We went to Alan’s firm’s dance at Caxton Hall. He has only been at the company for six weeks and it’s surprising how much attention he seems to have caused. He is the only young male working there out of about 30 girls and a handful of men. The girls must have gone mad when they found out about him starting there. I bet it was a disappointment when he came in wearing his ring.
I had a half day today and had my hair set. I was determined to make a good impression for Alan’s sake. I couldn’t have the girls saying, ‘Fancy going out with her!’ The better I look the less they’ll fancy their chance of making him break his engagement for them.
I must have looked OK because I felt good and that usually goes together. According to Jennifer’s report Mum had said, ‘she looked ever so nice.’ and Dad said, ‘she usually does when she makes the effort.’ I don’t know how to take that but I think it was nicely meant.
I met Alan on East Ham station and we went up to Westminster. The dance was held at Caxton Hall – very, very chic. We did one long detour around the block looking for the place but finally got there and discarded coats etc and went in for a drink.
There we ran into Betty and the crowd from Alan’s office. I was introduced all round and some appreciative noises were made over my ring by the esteemed Betty. I didn’t think much of her from the start and that is unusual for me. Still, perhaps I am prejudice through knowing she works with Alan all day.
We met Mr. Owen-Smith there. He qualified Alan and was there by himself. His wife works with him but she doesn’t go in for dances, so he was there by himself. He’s nice. Very charming and very easy to talk to and the perfect example of tact. It was understood that he would be ‘with us’ throughout the evening and he was. But now and then he would disappear just at the right time and for the right length of time. He lives at Guildford so he had to leave quite early.
Now and again Alan would tell me someone was looking at me and I tried to look unconcerned and sophisticated. The only time I actually caught someone looking was when we were queuing for the buffet during the interval. Then, I had just taken my glasses off and was waving them around like mad. I felt tres, tres chic. Must try that again sometime. Alan said the girl looking was one of the typists.
We left a few minutes before the end and caught a train home. It was a jolly nice evening and although at times I felt like something in the zoo I didn’t mind all that much. Probably because was wearing my black dress. I always feel good in that. It is the sort of dress I can face or do anything in.
27th November 1961
This evening Alan told me that during the interval at the dance the MC called for engaged couples and gave away terrific prizes. We were in the bar!! There weren’t any other engaged people there so one of the married blokes went up with a girl and got the stuff. I was so cross. I could have kicked myself when I heard.
Surprise of surprises! One of the women from our Divs Dept was there with her husband. Small world!