Alliford Bay, B.C.
Feb. 14, 1944
Dear Mom & Dad --
Thanks for Percy's no. & address. That bit from the church calendar was interesting. That was a lot of mail to receive in one day, wasn't it. Jim must be having a good time over there but in his last letter, he says things will be popping over there soon. He mentioned being up to Blackpool over the weekend.
That party must have been nice for Mrs. Heath. Is she really eighty-five? Tell her I hope she is well and will see many more birthdays.
Well, the stormy weather I told you about passed away and this past week has been wonderful. The days are getting longer up here already, and today I was sitting in the sun out behind the hangar with my shirt off. It was sure swell. The skies were all clear too and the sun shining on the mountain was beautiful. On days like this I almost don't care if I never leave here.
Last week they were around looking for motorcycle riders and mechanics to go overseas. It is only a "C" group trade but it would be a great experience. A few of us put our names in for consideration but nothing definite. Anyway I put in my application for furlough and if all goes well I shall get out about the 15th of April. I am hoping to fly down to Vancouver. It takes approx. 3 hours whereas it would take about 3 days by boat, or by train, if I went to Prince Rupert. Did I tell you I got a swell letter from Beatrice Fearnley. Aunties B. & E. sent her my address. She also heard from Uncle Tim that I was up here. She enclosed their telephone no. so I could phone them when I reach Vancouver.
Well, there is another Trade Board coming here on or about the 17th so I shall try and get something out of this. Did I tell you what happened on the last one? It seems I didn't quite make the "B" group. I was weak on Stores Procedure and Canadian Air Publications, a lot of crap that we never have anything to do with but have to know anyway, and get the most quizzing on, it seems. The officer was not told that I was a standard so naturally I guess he supposed me to be a "C." Well, in the end I was left with nothing so I'm still an AC2 standard. What makes it worse is having this spark plug maintenance on my hands, which requires an "A" group man in charge, but that's the Royal Can. Air Farce for you.
I have to give a lecture tomorrow afternoon to the fitters. It is a sort of pre-trade board prep talk. We always have them. It is a joke. Every one of them is a higher rank than I am yet only the odd one knows anything about plugs. The sarge told me to study and go both "C" and "B" again. If I don't get it, I am going to try and get moved. I am not in this thing to make money, anyway.
I had better change the subject before I froth at the mouth, just thinking of it.
Glad to hear that the population of Mt. Hamilton will be increased in the near future. I guess it won't be long before the old house will be like it was 20 years ago.
I guess Dad enjoys the parsnips, eh? I love them now too. We get them 2 or three times a week creamed most of the time. I also like turnips too and onions and marmalade --- all the things that I thought I didn't like. It must be the climate.
Did Dad ever get the material to finish the garage?
The stuff we make when we have nothing else to do isn't exactly jewellery but I have finished an ornamental knife made from a .50 calibre machine gun bullet and a piece of stainless steel sheet. I will send it home when I find something to send it in.
Well its 9 P.M. and I still have three unanswered letters here. I have to write Percy and answer a letter from Grant McDonald in Pr. Rupert and a letter from a girl in Galt, so, hoping you are all well, so long for now -- Joe