c/o Ernescliffe MuskokaBox 03-146 TO REV.CALVIN MCQUESTEN from Percy Grimstead
Aug 2 1958
To: Rev. Calvin McQuesten
From: 340 Margueretta St., Toronto, Ontario
My dear Padre,
We were so happy to receive your letter this morning to know that you were enjoying your Holiday as usual at our favourite resort. No, you do not owe me a letter, it is that my typewriter has been shut down because I do not seem to be able to produce anything that Editors want or care to publish. My MSS gathers dust upon my desk, and I have tried breaking it up into shorter pieces. I enclose for your amusement (I hope) two copies of excerpts. I do not need them back--perhaps our friends the Sparlings might like to read them. Also enclosed a letter from the Book Editor of The Telegram for which I was grateful, but it shows what a tough game it is and to break into.
I feel somewhat sad too, at the closing of the store for which I was responsible for so many years, for the Company have decided to move into the Shopping Plaza, a few blocks away, to a very modern and larger premises. I am told that they are counting upon my past work here to get them away to a flying start, instead of starting cold as it were. I suppose this may be regarded as a compliment.
I wish so much that we could be with you, how gladly would I perform those little duties for you that I was wont to do in the past. But we find, almost every day, that anything but the shortest walk, about half a block and back is my limit and even then the climbing of the one flight of stairs brings on the warning, that I have done too much.
So it is reading and resting all day, and every day, I cannot even manage Church with my wife on Sunday mornings.
Speaking of books, when you get back to Hamilton, do look for one called THE LONG SUNDAY by Peter Fletcher. In a letter to me, he tells me that he preached in Toronto at the old Sherbourne St. Church.
I have made a hobby of writing to Authors all over the world whose books have pleased me, and with the one exception of Beverly Nicholls, they all seem happy to respond. Adrian Conan Doyle from Switzerland, and another from S. Africa.
All seem happy that their books are available for reading in Canada.
My wife, I am happy to say, is well and as busy as ever both in the Home and in her Church work and is content with out lot, although I wish she would consent to leave me and take a short respite in Muskoka.
All the boys are doing well, and we see the grand-children. In fact for them, as did the author of "Alice" I have been writing stories for the youngest, and I am told that their parents have to read them each and every night at bed-time. The latest series were of "Tommy the Turtle." I believe there is a field for Childrens books, but I would need to make them a little less personal.
I have been saving this anecdote for you, knowing that you are acquainted with the Cockney dialect. The late Bishop of Durham is said to have spoken upon the matter of accents thusly "that he would rather have a curate who spoke unblushingly pure Cockney and sing "PRISE 'IM FOR HIS GRICE AND FIVER" than have a curate with a mock Oxfordian accent singing "PREESE HIM FOR HIS GREASE AND FEVER."
Thank you for your kind thoughts of us, we remember you too, in our prayers and trust that you will paddle your trusty canoe for many more seasons to come.
One more story-of a gentleman walking down Bond St, and saw some peaches marked 7/6 he opined that it was rather dear for such poor looking fruit, but said that he would take a dozen. "A dozen" said the salesman, it is 7/6 each and wrapped one poor looking specimen in tissue. Handing the man a ten shilling note, the customer said, "Sorry, you had better keep the change I just trod on a grape."
Your would be Jeeves