Capt GS Andrews, RCE
HQ First Cdn Army O'seas.
26 April, 1942
Nothing has happened in the way of mail since my letter of last Tuesday. Day before yesterday, we moved to our new abode, as part of Army HQ. In reality, and somewhat ironically, we are in the same offices which we occupied last summer and fall, so we are in old territory, and once more within walking distance of our friends the Morris'. I went up there last night, for a quiet evening, and my friend Lt Col Rodger is staying with them, and as he has recently returned from a trip to Canada, we had a good chat. Mrs M is feeling fine, and looking fine. I took her the box of peppermint creams which you sent in your last parcel. She was delighted, as peppermint creams are her pet passion. Only one or two of the snaps which we took there when Bert Hammond and I stopped there about 2 weeks ago, turned out, and they are enclosed. The others, including those in which I was also present, were all spoiled in the developing. Anyway, the one of Mrs M is quite good, and the one of Bert, Ecila and the old lady is not too bad.
Have been busy unpacking our stuff, and now have most things pretty well arranged. So far we are in a small mess, only about half a dozen officers, but one or two I knew before, and the others seem quite nice. One is a Capt Smith, a paymaster, who has lived in the West a lot, and knows several of my friends. He is quite a live wire, and interesting. Another is Abe Lincoln's double, and I think I'm going to like him a lot. His father was professor of Surveying at the University of BC, in the old days when I was there. Poor Bert Hammond is now left alone down at Corps HQ, and I think feels a bit gloomy, as he used to enjoy our company, and used to come down to our mess there at least twice a week. However, that is the way in the army, shifts are always staking place, and you have to say goodbye to good friends cheerfully. After the way, we will have some grand reunions, and you will be able to meet a lot of these chaps and see how fine they are.
I have kept all your letters, and have been wondering the best thing to do with them, and as we may in the future be on the move a lot, I think the best thing is to make a parcel of them, and send them home. They make a priceless diary of my wife and family at home, and especially of Mary's little doings and growth. So, if they arrive safely, put them away in a safe place for me, and someday, when we get old, and reminiscent, they will give us a lot of pleasure. You write extremely well, you know, and always include the topics which give me most pleasure, and interest.
Next Tuesday night, I go up on the platform again and give a talk on BC to a London audience, of ordinary people. Was up in town Friday, to look over the auditorium and meet the Librarian, and I think it will go off OK. Have not spent much time on subject matter as I propose to talk pretty well ad lib, but managed to get together a number of slides, not an ideal set, but think they will prove entertaining for an audience of London Cockneys. Will have to quit this sort of thing, because even without much preparation, they do take a bit of time, and interrupt my other work. In some ways I like to do it, because I feel it is a duty to BC, where I have lived so happily and interestingly, and of which I have been privileged to gain a unique knowledge. Also, there it a duty the tother way, namely to these ordinary people of London, they were so wonderful during the Blitz, and are so cheery and good natured, it is really an honor to be able to entertain them with accounts of a lovely land far away on the other side of the American continent. Am enclosing a couple of programs which will give you an idea of the sort of thing my talk is tied up with.
My little Colonel is off this week end for a visit with his lady, so I have been holding down the shop. Mrs Meuser is a fine little woman, real quality, and I am so pleased because I think a great deal of him. Expect him back tonight, or in the morning.
Made an interesting contact yesterday, a young RAF pilot who has been interested in Survey Flying, heard of me through mutual connections, and sent word that he was flying up to the nearest drome from his station quite some distance away, to see me. Was able to get there at the appointed time, and he arrived right on schedule, so took him over to the Survey Coy to show him what we do with air photos, and we had lunch there, and then took him back in time for him to fly home before dark. He is a keen clean cut young Englishman, one of the best kind, married, and is extremely interested in just the kind of work I do in BC. If we could get a few chaps like him doing work for us, our most baffling problems now would be solved.
The tobacco situation is in excellent shape since the arrival of your last two parcels. I am very lucky. I must try to get a letter off to FD Mulholland, telling him of my visit with his brother last Sunday. Also must try to get off family letter soon.
Well, dear, that's about the lot of news for this week.
All my love,