Onboard S.S. "Megantic".
May 25th 1915
Dear Mother.. Well this is where I am now, not on board ships off course but a few miles from Shorn Cliffe we landed at Plymouth last night and came up here. We are not very well established yet so there is no use writing for a few days until you get definite news from me where to send it too. I don't know what corps we'll be attached to yet but there is a chance we'll be sent to France to join my own regiment there you see the squadron from Toronto is not here. There was three of us packed some of our kit and fell in with a Toronto bunch that was coming and we were not detected so we gave ourselves up when we got here. All of which was a trifle irregular of course but I hope your Presbyterian conscience will be able to overlook it. Men are badly needed in France now and there is plenty of men that would sooner be at home can do as well as myself in Toronto. I must save enough ink to write the address on the envelope so this is the reason for the pencil. To continue on the morals and irregularities of my case I might say I have no scruples what so ever my only fear is that I might be sent back but I think that is unlikely. We haven't been tried yet but expect to be tomorrow if some of our illustrious majors colonels generals etc are not indisposed.
They might want to attach us to the 20th Battalion but we know nothing about infantry drill. The three of us are all big and hardy so we should be all right. One of the colonels patted us on the back and said we had the right spirit but off course the military authorities have to be consulted but I guess we won't be shot. I'm writing this private information to counteract anything you might hear from Toronto. I never had a crime against me while I was there so I suppose I can trust you not to attach too much importance to my beating it from the Dragoons.
I had the thing all well thot out weeks ago and was getting more disgusted with it every day and the climax came when one of our officers told us all we was grooms for the attached officers who came down for a course. so I made up my mind to let them get some one else to do their grooming. I don't think that squadron will ever see active service, and I think a lot of them don't want to. I suppose this can be kept more or less to the family. You might send me our relatives addresses when you can but you better wait until I write you again and I will as soon as we are tried. We had a fairly good trip across it took about 9 days. I wasn't sick and enjoyed it immensely. They take every precaution against submarines. when a couple of destroyers came out to meet us one fellow threw his life preserver away and said 'we are saved' and promptly fainted, which was a joke of course. They caught a member of the crew a steward or something signalling on deck one night. I think these are about the most important incidents that happened on board. England is certainly a beautiful country especially in Devon and thru that country we came thru to London. it was nearly dark when we got there but I'll go down there as soon as I can get a pass. It costs about 50 cents from here I think.
With all kinds of love to you all