From Ibiza to Bonn, via Madrid

David's postcard from Ibiza

David’s postcard from Ibiza

September 7, 1958

Dear Dad,

Having a glorious time loafing, swimming and riding a bike I rented for 35¢ a day! Truly a paradise – lives up to all its expectations. Will drop you another card later.

Love, Dave

David's postcard from Madrid

David’s postcard from Madrid

September 23, 1958

Dear Dad & Russ,

I’m visting Madrid for a week then returning to Ibiza for another week before heading back to Bonn. All going well and I’m having a good rest.

Love, Dave

[While David was in Ibiza, regular air service to the mainland began, so, once again, he was in the right place at the right time and experienced a special place before the hordes (tourist or military) descended.]

October 9, 1958

Dear Dad & Russ,

As you’ll see from this letter, I’m back in Bonn again after one of the most glorious holidays I’ve ever spent! It was truly superb and, strangely enough, a very difficult one to try to describe to anyone by letter. I suppose that’s because it was more or less an “atmospheric” type of holiday – that is, a person would really have to be there to get the full appreciation of the atmosphere of life on Ibiza.

And what a life! Swimming, sunning, boating, bicycling, walking and visiting funny little “bodegas” (Cafes?) in the evening and listening to guitar music and singing. I did a lot of “skin diving” in Ibiza, having purchased a pair of rubber flippers, face mask and snorkel. I always was a far better swimmer underwater than above anyways, so this new type of sport suited me to a “T”. This “skin diving” is quite fantastic – like discovering a whole new world.

My itinerary was as follows: for the first three weeks I was staying at the private villa of an English couple who are friends of a Canadian friend of mine at our Embassy in Madrid [Gwen Bottoms]. These three weeks were particularly wonderful as their villa was secluded enough to be nice and quiet and yet only 20 minutes by boat to the town of San Antonio. There was a delightful little beach with top swimming just in front of the villa. Then, I went to Madrid for a week and, while there, took a day’s tour out to Toledo. And the last week was spent in the Hotel Bahia in San Antonio (cost me $2.00 a day – full pension!). While not quite as restful as the first three weeks, this last week was terrific fun – I made all sorts of wonderful friends.

I think the best way to describe Ibiza to you is to wait until I get my coloured slides back and then send them to you so you can see for yourself what a beautiful spot it is.

Judging from reports here at the Embassy, Russ and Pete must have had quite a good holiday too. Our receptionist is still talking about the two black beards that appeared at the Embassy one day. And the Yorks tell me that you all had quite a night out on the town. By the way, how did the car run? It’s really running well for me now and I must thank you for filling up the tank when you left it. Also thanks for filling up the refrigerator. Be sure to let me know, Russ,how your trip went.

Well, as I’m typing this at work, I guess I’ll have to cut it short as we are apt to get into a bit of a flap at any moment. As you know, Mr. Diefenbaker is due over here next month, so needless to say, we are all up to our necks in preparatory work. Will write again soon.

Lots of love, Dave

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