JULY 19, 1944
You might know I'm on night duty, and a far different one than before. I have three large wards and hallways to cover. It's three a.m., and I found a minute or two. This is an ark of a place. I get lost if I go off my wards. Am sleeping while on nights in the tower. We are living in tents, and the heat is unbearable. The tower is much cooler. We are all working twelve and fourteen hours, day and night. No time for pleasure. We are getting some more nurses attached to us, so it may lessen a bit soon.
The country is delightful here, more like home than in Africa. I love the green hills and trees. The days are quite warm, and the nights nice and cool. Have done quite a bit of sightseeing since coming to Italy. That is when we first came-no time now. Was in Naples for a couple of weeks. Visited the ancient city of Pompeii; the King's palace; Mount Vesuvius. Visited Rome. It's a lovely city, and as you know, very little damage was done there. Went to St. Peter's; the Sistine Chapel. Saw all the lovely paintings by Michelangelo, and believe it or not, had an audience with the Pope. I didn't kiss his ring, however. His address and blessing in English was very simple and sweet. Went through the Coliseum (photo on this paper); through the catacombs, where the early Christians held their secret meetings, and buried their dead. Went to the Royal Opera House, and sat right beside the King's box with its canopy. All this was very interesting, and brought back all my ancient history. Bible stories and Julius Caesar. 'He hath brought many captives home to Rome, / Whose ransoms did the general coffers fill. / Did this in Caesar seem ambitious?' The old Tiber, and the bridge Horatius defended. It's all very fine, but give me my quick America.
You may be on vacation before this reaches you. Stop and take me along. It just doesn't seem possible you will have completed two years in August.
The paper is all, and I hear the penicillin nurse making ready for my wards, so I must get going. Write me some time if you have time. Not receiving much mail. No word from your mother for ages-don't know how Gladys' visit went. Had a package from Aunt Clara last week.
Goodbye for this time.