Letters from Marcy #37: 2 May 1968

This is the second-to-last letter I have from Marcy to her parents, and the last typewritten one.

In this letter, they seem completely set on moving to Seattle, but that never happened. By early 1970, we were living in El Cerrito, California, and we lived in various parts of the Bay Area all through my growing-up: Sebastopol, Santa Rosa, Cotati, Palo Alto. I had no idea until I read this letter that there had ever been a plan to move to Seattle. I don’t know what happened to that plan.


               Wednesday (probably) [handwritten: (5/1/68)?]

Peter just had a magnificent idea ! about how to travel:
driving all that distance is kind of hard, and will be quite
hard on the car, and expensive (that many days' food,
diapers, laundry, etc,) so here is what we'd like better to

We'll be going up to Seattle quite soon (we're trying to get
money together to do it with some degree of ease) to get
settled, find a place to live, get Peter enrolled, find
jobs, etc. Then to wander around the Olympic Peninsula,
Puget Sound, Straits of Juan de Fuca (see map) by ferry and
other such very cheap contrivances, and get to Vancouver,
thence take Canadian Pacific R.R. to Montreal. About $60 one
way per person, including meals, from Montreal to Phila by
bus is about $15, possibly cheaper by train. Anyway, then we
can (I assume) use your car for transportation while in
Philadelphia, and get a drive-away (where you drive someone
else's car) to go back, so that we can stop off in Yellow
Springs and possibly elsewhere......it all sounds to us like
a lovely way to travel-----

What do you think? Would you be willing to sponsor such a
venture? Twould probably cost about $100 less than traveling
all the way in our car, maybe even a greater difference than
that, as the train-etc will cost roughly $200 and with the
car it would be that much just to get it into shape for
traveling, then there's food and gas and carburetors and
generators and all those things that give out when
traveling. Besides, Jed says he'd rather take the
train--it'd be cooler and both his parents could spoil him
all the time (no less than constant attention will do) and
they wouldn't get tired with 7 thousand miles of driving to

As to timing:--when we'll come I can't be sure. Our leaving
here depends on money, and it surely won't be before May 20,
as Peter has a math class to teach at the 6-Day School in
sonoma, for a week starting May 12, and Jed and I will want
to go down there too. And we want to get settled in Seattle,
at the very least to the extent of finding a place to leave
our stuff. Trying to find a house any later in the summer
will be impossible or worse. So I guess it'll be sometime
between xxx the end of May and the middle of July, none of
which is too terribly far away.

I'm not teaching right now, though I may go back on a
part-time basis. Before the baby came I had been more or
less running the show, and now Bertha, the other teacher,
has to take over and finds it impossible to do so with me
there, and I find it very difficult to be in the same
situation but unable to do things the way I've been doing
them. So at her request I'm staying out to let her get
things organized her way.....if I'd tried to continue doing
it my way I would be neglecting Jed more than I like (though
some women are away from home working 40 hours a week by the
time their babies are 5 weeks old.....how xxxx sad, for the
mother and the baby). But I'm still getting paid, whatever
amount that is, and I'll probably be gong back as she can't
teach reading. But I begin to like being free. All is very
leisurely and luxurious [handwritten: & uxorious]. A friend
of ours has come to stay for a week or so and do housework
for me and enjoy Mendocino, leaving me free to nurse the
baby umpty-trillion or so hours a day without thinking about
dinner or cleaning.

Recieved a very clever little card and a check from Eunie
and Barry ($5) which amazed me all to pieces. Went on a long
trip about Hutchinson street and living there and learning
what the word "hideous" means and about Laney Forman
(Barry's younger sister, who I used to play with, but I
can't remember her face) and Elise and ....oh,shiver.

Peter is making a mincemeat pie and didn't put any cloves
in, xxxx which is fine. It's from the end of the venison we
were given a long time since, which we preserved in a bit of
brandy. Mincemeat is beautiful. Day (the friend who's
staying here) says it's so good it's xx obscene. She just
baked a batch of rolls and claims she's trying to not gain
weight. The quoet for today is It's a great life if you
don't waken.* end of letter,

               xxxx love from Peter
                                         [handwritten: Marcia]

[handwritten: regards to Sachs’s & Aunt ’Stelle & all]
[handwritten: * it’s supposed to be “weaken”—never heard of
it either way.]


Postmark: May 2, 1968, Mendocino, CA. Handwritten: “Rec’d this 5/4” and “Ans. this 5/8.”

Facebook post for this letter.

One Response to “Letters from Marcy #37: 2 May 1968”

  1. Dayle Wilson Smidt

    I wonder if the friend was me. Rick and I came for a visit near that time. We stayed in our bus, parked in front of the tiny cabin. I still have a little picture of the boys from Harbinger. We so loved Peter n Marcy.


Join the Conversation