Jan 3. /.17.
Dear Mr Pecover, -
Have just returned from my Christmas holidays and found both of your letters awaiting me. I was so glad to hear from you, as I had been wondering where you were, whether still in Canada or England but never thought you would be at the front so soon.
I suppose Christmas Day was one which you will never forget. [deleted word “Some”] many times that Day I thought of the poor boys “Some where in the clutches of this great war” We are all hoping and praying that it may end speedily.
Am sure you had a fine time in London. It must have been so nice to have seen those interesting places of which we had read so often. I have imagined them but it must be wonderful to see the real thing However we shall hear of it when you come home.
We had ten days holidays. I went to Elgin to visit relatives and had a lovely time, but would have liked another week or two. Classes begun this A.M. so I felt duty bound to return. There is just three more months work. Then finals. & then home. I shall be finished on April 9 only hope I am successful in taking off my five classes. The work is no cinch, but the Christmas exams were quite fair. They count 25 percent on finals too.
The majority of the boys at Queen's are either delicate or undersized. The rest have enlisted. and the new Arts building and Grant Hall have been given over to the gov't. as a hospital for returned soldiers. I do not wish you hard luck at all. but would not it be fine, if when you are wounded, they send you to the Queen's Hospital to recuperate. However I sincerely hope you may be one of the lucky ones. I saw the “Battle of the Somme” in moving pictures and since have had a terrible fear of war. It gives one a clear cut idea of affairs in No Mans land.
We are having lovely winter weather, good sleighing and skating too. while I was at Elgin the thermometer registered 18 degrees below zero, and the people were nearly frozen to death, I wish a few of these eastern people were out west where temp. was 40 degrees below. and wind travelling 60 miles per hour from every direction they would never survive.
Do you like Shakespeare's plays? I saw The Merry Wives of Windsor here before Xmas, It was fine, Falstaff was real good, The scenes, and costumes were very quaint and pretty, and the last scene was a fairy scene, and was the prettiest thing I ever saw. Have seen several good plays since I came down. In fact I have been out so much and had such a fine time that I think the folks at home believe I am a loafer.
I met an old school friend while away who was in the war for sixteen months, but is in Toronto now taking off his final year in dentistry at Varsity. He was in Egypt, crossed the Sahara desert. In the Dardanelles for a while, was on the plains of Troy. he said when they were digging trenches there, many wonderful things were brought to light. fine old crockery, statues, and beautiful carving. He was also in Greece & visited most of the important cities of France It was very interesting to hear him tell of all this, but he was never in the front lines. However he has a bad scar on his wrist caused by a shrapnel.
Had a nice long letter from Scottie at Xmas time. He is still in England but expected to go to the trenches right away. The 183 battn has been broken up too. Have you seen Willie Longman or Roy Notman. They are fighting too.
Santa Claus was very kind this year, among other gifts. I received a lovely box of EATS from Mrs Kerr and Annie. Christmas cake, ginger jim-jams and date cookies, you know the kind, I also had a letter from Mrs Kerr. but she seemed very low-spirited then, Nora Potter is working for Mrs Dr Turner & is obliged to eat in the Kitchen with the hired man, I think it is mean to make her eat in the Kitchen. She is just a fine a woman as Mrs Turner. but of course the uneducated people have to take the back seats. I hope I may live to see the time when all people are on a par, no matter what their social standing or their work may be. This is my hobby so I had better not say too much.
You may be wearied with this so will end this and write later.
With Best of good wishes for the New Year and hope you may be one of the lucky ones.
Very truly yours