853 Nassau St. Winnipeg, Man, Can.
August 24 - 17.
My dear Will,-
This is just Thursday eve. 6 pm - and supper over & all done for night: so I shall work in an "Extra" this week. I had your letter yesterday p.m. - also one from the Red Cross in the morning. It was the first I had had from the Red Cross in the morning. It was the first I had had from the Red Cross, so I was a little bit scared - especially as I had not yours then. They told me where you are - that your arms were nearly well, but the thighs were more severely hurt & painful. That you were suffering most from nerve strain, which affected your sleep & appetite, but that the doctors felt sure that the rest would remedy this, and that they looked for their next report to be of a much more cheerful character. A printed note at the bottom says you will be visited from time to time if you need any other comforts than those supplied by the Hospital, their visits will let them know & they will send them from their parcel office. The letters are sent from London I am wondering if I should not be sending you some things - if you lost everything let me know, - I guess it would be time when you reply to this - or you may have told me in the meantime. I could send you paper & envelopes, handkerchiefs, etc. - pyjamas -
Well, my dear boy - I was "down & out", when I read your letter - up till then, there was no hint of either coming home or not - but I gathered from this one, that you are not counting on being sent home. The children are feeling it too - Billy is going to "cry" - if you don't come. Surely you are not fit for any more of it - your nerves any way will not stand much more, - Don't let them send you back. Is there anything at all that I can do, or write. I had some inclination to write to the Red Cross (Dr.) but don't know. Maybe they will find out you are not fit for it & keep you in England. I could stand that tho' the disappointment is keen. Every one tells me you will not be sent back - but I think it is just to keep me up. We have laid so many plans -and since yesterday - it seems if "nothing mattered very much - tho' this morning I got up & tried to interest myself in things - have been feeling dead tired the last few days. I baked my bread (3 loaves & a wee one for tea) and did my weekend cleaning. Then went down send the money for your crate of eggs - paid for my 1hundered lb sugar - & got some fruit to make our Xmas cakes to use up some of the eggs. I am getting the matter of your coming home more settled in my mind. One thing it is too soon to know yet - and I have tried all along to hang onto Hope. Some of the friends have said "I am so brave" - but when you get down to the plain truth of the matter - one has to be - for if I go down - what will become of the Family! & home - Mrs. McCord phoned this morning. She had two letters from Serg't McCord. You may have seen him before this reaches you - He said he had heard of the misfortune to his old pal: and that had he been sent to France - he would likely have been in the same place. He was getting leave at the end of Aug & I think he intended trying to see you. I hope he does. Is there any one there you know?
There was another Br mail in last night: but nothing for me. Had you written in 2 or 3 days there might have been. But you were to be under the Xrays next day, so I fancy you may have had you operation. I hope you got through it all right. I suppose you will not feel very well till they get the shell all out. Am glad your arms are so well. Do you use the left one? There are great doings at Lens just now - the Manitoba boys in a hand to hand fight. I expect there will be long lists in a day or two. Poor boys I hope and pray that it ends soon. The Germans are going back all the time- but it is a long way to Berlin yet.
I am glad you wrote to Mrs. Pryor, some one - I think one of her sisters - told me she thought you would write to her. I wrote to her too.
I am glad Bella & Bob have been so good. It was certainly kind of them - and just at the time it happened. I sent them $ 10.00, so they can either send you some of it or get what you need.
I think you should have a letter from Ruby anyway. Mother also asked where to write, and I gave them all your address - I have an awful time "drumming" them up - to write to Hattie. They have all written to me - even Mattie. Gunns get so provoked at her - never writes a line & mine was just about one page - small paper. Hattie is very poorly - just waiting for funds to go the Hospital. I hate to think of her having to wait for money. The Dr. cannot do anymore for her til she has the operation.
Lena seldom writes -ï¿½tho' she & Hervey wrote a real nice letter, when they heard you were wounded. I thought I had got Lena to write to Hattie - but I believe she didn't after all. I'm afraid they are a "hopeless lot".
I rec'd my shell-scarred letters - it is quite a curiosity, & I must keep it. It was written June 18, & I suppose was the last you had. There must be about 25 on the way, but you will have some of them before this - as yours was ready 3 weeks coming. I had been telling about my garden in this one you returned. Yes, I had a good crop - and we are using it right along - I am leaving the potatoes while I use 8 lbs. (28c) worth I bought. I am thinning out the carrots & beets, & eating the largest ones. I have them near the end next the house - so as soon as I get the potatoes used, I'll get in the fuel. I think coal is still $ 12.00 & I need two ton. Wood is $ 9.00 a cord (50 c dearer than before and I have about 1/2 of a cord of Tamarac now at hand, I'll get 2 cords. I think Mr. Burdice will split it again. Just nearly a year ago, we had our bee splitting & piling, do you remember? My sweet peas are doing pretty well, - just blooming fine now. Billy is a terror to pull them. He loves to have 2 or 3 in his buttonhole. He & Shirley picked them all morning & I put them in the little jardinire & they look lovely. I wish you could have them I have a great bunch of nasturtiums on the sewing machine and the peas on the table. The houseplants are all outside and blooming fine now. When we get a nice dish of carrots cooked we say "My, papa would like these." We eat in the kitchen now - it's cool again.
It is getting rather dark now, so I'll close, and get this mailed before 10 to-morrow - Shirley will be off to school on Monday I guess. She has learned quite a bit in the holidays. It will be good for her to be in school again - not enough for her to do here - & always wanting to buy candy etc. They are quite to handle all right, I'll soon begin to sew for winter but while it is this fine I think we should stay outside as much as we can.
We are very lonely now - don't know how we shall stand the long dark fall & winter - unless you are home - or coming.
Good-bye my dear, and God bless & Keep you, & bring you home safe soon.
Love & Kisses from us all.