I’ve just finished reading Pack and Follow: One Person’s Adventures in Four Different Worlds, by Joy Packer, which I bought second hand from Amazon for not very much. It was published in 1945, and tells about the travels of Joy Packer, the wife of a naval officer who became a naval attaché for Great Britain at various diplomatic missions.
Her life was very much a diplomatic roundabout of social events. That world of the pre-war 1940s has completely disappeared.
Joy Packer was born and brought up in South Africa, and the first part of the book is about her blossoming into a woman in Cape Town. Nowadays, we would regard the language she uses as unacceptably racist, but you have to consider the time it was written.
She moves to Malta, London and then China (Wei-Hai-Wei). There are always staff to help with the daily routines. Then it’s on to Athens, with trips to Turkey, during the time when war was approaching.
A very independent and confident lady, with some fascinating travel tales to tell.
In side the cover is a handwritten note: “D. A. Flower, Southdown Hall Hotel, Lansdowne Road, Wimbledon SW20.” That hotel doesn’t seem to exist anymore, but according to Google Maps it may be this building.