On Active Service
Y.M.C.A. With the British Expeditionary Force Y.M.C.A.
August 9th /17
My Dear sister
I received your letter dated th[e] 17th July, all O.K. I am sorry to know that you have been worrying over me. I know I do not write as often as I ought, but it seems hard to be able to settle down to letter-writing, then besid[es] there is not much news that we are allowed to write about. please do not fret over me, as I feel pretty sure of coming out of this alright. We'll hope so anyhow.
You were pretty nearly right in your judging of those snapshots. That girl in England, I met her while up there on leave, before coming to France. She was the cousin of a chum of min[e.] We do not correspond now. As to the one in Halif[ax,] I met her at an at-home given to one of our batt'n before leaving Canada. I just met her twice so do not know much about her. As to Marion, s[he] is a lively girl, but has got plenty of common-sense. She is also a good cook, and we are engage[d] to be married as soon, as I get back. I think she is just it. I do not know how you will like her. I am going to send you her address, so you can write to her, if you like. she is attending Business college at present. We had a little tiff some time ago, but we have made it all up again. Her address is Miss Marion E. Landon 1432 1st St. East Prince Albert Saskatchewan. By all means call her Marion, she would never stand for being called Miss.
I am pleased to know you are enjoying life over there. We have some jolly times, even over here. There is always the spice of danger in it, that makes it seem adventurous. It makes a chill run down a fellows spine sometimes to see some of these once beautiful towns and cities, now only a pile of rubba[ge.] It seems odd to see the number plates over some of the doors still, and probably there is just a little piece of one wall left standing. We have great times at night going out into the onetime gardens collecting fruit. The apples and pears are still green, but we bring them in and cook them. It's queer alright to have a trench right through the centre of a town, an[d] not being allowed to walk on the streets. a person wou[ld] not get very far before a german sniper had him, I'm afraid. It's marvellous the nerve some of those french people have. They come up pretty close to our line, and start patching their onetime homes, and try living in them once more. probably old Fritz would spot their smoke next day. If so, it would be all off. My partner over here is still going strong, and we mean to start up on our homesteads as soon as we get back. I am satisfied that you should do as you like with that mark I sent you
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