Somewhere In France –
Mar. 11, 1945
Dear Dad: –
Two weeks ago I tentatively decided to attempt to write you once a week, probably on Sunday. However, last week I was kept quite busy in trying to keep the diesels operating correctly with large, sudden, load changes, and didn’t get enough time. So, I’m attempting to do it again. The load, thus far, has been very even, and if it keeps on I’ll be able to finish this without sudden and unexpected interruptions. However, if anything unusual happens I may have to drop my pen and run. But, here goes. I have received all but Feb. 7th letters. And I have them in chronological order and will comment upon them in that order.
Jan. 21st and Feb. 11th – I’ve already answered and destroyed.
7-1-45 (European style – day, month, year) – Although over two months old, and sent regular mail, I received this letter last Thursday. It came with a letter written on Feb. 25th, the last one I received. Some difference, eh? The only comment I can make on this letter, excluding a remark about Paul’s good luck in getting a permanent assignment in Oklahoma, due to censorship restrictions, deals with a theme which has been present in quite a few of your current letters, and will serve as an answer, to that point, in all of them. I’m writing to Marianni each night, as I try to do, I cover everything that I can write about, and there isn’t much except weather, how I feel, what I am doing in general and food. Therefore, if I were to write to you of happenings it would be almost word for word from Marian’s letters, leaving out words of endearment and subjects of a more or less private matter. In writing to her, if I recount something of interest to you and the rest, dealing with other than above mentioned items, I attempt to write it in such a manner that you can take it directly from verbal dictation or from the letter itself, depending on Marian. I have only written five items of this latter type. (1) an air raid scare we had in our first A.P.O. address, (2) too vivid a description of our quarters at our present A.P.O., (3) description of a trip to a French Barber Shop, (4) description of our 1st A.P.O. quarters, (5) trip to Marseille, and return by trolley and truck via Aix. So you can see that I’ve really not felt that it was necessary to write to you. But as I stated earlier, I’ll try to write something every week or two. I think I can understand your frustration, too.
14-1-45 – Dan’s poem is wonderful. What a guy. I’m still hoping I can get a chance to see him and his bride-to-be before we are again shipped too far away. Ced really has quite a literary style, too, hasn’t he? I sort of envy both Dan and Ced and the way they can so adeptly write what they think, and put it across in an interesting way. I love your direct quotations from their letters. The frost Ced mentions, is very similar to a formation we had here a couple of times. It is really very beautiful, except that it is always formed over here during a fog. The temperature of everything is below freezing and the fog freezes upon contact with any and all objects. So Dave was AWOL. I’m glad that there were others with him to help him prove his point. The Army really frowns upon lateness, saying there is no excuse for not being where you are supposed to be.
Tomorrow, I’ll post the rest of this letter.
On Saturday and Sun day, Grandpa’s early years continue.
On Monday, I’ll begin posting letters written in 1941. Lad is expected to return from Venezuela in May and Dick will be leaving soon to drive to Seattle, then board a ship, along with the car he has driven across the country, and deliver himself and the car to Anchorage and his older brothers, Dan and Ced.