V-79818 P.O. Arthur Bergquist
H.M.C.S. York [?]
April 5, 1944,
Dear Ma, Pa, Rub & Ruth:
Just a few lines to let you know that I am okay. A person sure gets tired riding on these trains though. I sure will be glad when we get off at Toronto.
The first stop the train made this morning was at “Swift Current”. Its only a small town. I think they have an “Air Force Training Station” there. I believe Lorraine’s sister stayed there for a while. The next stop was at “Moose Jaw” where the business district was about the size of “New Westminster” They usually stop at these towns for about 15 or 20 minutes so I have a chance to get off and walk around a bit. A fellow doesn’t get a chance to see much though because by the time you get off the train and on again it only leaves about 10 minutes in which to look around. There is not much to see anyways but a fellow at least gets a chance to stretch his legs. After leaving “Moose Jaw” we next stopped at “Regina” which is a faily good sized town. While at Regina I had a chance to mail you a card which I hope you received alright. The next stop will be at Winnipeg from where I will mail this letter. I will get there about 7 o’clock your time. Here the time is now 2 hours ahead making it about 9 o’clock for me.
All day today I have been seeing nothing but flat prarie. There sure is a lot of prarie when it takes more than a day to cross over it. At supper to night the waiter said that to-morrow we would be traveling through rocky country again.-but I will write about that to-morrow. By the way the meals are pretty good I had bacon & eggs, mash[?], toast & coffee for breakfast. For lunch I had my choice of sausages or fish, mashed potatoes, carrots, ice cream and a very small piece of fruit cake & coffee For supper to night I had beef-steak, mashed potatoes, & parsnips, peaches[?] & coffee. The meals don’t sound too bad do they.
The fellows that I am traveling with are a pretty swell bunch of fellows-(I had to borrow a pen- just ran out of ink in mine.)- We sort of travel in pairs, that is they have compartments on the train, this is one fellow sleeps on the upper bunk and the other on the lower. The lower bunk is made up from the seats. Last night the fellow with me almost missed the train. We stopped at “Medicine Hat” about 11.30 P.M. We both got off to stretch our legs. Just a little before the train was to pull out I told him that I was going aboard and hit the hay. I had only been aboard about a minute when the train started to go. It was about 15 minutes after the train had left before he showed up. Boy! I sure was relieved to see him. When I asked him what happened he said that he had just gone into the station to get some cigarettes and when he came out the door the train was moving so he was just able to get on the last car- better known as the “Caboose”
Well in about 10 minutes now I will be in Winnipeg so I guess I will have to stop for now, so hoping that you are all well I will stop here.
Love to you all
P.S. I will write again to-morrow –Don’t forget to overlook this writing because the train sure shakes a lot, making it hard to write.