Monday, July 03, 2006

December 7, 1954 (Tuesday)

Dear Folks—

Well, its over! At long last, after fifteen long, grueling, tedious, torturous, horrible weeks. I still can’t believe it—my mind is still muddling through that sea of molasses the Navy has managed to make of an ordinary day.

This morning we had our last two finals—Principles of Flight & Celestial Navigation. I was really worried about P. of F. , because if I flunked this test I would flunk the course, & would not be able to go to New York. But I passed it—by a narrow margin I’ll grant, but nevertheless I passed.

Instead of graduating with my class on Friday, we members of the band will be handed our diplomas on Thursday afternoon, & will move to Corry Thursday night. The thought of not going through the pomp & ceremony of graduation doesn’t hurt me in the least. I have always pictured myself marching up the stairs of the reviewing stand, which is always crowded with admirals & captains & things, & just as I’d get to the top step, I’d trip over my sword scabbard & fall flat on my face. It’s probably never been done before, but that doesn’t mean I couldn’t do it.

Friday morning at 0800 we take off from Corry Field for New York—God, how wonderful that will be! We’ll land at New York about 1500 (3:00 p.m.). That night we’ve got to play a concert at the band director’s old prep school somewhere outside the city. Friday night, & Saturday, we’ll be staying at the Brooklyn Navy Yards (doesn’t that place sound like it will just reek with charm & hospitality?).

Saturday evening I’m trying to get tickets to “The Pajama Game”—Ensign Barnes’ mother is going to pick them up. If I have any time Saturday Afternoon, I’d like to see another; preferably “The Boy Friend” ( a terrific take-off on musicals of the 20s).

No TV show, which didn’t surprise me too much. NBC wouldn’t tell us what kind of show they wanted, & besides we couldn’t have been ready anyhow.

Sunday morning at 1000 we leave for Pensacola, arriving back here around 1500. Then, in five days, two hours & forty-five minutes, I’ll be boarding another plane—for good old Chicago!

Now for news on the home front—good lord, I didn’t expect a new car; I realize we aren’t that rich yet.

Well, parents, I guess that is about all for now. I’ll be seeing you in a while. Till then

I am
As Always

P.S. I’m not expecting anything for a graduation present, but a new car would be nice, now that I’ll be at an outlying field with no way to get into town, and….


Eric said...

My childhood in the '50's was spent two blocks from the Brooklyn Navy Yard. Still remember being aboard an aircraft carrier and seeing the Nautilus submarine. Hope you got to see the original Pajama Game - we just saw the revival with Harry Connick Jr!

Dorien/Roger said...

Gee, Eric...were you that little kid who waved at me on the corner? Wouldn't that be a sure-fire winner in the Guinness "Small World" catgory?

No, I somehow missed "Pajama Game":saw Judy Holliday in "Solid Gold Cadillac" instead (it's coming up in a letter soon).



Eric said...

Sorry you missed Pajama Game, but envious you saw Judy Holliday. I only saw her in movies and would have loved to see her on stage. Last year I performed Perfect Relationship from Bells Are Ringing (albeit I changed some of the words!) - it was my wasy of paying homage to a truly great comedic talent. I waved to a lot of sailors when I was a little boy (still do) - was I wearing my sailor's outfit? (there are pictures)