Cpl Roman F. Klick 36620923
Co "A", 353rd Engr Regt
A.P.O. #502, c/o Postmaster
San Francisco, California
25 October 1943
I received three letters today. Two were from you dated the l5th but written on Thursday and Friday. The third was from Myrtle. My backlog of unanswered letters has now mounted to a point where it would be wise to begin answering some of them. There are now letters from Anita, Aunt-Aunt, Marty and Virginia, Myrtle and Uncle Jack which need answering.
Uncle Jack used to write and tell me about that spiritualism business when he was in Los Angeles. Evidently it is good entertainment if he still is interested in the stuff now that he is back among the white people of Chicago. Those spiritualists certainly do pull off good stunts according to what I have read about them and heard from others speak of them. And it is true that they pull off things which are seemingly inexplicable by ordinary laws of science etcetera but for the most part they have been exposed time and time again as being fakers whether sincere or not. Houdini, the magician, certainly gave them the royal roustabout in his closing days as a magician when he became anti-spiritualistic and offered a ten thousand dollar reward to the spiritualist who could produce a trick that he could not duplicate.
O my goodness and for gosh sakes, Sgt Forgosh walked into the office just about two hours ago and it was first now that I had to rudely break off the prolonged conversation. These conversations are interesting and you get to learn how other people act and think but they sure are the time killers. I had intended writing quite a bit this evening but now at quarter to nine, I'm not so sure that I shall be able to.
The packages didn't come today and I'm getting worried about them. It is now forty days since you mailed them out and they haven't arrived yet. If that tooth powder package doesn't arrive in short order, I will have to go out to the PX and buy some other brand than Listerine or else go without brushing until the package does come. That would be a good one if I decided to go without brushing until the package came and it ended up by being lost.
But now to recount some of the day's events. For one thing, Uncle Mike (Michael Nyalka to you) did me a good turn today. I finally got a cramp while swimming and although I was lucky in the fact that I was only in waist deep water at the time and managed to scramble over to still shallower water. For the life of me I couldn't get the thing out and on top of that I stumbled over backwards and incapacitated my right arm by banging it against the rocks. It went dead on me and hung at my side uselessly while the cramp still hurt like anything. At this point I asked for assistance and Mike gave it readily. He worked on that cramp like nobody's business by using a strong kneading action on my leg muscle and soon I was able to get out of the water under my own power.
The drawback was that I was now on the far side of the river and although Mike offered to swim me across, I was afraid of venturing out again so soon after that shock. By going up-stream some hundred yards to the rapids, I was able to cross in comparatively shallow water of perhaps ten inches to one foot.
There are three contributing factors to the seizure. One is that I had been swimming yesterday and had already been active in the water for almost two hours today. Then too I had been sweating in the heat and sun all the morning and afternoon and that alone is enough to enervate all the muscles of one's body. Finally there was the incident which caused the cramp. Captain Schaaf built a canoe and we were all taking turns riding in it. It so happened that I had to stretch myself up on one leg to clamber into the thing and that is what did it.
Even now I can still feel the cramp in my leg and you can rest assured that I will not be swimming for the next few days until the leg feels alright once again and when I do go, I'll be extra careful. Isn't it ironic though that just yesterday I told you that I had been swimming with such freedom lately without fear of any cramping of my muscles and today the story is so different.