Cpl Roman F. Klick 36620923
Co "A", 353rd Engr Regt
A.P.O. #502, c/o Postmaster
San Francisco, California
July 24, 1943

Dear Aunty Clara,

Yesterday I received two letters. One was from Mary Kuehnle and the other a birthday card from Mr. Gonzalez. I also wrote a V-mail to Myrtle. They had a band concert and then they were to have a movie "Yankee Doodle Dandy" but there was a breakdown in the sound apparatus and it was postponed until Sunday. There has been much discussion lately among the fellows as to the length of the war. My opinion that it will still be a long war hasn't changed any in spite of the recent successes on almost all the fighting fronts. In addition to that I mentioned that I thought the invasion of continental Europe would not begin this year. Campbell, the clerk of Company F, thought otherwise and was willing to bet that the invasion begins sooner than that. As a result of this we have drawn up a very formal looking document which states that if the Allied Forces invade the continental limits of Europe between the dates of October 10, 1943 and January 10, 1944 I will pay him $5.00 while if the Allied Forces invade the continental limits of Europe between the dates of January 10, 1944 and May 10, 1944 he will pay me the $5.00 bet. Personally, that is a bet which I would just as soon lose as win just like the bet I have with Bob Miles at Rathborne which says that the war will go into 1947. None of us want the war to go on even another year but in looking the situation over there doesn't seem to be any immediate let up in sight.

Last night I read one of those Florian Slappey stories in the Post by Octavus Roy Cohen. I remember away back when I never would glance more than once at one of those stories but you told me that they were good. That started me off and I have always looked for those stories in the magazine. The Florian Slappey certainly does get out of the tough scrapes.

I have written letters to Myrtle Reed, Jerome Barta, Marion Kuehnle and Marie Volenec. The letters to Myrt and Jerry have been mailed but I am going to write one to Eleanor before I send out the ones to the two girls. Almost to the last letter they are horrible specimens of letter writing but I haven't any regrets except about the one I sent Myrtle. But then that was the best of the four anyway. The others have quite a few words missing in spots but when compared to one of their letters, mine are ok. I realize that is not a good way to look at things but gee whiz, I had to get those letters off somehow, bad or otherwise. In addition to those letters, I have one to Senor Gonzalez. Of this letter (which is not typed up as yet) I am justly proud. It is the first letter in a long time which I have given any thought to the composition. However, as was the case with my high school themes, the one I thought the best of was usually the one that received the lowest grade.

The other day when I received three letters from you all at one time, I suspicioned that the following days would be letterless as far as you were concerned and I was right. Although it feels swell to see so many letters at one time, you would trade them for a letter a day.

Well, the PX finally received a shipment of candy - Tootsie Rolls - and they were sold out in nothing flat. Even though I was flat broke I managed to get several of them. One thing which is being sold by the case right now is a small can of Planter's Peanuts. The only trouble is that they cost 30 cents per can.

I think we were reading it in the Yank magazine the other day about barter between the South Sea Islanders and the soldiers where trinkets and knickknacks are the medium of exchange. That may be well and true for some of the other places but the natives of this spot know our money inside and out and would sooner have a few American dollars lining their pockets than a bushel basket of trinkets. The funny part about this is that several fellows in the regiment had loaded themselves with those very knickknacks before leaving the Yewnited Snaps and now they are stuck with them.

/s/ Roman