This is the last page of a very long letter written by Grandpa, telling those away from home about the engagement of his second born, Dan, to a lovely French girl. This page has other news, particularly of Lad and others.
Page 4 3/4/45
And I am happy to report that this week brought a letter from another part of France, where our diesel expert is doing his bit to make Jerry a better boy. He says: “My present work is just what I have wanted for some time – – diesel electric, most restricted to operation and slight maintenance whereas what I wanted was more on the installation and troubleshooting side. But I like it about as well as anything I’ve done in the Army except the instruction work at Santa Anita.” Then he follows with a very welcome comment on the desirability or otherwise of items contained in a Christmas box I sent him which arrived just a short time previously. I wish you all would do the same. It is not a case of looking a gift horse in the mouth. As far as I am concerned, you can go as far as examining his tonsils. The point is that it is so difficult to send you things that are acceptable. We back home here spend untold hours thinking and looking around and shopping for what we think might come in handy, and for future guidance to save lots of time and uncertainty, we would much appreciate comments, particularly criticisms, so we won’t be floundering around next time as to whether to send any more of this or that because we will have learned from you definitely that for such and such reasons this thing is out. This is exactly what Lad has done and it is certainly very helpful. He goes on to say that his chances of getting to Paris are not too good from where he is located, but in a later letter received by Marian, he says he did see Dan and learned firsthand the news in Part 1 of this letter.
And Dave, you will be interested to hear that cousin Pat writes: “Life has been so hectic for me these past few years that my hobby of collecting the family history has been forced to lie on the shelf; I’ve been saving it for my “old age”. But I couldn’t allow an opportunity like this to pass. I note this branch of the family retains the old French pronunciation which would indicate they settled in St. Louis in the early days. and Jane Hall says Charlie’s ship in the Pacific is AO-67, if you ever happen to spot it.
Enclosed are a few more snapshots of local flora and fauna – – (the flora, of course, referring to the girls). The new tenants in the apartment are busily engaged in repainting and decorating and the result is beginning to be quite pleasing. The weather today has held just a hint of springtime to those with discernment but just so hopes wouldn’t rise too high, quickly I had perforce to move out some 15 to 20 baskets of ashes. I remind myself of one of those fool spiders – – you know the kind that just after you knock down his web is busily engaged in building it over again. Each year I take out the ashes and fill up the ruts in the driveway and, a few weeks later, with commendable sang froid (that’s one for Paulette) I do it all over again.
Well, four pages ought to hold you until next week, when perhaps Dave or Ced will have some comments to add life and zest to these weekly out gushing’s. Until then, aur revoir (I’ve got to work in some French now and then in honor of the occasion)
Tomorrow, I’ll post a letter that Marian wrote on the same day Grandpa was writing his letter and it was enclosed with Dan’s copy of the letter.
Every weekend, I will be posting my Grandfather’s story, as written by him in his Reminiscences. When the time comes, I’ll add the memories of his children and other groups of letters pertaining to a particular “Slice of Life”.
Do you know of anyone who is interested in life here in the United States during the 1920’s, 1930’s and 1940’s? Why not share this blog with them. They might really appreciate it.