May 1923

Tuesday 1st   It was showery in the morning, but cleared up & was fine in the afternoon and evening.  I was working at the gate.  Jim was drilling grass for Neil Neeley.
In the evening my many friends gave a social in my honour as I am shortly leaving Leigh to take up my residence with my daughter Jane (Mrs Jim Dunning).   It took the form of a concert, Mr A. Matheson being chairman,  after the concert Mr Stewart read an address which was presented to me also a silk umbrella & an enlargement of the Leigh church which is not quite finished,  after that Mr Whitaker & Mr Bowden Birdsall spoke eulogizing my work on behalf of the district, then followed supper, cards & dancing, every house in Leigh was represented and several came from Pakiri, Ti Point & the Claim. Dancing was kept up until nearly 2 am.

Wednesday 2nd   It was a fine day, but threatening.  I finished making the gate and then started to pack.  Went down to the steamer & got the mail.

Thursday 3rd   It rained all morning, was not able to do anything out of doors, so I was packing up in the house.  It cleared up in the afternoon so I went to the old home, and carried things down to the gate where I had the wood box in which I packed the things.  I gave Mr Stewart & Mrs Gravatt some Onions.  Jim shot the first pheasant & we had it for tea.

Friday 4th   It was  [fine]  during the day with the exception of a slight shower, but it rained steadily in the evening.  I went over to Dacres in the morning with the mail carrier (Trevor Gravatt) I got out at Coxs creek and walked up to Gus Neeleys to see when he could come & cart my furniture, but he was not at home, then walked on to Jims.
Jim & Wat Darroch were putting new planks on the bridge near Jim’s slip rails.  Had dinner at Jims & I hung the pictures in my room at Jim’s house.  Called at Mr Holders,  Trevor called for me & I came back with him & got the mail.
The Annual Hall meeting was held in the evening, Jim & Eddie went.

Saturday 5th   It rained all morning, cleared up a little in the afternoon.  To day was the 60th Anniversary of the ship Queen of Beauty leaving Gravesend, London, the ship that J. C. Wyatt & I came to Auckland in.
In the afternoon I went up to the old house and carried things down to the gate.  As I have got a bad cold, I made a fire in my room & dear old Jim came in and we had a game of cribbage.

Sunday 6th   It was a very fine day, but cold.  Eddie went into camp at Warkworth.  Revd Thornley the new Methodist Minister held his first service here in the afternoon and made a very good impression. I attended.  Jane & Jean drove over while we were at church, they came up here for tea and then took back my bedroom Toilet service.

Monday 7th   It was a very fine day.  It was the last day at Wyatts.  Jim & Roddie Matheson were harrowing in the barley paddock.
Gus Neeley came with the cream wagon to remove all my furniture over to Janes, as we were having dinner, so he joined us,  & after dinner Jim & Roddie helped Gus load the things from my bedroom and also a lot of things from the old house I had carried down to the lower gate.  I bid goodbye to Ivy & Jim.  I was very sorry to part with good old Jim.
I rode with Gus & the furniture and we got over to Jim Dunnings (my son in law)  at 3 pm.   Laurence Whitaker came in and helped me arrange the furniture in my room and I had everything unpacked and put away before I went to bed.  I think I will be very comfortable here.

Tuesday 8th   It was a fine day.  Jim D. got a gate post for the entrance gate.  I was hanging pictures in my room and putting hooks in to hang things on.

Wednesday 9th   It was a fine day.  I commenced to put the gate together, Jim put in a gate post.
Mrs Evans & a friend were here in the afternoon.  The “Kawau” made a round trip.

Thursday 10th   It was very hot in the morning, but it rained in the afternoon.  Jim put in the 2nd gate post ,  I finished the gate & we hung it and I put all the fastenings on.  Jim sent away 16 young stock to the sale.  Murray Birdsall came for them.

