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July 16, 1934 “I have to work much faster to really earn some money. It’s piece work.”

16 Jul
July 16, 1934 “I have to work much faster to really earn some money. It’s piece work.”

July 16, 1934

My dear Goldkind:

Sounds like you had a very jolly birthday party. But I too am very happy.

Today was my first day at work. Unfortunately my old trouble, slowly-ness, is bothering me. I sure hope to get over it soon.

I started at 10:00 a.m. in a beautiful workroom. I sit right by the window and look out at the lake. The work is quite different from what I was used to.

I get all the parts and only have to sew them together on a wooden respective cork head block. Maybe 6 of the same kind and then maybe a different model.

hat blocks

A hat on a hat block, with tools.

Anyway I have to learn to work much faster to really earn some money. It is all piece work.

From 12-1 is lunch time and we eat in a cafeteria where you serve yourself. Not an automat like in N.Y. Tomorrow I will take a couple sandwiches with me so I only have to buy something to drink. I can save that money. We anyhow have always a real dinner in the evening.

We finish working at 5:30. I really like those work hours. I have time enough to go swimming in the morning and evening I am free.

So far I have not found a good street map but will send you one as soon as I can. It is too hard to explain it otherwise. Just imagine the river Main was a big lake, whose banks you cannot see. Along the beach, miles of grass and trees and beautiful flowers. Almost all along the water’s edge from one of the city to the other except where there are beaches with sand for swimming in between. And of course now the big Fair in between, you can step on the grass. No signs forbidding that.

And as you come away from the lake you get into a beautifully paved road for car traffic and then a little farther is the famous Michigan Ave.

The street we live on leads right into the lake, just 3 blocks from our house. That’s where we go swimming and where I work is right on Michigan Ave. It takes me only 20 min on the I.C. train to get to work. With the bus it would take 45 min. and with the streetcar more than an hour. In the morning I take the train and going home the bus because it is prettier.

Trudel in the water

Trudel in her natural element

Uncle Julius thinks he went to school with Papa’s brother Julius. Could be.

Yesterday Hans K. and I took a 1½ hr ride by train and hiked thru a nice woods on a good road and into a sand mountain. If I could not see the beautiful dark blue lake as we got on top I would have thought we were in a desert. There was nothing but nice white sand, beautiful sea shore and blue sky and a few straggling bushes. It was indescribably beautiful, no end to the water looking east and west a nice big wooded area. I only wore my bathing suit, a yellow shirt a pair of slacks rolled up and a cap from the same material white socks and shoes and sunglasses. Hans wore just about the same.

After reaching the top of the sand mountain we first rested for about 1 hr. For miles there was not a

Indiana Dunes

Indiana Dunes

soul to be heard or seen. Then we went down to the water which was rather dangerous but quite warm.

After eating the lunch which Rose had fixed for us, slept a while and went back into the lake. There we could see a couple of people about 100 feet away. The sand was so hot that I thought I [would] burn my feet going barefoot. Stupidly I forgot to bring some sunburn lotion and have now a nice sunburn. But I do not mind that since it was such a wonderful day.

At 4 we decided to start for home. This time we walked along the lake and after resting a little in between landed at a very good restaurant right at the beach where we ate our dinner. As we got closer to the restaurant there were of course many more people and I just love to watch all the different outfits and people.

There is a marked swimming place with attendants to watch. But it is all free. Only the whole area is called Dunes and costs 10¢ admission. Well worth it. To keep up the roads, signs, etc.

We had to walk another 45 min to the train and arrived home at 9:30 very happy, burned, feeling well but tired. I sure hope we will go again this summer. Hans is very nice, very quiet but strange fellow. He took me again to the Chicago theater last week. The program changes every Friday. He goes every week. Wonder if he will take me again–

Now back to your letters. I am delighted to get much mail from you lately. Now that Erna got her driver’s license too, you 2 can really drive places.

Here everybody drives a car. Young, old, short, tall, fat, skinny, men, women and children. Except us–One can hardly find a parking place at the fair in the evening and coming home yesterday it was like a long black snake, going very slowly on the highway. The train went much faster. Actually it is quite expensive to keep up a car, the car itself does not cost that much.

Lately many people are riding bicycles here, but only as a sport not for real transportation. Motorcycles you hardly see, except for the police and light motorcycles I have not seen at all. Erna, would find it sensational.

One day last week I looked up all the people from the boat who I knew were at the fair. A couple and a friend from Vienna are cutting silhouettes of people. Enclosed [is the silhouette of] me.

The single fellow went with me to look for the midgets. We spent quite a bit of time with them. We visited with a Hungarian travel friend and after finally finding catalogues for her went home at 7:00..

Summer at the Dunes

Poster: The Dunes.

For your new apt I could give you some advice. Do not get fold-a-way beds. 1 room for Papa: bed, sofa, chair and clothes cabinet and brown desk and leather chairs. For Doddo: her white and black furniture and a white linen cabinet. For Ernale sleeping couch, black or brown furniture and piano like a living room. The dining room set you may be able to sell if you have no room for it. And be sure you get a nice bathroom with running warm water and heat. A gas stove you have and a refrigerator is not as essential as here

That the 2 fellows from the boat, Baer and Strauss liked music very much is right. Unfortunately I have not heard from either one of them. They are probably as busy as I am. And now it is almost midnight and I better go to sleep. High time for little children like me. Give my regards to everybody and excuse me for not writing to them.

Everybody here thanks you for your greetings and wishes to reciprocate to you the same.

Love and Kisses.

Trudel,


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About Leonard Grossman

Writing about the online world since 1992: The ModemJunkie's Portal Taught school in the inner-city from 1967-78, Government lawyer from 1979-2010. Married to the incredible Cindy Barnard. Proud father of Sarah and grandfather of Gavin.

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