December 14, 1941
Many happy returns of the day, Dad, and thanks for your letter of Nov. 18, which I received yesterday. I also received the postal order for one pound, two shillings and four pence, which Mother mentioned in a previous letter. The cigarettes you and Mother have been sending have been coming in with clock-like regularity for the past six months and are greatly appreciated.
Well, things have certainly happened this last week, haven’t they? I think possibly it was one of the most eventful and perhaps the most calamitous week the Democracies have had. Imagine the U.S.A. being caught so completely off guard. Then, add to this the blunder resulting in the loss of the Prince of Wales and the Repulse, and you have a picture which is anything but pleasant. One sometimes wonders how long it takes for our leaders to profit from mistakes. You would naturally think that the Crete affair had taught us that a navy without air support was very vulnerable to enemy air attack, but such doesn’t seem to be the case. However, our air forces in Libya and the Russian forces seem to be doing very well just now. I wouldn’t fancy a war in a climate as severe as Russia, and from all accounts, neither do the Germans. I don’t believe the Russians forced the Germans to withdraw, but I do think that their sudden and determined drive is making it very difficult for the Germans to avoid making a retreat into a complete route.
Do you think that Mr. Mackenzie King will see fit to order conscription now? We, for our part, are doing exactly nothing as usual and with no prospect of any change in the near future. I went to our nearby large town to play hockey last Wednesday and enjoyed myself no end in spite of lack of condition. The smell of the ice did more to make me homesick than anything has for a long time. If we stay here, a schedule will be arranged and I am almost certain to be on the Regimental team, which would be a pleasant diversion.
I am still working in the Command Post as an “Ack” and this morning am busy brushing up on my work which is scheduled for Wednesday evening. During these shoots in my new job I have the opportunity of watching the rounds burst.
I am glad you were able to make some small return to Mrs. Stott, as she has been very kind in regards to sending parcels. I haven’t heard from Liulf for over a month, but expect he is too busy to write. He hasn’t answered my last letter, but expect he may not have received it.
I have a tea date with a very nice lady from the local canteen, but don’t expect to be able to keep it, as it is raining cats and dogs. We haven’t had any snow yet and there are roses still blooming in the garden.