Friday 11th   It was a fine day.  There was a Loan Sale at Warkworth today, as Jim’s cattle were to be sold there he went and returned after dark, the cattle sold very poorly, yearlings from 25/- , calves from 14/-
I was digging up some ground in the garden.  Went to the P.O in the evening for the mail, received the slippers & boot from Azzy [?]

Saturday 12th   It rained last night & early this morning.  There were military shorts [sic: sports ?]  at Warkworth to day & a Ball in the evening.  My cold was much worse & I staid in bed.

Sunday 13th   It was a wet day.  Revd Poole should have held service in the Claim hall this morning, but on account of the weather he did not turn up.

Monday 14th   Weather fair.  My cold worse so I staid in bed.  May Dunning came in the afternoon to stay.  I got up for tea & we had a game of cribbage in the evening.

Tuesday 15th   One small shower in the morning, otherwise fine.  I got up for dinner, Jane and May drove to Pat Dunnings in the afternoon.

Wednesday 16th   It was a fine day.  May & Jean went up to Whitakers.  My cold and cough were still bad.

Thursday 17th   It was a fine day.  My cold was a little better so I  went up to the garden & planted the following variety of bulbs.
Paper White Narcissus,  White Lady & Mrs Veitch Daffodil,  Fresia, Bride Gladiolus,  Blue Bell,  Sparixis,  Renunculus.
I wrote a long letter to my son Henry.

Friday 18th   It was a fine day.  I sowed 2 beds of Brown Spanish Onions,  Hector was helping me.  By the post in the evening I received a nice letter from Mr A. J. Shepherd, also one from dear old Jim.

Saturday 19th   It rained nearly all day.  It cleared up a little in the afternoon .  There was to have been a hockey match at Dome Valley between the local club & Omaha , but on account of the weather it did not eventuate.

Sunday 20th   It rained all last night and this  [morning]  but it cleared up in the afternoon, dear old Jim and Elva were to have come to see me to day, but I suppose on account of the weather they did not turn up.  So spent a very quiet day.

Monday 21st   It was a very fine day.  I fixed up the wheelbarrow, & strung up the Onions I brought with me.

Tuesday 22nd   It was a fine day.  Jim was working on the road.  I was clearing ground up in the garden.  In the afternoon I went to Mr Whitakers to take some flower bulbs, and to borrow some books.

Wednesday 23rd   Although it rained last night, it was very fine today.  Jim was working on the road.  I sowed a row of Daisy Peas.
Mr Holder was taken seriously ill this evening & they had to wire for Dr Whetter.

Thursday 24th   It was a very fine day.  I sowed a 2nd row of Daisy Peas.   Hector went to Matakana in the afternoon to get medicine for Mr Holder.

Friday 25th   It was a fine day.  In the morning I was mending the fence round the garden.  In the afternoon I went down below the road and cut pegs for the fence & also stakes.  Jim was working on the road.  Received a letter from Alma Wallace in the evening.

Saturday 26th   It was a fine day.  There was a hockey match at Matakana,  Omaha  V  the local club, it was a draw, each side got a goal.  Jim Wyatt for Omaha & nearly a second one.  I finished mending the fence round the garden.

Sunday 27th   There were a few showers in the evening, but it cleared up later on.  Dear old Jim & Elva drove over to spend the day.  They brought me a bunch of flowers from my garden .  I was very glad to see dear old Jim , as we have always been friends.

Monday 28th   It was a fine day.  I put some stakes in the fence & commenced pulling out the bean sticks.  The children returned to School again after the holidays.

Tuesday 29th   It was a fine day.  I commenced to dig where the climbing beans were and planted the Cabbage plants that Mr Stewart brought from town for me, but I could only  [plant]  20 plants out of 50 sent.

Wednesday 30th   It was a very fine day.   I went round to Mr Evans in the morning to get some cabbage plants, but they were too small to transplant.  Jim Gozar came to see me and staid for lunch.  Minnie & Alma came in the afternoon, Jane gave them pm tea.

Thursday 31st   It rained in the morning, but it cleared up in the afternoon, it was too wet to do anything in the afternoon so I got firewood and cut pea sticks.