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Australia: January 4 ~ 5 ~ 6After lunch, I went with Miss Osborne of Australian Broadcasting Commission and recorded a talk for her children's hour. Afterward, I spent the rest of the afternoon shopping for something I needed. Went to the Finance Section and got a priority release. Took a cab to a big concern that was supposed to have what I wanted, if anyone did. They didn't. But a friendly and very busy chap named Haughtry spent half an hour telephoning all over town to locate the article. His desk was in what I suppose the British call the counting room The whole place, including the furniture and the clerks, might have been lifted bodily out of a Dickens story. A sad faced, little old man wearing a white collar and a black alpaca coat, matched the ancient, timeworn tables, chairs, and desks. Everything was dingy and depressing.. . . autograph. I had to have another "spot" with them. Then I saw Ham and a pretty girl, and he asked me to have dinner with them. The girl was one of the few really nice girls we met informally, except the American nurses, of course. Anyway, they were all safe with Ham, not alone because he is a Suth'n gem'n from Richmond, Virginia, but because he always took me along. Whether to protect the girls or Ham, I wouldn't know.
We met again at seven. Bob Ferguson and a Sydney girl were with them. We went to Ciro's and had a pleasant evening. Pat Robinson was at another table with a girl. He was getting his spirits lived -- rapidly.
The following morning (January 5), while I was at breakfast, Mr. F.W. Simpson of the Australian Broadcasting Commission called for me. I went to the studio with him and recorded a talk (8 1/2 minutes) that was broadcast that evening.
Went to the Grace building and talked with Major Cary Tucker of Buffalo, N.Y. about purchasing US War Bonds. While there, I accomplished even more. Lt. Cruickshank took me to the Officer's Club and got me a bottle of Johnny Walker. I decided the War Bond matter could be placed lower on the agenda. First things should always come first.
The MGM men called for me at three. Bob Ferguson was with me and I asked to take him along to see the Tarzan picture. It looked good box office to me. Met a number of MGM people and we were all photographed. Saide Parker, MGM News Service asked me to record for her the next day. She also interviewed me.
My laundry finally came back after eight days. What Australia needs is a few Statler Hotels with Statler service. Of course the war has messed things up for them. So has the Labour Government. Some of the things one saw on the streets were reminiscent of the '90s -- hansom cabs and other horse drawn vehicles, and ancient bowler hats.
Back at the hotel, Bob and I found Ham and Mr. and Mrs. Field in the lounge. Thelma Terry (the nice girl) joined us later. After Bob, Ham and Terry left, the Fields took Pat and me to Prince's for dinner. Prince's is another swank restaurant. Prince's and Romano's are the best in town. They put on quite a lot of dog. At tea dances in the afternoon, I was always rather shocked to see the number of men in civilian clothes dancing. It didn't look like all-out war effort to me.
The following morning (January 6) I made a recording. The script was written by Saide Parker. The recording was directed by George Matthews, General Manager B.A.P.
Met Brydon Taves, UP Bureau Chief, Sydney. He seemed peeved because I hadn't reported to him. I thought him something of an ass. So did Ham.
Australian Broadcasting Commission Mobile Studio Caravan 1943 and Camouflaged Double Decker Bus
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