Le Havre, France
May 28 1919
Well, at last, I've said good-bye to Belgium and have taken the first step towards home. We arrived here yesterday morning after 36 hours on the train. We were quite comfortable on the train- cattle cars full of straw- and we had a stove in each car, etc.
I was really sorry to say good-bye to Bierges, since the people had been so good to us. We were there nearly 4 months. If you would like a little idea of how much of France has been destroyed, here it is.- We left Mons at 10 o'clock Friday night. Mons is where the destroyed area begins as that was where the allies were on the armistice day. It was 2 oclock the next afternoon after steady going, that we reached Amiens and saw the first inhabited house. Though all that there was not one house fit to live in. And everywhere was trenches and shell-holes.
I don't know how long will be here at Havre but I think it will be 5 or 6 days more. It rains all the time here and is "no bon". I'm still dreading the trip across the channel.
I wish you would write to the Post Office Truro immediately and tell them what to do with any mail that comes there for me because I expect there will be some soon. Since my army address is so uncertain now, I have given Truro address in one or two cases.
I slept last night in a leaky drafty hut with my clothes on and caught a cold. That comes from sleeping in a bed for 5 months I guess. But I've got a decent hut and some blankets for tonight.
I don't much expect to receive any return mail at this date but will enclose my address. I expect to be home or else on the ocean this time next month.
Did you send the money to Lloyds Bank.
If I am lucky enough to get that sword to England I'll express it home to you as I don't think I can carry it to Canada. In fact I am not expecting very much to get it out of France.
Today we went through the "incinerator" and I feel lonesome now, no little friends at all. But, really, I've been clear of them for two or three months now, ever since you sent the change of underclothes.
Well mother I'll have to close now.