Drove to Faubles' in Pontiac for the weekend, arriving at noon. Fixed a tire punctured on the way. We played bridge in the evening. Sun. Mr. and Mrs. Fauble came, with 2 lads named Peacock from where they had been visiting. Chicken dinner and home again at 7:00.
Dug under the porch some more. Haven't eaten much today and it used me up so I was all in for evening school. Mr. Fauble gave me a swage set for a cross-cut saw.
Nov. 4, Tuesday
An extra heavy day. Herbert [his brother] had a vacation this PM, came down, and went the rounds with me. Voted mostly democratic. Had a wisdom tooth pulled and my mouth is sore & stiff tonight.
Digging under the porch spare time evenings.
Nov. 10, Mon.
John had a sun bath outdoors today, it was so warm, about 75. Still, working under the porch, in a great hurry to get it done, for fear a rain will get it all wet. Back nearly to the center beam, but far from half done.
Bought an electric clock, Sat. and have it running on my desk.
Inserted an ad "Free dirt" in St. Journal. Completed an extension cord for use from auto battery, with a drop switch. Dug a couple of hours in basement. Am reading first volume of Hughes' life of Washington, 1732-1762. Also a book of fiction by the same author, "Cup of Fury" to see what he is like in that field.
Digging proceeds apace. It allows me little time to read unless I get home early at noon. It is not as hard now as it was since I am getting somewhat accustomed to the hard work. The pickaxe swings under hand much like an ax but has an overhead movement that is different. I cannot use the latter much because of the porch floor overhead.
Thurs. Nov. 13
Attended regular and first degree. No more degree work for me when I can dodge it. Tedious to the last minute, and oh so long to get to the last. Inserted a "Free Dirt" ad and got rid of one good truckload.
Friday, Nov. 14
Bought a baby-jumper for John, one of the affairs with a seat hung with a spring so he can jounce it up and down, and hung it with a bit of steel strap which I obtained from George Kieppe. Am driving my excavation steadily back under the porch, about 6 feet from the rear end now.
Saturday, Nov. 15
Dug in my hole all the afternoon, but did not make much progress. I can work two or three hours fast and hard, but after that am too tired to accomplish much. I can therefore do almost as much at night after calls as I can in a whole day. Didn't feel very well, however.
We had the first crout [kraut] out of the batch I made Oct. 21 tonight. It was delicious. A week or so back we found it too salt and in desperation I dipped out some of the brine juice and put in water. It began to ferment better at once, and a second dipping out and dilution made it what it is. Put it out doors to keep cool.
Am reading Hughes Life of Washington 1762-1777.
Sunday repaired a tire and soldered a leak in the radiator. Was quite proud of the latter. Used an alcohol lamp and blow pipe and did not remove radiator from the car. Mon. was ill, stomach upset & could hardly make my calls. Of course it had to be the biggest day yet, 30 calls in AM, didn't get home till 12:30.
Thursday Nov. 20
Did some work on the car, greasing, soldering radiator, servicing battery and putting on a new windshield wiper. At lodge, attended De Molay initiation.
Friday, Nov. 21
Reached the rear end of my excavation and took part of the remaining material which has been left on the floor so far, bringing it down to the final level.
Saturday, Nov 22
Bought a good spirit level, square, chalk line and 2 foot rule for use in my building job. Took Ruby & Jane downtown to have a little spree.
Our sourcrout is delicious and we are eating it almost daily.
Worked in excavation and went to club party at Pancosts in the evening. One game of "crazy bridge" was played in addition to four hands of the usual auction. I won every game, all through the evening, and men's first, a nut cracker & pix and a little salt shaker, to make it a 25c present mostly, I suppose.
Sunday, Nov. 23
Worked all day. Took a 30 minute ride in evening, taking some letters from Uncle John out to Orville & Herbert, regarding the trip to Fremont for Thanksgiving.
Greased the car, put on a new windshield wiper blade and re-soldered the radiator.
Monday, Nov. 24
John cried twice in the night last night. We are all away back on sleep, & I spanked him, but he yelled for an hour or more. We looked him over carefully, but nothing the matter.
