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Date: December 30th 1943
Mother and Father
Joseph Moore

Alliford Bay, B.C.
Dec. 30 / 43

Dear Mom and Dad --

I have not written for a while because I have been waiting for the results of the Trade Board, but seeing as I got 4 more letters today, bringing my unanswered mail up to 10, I thought I had better start catching up. The Trade Board results should be out in the early part of January. Did I tell you I was recommended for my "B" group. It will be quite a jump from a standard A.C.2 to L.A.C. "B" group, if I get it. It will mean $2.00 a day instead of $1.30. I guess it's about time though because I have been enlisted since last Dec. 16th, over a year.

Yes, we wash with washing machines. Some are the "Easy" make, like yours. Right now though, 4 of them are unserviceable. They take quite a beating, running nearly 20 hours a day. The night and day shift wash at all hours. Sometimes I eat in about 10 minutes and rush up to the laundry to get a machine. We have a wonderful drying room. My socks are in pretty good shape considering that I wear rubber boots so much. To get new ones we must wash the old ones and show where they were darned once or twice. (I'm not bad at darning now.) I still do a little "damming" during the process, but I'll get there.
The flip I had was nice but I will have forgotten what it was like by the time I get another one, because there are so many of us.

I was talking to a fellow who just came back from flight engineer courses and he says that they have stopped taking mechanics, and are taking washed-out or deferred air crew. That is a little unfair to us but there is nothing we can do about it.

Thanks, Dad, for getting the wrench, A small adjustable is the handiest thing to have up here because equipment for working on tiny aircraft parts is scarce. Midget socket sets would be the proper thing but apparently even the R.C.A.F. cannot obtain them. Last week I was put in charge of spark-plug maintenance. I am responsible for the serviceability of all the aircraft plugs. There are about 450 in service and about 600 replacements and spares. A set is changed every 100 hours when the aircraft comes in for inspection. I don't like working inside but it's not bad when it rains. I have a swell little shop all to myself. It takes about two days to completely overhaul a set of plugs. Gap setting is the hardest part, there being 4 ground electrodes surrounding a centre electrode. Some days I work late, and other days I have nothing to do so I have been painting the cabinets, benches and equipment. Yesterday, I overhauled a set of plugs for a fellow over on Graham Island, who has a car like yours. They were in pretty bad shape on account of the dampness and slow driving he has to do on the crude roads.

I got a letter from Jim today. He received his first letter I wrote him (Oct.27) on Dec. 10. He says he would go crazy here after being in London. Judging by the stuff he writes that he has stored up, he had a swell Christmas. That bombing must have been terrible. I am sending the clipping back because you probably want to keep it. It must have been great to see what Alan wrote about. How is Mrs. Heath these days. Whenever I get my letters out I always re-read that message she gave me. I am figuring on getting leave in April or May if possible. If I do I can get down to Vancouver to see the Fearnleys and then go to San Francisco quite easily. I sent Aunts B. & E. a Christmas card today and received a lovely card and letter from them. They said they mailed me a carton of Old Gold cigarettes. They were not sure whether I smoked or not, but if not I could pass them along to the boys anyway. They ask me to write if I have to pay duty on them so they will know whether or not to send more. I think this is very good of them.
They received a card from Jim and they also received the chocolates you sent them; they appreciated them very much because they are scarce down there. They inquired about my being able to visit them, say they would be glad to see me, and if I get a chance to see the folks in Vancouver, to do so. They have given me the address and from a detailed map one of my chums has I have found exactly where to go in Vancouver, should I travel by aircraft, by boat or by train. So Colin lives in Redwood City now. I have heard it's a swell place. One of the boys here has three sisters living there.
Sorry to hear about the flu. I hope you shake it soon. It seems to be everywhere. There is very little sickness here.
Thanks for your Christmas wishes. We did have a lovely Christmas considering. We had three days off (25, 26, 27) and on Christmas day I got up early with most of the fellows, had a shower, went to church, having an Anglican service, & a Communion service afterwards. We knelt, six at a time on the altar, while the padre broke bread, and passed the cup. There was a little confusion for it was hard to follow the service.

After church we had a swell turkey dinner with all the trimmings. It was odd eating from a chair instead of a bench and having a cloth on the table. There were fruits, nuts & candies in heaps all along the tables. The mess hall was beautifully decorated, and to top it all, the dinner was served by the officers.

In the afternoon, we had a swell show, also another show in the evening. It was a beautiful day for Christmas. One could almost go out in shirtsleeves but we had to dress in blues. It never rained and the sun shone nearly all day.

The day before they had a big doin's for the kids from Charlotte City, you know, a tree, presents, and even one of the fellows dressed as Santa Claus. We also rigged up a big tree in front of the administration building. We painted 40 watt bulbs all colours. It is still lit, and looks swell.

Well, I got 9 Christmas cards, not bad, eh! I got 3 from you and Dad, one from Aunt Reta with a box of chocolates. One from Aunt Doris with a nice letter, one from Jim & a letter since. One from Alex MacDonald at Sea Island, Vancouver, and a letter since. I got a lovely card & letter from Aunts B. & E.

Do you remember Mary Anderson, the girl I introduce to you & Dad at the cottage some time ago, when I had the Ford, well, I got a nice card and a swell letter from her today. She works in Zeller's and says it is pretty tough with the Christmas rush. She has two brothers in the Air Force, I don't know where they are but she hopes they get home for Christmas. She says the ice has been swell at Gage park lately, but, like that song "They're Either Too Young Or Too Old," it seems all the old gang are gone.

On the 19th, I got a letter from Mr. Inman of the Church. Enclosed was a devotional booklet. He tells me there are fifty overseas now. He had a letter from Jim in the fall. They sent Jim a box in Oct. I am sorry to hear of Dr. Martin's retirement. Having been there for 18 years, he will be missed. I received another letter from him on the 24th asking me to overlook his error because he had already sent me one when I was in Galt. The church is sending me a box, also. This is very good of them because I am not really overseas technically, but I saw enough of the sea getting here. Well, I've written quite a bit and I have all these other letters to answer and greeting cards to acknowledge.

Hoping you are all well, so long for now --

{P.S. This picture might well have been taken in the channel outside the bay, but it says the Aleutians.}

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