May 18th 1918
My Dear Mother:-
Today's mail was kind for it brought me your letter of April 18th, one from Nellie, one from her fellow teacher and a card from Aunt Lizzie. I have just come back from our canteen where I purchased a new writing pad so I'll write you a short letter for there's not much to do here in the evenings. I am money-less so its no use journeying to neighbouring towns. Your parcel has not reached me yet. You asked me for a list of things I would like you to send. What I suggest is that you send a small parcel - not very big - about half as large as you've been sending or smaller and enclose say-
-a pair of socks (once in a while)
-handkerchiefs (two or so a month)
-soap (a cake a month of toilet soap)
-cigarettes (not more than fifty in a package)
-chocolate or toffee - not more than a half-dozen chocolate bars or some Riley's toffee if you can buy it.
-a tin of cocoa - good while in the line.
-a small cake - they do taste good for here is where home cooking is appreciated
These are a few suggestions that I can think of just now. There are many things we can get here but when you get away from the canteen the prices are exorbitant. I asked you to send a razor strop & some light underwear in a previous letter. But just a small parcel is, Mother, I think best.
Andy must be having some experiences. I am going to make another try to get into the Corps myself in a month or so. Look among my papers for a Lieutenant's certificate and send it to me in one of your letters. I may also have to have Dad do something for me in getting a recommendation re character etc. from some prominent man in London. His work on the Exemption Board should give him touch with someone who will suffice. I will send more about this later. It takes several months to get the thing through.
Today has been a fine, warm day. We do our work these days in our shirt sleeves. Have had two ball games this week, a tie game on Thurs. and today our company was trimmed 8-7 in a rattling good contest. I certainly enjoy a nice close ball game. We are still living in the barn and getting acquainted with French peasant life and customs. Their crops look fine. Their rye is out in head and this week they have been thinning out turnips and planting potatoes etc. You will remember how I used to like thinning turnips.
Hope Charlie is able to get the camera working. You must get my other one from Aunt Lizzie. It is a real good one but I never had much success with the Pocket type.
The S. E. Posts come very regularly and make fine reading. Have not received many of the Saturday Nights, only two, I think.
Well, must close. Best love from