The following is a letter my sister sent to me in Spokane, Washington a few weeks after Mount St. Helens erupted on May 18, 1980. Spokane was covered in a layer of ash from the volcano. I had just completed my first year of law school. EJ and Eddie are Edward Jacobson, my sister's late husband. Merry is Meredith, my sister's older daughter, then 5 years old. Regge (nee Reba Cohen) was the widow of my father's brother, Lewis Freedman.
Tues., June 10, 1980
How's everything? I'm enclosing "Mount St. Helens Diary," a supplement from The Bulletin for your interest. How does the information compare with the facts as you know them?
Saturday evening at 6:30 P.M. Eddie had to show a condominium so we had to go to EJ's Mom's later than usual. At first I thought we'd skip it all together but when Ed called her she said she had his birthday gift ($50.00) so we went. I knew I'd get too hungry to wait to eat that late so I ate my hot dog and broccoli. That night, since Ed had already eaten a steak sandwich we went out and I had tea while Ed had a huge ice cream soda with lots of whipped cream at the Tyson Grill. People go there for that stuff and I thoroughly enjoyed myself watching huge banana splits and sundaes and waffles and ice cream going to all the tables while I wasn't gaining an ounce!
On Sunday Merry and I went to the swim club. It was very windy. The sun would come and go. We had to leave early anyway because Regge and Ed's mom & dad were coming but we left a little earlier than necessary because of the weather. It was so windy that Eddie couldn't get the gas grill started. He had to go buy a small barbecue at K Mart. We, I should say they, had salad, chicken, hot dog, potato salad, cole slaw, corn on the cob & cake, (also nuts & pretzels) and soda. I ate a small salad, broccoli (raw) and chicken from which I removed the skin. I enjoy dieting so much I'm really in the groove again and I love it. I have been seriously dieting since May 11th with one splurge on May 24 at Villa di Roma after "Annie." Regge couldn't get over how thin I had gotten. I have about 10 or 15 lbs to go then my arms & legs will be just right.
Our weather has been awful. Monday was mostly cloudy with rain and winds. I don't think it reached 70 F. Today (it's about 8:15 AM) it's raining with that heavy heavy overcast. Today and tomorrow it's supposed to be no higher than 70 F.
Monday June 16 is Merry's first day of two weeks of swimming classes. They are 10 AM -11 AM. Pretty early. She's in the intermediate class. I was supposed to go back to the eye doctor at 10:30 on Mon. June 16th so I changed it to 12 noon then I realized that I couldn't make that. Since the doctor won't be back until the following week, I made it for 8:00 A.M. on the 16th. Merry'll have to go with me. I figure it should be easy to park at that hour. I'll just be hard to get up at 6:30 AM. I told Merry we should go to the library today. It is really boring around here. I need some intellectual stimulation.
Art's wife, Joy, got a job as a secretary near here. She did work at the real estate office but I guess she wanted more money and more to do.