Now Look Here Lady

Mon. 18 Sep. ‘44

8:30 p.m.


Dear folks,

Well I’m in the barracks tonight. The company is just pulling out for night operations up by the Red River. I’m on an empty bed near mine. No sense in unpiling mine for tonight. I have a nice little radio here that I borrowed from one of my boys so I’m set to spend an evening “at home” (Yeah I’m laughing at that one too.) I’ve got some pretty good music on it now. Last night I got to bed at 10:00 but squadrons of mosquitoes came roaring in and didn’t help me any. We went on the winter schedule this morning. That makes reveille at 6:45 so we slept ‘til 6:15. I got up, dressed, fell out for reveille, came in, fixed my bed, swept, mopped and went to breakfast – cake, syrup, butter, rice cereal, milk and a pear. After breakfast I went to work at about 7:45. I did my reports and some odd jobs and then got back to remaking form 20’s. I’m beginning to go along a little faster now but not fast enough. At 12:00 we quit for dinner – beef loaf, potatoes, peas & carrots, salad, bread & butter. After dinner I had ½ hour or so before going back to work at 1:00. I typed an emergency furlough & a company fund report & then went back to my job until nearly 5:00 when we quit. For supper I had potatoes, beans, salad, bread, butter, jelly & iced cocoa. I loafed around awhile and then went back to the office and worked up until a little while ago. I got your Fri. letter today. Now look here lady. I guess I’ll have to come home and put you over my knee. If I’d known you would feel as you do I’d have kept quiet awhile until I was sure. I’ve merely been passing along all the good rumors. Now you better snap out of it. Actually I find I’m not worried about it myself so don’t let yourself feel so. I’m here & can see about what will happen. Everything I’ve seen so far adds up to the same thing and believe me it could be plenty worse and I’m really thankful for that. There’s one place I don’t want to see & that’s the South Pacific and I’m willing to bet a plenty now that we aren’t headed that way. One rumor of a couple weeks standing came out today. We are now in the XXXVI Corps instead of the XXIII so I suppose the patches come off again. I don’t know if the XXXVI has one or not. So far I’ve worn 7 & you have at least one of each [sketches of 7 patches]. I don’t know if it’s still part of the 4th Army or not. That leaves one rumor – that we go from Combat to Construction Engrs & I think that’s coming pretty soon. Now to answer your letter. Dad’s getting to be quite a typist. Incidentally typing is good to use for V-mail. You won’t have too many days without mail if I should take off for somewhere. I’ll go a lot longer without it than you as I’ll be on the move. I realize it isn’t such a good thing but a few million others have had to do it and they went over to duck bullets. That’s the big thing. I’ll never believe this outfit is meant to fight. Physically it’s incapable of it. Not when we get morons of mental age 7 yrs. & we got one yesterday. It isn’t so much. If I’m 1000 miles from home & can’t get there I could as well be 3000. My chances would be the same. You haven’t too much to worry about. We’ll be off on a little trip chiefly to gain a few points toward a discharge, a couple service ribbons, and a little education. I’m wondering how fast I can pick up French or German. There’ll really be some things to write about and censorship will gradually be lifted as time goes on. That daily letter will be there as long as it’s possible. There might be a space of 2 or 3 weeks but once they get started they’ll keep coming. I’ll always be near my typewriter and can dash off a note or two every day. You know once we get these records in shape this develops into a gold brick’s job. On the field it’s a cinch. I ain’t very doggone near here in Texas 1200 miles away or 2500 miles away at Palo Alto. What do you mean “I was”? Hey, hey, let’s not be using any past tenses here. Let’s let the worm live, huh? We have A2 with a priority for 100% new clothes. We had to lay out our underwear, socks & all our woolens today for serviceability inspection. One pr. of pants & a shirt of mine were declared unserviceable so I’ll get new ones. I got a set last week so that makes two. I’d like to have gotten a blouse but I guess they didn’t notice where it was ripped that time. Priorities often drop off though. The 102nd Div. got to POE & was turned back. I don’t intend to lose my stripes. Right now I’m keeping my eyes open for a chance to grab another but it is definitely out I guess. The CO didn’t break those boys. Ratings are still frozen. I can get away with quite a bit and I know what I can & can’t do. My CO is a lot different from my 1st one. I don’t say much except yes & no to him unless I can put myself to advantage by sounding as if I’m really on the ball. Right now my morale is surprisingly high. I feel pretty good about things. For one, I’m not hit by most of the stuff the boys on the line get. And also I have a slant on what’s going on. The boys have grasped all these rumors & passed them on but they don’t believe it. They think it’s all a big joke. Someday they’ll wake up. A few believe it & some of the rats are trying to desert the ship. I’d rather stay with this outfit than go with some other one in 5 or 6 months. I’ve a good job and nothing to worry about. As I see it we are bound to get it sooner or later so the sooner the quicker we get back and some other poor sucker takes over. It’s a vicious circle but there won’t be many troops in the U.S. by next year. I thought we were due for rain Thurs. night but it didn’t come. The Irish man is O.K. but no particular friend. Say, the Tigers were in 1st place this morning. What do you know? Dunkle’s children are quite problems. Maybe you’ll go up next weekend. I guess my pass is probably out now. The way I see it Mom is this: They are going to keep men in Europe quite awhile and rotate them. We are getting wool clothes & overshoes, no cottons so it almost has to be Europe. The war in the Pacific can last quite awhile so I’d much rather cool my heels in Europe than in the jungles. I think every man will have to go over before he gets out so now is about the best time. We are to be packed & loaded (I hear tonight) by Oct. 12 which means any day after that we leave here. That gives us maybe ‘til Jan 1 here in the States. By then it’s bound to be over in Europe so we go build it up. Remember what I told you when I was home. That’s what I mean by it could be plenty worse. It really may not be so bad at all as compared to what some have had. Well I’ve dwelled on this way too much but don’t let it worry you too much please. ‘Cause then I’ll be worrying because you are. It’s not too serious after all. Well I’ll call this it for tonight and get to bed early for a change. So at 9:40 so long.




Share your thoughts