July 30, 1944 (2)
Dear Mother, Dad, and Grandpa,
Two letters in one day is quite unusual for me, but I just feel like writing you again, so here goes!
It is now 7:15 and I have been at the Main Post and the theatre all day. I just can’t bear the thought of going back to the company area.
After I talked to you this morning I had lunch at the Service Club—fried chicken, mashed potatoes, peas, tomato salad, iced tea, and watermelon. Very nice—only the watermelon was hot. I kept thinking of the good ice-cold watermelon we had at home.
I then managed to get up enough energy to go to the show. I was Robert Young, Charles Laughton, and little Margaret O’brien in “The Canterville Ghost.” It’s very good. Margaret O’brien, a new child actress, is very good.
“Christmas Holidays” is at the other theatre. We saw it in Dayton, otherwise I would have
gone to another show tonight.
Gee, it’s so hot here, it almost knocks you over. How I’d like to be sitting on our cool front porch now listening to the radio.
I am in the library now. I went to the show with 3 boys from my company, all A.S.T.P.’s. They are just as bitter as I am about everything. 2 of them were out on the range firing the sub machine gun when they picked the boys to go to school. The other fellow was on furlough too. Now, besides 2 more on furlough and another boy we’re the only A.S.T.P.’s left here. John Hughes from Milwaukee was one of them on the range. Some of the boys who went had code speeds lower than ours. They just asked them if they wanted to go and they said yes. They were so lucky to be sent to Monmouth. If I ever go, it will probably be my luck to be sent to Crowder.
2 fellows who came in the company after we did were also sent. However, they were in the Southwest Pacific and Aleutians and have studied radio before, thereby having a lot of experience. That’s the trouble. There [sic] always
bringing new ones in who have had much more experience and training and threatening to send us to the construction companies if we don’t get our code speeds up, and yet we are never given time for code. I never told you before, but that was held over our heads for a long time.
An older fellow who had been in the company a long time and who drives a truck found out about the shipment to Monmouth, asked if he could go, and was sent. He only wanted to go because he lives in New Jersey. He hates codes and balks every time he has to take it.
Wish I could hear some news programs and other broadcasts. There is not even a radio on the Main Post. There is one at the Guest House, but I don’t like to go in there all the time.
We have no dayroom. It was turned into an orderly room and supply room.
They move the radio down into the field in a tent but if can only be played at night. The electricity is turned on only at that time. The power comes from a big generator which makes so much noise that the radio can’t be heard any way.
The library never has the latest papers. This is sure an isolated camp. Fellows near big towns certainly are lucky.
For dinner tonight at the Serv. Club I had steak (hard as nails) and french fries, peas, tomato salad, 4 glasses of iced tea, and Boston cream pie.
They The tomatoes were hard and the pie warm. It sure isn’t like home.
I wish I could hear Winchell, Gabriel Heatter, and Drew Pearson, etc. tonight.
Last Sunday night we were all together at this time listening to the opera. Wasn’t it wonderful? Wish we were doing the same tonight!
My, but the heat is intense here. You just couldn’t have any idea how bad it is.
Let me hear from you. Love to all of you.