My dear Gertrude,
Writing in the forenoon this morning - rather I rush but you know what I mean. Very mild today - am writing quite comfortable in the hut with no fire on. Went along & this "YMCA" & write to mother but they had a fire & the place was like a furnace, so I retired here to carry on. We have fortunately never had such cold weather again as our first week & since then we have both become hardened & also had coal issued. Still I hope it keeps fairly mild this coming week as it is much easier for studying & our Examination is a week to-morrow & there is quite a lot of work to be covered yet.
Mother tells me Syd has been thrown from his horse & a leg broken but is going on well. You will have heard this before now. As he is going on satisfactorily the family will not be too sorry - seeing it will mean more delay in getting overseas. Also Berk has not gone to Italy.
I have three letters from you to deal with. No my increase in Pay never came about - the Q.M.S. never kept his promise - at least I think it would have gone through had he done so - and there is no sign yet of the extra service pay being paid. For the just two weeks here I got about double my usual pay - but it has since gone back to normal - don't know why I got the extra - & a soldier never enquiries about any over pay.
Thanks for your Aunt's address - quite a lot of our men go down to Brighton for their week ends - cycling & I have even heard of one walking (it is 18 miles). but with these early dark days it is too much of a rush. Had it been Summer I would have gone down some Sunday. Uncle Will not infrequently goes to Brighton in the winter - if he does i will probably put in one week end with them if so will be sure to look up your Aunt.
I quite agree that Port Elfin would be no rest for your mother whilst Mrs Swartz would be - Your turn should be next.
Glad you have found time to join in the Red Cross work - although it hardly sounds like a change from such a busy house time for so much of the year. But i think it is as big a mistake to confine all ones energies to work in the home - as to be always gadding about away from house.
I am very please that you got up to see the Creighton's & enjoyed your visit & I am glad to have news of them I know that you would like Mrs Creighton immensely if you know her well - she is one of the best kind of "motherly" women and kindness itself. Sorry to hear of Stella being laid up - she is about he most unfortunate girl I ever met - there is scarcely a year that she is not laid up with some serious illness or accident.
I rather wondered how Spencer would like the transition from Banking to business - it certainly would not suit me. Except as doing it for the sake of your Father & the business, I think he may have made a mistake in doing it or of course if he is doing it, as a first step to a successful business career from the monetary point of view - then he will naturally find interest in the work. Very fortunately for the working of the world we are not all made the same.
I hope that house's uncertainties develope into certanties sooner or later - but it would seem that she is quite changeable in her uncertainties. Friends are certainly wise not to endeavour to help in such matters. I think that if your friends had been more reserved & judicious - we might have had quite a different mutual story. I remember when I came back from New York in 1910, that several of your friends were so pointed, & openly so, in some of the things they said - that I seriously considered - if under the circumstances I ought to visit Pearson Avenue at all 0 but owing to the great kindness that your people had all & always shown me - I decided it would be wrong to do so - & I made a rough rule - not to go to Parkdale more than once in three weeks - which I kept more or less thoroughly for some year - although I was often rather lonely at week ends - for although I saw a lot of the Creightons - they have always been such a very busy family - that except at certain times - one could never get them at leisure & Charlie for so long, as a newspaper man, worked through the evenings into the night. Another thing that I was prevented from doing was taking you out as I would have like to do. With the Creightons it was different. Summer freed them from their activities. & I could take them out freely - as being so many - I could always get hold of some two easily - & their was no question of compromising anyone. However I am not trying to blame other people for my own short comings - I believe as I have always believed that anything one has missed in life that would have been good for one - is in nearly every case ones own fault.
There is one good thing we all have - the hope of the future.
It is near dinner time so I must close - Work this after noon (that is read notes) and to church in the evening. There is no news for the week that I remember. I enclose a copy of the new stamp - much better than the former one - very lightly postmarked.
Had a letter from Jack Morgan - the Field Artillery Cadet - & the "Carpet" man. Their course has been extended to five months - & they have been told they get a week at Christmas so both advantages must come our way. - rather may come our way.
I hope all is going very well. with you & everyone. The war news is not really bad in spite of Italy's misfortunes. France & Flanders is what really matters.
With very best love