Jan 29. 1944
This is really the most hopeless place to be stationed from which to write letters. I haven’t the faintest idea what to put on this page. You see I haven’t been off the place since I last wrote. One reason for this is there is no bus service into town and it is usually difficult to borrow a bike. I cannot understand the lack of a bus, it seems criminal as we are so isolated. Certainly some reform is needed here, also in the choice of shows which are of the lowest calibre and in meals which are worse than Bournemouth although you can get steak or eggs anytime in town. Quite often we have E.N.S.A. concerts but these are hopeless, far below the standard of one concert put on by local talent. Every Friday we have a speech followed by discussion given by some well known person and these are good. Once we had Beverly Baxter here.
Fairly close is a town that the boys go to sometimes by getting up a party and chartering a taxi. You can order a meal ahead—the best there is—a couple of roast chicken or steak and get any liquor you want including champagne. I must get in on this sometime.
You ask about liquor rationing. Well there is none as we know it in Canada. Every bar has so many bottles a day and when that is gone—you’ve had it. I have never bought a bottle from a liquor store (called an off licence) but I think this is difficult because they don’t get much and usually keep their supplies for regular customers.
I haven’t heard from Dick, other than a card, since I saw him so you must know more about what he is doing than I. He hasn’t answered my letter. Heard from Peter today though. He has been up in London again—just passing through (again.) Had a letter from a girl I met in London and she had seen Peter and I think he must have been a little longer in London than his letter seemed to indicate.
By all means take over my brown hat. Don’t call it old though—it was also my newest.
I have taken up quite enthusiastically one quite typically English game, that of push penny. Sounds silly doesn’t it but it whiles away the time before and after meals.
I went for quite a stretch without much sleep not long ago—about 43 hrs with about six hours after the first 26. I tried to catch the odd nap at various times but never was down long enough to get any sleep. I wouldn’t want to do it again.
The instructor I had at Summerside who the whole class liked so much has just been posted to this station. I was very surprised as he had last said that he thought there was no chance of his getting posted back to England again. He flew over and wonders when his trunks will ever catch up to him.
It is just about time to stoke up the fire and crawl into bed.
Yours truly, Tony
[Editor’s note: Transcription provided by collection donor.]