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Date: November 17th 1944
Eira Williams
Margaret Chesney

R.C.N Barracks,
Block 26
c/o F.M.O.
St. John’s

Dear Eira :

Well, as you can see I have arrived in the land of fish and fog and that is really what it is.

When I arrived here there was no less than 15 letters for me, several from Mother and Dad and notes from people of home and also your lovely letter. Thanks so much Eira it was really grand. It was an awful blow to hear the news of Lorne, I received it just the day before I left, Daddy sent the wire to the Padre so he told me. It did make my trip rather miserable. I wanted to go home, but being on draft it was an impossibility.

As I mentioned I had several letters from home and a lovely letter from Dad. They all feel dreadfully about Lorne but are really very proud of him. Vera had a long letter from him just three days before he was killed. She asked Mom and Dad to read it and make copies to send to Alan and I. Daddy said it revealed so much his fine character, and as Dad said Lorne was every inch man and every inch soldier. It’s so hard to believe he won’t be coming home. Alan got 3 days leave which made me feel much better. I had the sweetest letter from Bethy, she said she had been dreaming for nearly 2 years what they would do when Lorne came home, she said that the first thing she wanted to do was have a game of ping pong with him. Mom said Vera took it very hard but was really a brick about it. Mom said Dad stood up very well the first couple of days but then went all to piece, she said she didn’t know what she would have done if Al hadn’t been home. Mother said everyone was so kind to them and they had beautiful letters and flowers from all over the province. Bethy took it very hard, she always just worshiped him, she said she had just finished writing him a long letter when Rev. Anderson brought word that he had been killed. It’s so hard to believe, he had everything to live for.

Well, a little about my trip etc: we were in Halifax much longer than we expected, but had a nice rest as didn’t have a thing to do all day. Our trip across was very rough, but am a fair sailor and think the only Wren aboard that wasn’t sea sick. A lot of the girls were terribly sick. I was only to two meals, breakfast the morning we went aboard, and supper just before we docked. Think I lost a few lbs., not that I couldn’t stand it! Our accommodation was something you dream about and we were treated like kings, altho’ it was too bad we couldn’t appreciate them to the fullest! When we arrived there was my little Gunner down to the Dock to meet me. I was so happy, he said he would be down to meet me but never expected he would be able to find out when we were to arrive. Cec expects to go back to Cornwallis soon to take a Chiefs Course and then come back here. He doesn’t live in the Base but in an Lodge as his work isn’t within the Base. I can’t tell you much more about my trip due to Censorship. I am working again in the Engine Room Branch, so far am not particularly fond of my new work but maybe when I get on to the routine better it will make a difference. Our hours are longer than at Cornwallis and we work every Sat. afternoon and every Sunday ‘till noon. We get one 36 a month from Sat. noon ‘till Sun. nite and 48’s are unheard of in our office. There seems to be a lot of work to do and have been very busy.

I don’t know what I am going to do about Christmas this year. They say the only things you can send out of here are those articles manufactured or made in this country, and guess that won’t be very much and they say everything is a terrific price. If I ever manage to get a ½ day some time will have to go down town and see what they have. All I’m really worrying about is to send some little thing to Mom, Dad, Beth, Vera and Al. I may have you a little later on send some flowers home for me, but will let you know more later.

Our Barracks is very nice and is comfortable, but the least said about the rest of the Base the better. The Mess is grim, we had the same Mess as the men. What I have seen of the City it’s really grim, streets narrow and dirty, the people are very odd, and the poverty and slums in some sections terrible. We thought N.S backward but it is nothing compared to this place.

I have been to the K of C. and they say the y.w.c.a. is very nice, and the U.S.O. out of this world. There are a lot of Americans here. Week ends aren’t much good anyhow, as there are so few places to go especially this time of year.

Well, Eira, I will close for this time but will write again soon. Thanks again for your lovely letter. I have had so many grand letters from my friends. Do write soon and give me all the news. Tell Myrtle I haven’t forgotten her but will write. Give my regards to your Mom and Dad.

Lots of Love,

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