Dear Aunty Clara,
For one thing, I received the five dollar bill which you sent me. And immediately I went off my budget. The very first thing that happened to the bill was to split it up $2 for air-mail envelopes and $3 to take care of the expenses of the month. I have already told you that Candy and Shows were not shown on my budget. I forgot to mention that I didn't intend to buy any ice cream either. That, however, was my downfall! Blumenfeld wanted to go over to the PX to have a bite to eat and reluctantly I hurried over with him and very hesitatingly I quickly ordered a giant strawberry sundae. Then, not two hours later we again visited the above named and aforementioned establishment to purchase a Dixie cup of ice cream. Now I am 25¢ off my miser standard.
We haven't been paid for our 'work' of Saturday night. And it looks as if I gave a $1.95 book away for nitz.
My best bet is to get a job in the PX which I am going to investigate tomorrow. I hear they pay 25¢ or 35¢ an hour which will not be so bad since you can eat double than in trade by the hour.
So much for the finances of your soldier boy; now for the paradox he has found himself in. In a room of some thirty or so men he had comparative privacy; while in a room of three men he finds no privacy. Where before he knew he could come back to the barracks to rest, he now will find none. Where once he did not have to do such menial work as sweeping the floor or mopping it up, he will once more become accustomed to it.
In other words, the change has taken place and I am now sleeping in a room with T/5 Roman F. Burkard and T/4 Glen W. Emery. The room is in the barracks next to the one which I have spent my time since coming to Company A. It is one of the best rooms which the barracks have to offer because it has only three fellows in it and two windows (east and south exposures). We have the biggest electric light that can be obtained in the regiment. The drawbacks are numerous and somehow seem to overbalance the good points. It so happens that the room is one of those open house affairs and the other non-coms seem to congregate in it for their meetings. Fat chance I will have of bringing up the typewriter to finish some late letters or reading a book in there. And now I can not depend upon the fellow next to me to sweep under my bed for me nor can I expect the regular weekly scrubbing to take care of my share of floor space as has been the case these last four months and a half. There are a few other inconveniences which I could tell you of but they are rather trivial. Some of which are the awkwardness of making up a bed which has one side against the wall and having a footlocker parked underneath your wardrobe. You probably remember that once before I might have told you I might have liked to room in privacy like that but even then had taken into consideration some of the bad points of it.
Only time alone will tell how this new situation will turn out.
I just couldn't get the chance to write any letters today. For once we worked continually from dawn to dusk without letup. And there will be more of these days within the next week or so with the payroll coming up again. Harvey was quite put out about it that I expected him to work straight thru instead of taking an hour or so off for personal mail. Most of our work today was on the typing side: 2 laundry rosters, 3 rosters of men working of the different shifts and 4 rosters of each platoon. Besides that there were the usual things which crop up from time to time to provide work for the company clerks.
During the daytime and this evening, I jotted down short little notes on things which keep popping up in my mind but which I never get to write to you about. For instance, did you know that the picture "Hello, Frisco, Hello" goes by a different title in San Francisco? It seems as if the natives of the town have developed an aversion to that shortening "Frisco" and as a result the movies advertise the picture as "Hello, San Francisco, Hello."
Another one was this mental telepathy idea which I may have or may not have mentioned to you before. It all started from an article which someone read in a magazine which advocated more of this telepathy between the soldiers and the people back home. For a full half hour of pre-arranged thought conference is actually supposed to be workable and satisfactorily so. Blumenfeld and his wife are attempting this wireless telephone system this Thursday at 9:00 Chicago time. If they get any results from it, I will let you know and maybe we could arrange it also. After all we seemed to be slightly telepathic all our lives, isn't that so?
Nor do I believe I told you the incident of the glass of cream. It all happened the second night of the three day pass. Edie and I came back from the show about 9:00 and decided to have a bite to eat at the Service Club. There was a big dance going on at the time and the restaurant was quite crowded. When we went to place our order, we found out that for the most part everything had been sold out or was nearly so. My appetite had been settled on a piece of pie and a glass of milk. They had neither. In lieu of the pie, I settled for a slice of cake and when I spotted four or five quarts of cream in the giant refrigerator, I asked if a glass of cream was for sale. If was. My glass of cream cost 20¢ but was worth it. Most people have turned sick at my telling them of the incident. They like cream but not in that quantity.
Besides receiving the letter from you today, I received another one from that gal in Hawthorne. She has talked to Rose since last writing to me and discovered that I was not at the A.P.O. address and believes that her first letter has not as yet been delivered to me. She can find no other explanation for my not answering. In addition to the letter, she enclosed a small snap shot which I forward with this letter. Please return it at once since I want to comment on it when I get about to sending off a note to her.
Blumenfeld received a box of Dutch Mill candies today and I wouldn't blame him if his opinion of me dropped appreciably. Every time he offered some to me I accepted and then there were times when I helped myself.
It is past 11:30 now and I had better get back to the barracks. Perhaps my room-mates will not enjoy my nocturnal habits of checking in so late. Maybe they will petition the C.O. for me to get out.