October 14, 1942
Well, here I am again after two week’s silence. Things haven’t changed in the least since I last wrote, though we did have a little excitement last Saturday. My troop was chosen to put on a display for the benefit of a visiting Canadian Minister, and believe me it was quite a show. This particular show is called what is known as “Crash Action.” Now here is the set up. Our troop is moving along the road in column of route, when suddenly our troop commander gets the order by wireless to go into action in support of other troops at a certain map reference. The Troop Commander passes us the “Crash Action” signal and then drives away madly to the indicated spot. We, of course, come pounding along behind. On reaching the gun sight, the Troop Captain parks his vehicle with the nose indicating the approximate line of fire. The four guns fan out, drop their platforms, swing the muzzles around into the line of fire and quickly get the gun ready for action. By this time the Captain and “Acks” have necessary correction ready (obtained by means of an instrument called a “director”) and number one gun fires the first round.
From the time we first got the order to go into action until the first round was away exactly two minutes and thirty seconds had elapsed. I think it all looked very smart and, from all reports, our C.O. was very pleased. There was a movie camera on the scene so perhaps you may see your pet ape in a news reel sometime in the near future. I was very lucky to be on deck at all that day, as I was in London that morning at 6:30 waiting for a train. It was a mad scramble to get on parade but I made it on time and had about thirty seconds to spare. I hate to think what might have happened had the train been late.
Well, so much for that. I went skating on Sunday to Purley with a very nice young lady, Kay King, who, by the way belongs to the National Fire Service, and had a very nice afternoon. Skating finished at five so we then took in a show at the local Purley theater and, after having supper, returned to her home in Mill Hill N.W. 7 and stayed the evening with the Kings and caught the old 6:30 out of Victoria in the morning.
Last night, I played on a local dart team in a tournament – which we lost, by the way. It was good fun and I held my own with the best of the old timers, so didn’t mind the defeat in the least. Some of the old boys marvel at how the Canadians have picked up their game and, on the whole, are very good losers, and they do lose quite often too.