Baker, James

Letter
Date:
February 28, 1941
To:
Mom
From:
Jim
February 28th. 1941

Dear Mom,

Well, here it is the last day of February. Mrs. Barnard was just remarking the March was coming in like a lamb so she greatly feared it would go out like a lion. I - for one, hope the old saw is wrong for we have had enough rain for one year! The two little girls are both getting ready for bed and I won't think I will be long in following their example. I am very tired these days. I don't know why for I am not doing anything. Yesterday I was on mess fatique - the first time since last November, so I have nothing to kick about: do I?

I am enclosing a photograph of the two little girls who are here with me. They are two sweet little kiddies but one - the younger, has been giving Mrs. Barnard a lot of trouble lately. She seems to have great difficulty holding herself and wets the bed nearly every night. She has had violent fits of temper lately and she seems to be very nervous too. I don't know what to make of her. The doctor says she is just lazy but I think there is something more wrong than that. I suppose she misses her mother a good deal although they never seem to show it when their mother and father come to see them. They treat them very, very casually. They are nearly strangers to each other now.

Mrs. Barnard has a badly sprained foot just now. She sprained it getting out of the bus the other day and it is badly swollen and very painful. I don't think she has broken the bone but I keep telling her to rest it but she is very independent and won't let me do anything for her that she can do herself. But I did go shopping for her in Caterham this afternoon and very foolish I felt too getting on the bus with my arms full of parcels, for there were a bunch of boys on there that I knew. But I was doing my good deed for the day so I didn't mind.

I am going to sing a solo in church this Sunday. I'll write and tell you all about it after it is over. I am feeling very nervous about it for I haven't sung for such a long time. However I suppose it can't be any worse than some of the one's we have had there lately and that at least is one comfort. But there is one boy in the choir with us who has a marvellous tenor voice and he had sung a lot of solos lately. Whenever they wanted anyone to sing for any special occassion they always ask for him. I don't know whether they are going to do anything with our choir now or not. I was talking to the padre and he was telling me about all the obstacles that have been put in his way by different people. I don't know why it is but this regiment never seems to do anything in the recreational line. We always see and hear of the different entertainments put on by the other regiments and are always reading long accounts in the Canadian papers about the doings of the other regiments but the Pats are never mentioned. I don't know why it is. You would think they would be only too glad of the publicity. We have never had these radio broadcasts that all the other regiments seem to get. I cannot understand why it is.

Well, Jamais - Mrs. Barnard's youngest boy, registered for the RAF last Saturday. He expects to go pretty soon. He is crazy to get in and I keep telling him that was how I felt at first and now I am just as crazy to get out again. I was just thinking today what a terrible waste this past year has been. I could have been home working and going to night school, taking singing lessons and a thousand things that I want to do.

Instead of that, here I am parked in Godstone and every expectation of staying here another year or two. They are building huts for us now so I expect will be here all summer. What a colossal waste of time it is! I am getting terribly lazy too and am begining to gain weight again. Well, I guess I'll go to bed now. Write soon -

Love as always,

Jim






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