Baker, James

Letter
Date:
September 29, 1941
To:
Mom
From:
Jim
Sept. 29th, 1941

Dearest Mom,

I have just received 28 letters all in one bunch from different people that I know. Included were two from you dated July 31st and 18th which help a long way towards clearing up some mysteries in my mind. Your see I got a bunch of letters for August from you but none for July and of course, I missed the connecting links. For instance I didn't know what you meant when you said about money that Dad had earned or that Stanley and Burt were working. However that is all clear now so that is all settled.

I know you must have been terribly worried lately and I have been wishing I could do something about it. But unfortunately I can't - unless I can get promotion to the rank of sergeant and if the Army remains in its present means of promotion, I am afraid I won't get very far. However I still have hopes. I may as well confess that I have made a big sacrifice just lately but I think it was worth it when I consider the many sacrifices that you have made for me. You see I think I could have obtained a transfer to the RAF...but if I had done so, I wouldn't have been able to send any money home, as it is impossible to export money from Gt. Britain. So I gave it up and decided to stick it in the Army, even though I hate it. That money is for you so please don't be afraid to us it is you need it.

You mention that some of my letters were taken by Mr. Welsh to the Daily Province. Have you heard any more about it? Wouldn't it be wonderful if I did get started that way? You know I seem to be building up quite a reputation all over Manitoba. I have had about 8 poems and letters in the Free Press and I have had at least forty letters from people all over Manitoba. This last bunch of letters contains eight from strangers saying how much they appreciate my poems and letters. One in particular appealed to me. It is from a 20 year old Scotch girl who is terribly homesick for her home which is Edinburgh. She thanked me for "such a lovely description of my home town!" At the same time I received nearly fifteen letters from my old correspondents whom I have been writing for over a year now. One of them was particularly interesting for it came from Aileen Small: a school teacher at Lac du Bonnet. This summer she was introduced to a teacher who taught at Fairdale School in Killarney, Manitoba. Well I had told Aileen that I came from Killarney originally so she immediately asked Miss Gibson if she had ever heard of me. Well, it seems she knew quite a lot about me for she had boarded with a "Mrs. Frank Harden" nee Miss Winnie Forster. Wasn't that a strange coincidence? The world gets smaller and smaller every day!

It is extremely interesting to hear of all the changes that have taken place in White Rock since I left. It really must be booming now! I suppose I won't know the place when I get back to it.

Yes, I got to Cheltenham on my leave and I met Mrs. Barnard's sister while I was there. I think I would like to go back there one for a day or two.

I haven't had a letter from Clarence for ages. I wonder what is wrong with him. I hope nothing is wrong. I guess I'll write him soon and hope for the best.

I am afraid there is much I can tell you about myself. I am still in hospital as you can see by the address and haven't much hope of getting out for at least another fortnight. My arm is sore but not too bad. But the wound is still open and draining. Please write to the old address as usual. The radio is blaring and I can't concentrate so I'd better close now.

Love to you all,

Jim



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