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Date: July 15th 1945
Peter Guttormsson
Carl Henneberg

Ste 8, Palliser Apts,
15 July 45

Dear Peter –

This letter is considerably over due, but the much talked-of process of rehabilitation takes longer that one would think.

In the first place, in the event you did not receive my note from Italy, again accept my congratulations on your success in Montreal – that was really good work.

Now I will attempt to give you a resumé of events since leaving Rome. After 9 months on the Pope’s doorstep in the Eternal City, we finally pulled stakes on the 7th of March and journeyed via cattle car to Naples. We sat beside Vesuvius for 5 days till we caught a Dutch boat to Marseilles. Again in Marseilles we had another 5 days in a gawd-awful staging camp, then started the trek north through France and Belgium, once more in the inevitable cattle Pullman. France and Belgium are much more our type of country than Italy, and there has been less war damage in those countries. After arriving in Belgium, word was received that I was to be sent back to Canada, so I spent 10 days driving all over hell’s half-acre to do some sight-seeing in Vimy, Lille, Armentieres, Ypres, Brussels and Ghent. And strangely enough I found that my French could be polished up more easily, than my Italian.

I landed in England on the 6th of April, and met Kay the following day in London. We had a grand 10 days re-union in the Savoy Hotel. Nelson’s Column in Trafalgar Square must have wobbled a bit at times with the small blitz we staged. I sailed from Liverpool on the 22nd of April, knowing that Kay would be able to follow in about 2 weeks. The boat trip home was damned uncomfortable as the submarine warfare was by no means over, and the tub was very much overcrowded.

I arrived in Estevan on V-E night and after a pleasant visit with my folks, returned to Winnipeg to wait for Kay. She reached here on May 25th and after a couple of days with her Mother and Dad, we boarded the old flier for Flin Flon. I had wired Percy and no one else, so was hardly prepared for the welcome committee at the station. A great number of old timers were at hand and I think for a while that Kay felt slightly swamped. I remembered everyone’s name (which gave me no small satisfaction). We stayed with Percy and Betty, and Baldy Green placed his car at our disposal. We had only 24 hours in the town, and believe me, there were no wasted minutes. Even managed to get out to Beaver and Phantom Lakes in that time. The changes were countless but naturally my chief interest lay with the new clinic and Company Hospital. They are pretty nifty, but the obvious lack was your familiar figure striding between the two (complete without hat and coat). The new contract set-up would not appeal to me like the old, but of course I did not learn all it’s details. I do not think I would like to practise there now.

We left Flin Flon on the following day, and the large farewell committee was present to see us off. Louis from the hill was even on deck, so I saw a pretty fair cross-section.

We came back through Winnipeg, and Kay’s Dad then drove us out to Estevan, to introduce Kay to the Henneberg clan. After a very nice time there, we headed back here, and I reported for work. At the present time I am on duty in Fort Osborne Hospital. I am very anxious to get out of the Army but there is not a hope in hell. It is impossible yet to lay any future plans, but I have a nice offer to go into practise in Winnipeg.

We were very fortunate to find an apartment for ourselves, and with the necessary priority, have a telephone, and a new Studebaker on order.

We have looked over some houses but will refrain from buying until I know the score in so far as the army is concerned. Kay received her Army discharge 12 days ago. As you will be aware, property values are absolutely insane, and it will be some time before prices recede to normal.

It was a surprise to me to receive the M.B.E. a week ago. The only reason I could give for being made a “Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire” is my proclivity for British Colonial stamps – perhaps the King heard about my admiration for his collection.

You mentioned having some of my stuff in Vancouver, and I would appreciate if you could bundle them off to me.

I must thank you again for looking after so many things for me. I had no difficulty in straightening up my income tax, and the satisfactory way you concluded the business is going to be a big help now that I am in the market for everything from a house to a vacuum cleaner. I was 39 on the 8th of this month, so it is about time I had the opportunity to light somewhere.

My very best regards to Salin and the kids. Is Auntie still with you?

Kay and I look forward to a trip to the Coast some-time, we would certainly love to see you.

Hope you are in good trim, and I have no doubt you are doing well.


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