14th June 1951


Frank and I went for a walk out of town today and it was nice to get away into the countryside. I’m afraid I wore completely the wrong shoes for the trip. But as Mother says, ‘A lady never complains about her feet’, so I just focused on the fact that at least I looked nice and that helped to make up for it. My heels are all blistered now though and I’ve been trying not to hobble around the house. 

While we walked Frank began telling me about his work, it sounds very exciting. He supplies all kinds of things to people who need them but can’t get them either because nowhere sells them or they are too expensive, a kind of helpful go-between if you like. Since the war it has been hard to get hold of nice things like stockings and cosmetics but Frank is a dab hand at finding them. 

He seems to have made so many friends and connections since his time in the Navy and they help him to get his hands on all kinds of products which he then sells on. I asked if he had a shop and he laughed at me. ‘Not a shop exactly’ he smiled, ‘it’s more about spotting a good opportunity and being in the right place at the right time’.

Well I had no idea what he was talking about, so I just nodded along. But when he asked if I liked to read Vogue he began to speak my language, and told him I do read it whenever I can. Mother sometimes passes them on to me from her employers when they’ve finished with them. I managed to get a copy of April’s issue but haven’t been so lucky since.

‘Leave it with me’ he said. I was very impressed Frank even knew what Vogue was never mind understanding how a girl craves that kind of knowledge! I’ll wait and see what he comes up with, but I’m not holding my breath.

He began to joke then, ‘So is that what you get up to while I’m not around? Read magazines and dream of frocks?’ He was smiling when he said it but it made me feel rather put out. ‘Actually, I do have dreams you know, I’d love to work in fashion’ I told him, and then I went on to explain all about the shop girls I’d read about in Picture Post. To his credit Frank didn’t scoff at me like I thought he might. It was nice to talk about my little fantasy like that, and Frank nodded in all the right places, he actually seemed interested.

After that we found a nice spot to sit down and ate the sandwiches I’d brought and it was so pleasant to just sit side by side while we chatted about all kinds of things, films, and movie gossip. Frank’s pretty on the ball and he even told me a few things even I didn’t know; like how Vivien Leigh is soon to make a big film comeback and how Barbara Payton is two timing her husband Franchot Tone. Well, I’ve only ever seen one of her films but I’ll definitely keep a look out for her now! 

When we got back to Hanley we made sure to keep to the back streets just in case any of the local gossips saw us. I just know they’d get completely the wrong idea. It was such a pleasant day though; it felt almost like it had before Frank had gone away all those years ago. I felt very carefree and happy. 

I don’t know why, but now I feel a little sad and tired.

And my feet hurt to buggery.