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

Dear Aunty Clara,

This morning after coming down to the office to do several daily reports, I went back to the tent and started to read several articles in the Saturday Evening Post magazine but soon I found that I was dozing off. I succumbed to the tendency and pulled down the mosquito netting on myself and slept the entire morning away.

I was awakened by Larry Isaacson just about noontime and I was one mass of sweat; for these tents get to be blistering hot the way it is and when the mosquito netting is down over you, it acts as a windbreaker and not a breath of air circulates inside the thing.

The afternoon saw me down at the office for a brief period to type up a necessary report but then I was back in the tent eating Tootsie Rolls and reading the "In the Wake of the News" book which I received in yesterday's mail. I thought about trying to get a bit of sun tan so I wandered about in the sun for about an hour with my shirt off but that doesn't seem to have any effect on my skin. Those fellows that are working out in the sun every day have some beauties of tans. Better than any lifeguard at a bathing beach or swimming pool ever could hope to have.

In the early part of the evening right after supper I went off to the lumber pile where they hold the volley ball games and where Personnel was to play H&S. I was supposed to be on the Personnel team but just didn't feel up to it so I sat and watched the for awhile.

The latest news about the regiment is that the Executive Officer, the former Major Stelzenmuller, space for 9-10 words censored, has been promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. He seems to be a fairly decent chap and since he has been acting in place space for 3-5 words censored the driver of the staff car has been out of a job since Stelzenmuller drives around by himself.

Tomorrow should be a good day for working because there is enough to keep me busy for some time. They are incidental odds and ends but there are some nifty problems in connection with the allotments which need figuring out.

The more I hear the fellows talking about their plans for living after the war ends, the more I wonder what will be the best course for me to follow. Will a year's college and the subsequent Bachelor of Arts degree in mathematics provide a stronger security against future unemployment or should I go back into Rathborne and pick up the old threads where they last broke off? And then this matter of going into business for oneself is another angle to look at. Which will provide the best and surest income. Can all three things be achieved or must I choose one course and the follow it to its ultimate conclusion?

The one thing I notice is that all the fellows who were happy, contented and liked their old jobs are willing to go back into that same line and get ahead. Just think of all the money we could make if I ever got into a position that I could own a going concern like Ratborne's box business. They make money in war time, they make money in peace time and they even survive depressions. I could easily let a dream like that run away with me.

Just imagine coming home with a minimum of capital, a lot of grandiose schemes and plenty of bluff being able to open up a small box shop we could work on margin and buy up one small firm after another until we grew up to a point when it could take customers away from those two big outfits of Chicago Lumber and Rathborne. That wouldn't be ethical, would it? That is to undermine the house that built you or to bite the hand that fed you. So I'll go out to Oregon and start out in Medford which is in the heart of a great lumbering area. Then we can have our cake and eat it too. We can live in Chicago or Medford as we choose, have a going box industry in the West and that way be on friendly terms with RH&R of the East.

So much for pipe dreaming but I do want to find some way within a short time after the end of this war that we can be reasonably well off financially. It is imperative that this happens shortly after the war because every day that passes lessens by one the days we have left to enjoy our lives.

/s/ Roman