25 Aug 1984
Sat. Morn.

Dear Diane,

It appears that I'm behind in writing to you again. I'll skip all the excuses. It has been a busy month, especially for August which is usually slow.

Last weekend Michael & I went to Sorrento and stayed 2 nights in the Bristol Hotel. It was great. The kids stayed with Faye Sigle, had a ball & didn't even miss their mom & dad. The Bristol is high on a cliff overlooking the town of Sorrento, the Bay of Naples and the Isle of Capri. It was too hazy to see Capri that weekend, but we could see everything else. We shopped, took a horse-drawn cart tour of the town and ate at some nice restaurants. It was too cool to swim in their pool or their private beach.

Our weather has been more like October weather than August. I've been wearing jeans instead of shorts around the house. It sure is weird. I'm chilly right now.

I was assigned the job of finding a raffle prize for our Hospital Wives organizational meeting in September. We looked all over Sorrento for something nice. (Everything's nice in Sorrento, but I wanted something unique, but not more than $35.00.) Finally we went to the store where we bought our dining room set. The man there donated us an inlaid wood music table (worth about $35.00) for our raffle. I was pleased. I hope everyone else will be. That meeting is September 5th. We'll see how it goes then.

Anyway, we had a good time in Sorrento for our 9th anniversary. I told Michael we'd have to go to Paris for our 10th for a long weekend. I didn't get much response to that.

I was recovering from that weekend when I came down with a cold. I was aching all over, but I couldn't take the time to go to bed. That's hard to do with 2 preschoolers. I laid down one of their nap times, but Steven got up after only an hour so I didn't get much rest. Thursday I was really down.

Last night, Friday, I helped give a "Wetting Down" party. That's an old fashion term for a congratulation party for promoted officers. Since Michael was recently promoted, I was expected to help give this party. All day Friday while I wanted to be in bed, I was out buying melons, making melon balls, entertaining kids, making chicken tidbits & getting ready for the party, etc. Of course, that afternoon the telephone repairman chose to come fix our phone that had been out of order all week. That slowed me down tremendously. Every time I tried to get into the bathtub, they would ring the doorbell. I finally got in on the 3rd try. We went to the party & had a good time, but I spent a lot of time sitting instead of up mingling. I just didn't have much energy.

Michael is on call today so we're just staying around the house & taking it easy. Perhaps I'll recuperate today. Tomorrow evening the church is having a picnic at Carney Park. It seems everyone has been trying to keep busy in this usually boring month. They've succeeded in keeping me busy anyway.

We haven't been watching much Italian TV so we haven't seen any of the Olympics. Angelique would have enjoyed the gymnastics & swimming & diving, too. Our kids have been busy learning to play PacMan. Real educational, huh! We also got a game, "Clowns," which is more on their level, but when we ordered it, we didn't know it takes the paddles instead of the joysticks. So we'll have to wait until we can get some paddles for that one.

Tell Laura I'm going to the Caserta Royal Palace Tuesday night to see the New York Ballet group perform. I have no idea what they will be doing. My neighbor just came in one day & said she'd get tickets for us. Caserta is about an hour away. I think it will be an outdoor performance in the gardens. The gardens are quite elaborate. I'll tell you about it later.

Michael ordered a printer for his computer. He ordered a Gemini 10X. From the little information we can get here, that sounded like one of the best ones. What is Bill wanting?

Thanks for the tapes & swimsuits. Angelique enjoys her variety. Someone asked me how many swimsuits Angelique has. (Only 4 that fit her right now.) No one else seems to have so many at their disposal. She's worn the purple one you sent a couple of times. I made the mistake of telling her she'd have to have help going to the bathroom with the red one on that has that halter tie. She likes it, but hesitates to wear it. If it would warm up, they could "swim" in our little wading pool & she could wear it here.

We wanted to get the kids swimming on video, but it's just too cold. It's hard to swim when you're blue. The pool will close in a few weeks. So we may not get it this year.

Steven had just started to come up for a breath on his own during the last class. He's probably forgotten how now. Angelique was learning to dive off the side of the pool & could swim about half of the width of the pool. They'll put her in one of the upper classes next year if she's tall enough to reach the bottom of the pool. She can't reach it even in the shallowest part which is suppose to be 3 feet but is almost 4. They both prefer to be without their floaties, but I insist that one of them must have them on while I work with the other one.

Do you know when Mom & Dad are getting into their house? She hasn't told me. I suppose she doesn't know. The last few weeks of waiting must be nerve racking. I hope they're in by October.

In Angelique's play there were 3, 4 & 5-year-olds. The younger 3's just didn't do well at all. They do plays every year. I hope the director will watch the tape and make some changes before next year. I think being outside & not being on a stage was distracting to the kids as much as anything else. Of course, they only worked on it one week. That might have something to do with it. Angelique's teacher wanted to have Angelique read the whole play, but thought one of the other mothers, of one of the other girls who read, who is another teacher there, would get mad at her. And she would have. She was a childish person. Fortunately, that was her last year here.

What do you mean I have a "decided Italian influence" in my driving technique? I think I drive just fine. Can't I drive like that in the States?

Yes, our church building is small. We'd be tickled to get new members, but we would have trouble seating everyone. We could always have services at the chapel on the Base, but we'd have to work around all the other services' schedules & we would have some restrictions there. But the building is nice.

We send the Coles a copy of the tape we send you. They don't send us tapes 'cause they don't have a camera. They did send us a cartoon tape that took them a couple of months to tape off the TV. I didn't understand all that. The kids (and us) get tired of the same ol' cartoons. They'll be surprised at all the things on TV when we come back in October.

We'll vote absentee in the elections. They'll probably come while we're in the States.

I'm glad you're getting your passports. That's the most promising thing I've heard from the States in a long time.

Have you heard more about the operation? Was she having a hysterectomy or just her tubes tied?

I sent Cheryl an Italian knit snow outfit for Justin that I picked up in Sorrento. It's really cute, but I'm not sure it will fit this winter - maybe next.

Thanks for the tape of the little ones. Justin was tiny. Jeremy looked big after seeing Justin. Christian & Brandon were really cute. I wish they could come for Steven's McDonald's party, but I know better than to expect that. Christian is really pretty. We finally got to hear Brandon say something.

Gotta go.



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