Manitoba Reg. Depot
March 29 1917
Dear Mother & Dad:-
Recieved your letters & parcel just as I was leaving Shoreham to come up here last Thursday & also recieved your registered letter yesterday. You will pardon the delay in my reply as I run out of stamps quite accidentally & was unable to write until I recieved your last letter. I must have left the stamps in my pay book when I turned it in to the Quartermaster.
You will see by the above address that I have been moved again & this camp is just a short way from the camp I was in when I first came to England. I think I will like it here much better than I did at Shoreham as the food is much better & we have better quarters & the best of all. I have a snap at a job as orderly in the Recieving Office of this Depot. The biggest part of my worries is keeping the fire on. The company consists of boys under age, men over & men discharge from the hospitals, from France & they all enlisted in Manitoba. They are more sensible than the battalion of kids I just came from.
Loyd Armstrong or rather Sargeant Armstrong is at Ross Barracks about three quarters of a mile from here, so I heard to-day. I must make a call to-night & see if he hasn't a pair of riding pants to spare. Had a general mobolization of all troops in England a few days ago & every man was called in off pass, given pack, ammunition & rifle except me & a few others who are on the staff. I don't know what the idea was unless just to cause a little excitement which it sure did. You wanted to know what I am doing daily. To put it in short - on the fifteenth & last of every month & a few days after each, you can picture me walking towards a small English town with a few shillings in my pocket, looking happy, taking in a picture show afterwards having a big feed & then broke. After that you can picture me in a camp Y.M.C.A. playing checkers with a friend until eight o'clock. Then in a hut lying between those nice soft horse plankets with a rat a each ear keeping them warm & several enormous sized lice for bed mates. All the time dreaming of a big sheet of line paper on which is written Discharge, then Home with you, Dad & all the rest sitting around the supper table. Dad, with his paper, discussing the war, you trying to make I or Wilf stop teasing Ralph. On the table, some home made bread, butter, fried potatoes, sausage meat, layer cake, bananas & cream (you will think me an awful eater when I get home). Then in the morning picture me waking up & finding it just a dream & chasing the orderly sargeant after breakfast for a letter. If I get one picture me doing the two-step or tango to the bugle call "Fall in". You will think I am foolish to write this but it really comes true, some of it.
Had a letter from Gladys & she is also sending me a parcel which has not arrived yet. I recieved a parcel of books & a couple of letters from a young lady in Canada to-day but as she requests me not tell, I am unable to give you her name. All I can say is that you a know her. Try & guess.
Well Mother I am perfectly well & as it is not my nature I am not getting thin. Sorry to hear you have such a bad cold but still that is quite common even over here. Hoping to hear from you soon, I am
Your Loving Son.