Dear Family (Saturday Night)
We took a taxi to the airport Saturday morning but the plane was late taking off from New York because of heater trouble. When it finally arrived several of the people on it had been sick because of the rough flight. We boarded it, we were served lunch and had a smooth flight to Miami stopping in Wilmington, NC to refuel. We were served a cocktail in the late afternoon. One woman was sick all the way to Miami and she and her husband left the tour there. We had dinner in the Miami airport and then took off for Nassau. Small buses took is to the hotels which we reached about 11 pm. We walked around town until midnight and then went to bed. We saw native policeman dressed like Marine Officers in their formal uniform.
The next morning we had breakfast in the out-of-door part of the dining room next to the water, which although about twenty feet deep, was so clear the bottom was visible. Native boys entertained us while we ate by diving for coins. We took a boat over to Paradise Beach where we swam in the ocean and it being somewhat chilly drank hot buttered run. We took a boat back to Nassau. It being Sunday, the stores were closed but natives were making and selling products of hemp and of shells on the wharf. Kay bought a hand bag and beanie hat to match and a large hemp doll. The natives were jolly and talked like Calypso singers. A little shop in the hotel was open and we bought a Wedgewood ashtray as a present to the doctor who gave Kay the aureomycin the night before we left for Kay’s home as he didn’t charge her. After dinner that night we went to the Holy Roller church where the preacher talked thru a microphone attached to his chest with a long wire which enabled him to walk up and down. A few of the members of the congregation had mild parapysms.
The taxi then took us to the Zanzibar Club which was roofless in the center. Both blacks and whites were guests while the floor show was all colored. We drank rum and Coca Cola and listened to the wonderful band but a British tour prevented dancing until 12 and it began to rain before then. I like the Bahamian natives better than the Haitians or Cuban mulattoes. They were jolly and had an engaging speech. Paradise Beach that we went to in the morning is supposed to be one of the world’s best and is the most beautiful one I’ve seen. In the afternoon a taxi took us for a tour of Nassau the most spectacular thing being the brilliant tropical flowers; poinsettia, hibiscus and bougainvillea of several colors. We walked thru the remains of an old fort that had been carved by hand tools out of the limestone.
The next morning while waiting for the bus to drive us to the airport Kay and I took a walk along the Malecon which is a famous drive along the ocean a few blocks from the hotel. We found ourselves suddenly both lying flat on our backs having slipped on some algae kept alive on the sidewalk by ocean waves splashing over the wall. I have never fell so hard or suddenly in my life. I finally got up to my knees where I rested for some more before attempting to stand, being afraid I would slip again. Kay thought I had broken my hip as she said all I could say was, “Oh my!” We stopped in Miami to pass thru customs. On our shopping tour the previous afternoon we visited a rum factory where we sampled most of their products and I bought five bottles each of a different liqueur. Since our quota was filled by the ten bottles of Haitian rum, someone else in our party took them thru for us. We had lunch on the plane and stopped at the Washington airport to refuel. Washington was beautiful at night from the air. We arrived in Philadelphia, a taxi took us home loaded with our luggage and purchases, and drove out to get Cholula and Luita. Both are doing well and Luita, of course, somewhat less immature in appearance.
Yesterday morning we drove out to get Tao. The breeder had been treating her for ear mites and we hope we can cure her as otherwise her ears will become like cauliflower ears. She says we mst give her a tonic to make her eat more as she is too thin to breed.
Kay phoned the woman who bought our white male and he had died from swallowing a tangerine seed! We took Luita out for her second distemper shot. This morning Kay called the vet who had treated the white male and he said he had died from improper feeding including the tangerine seed. Both the woman and Kay were heartbroken.
My Tricontinental was sold on December 31st at 17 1/2. I hope the market goes high enough for my US + Foreign Securities to reach 66 which I have listed as the selling price. It will have to go even higher for Father’s Emerson Electric to reach 16 3/4. I think he ought to lower the selling price.
Kay says for you to save this letter as she would like to have a record of our teop. She seems to be over he cold, but my ears are so stopped up from the flying I can hardly hear.
Glad you had a Merry Christmas and that father is better. Hope Dick’s records have arrived unbroken.
We will be out of school from January 23rd thru February 1st. Hope you can visit us then but you should have someone stay with Father or let him stay in a hotel in town if you do. It would be nice if Mrs. Engels comes by then.
I also bought an alligator about a foot and a half long which I have hanging on the wall in the den.
Love to all,
A very happy and good New Year to all of you. I’m just about to dash downstairs and fix dinner. Because I may not get around to writing up our trip, will you please return this letter to us. He hesitates about asking you for it, he said it was not written as a diary for preservation.
Love to all,
Below you will find the trips itinerary:
Resort Airlines Holiday House party (as planned)
1st Day, Saturday-
OFF TO THE ROMANTIC CARIBBEAN
The fun starts on Saturday morning when your highly competent cruise escort and stewardess welcome you at a friendly and informal breakfast at the Waldorf. Here, too, are your traveling companions-the nicest people you will meet anywhere. Like you, they are in a gala vacation mood. Friendship grows quickly. While chatting with your new-found friends, your baggage and other necessary details are taken care of. Then you are off to New York International Airport at Idlewild, and soon are on your way. After a delicious lunch aloft, (complimentary bar and soft drinks) in your comfortable, spacious “Air Yacht,” in a matter of mere hours you are in Nassau. Your car awaits at the airport. Sink down in a comfortable seat and you are whisked to the luxurious Fort Montagu Beach Hotel. A delicious dinner and a gala evening is before you. You’ll dance, enjoy a floor show and…eventually, float off to sleep in the cool privacy of your luxurious room (with a private bath.)
