Dear Friend Annie,–
A few lines tonight to thank you for the box which I received OK yesterday. The butter kept fine and is a great treat for us after the endless issue of Margarine, and the sox are fine. I am sure that I will often look back on the days I have spent in the Army and think what a help my friends at home were in the making my life as cheerful and comfortable as possible and I feel very grateful to you for what you have done for me while I have been in this country.
Well, Annie, I hope to be on my way home in a couple of months if all goes well – we hope to leave here for Blighty shortly, get a few days leave and then proceed to Toronto as a unit sometime in March – a much brighter outlook than we had 12 months ago when we were holding the old Lens front and knew that Fritz was going to strike a Spring offensive anytime, – and I’ll admit that he had our “wind up” too – we expected him to put on the “opening show” every morning – and I for one, had the “line of least resistance” to Le Havre mapped out, for future reference if required. But it so happened that he never advanced on the front we held, so raid and patrol scraps were our specialties.
I had a swell time in Glasgow when I was on leave and hope to go back for a few days before I leave for Canada. It was just at New Years so there were beaucoup parties, and we were right in it. You should have seen us dance. Just like we used to when the “Seemore” club was in full swing and you used to undertake to teach me.– Oh Scotland is the country, Id never spend a leave in London after once seeing Glasgow,– I'll be able to introduce some Scotch games when I go back. We were to parties every night and I was up Loch Lomond for a day, intended seeing Aberdeen and Edinburgh but couldnt break away from the good times in Glasgow. We had come all the way from Waterloo by Brussels, Ghent, Eeloo, Bruges, Ostend, Dunkirk, Calais-Dover so were tired traveling anyway. But when we came back, we just had to come this far which is near Lille as the unit had moved this way. So we didnt have to go to Germany as expected.
The people in this part speak Flemish and are more of the peasant type than they were in the Mons-Brussels area, do not appear so prosperous and the lack the beauty so typical of the Mons or Brussels fair sex, – as a rule their morals are low but I have met some fine Belgian families in that part of the country, who treated me like one of their own and asked me to call if I ever came back to Belgium again – which is highly improbable
I do not see any signs of being home in time for skating as I hoped awhile ago – if we get home by the end of March we will be lucky I guess then I must see the West next summer if all goes well.
I have two letters from Florence Somerville which I must answer shortly. Also one from Jean Barclay – I was sorry that I was unable to get any information about Art Mackey's fate – altho I was right close to him that day I did not know he had been killed till I heard from home, – I inquired about him on Oct 2nd and a fellow in his company told me that he was on our right in charge of a machine gun and still going strong but I suppose he got it that day or the next because we had to advance across open ground while Fritz had the brick houses on the high ground in St Olle. for protection on the outskirts of Cambrai.
So Elmer Penrose is home eh? I suppose he will be enjoying some good times now for a while. – It sure looks good to me to think I will be home for the nice spring weather once more.
Well Annie I think this is all for this time. Hoping it finds all well Kindest Regards to All
Your Sincere Friend,
David L Reekie