Dear Aunty Clara,
I'm going to try some new tactics and that is this: skip the noon lunch hour on days I don't feel too hungry and have been eating candy all morning like I did this morning and in place of wasting time eating, I can either be writing letters or working. The noon hour has the advantage that there is no one around to bother you for sixty minutes whereas during the day or at night there are people galore just floating continually from desk to desk and bothering people sitting at them.
This morning I received another flock of Daily Newses with more expected in this noon plus SIX LETTERS FROM YOU dated the 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th and 14th of November. And I was able to tear them open and read them on the spot as I was handed them this morning. Through dint of producing the work both night and day, Sundays and Holidays I have managed to bring the avalanche of work under some sort of violent control
Hey, that was a pretty good one about having the answer ready when Charley Matcha asked you about the typewriter. In a way that is a lot of nerve to just expect that you can borrow typewriters just on a drop of a hat (by "you" I am speaking in general of people who borrow typewriters on a drop of a hat and not specifically of Charley Matcha. Those are precious machines and once they are put on the blink they don't ever work the same again. Of course, just loaning a typewriter so a person could type an important letter would be alright but just to loan it for an undetermined length of time to use casually is another thing.
Yes, Aunty Clara, many a times we old (Camp White) fellows sit in our quarters talking it over and we ourselves find it hard to believe that it is more than three years since we left for the army and that it has been more two and a half years since we have left the States and that we have ended up so far distant from those humble beginnings as travelers in New Caledonia. Over and over again you hear fellows expressing the standard opinion that they never thought anything like that was going to happen to them.
Yes, again, I don't blame Rosana for not liking Catholic schools. From personal experience and from listening to kids talk about those sisters, one finds out that the greater majority of them are autocratic and severe and require a discipline which is impossible in public schools.
I am surprised, frankly, that you did not like "Rhapsody in Blue" so very well. But then again that resulted most likely just as you said, from preconceived notions of what the picture was about and then finding it was not so. I haven't seen "A Song to Remember".
Being T/Sgt will not affect my going home or release from the army a bit because thus far only about seven or less skills have been designated by the army as essential and they are trained medical men and interpreters. While it is true that the army has a great need for clerks and office help, and that they would like very much to retain much of their office personnel through this most trying period of readjustment, they haven't the power to do it.
Do you know that the rest of the battalion is more optimistic about the departure of the 67 pointers than the 67 pointers themselves? The score is still at 71 meaning that all 71 point men in the Sixth Army have been called and are either waiting transportation home at the 11th Replacement Depot in Nagoya or else they are already on board ship and on the high seas. The rumors have had it for the several days past that the orders were cut reducing the points to 69 thereby releasing all the men with 70 and 69 points for immediate transfer to the Depot. However, I checked with Halper at Brigade Headquarters and he said that the Sixth Army is supposed to have the orders cut and is waiting for the okay from the Replacement Depot before they send it out through distribution to all units.
Meanwhile the 32d Division which we are attached to may begin cutting orders on the 60 point men and that may indicate going home with them instead of through the replacement depots. O well, so it goes. Until we actually get the orders, they can say whatever they want to say and it won't mean a thing.
I've never said that I expect to be home by Christmas but I, like you, have continued to hope against hope that it comes true and once the ball starts rolling, it wouldn't take long to be home and out of uniform. I know that in January I'll be back home and working but even if Christmas itself is actually missed, the New Year's ought to be a cinch. After all haven't we got 67 points and weren't we eligible to go home 1 November and aren't they down to the bottom of the 70 list and all that? We all realize that the time is near at hand for us to go and every 67 pointer tries to find out those answers and is willing to listen to any kind of assurance from anyone else so he can put his mind at ease. M/Sgts will ask Pfc's for rumors and listen attentively to anything they say as long as it is a good rumor.
The noon hour is just about over now, the fellows are coming back in and talking to me, but I've at least got some words down on paper for a change.
Lt North brought a Japanese girl in to work in the office this morning and I went to talk to her asking some questions about a Japanese trinket given to Hipp by a small boy. I talked slow and pronounced my words carefully the way you have to do in the Philippines and she says to me, "Those are given to soldiers by their girls and they wear them most anyplace, on their hats or inside their shirts". I told her they remind me of charms on slave bracelets and she said, "That is exactly what they're like - slave bracelets". She wanted a stencil stylus and I gave her three to choose from, she chose one and said, "This'll do". Japanese but educated at Chicago U or someplace, no doubt.
Saturday night at a dance Lt Levine met a gal who attended and graduated from Los Angeles High School - the same school he graduated from! O, I forgot to mention that she is a Japanese girl living in Fukuoka. And since he has been in the army he never once has met (in five years) any fellow he knew from his high school days. Meanwhile there are other strictly Japanese Japs and we use our little guide books to talk to them. After about a half an hour of sign language and using the book two or three times you get to know that they are taking off for lunch and will come back at "o-gee-ja" (one o'clock) to sweep up the office.
Next morning ---
Went to bed at 7 or 8 PM last nite. Very cranky & irritable. Had to leave office because I felt I would be getting on peoples nerves. Am rested this AM but the spirits aren't too good. Will write again at noon hour.