Tuesday, Nov. 25
Getting ready to close up the porch hole during my absence. Removed one of the big cement pillars, putting a post in its place. So heavy could hardly roll it over, let alone getting it out of the hole. Tried to break it, everything, no result.
Wednesday, Nov. 26
Removed the small middle cement pillar, did some digging, filled up outer part of ramp up which I have been running wheelbarrow loads of dirt to the surface, removed my tools from the hole, replaced the steps, and left everything lookinng as if nothing had happened, ready to leave city tomorrow. Taught evening school at night. A blizzard raged this afternoon while I closed up my job. Very small crowd at E.S.
Thanksgiving, Nov. 27
Rose about 6:00, ate a small breakfast, loaded into the car, John in the big clothes basket, and at ten to eight started on the annual trip to Fremont. The roads were slippery with the new snow, but it was cold, freezing hard, and not as skiddery as the night before. 3 1/2 hours later we were in Fremont, but did not find Dad & Mother there as they were snowed in, roads blocked by worst Thanksgiving storm in years. Millers & Uncle Bert were there for dinner and Andersons in the evening. Weather very cold. Percy couldn't start his car. To bed late, and John, sleeping in our room, kept us awake a good share of the night, fretting at every noise we made, and sometimes at no noise. Ruby fed him three times and finally had to take him in bed with us. There he awoke and cried every time we moved.
Friday, Nov. 28
Had dinner with Uncle Charley & Aunt Helen, Beem's too. In evening, went to hear Sen. Brookhart of Iowa, speaking at Hesperia Big Meeting. He attacked Wall St. and advocated a system of cooperative banks & stores. Our car wouldn't respond to the starter button, but we started it by towing with Uncle John's car, and drove our car to Hesperia. Started it with the crank after some trouble & came back. John slept quietly all night. We put him in a vacant room adjoining.
Saturday, Nov. 29
Good dinner at Beems; steak with a tomato preparation poured over it. About 2:00 we tried to start the car & found the battery dead. The ignition, horn & windshield wiper were all unresponsive. Found the battery frozen solid. The lights burned several hours on Thanksgiving day accidentally and ran it down. Had to have a new one installed and then car wouldn't start because moisture in distributor. Took three mechanics half an hour to start it. Had front wheels, bearing adjusted and packed, total $9.35. Left at four in rain, icy road, dangerous driving, several tight squeaks but no hits, arrived home at nine P.M., just as the curfew blew.
Ruby and I and Jane are all pretty bored over it all. We have had to sit for hours in stifling, overheated rooms, facing glaring lights, and listening to no end of gossip, unable to read or be comfortable days, and in misery one of the two nights. Nothing against the folks we visited. They did all they could to show us a good time. But hereafter we stay in town all winter unless it be for a long strip South some time. Other people are accustomed to keep their houses hotter than we enjoy, they do not have any common interests with us, have religious scruples against a game of bridge, and we are getting older probably, and do not as easily adjust ourselves to their ways. The annual trip, which we have made every year since 1924, I think, has almost become a custom, but it is too severe, and too hazardous, at the time of year, and we feel it had better be dropped. We see everybody there practically every summer, and at intervals irregularly, at other times. When it began it was a real visit, Beems lived on the farm. Whiting and Edith [Maurice's sister and her husband] locating in Hesperia helped to make a jolly custom. and Christmas festivities increased its charm. Now it has run its course. I doubt if we receive another invitation, for I think Aunt Grace is pretty tired of it too.
Sunday, Nov. 30
Rejoicing every hour to be home, we loafed about the house. I put a quart of oil in the crankcase, otherwise haven't been outdoors all day. Rainy & wet. Had one big meal about 2:00 and a lunch now and then as desired according to the peculiar custom of our family, that would drive an outsider frantic. Had the house cool and comfortable, slouched about in comfortable old clothes, and just enjoyed ourselves. The kitchen sink became clogged this afternoon, and I put on my overalls and cleaned it out through the cleanout hole in the end of the pipe, a filthy job, but a short one since I've learned to do it. Tonight have spent an hour writing up my diary since and inclusive of Nov. 25.