their linen and utensils. The people lie down on the floor to sleep or sit in chairs leaning over the tables half asleep. Honestly to sit and look over the scene causes in one the queerest reaction. To think of such places in peace time bristling with business activity and admission based on the extent of one's pocketbook, now to be so changed as to become a charitable shelter, without charge. It causes one to wonder at the sudden disregard of material value in the face of a threat to one's very existence. It is just as if the lower floors and basement of the Royal York and King Edward [grand hotels in Toronto] were cleared of all business transactions, and anybody and everybody who happened to be near there when the air raid alarm sounds, were to flock into them and sprawl over the chairs, remove their coats and boots and stretch out on the carpeted floors. It is just that picture Honey that we see here. It is so absolutely strange it is mighty hard to believe--and here in old historical, conservative London. Dearie, it is typical of the spirit that pervades this entire country. Wonderful is no word to describe it.
And, Dearie, from what I have been able to observe, while there is free mixing of sexes in comparative blackness all about one is night, the moral aspect is truly just as wonderful as is the predominating spirit. This war I believe is going to have a tremendous influence on the character of people.
Everything is being regulated extremely well here. Rationing while on a reduced scale, still provides ample food value and people have no thought or notion of complaining. For instance one gets 1 cube of sugar for a cup of tea. Three 1/2" diameter balls of butter for a meal. Eggs are .08 cents each and very hard to get. Everything is evenly distributed and no favoritism, this is a fact I believe.
The weather here is typical of Toronto weather at this time of year.
I shall post the cards I have been able to get for you, also a few newspapers which shall be out of date insofar as headlines are concerned, but if you read the locals and editorials it will give you a good idea of life here.
It doesn't look as if I shall be able to visit anyone this weekend. I pay 9 s. for bed, bath, attendance and breakfast here and I don't want to stay too long.
Well, Sweetheart, I shall try my best to keep you well informed because I must see everything in terms of you. And I want you so.
Gee, to be only near you.
I hear from Miss Slade that Dr. Borden has been called up for medical board work in the west.
Heaps of luck and may your mind keep free from worry. I love you only and shall die for you if need be. Keep bright for my sake and hopeful.
Note: these letters are all Copyrighted to Karen Rempel Arthur
These letters give only the bare bones of what William Jones was doing. For more detail, The Tenacious Spy: The Story of William Morris Jones by Karen Rempel Arthur, may be purchased on Amazon or Kindle.