Letters From Bill – July 18, 1943.

September 28, 2011 by Dan Black

Dear Mum, Dad and Jack:

Here I am sitting in the General’s office calmly taking my leisure time at ease. Since I have just sent him out to shine my boots and at present I have my work done, I thought I would drop you a line and give you what news there is. Of course, I am quite busy running this place in a proper manner but have worked out a chart which makes it quite a bit easier. The General is of some use but I cannot depend on him to the fullest.

All fooling aside folks if you could see me now after that bit I wrote you would laugh.  We have just finished a nineteen- or twenty-mile route march and I am lying down beneath a big tree Somewhere in England. This is Sunday but it doesn’t seem to make any difference to the Canadian Army in England…. This makes three weeks and we haven’t had a day off, it gets tiresome after that long. I am lying on my bed which is a groundsheet and two blankets with the stars as a ceiling. It sure is a good go or so some people think.

There was no church parade this morning …it was about the hottest day we have had. The sweat was rolling in our eyes and I could hardly see—boy it was really hot. We walked the whole way in six hours and that is really going. Whoever said England is level country is crazy. There are hills that make the one at home look like anthills. They call them the “downs” and the hills are straight up.  Boy some of them are really steep. Someday they may give us a day off, at least we are hoping so.

Yesterday I had an airmail from you written on July 9th. I sure am glad you are better Mum but I still don’t know what is wrong with you…. I was sure worried for awhile but since you said you are better I don’t feel so bad. Be sure to take good care of yourself Mum and get as much help as you possibly can….

Yes Mum, those boxes will sure be good to see and I could sure eat right now. I don’t care if it is sardines as long as it is good to eat but if you can get Kam or any of that stuff it will be better…. I have another thing I want to ask for and that is shoe polish. Get Nugget if you can—we really have to have ‘em shined over here….

Pretty soon everyone will be married over there. I never thought Elda and George would be getting married. I suppose Ellesworth and Babcock will be doing the same on his next leave but I never thought they were that way about it….

Well, I am expecting lots of mail when I get back Wednesday and I hope those cigs are there too. They should be here by now unless someone is smoking them at 3 Canadian Infantry Reinforcement Unit . It has happened before and I wouldn’t be surprised if that is what happened to mine.

Well folks I have to get some sleep as we have to get up at five tomorrow morning and it is ten or more now. Give my best regards to the grandparents and I hope they are in the best of health.  Say hello to everyone for me and be sure to write often and give me all news. I am still waiting for a letter from you Jack so stay home from and write me….

The best of luck and all the best of everything to you all, write soon and lots.

Lots of love,

Bill

Airmail letter received July 31, 1943.
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