Dear Aunty Clara:
You will be duly notified by official card that my new Army mailing address is:
Cpl Roman F Klick 36620923
Co A, 353rd Engineers Regt.
P. O. #3613
DO NOT ADDRESS ME BY THAT ADDRESS UNTIL YOU RECEIVE AN OFFICIAL CARD TELLING YOU OF IT.
I am going to try to send out answers to almost all my back and unanswered mail tonight even if it takes me to two o'clock in the morning. For all we know, this may be the last night in camp. Although I think we will remain here for a few more days now that two companies have been restricted because of an outbreak of measles.
Don't ever send me any Tangos again. Why? Because a miracle of miracles happened this evening. Perhaps they bought a fresh stock of assorted candies at the PX because they knew the boys were going for a boat ride soon; but, nevertheless, as I live and breathe, they had on sale more Tango bars than I have seen in a dog's age. So what did I do? I promptly bought a box of them (two dozen for 96¢). Now I will have enough to last me for quite some time and if they don't last me for "quite some time", I will be probably so sick of them that I will never want to see another one again. Incidentally, from my first experience in being separated from civilization during the ride here from Camp Grant, I realized what a boon a candy bar is to a soldier; so this time I will not be caught unprepared. I bought another box of Hershey Almond bars for an additional 96¢. This may appear to you as a rather steep investment in candy bars; but if it so happens that we are out of touch with candy counters, they are going to come in mighty handy.
I received letters from Mrs. Boyer, Uncle Joe, the office (a form) and you.
At noon I typed up 26 cards with my address on them and have addressed them to most of the people with whom you do not come in contact with very much. When you get my address through the mail, you can tell the people like Mrs. Reed, Gonzalez, the Infiestas etcetera.
The watch has kept a steady pace up for the last two days with no sign of going on the fritz yet. If anything goes wrong with it from here on in, it will be just too bad because I doubt if I will get the opportunity to send it home again.
I will write more later (if I have the time) after writing a final word to my other correspondents.
What has occurred since 8:30 -----
I have written six letters which isn't much when you consider my original plan.
Ray Gradler was the bugler today and he became quite drunk at the Company A beer party this evening. At 9:00 he blew about the sloppiest "Tattoo" I have ever heard. He was called down quite severely by Lt. Hunter who overheard it.
I also have eaten two tangos and a Hershey since then.
By the way send the rest of it along in a regular envelope. How many times is a letter lost? And if it is, it doesn't make such a great difference anyway. I think you are correct in the fact that I better not send Eleanor and Dolores anything for Valentine's Day except the cards.
Do you know that I got the watch before I received your letter telling me you were mailing it? I realized what had happened at the time I got the watch and it surprised me like it is surprising you now to think that a package got here faster than a letter.
I dished out Fiala's candy today and it disappeared faster than greased lightning. I hope the boy's don't get sick like I did.
I wrote and told Aunty Stella that I passed out her nuts to the fellows when I really haven't but will on the day your mallow delights come. That way they will think it is the package of nuts I received and I can keep the MDs for myself.
Boy, I can taste the stuffed dates now. Mmmmmm hmmmmm are they going to be delicious. Yummm mmmmmm.
When I begin writing on V-mail (I hear we will be allowed only 3 a week if we are overseas) I will have to cram the sentences from margin to margin without paragraphs to conserve space. It would be a good idea to stock up on V-mail. You can get it free at the post office although you have to put on a stamp. I have about 12 sheets of it saved up now. That isn't much when you think how much paper I use up with my nonsense.
There is a picture of Morris Mersing in one of the rolls and I promised him I would give him a print.
Blumenfeld's wife was here the other week (I might have mentioned) but I did not meet her at the time. Today he showed the fellows her picture and I never saw a girl any prettier. Every last fellow in the barracks wanted to know how she ever married a guy like him. That is a fact. It is like a Toots and Casper setup. Even Blumenfeld admits he is about one of the luckiest fellows in the world. She doesn't look a bit Jewish although she is a Polish-Jew.
That shoe rationing is going to put a crimp into the high school style of having a half a dozen different kind of shoes. I'm glad I sent mine home now. Maybe Uncle Joe might need them or I will have a pair to wear when I get home when the rationing might be a lot worse than it is now.
That coffee must really be scarce the way they are cutting down on it. But I never heard of coffee rationing making anyone thinner. Now take me for instance eating another candy bar. I will put on weight. I weighed myself on the USO scale the other night and it read 155 with my Army clothes and shoes on. That would bring the actual weight down to about 147 or 148 which finally is a definite increase. And it isn't muscle. I will be a fatty if I continue to gain 10 pounds every three months. But then my normal winter weight last year was approximately 144 0r 145 making a net increase of only 4 pounds.
How I do ramble on. I see I have filled up a page and hardly said a thing.
1. Author's correction July 2004: The date on this letter is incorrect. It should be February 10, 1943.