THE LIFE OF MELBOURNE
Mirror of the Day
The shops certainly had a busy day for the first date of the new coupon rationing. Handkerchiefs went off like hot cakes, all sorts of woollen goods were bought up for friends overseas, and women bought stock- ings, not by the pair, but by the half dozen pairs. Our coupons may have to last for a year, but I am sure that tonight there is many a book which has lost half of its clothing
coupons. The temptation was all the
greater because the weather was so fine.
A bronze tablet in the nurses diningroom at the Austin Hospital was unveiled to the memory of Miss Isobel Grant Marsh at the annual meeting of the Austin Nurses' Club this afternoon. Miss Marsh was
matron of the hospital for 22 years before she resigned in 1928. She died last year. The tablet, a token
of affectionate regard from past
trainees, was unveiled by Miss Ethel Hore, who was a trainee under Miss Marsh. Miss E. Richardson, present matron, received about 60 guests, who were later entertained at after- noon tea.
In Hong Kong
Today I heard an intensely interest- ing story of the help she was able to give internees and POW's in Hong Kong from Miss Doris Cuthbertson, sister of Mr M. R. Cuthbertson, of Ranfurlie cres, Malvern. She her- self was in Stanley internment camp for nine months at the beginning of the Japanese occupation, but was released on parole on account of ill health. She was guaranteed by a French family, and allowed to live with a Portuguese family in their flat in Hong Kong. From here for three years she conducted a parcel service for the internee and military camps near Hong Kong, which worked under the covering name of "The Informal Hong Kong Welfare Committee."
Help From Chinese
Miss Cuthbertson told me that she considered one Chinese girl who helped get the parcels into the camp the heroine of Hong Kong. She was Miss Helen Ho, and had now been taken to England by the British military authorities. She worked very courageously to get comforts into the military hospital at Hong Kong, with the fear of prison over her if she was found out. Her highest tribute of heroic devotion Miss Cuthbertson pays to her Chinese house boy, Ma Ba Sun, who went with her everywhere in her three years in Hong Kong, sleeping out- side her door every night.
P O W's Reception
About 500 returned prisoners of war of the 2/10th Engineers of the 8th Division were given an official wel- come home by next of kin at Palm
Grove, Earl's Court, St Kilda, to- night. The reception, which was in the form of a dance, was arranged by the 2/10th Engineers' women's auxiliary. Mrs I. J. O'Donnell, presi- dent of the auxiliary, was very thrilled when I spoke to her, be- cause this was the first time the women of the auxiliary had been able to do anything directly for the
At Tay Creggan
Many beautiful exhibits of handi- craft done by students of the Grail were to be seen at Tay Creggan this afternoon. During the last year students have shown a great in- terest in weaving and pottery work. Beautifully made Christmas cribs in painted fretwork were also on view, and there was an interesting pic- torial record of the work of the various courses done at the Grail during the year. Some of the ex- hibits were the work of service women of the Arrows Club - the Grail Club for service girls.
Staff Corps Mess Ball
When I arrived at the St Kilda Town Hall tonight the Victory Ball given by the Staff Corps Mess, HQ, AMF, was in full swing, and I was greatly struck by the happy spirit which prevailed. About 1,000 guests attended, including many senior officers of the three services and their wives.
Flowers formed the main part of the decorations at St Kilda Town Hall. Every table was decorated with beautiful blue delphiniums and pink carnations, while the official tables were bordered on either side with pink camellias. The stage was decorated with trees and ferns, and round the walls were the flags of the Allied nations. Another charm- ing idea, I thought, was the pro- vision of flower sprays for the women guests. These were on display in the cloakroom, and all you had to do was to take one to match your frock or pin in your hair. The ball was organised by Captain R. A. I. Fisher, who was present with his daughter, Miss Heather Fisher.
Before I went on to the brilliant staff ball at St Kilda I spent a pleasant three-quarters of an hour in the newly decorated and renovated Plaza picture theatre, where a pre- view marked the reopening after the big fire. The theatre looked bright, and I thought the Wurlitzer played most appropriate tunes. The girls in the box-office and the ushers were in smart new gowns, and everyone seemed to be saying: "Isn't it fun to come to the Plaza again. I agreed
Friday, 8: Kelvin Hall: Soiree Al- liance Française.