Dear Aunty Clara:
THIS PAGE IS STRICTLY CONFIDENTIAL...AT LEAST TO SOME PEOPLE.
My Financial Situation:
You well recall how during my vacations which were spent right at home I could spend just as much money as people who went away for their two weeks. Well I managed to outdo my own record (for spending an average of $3 per day) in my three day leave. I spent $3.33 per day or, in other words, a total of $10.00. On top of that I have had to spend another $1 in the three days since then. This money situation has gotten desperate and you know very well that I started off by not having any of my own money to begin with. As a result I will have to pay back the $11.00 to my fellow soldiers with the $10.65 I am going to receive on payday.
I do not regret my good time because of that. Those three days away from the Army and being as free as air were worth it. They were very similar to the vacations I used to take at Rathborne. Many of the fellows could not see the sense in taking a vacation while still remaining in camp or in Medford. Their idea of a good time is to travel to a spot they haven't seen such as Klamath Falls, Portland, or San Francisco. That is all very well if you know the surrounding country and the city of Medford like a book. And if you haven't any interest such as golf to keep you back. However, Medford is still quite new and those golf courses probably couldn't be beat in the other towns. How to spend a vacation is all a matter of opinion.
But now to get back to business. Have I any money of my own in any of the bank books? How about Kaspar's American Bank? Is there anything in there? And that joint account in yours and Aunty Florence's name? I think there is only $4 in that one. If you can't dig any out of Kaspar's bank account take $3 out of the joint one and send it to me. And how is that weekly fund coming along? Were you ahead of the weekly expenditures or behind on them? That is, does the $30 check come in before the weekly fund has dropped down to nothing or does it come while there is still some cash on hand? If you can spare a few dollars out of that, it would help matters a bit. I don't want to touch the big account which collects interest.
I am not renewing my bond subscription but will purchase the bonds from month to month and send them home. Then, when we finally do go across, I will make out a greater Class E. allotment to cover the price of a bond which you will buy for me every month. That means next month I will have a bit more in my pay and my financial standing will be improved for the time being. You see, next month I plan to skip a bond while I get caught up with my spending spree.
If you can not scare up any money by those means, I guess I will be forced to borrow some from you, only if it can be spared!! At any rate do not send me more than $10 or less than $5.
When I was in my lethargic state of mind during the first four months in this man's army, I spent money at a terrific rate for candy bars and the like but now with this added expense of golf and ice skating it is more than terrific.
The trouble is that if I die, the insurance will take care of you and those few extra cents I spend now will not mean so very much to you, while they will provide a good time for me now. But should I come back from this war, we will get no insurance dividends and we will have to have some sort of savings to rely on during the post war era. The $800 or so that I now have in the bank and in bonds will not last long during that stretch then. That is a dilemma if I ever saw one.
If only I had some other source of income .... STOP. O, O, I should not have started this letter. My wishes have usually come true in regard to a raise and the like. Now, sure as shootin', we will go across and then I will get that extra $13.20 in my pay every month. Who wants it then, eh?
Let's drop this whole thing right now. But don't forget about sending a few shekels. And put me hep to my financial standing once again. I have never marked down just what is what even though you explained the whole thing to me in one of your letters about a month and a half ago.
What I will have to do is budget myself: so many 15¢es for shows; so many 80¢es (50¢ for admission and 30¢ for bus fare) for ice skating; and so many $1.80es for golfing. I doubt if the golf will continue to be such a large item as it was during the last week. Also, so many 5¢s for candy bars (correction 4¢s) and so many ???¢s for those times I miss chow.
Thus ends this financial page . . . .
And now for a note about religion which I think I wrote to you about once before and then never mailed the letter.
About three weeks ago I received a very nice silver medal with a real good silver chain from the St. Valentine's Church. I couldn't wear that and you know it. It is too bad my Dad and Rose still insist on believing that I am a Catholic because they are. I doubt if it has ever occurred to them that I could be something else. Just the same I got the medal and Jack Molyneaux who is an ardent Catholic and has locket after locket, medal after medal, etc. hanging around his neck took a liking to it. He offered me $1 for it and I sold it on the spot. At least it is serving its purpose on the person of a Catholic. The church doesn't know the soldier that it is sent to anyway and all they are interested in is that it winds up on some ones neck (Clarence would say that all they are interested in is making the profit on the sale). Anyhow, that's the story.