ArlindoWarLetter - Family de Freitas

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Arlindo de Freitas went to war, joining Celso. This letter was sent by Arlindo to Celso on his unusual arrival in Britain to serve...
If you write address to Mrs Ormon. I will be at Abbey Lodge, Park Road, A.C.R.C. St. John's Wood.

Guy took me to the West Indies Committee today & then to the West Indies Club where I had lunch. I met Lady Davson, she was very glad to meet me, she seems to be very fond of you, & told me if you want one she could get you special leave to come & see me.

Dear Celco

I've had quite a experience, when we arrive in Scotland I was search & all my papers taken away from me even my money, soldiers took me from the ship & kept me at the Barracks at Greennock, they were nice fellows - they took me to lunch & tea & told me not to worry as everything was allright, but at 6 o'clock the scotland yard men got hold of four other guys from another ship, & myself, & search us again then they took us away to London; we travel all night, & arrive in London 9 o'clock next morning & were taken to the Patriotic School, Wandsworth. Where we were told we were not to write or to send any telegrams. We had to wait until we were proven to be OK. We had breakfast at 10 o'clock 0 a cup of coffee & bread, lunch - a plate of potatoes & a piece of fish or meat, Dinner at 6 o'clock which was a cup of tea & bread - no sugar; they were about 600 men of all nationalitys.

I was in there for 5 days, luckily I had a few bars of chocolate, Cabs, gave me before I left BG otherwise I would of starve; I honestly enjoyed the experience as I heard some wonderful stories while I was in there of the war; we even played football.

I have been busy these last few days at the Air Ministry; its now all over, and I have been accepted to be trained as a pilot my official No 1397606; I have 5 days leave in order to clear up my private affairs then I will be sent to Aircrew Receiving Wing, St. John Wood for immediate course prior to posting to an aircrew section for pre I.T.W. training; I would like a little advise from you when you write, of what to do & what not to do. I have been to Guy's this afternoon and we had a drink together; he wants me to have dinner tomorrow with him at the West Indies Club. He as just receive your letter & gave me the news about how you're getting on.

Well here is what we did while coming over from B.G.. Angus Wood, Fredie & I went ashore in Trinidad - we spent most of the day in Fredrick Street; Angus and I went to see the Portuguses Consul; we had a glass of wine with him; he ask us to dinner, but we had to refuse as we had promise to meet Oscar & Wood at the Queens Park Hotel. At QP we had a few drinks, then I left to look up Compton. The ship left Port of Spain for San Fernando, & was'nt coming back until morning, so Compton's mother offer to fix up some beds of rugs on the floor & to let us have a bath & coffee in the morning which we were very glad to accept to stay for the night, as all rooms in Hotels are taken up by Americans; at 6 o'clock we all met at the Hotel de Paris & decided to go to the Cinema at 9 o'clock; we had six beers each & it was getting late, when Eric Murray & a friend came & join us we had a couple more beers; Eric ask us to dinner at the Q.P. we try to refuse but he would'nt hear of it; when we arrive at the Q.P., I felt more like sleeping than eating; we had a few more drinks before dinner was ready; after dinner which over at 11 o'clock, we ask Eric to come to the Country Club with us, but he refuse as he was'nt a member, but he insisted on us coming & stay at his Flat which was next door to Q.P.H, so I had to ring and tell Compton that we wer'nt coming. Angus Fredie & I went to the Country Club; we met Clare & Joan de Freitas; we left the Country Club at midnight; we ask the driver [section heavily deleted] so we called it a night & went home to find Eric Murray waiting for us with a bottle of Gin. Fredie went to sleep at Dick Cannons flat; Angus and I slept at Eric's flat; we had a bed each but no pyjamas so we slept naked under the sheets. Next morning the maid brought in the coffee to find Angus asleep with no sheets covering him; we had a bath a shave & breakfast; the maid told Angus she knew Molly, as Molly spent a holiday with Joan Murray at the same flat. Well we had a real good time in Trinidad.

Next we stop at Dominica & went for a drive with Oscar, Angus, Leon & Wood, then we end with a swim.

At St. Vincent, Wood Camacho Amory and I went mountain climbing; the next day Oscar Leon Wood Angus and I went for a drive & end up with a swim. At St. Kitts we met Allan Campbell & we had a lot of fun; the first thing he did for us was to take us to a pub to buy a case of rum; he then got two cars & took us to a place call Frigit [sic] Bay where we swam & drank rum, after which we went to St. Kitts Club where we played Billiards & Ping-Pong until 12 o'clock when we had to get on board; Allan came on board & had lunch; after lunch Oscar & Allan came down to our cabin & got tight; well to finish up with we all got into bathing suits & swam off the side of the ship; I was afraid as Oscar could'nt swim too good & the water was pretty rough; the salt water sober us up. Allan sends his regards to you & is seriously thinking of joining the army; he wants to join the Tank Corp. A week after we were in Halifax, although we found it hard to get Canadian money; they would'nt change the £ [Pound] & if they did they wouldnt give you much for it. We had gun firing practice the 2nd day we were there; all the crews & volunteers from different boats were taken aboard a Korvet & taken out to sea to shoot at kites which were flown by the Korvet. After we left Halifax we all had to watch in turn; we had a very quiet voyage; we did'nt see a enemy plane or submarine; we were the first British ships to be convoyed by American Destroyers. Although we did'nt see any submarines they were about as the Destroyers heard them & drop depth charges.

Well I have just seen the others.

Observers: Angus, Fredie, Bolan Jardine, Osborne and Wood.
Pilots: Leon, Amory, Collins, Grant and McLean.
Philip Camacho failed - he is long-sighted & weak at Maths.

Angus as something for you; I don't know what it is, but I know he as a photo frame from Muriel Mimms.

All the Family was well when I left & sends their love.


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