2nd Day, Sunday-
SIGHTSEEING, SPORTS, FORT CHARLOTTE, BEACH PARTY
The morning is as free as a breeze. Lounge on the beach at your front door, attend religious services, explore, go fishing…follow your fancy! In the afternoon, cars and polite British-trained drivers are at your disposal for a leisurely drive around the island. There’s lots to see- Fort Charlotte, the Queen’s Staircase (65 steps cut in the solid rock of a cliff) and the charm and peace of a British Colonial Island on a Sunday afternoon. In the evening, join the beach party at the hotel which is one of the centers of the Colony’s social life.
3rd Day, Monday-
SHADES OF CHRISTOPHER COUMBUS, THE BUCCANEERS, HENRI CHRISTOPHE AND HIS “EIGTH WONDER OF THE WORLD”
Monday morning finds your “Air Yacht” aloft enroute to the mysterious and exotic island of French-speaking Haiti. Flying swiftly south over the blue Caribbean, you pas the very face of history- in the wake of Christopher Columbus, the Buccaneers, Drake, Sir Henry Morgan, and the golden galleons of the Spanish Main. From the relaxed comfort of your Resort Airlines cruiser, you spot Tortuga, famous pirate hangout…Cap Haitian, site of the first settlement in the New World…Sans Souci Palace and the “eighth wonder of the world”-The Citadel-a gigantic fortress on a lonely mountain peal. Forbidding and empty, it is now the tomb of Henri Christophe, Emperor of the republic. Now you are in Port-au-Prince, the Capital City of mysterious Haiti and a private limousine waits to take you to your Haitian “Shangri-la” for lunch. The afternoon is yours- swimming, shopping, sightseeing. After a delicious dinner at the hotel, you’ll enjoy an enchanting evening with visits to native night clubs, dancing and the International Casino-often called the Monte Carlo of the Caribbean.
4th Day, Tuesday-
SIGHTSEEING, SHOPPING, HAITIAN ALPS, VOODOO CEREMONIES
Limousines with English-speaking drivers are at your service after you’ve had a leisurely breakfast. A few of the places you may visit…a native mahogany factory (real bargains in salad bowls, coffee tables, figurines, ect.), a sisal factory (mats, purses, shoes, etc., go for a song), the Cathedral, the Museum, Art Center, Fisher’s Art, and Curio Store, the famous Iron Market where the natives trade among themselves; and you can pick up unheard of bargains in exquisitely tailored clothing and needlework at “La Belle Creole.” If you prefer, there’s exciting undersea spear fishing to watch as well as water skiing and other sports. After a delicious lunch you will motor through the Haitian Alps with a visit to Mt. Boutilier for a breathtaking view of Haiti’s rugged terrain with interesting sights along the way. The evening is free and there’s a wide choice of entertainment including voodoo ceremonies, dancing or just plain luxuriating in the cool of the evening…or perhaps a moonlight swim!
5th Day, Wednesday}
6th Day, Thursday}
CUBA, PEARL OF THE ANTILLES, HAVANA, MORRO CASTLE, VARADERO BEACH
It’s hard to say goodbye to Haiti, but equally fun-filled hours lie ahead. There’s choice flightseeing too…Varadero Beach of fame and fable…Morro Castle and that “unmarked ocean wave” where the battle cry “ Remember the Main” was born. Soon you’re in an entirely different world…the beautiful modern city of Havana, that offers fast-moving, scintillating entertainment in the Spanish manner. Transportation awaits at the airport. Before long you’re sipping your favorite nectar (on the house) at the Chez Merito bar in the Presidente Hotel, with never a thought for bag, baggage (and Souvenirs) which are efficiently taken care of by your airline hosts while you’re lounging in air-conditioned comfort. Lunch is ready when you are! The afternoon is free but there’s an evening of thrills in the offing. After dinner, you take an exciting night tour of Havana. See charming, French-style sidewalk cafes with all-girl rhumba bands…see Jai Alai (the fastest game in the world)…then free (if you desire) to visit fabulous Tropicana Night Club which boasts one of the finest rhumba bands in the Americas. There’s dancing, of course, and gaming tables are available, too.
Thursday morning, you’re off to make the rounds of the fabulous Cuban capital. See the Prado (a romantic ten block promenade of imported Italian Terrazzo marble.) Visit the Trocadero Rum factory where you’ll find some real bargains. See cigar and alligator-leather factories where your dollars work magic. That evening, raise the roof at fashionable Montmartre Supper Club…famous for the gayest and most uninhibited night life in the Western World.
7th Day, Friday-
You reluctantly take leave of the gay Caribbean and speed Northwards. Flightseeing the Florida Keys, you stop briefly at fabulous Miami. Then homeward bound along the U.S> Eastern Seaboard. You arrive home early evening with pep in your step, a sparkle in your eyes, many new-found friends, and fond memories of the most enchanting, utterly satisfying 7-day holiday you’ve ever spent!
Do you even remember what you had for dinner last night? Thanks to Cath's detailed journals, we know she accidentally had sloth soup for dinner 53 years ago while visiting the Amazon. Read through these interesting chronicles for memorable anecdotes from Cath's travels.