March 6, 2015 – So war is about parties and flowers????

“Accept who you are without judgement or criticism”

Grand day today.  Took me some time to get up but eventually I did and called Judi to tell her I would be late meeting her for breakfast..  This not wanting to get up in the mornings is really getting bad..   But I got there and we had a great talk about her trip to her granddaughters birthday and she spent some time reminding me of why I do what I do.  And she told me a funny story about someone who drives us both crazy.   Well, drives just about everyone crazy. I am still giggling over it.  Then we went to our meeting which went well.  Great way to meet having some people in the room and a whole bunch of others on the phone.  Makes having a statewide meeting that gives everyone the opportunity to participate.  Then we all visited a whole bunch more and I got to spend some time with the folks from OASAS who I dearly love.  Then I went to try and find batteries for our phones. All three phones are not happy when I talk more than 10 minutes. They all die which says to me their batteries are all running out at the same time.  Such fun.  Could not find them in the store so will order them on line. I love both hardware stores and business stores like Staples.  What is that about?  Anyway, came home and was so tired I fell into bed until 5:30. Am I getting old or something? Like maybe sitting up until 1 am playing Suduko’s on my ipad in the dark and listening to CBC radio?  Okay, I feel like I am in 3rd grade all over again. Bad habits don’t go away, they just hide.

Anyway, here is tonight’s letters from Pat.

3 May ‘44
No 8 Cnd Gen Hospital

Dear Sheila,

This will be late for your birthday but I hope it is a good one and that Marye brought you something nice from me. I haven’t much to tell you because I wrote the other night.

Mon nite I had off so I went down to L……. and stayed all nite. The country is wonderful down in that district. We (Dick, Norm and I) walked for miles around the hills. The apple and cherry trees are in bloom and there are orchards full of them. Every little while we came to an old fashioned sty to get from one field to the next. The moon came up and it was as bright as day and very warm. The towns are very quaint, most of them are hilly and you can look up at the way they wind and there is usually a church bell ringing. Of course I could rave on for hours. We had a grand evening. I stayed at a small hotel – it had a perfect garden with magnolia trees, and a pool. I came back in the morning.

I have so much to do, this packing is dreadful. Every day they change their minds about what we can take and how much. I am storing all my civilian clothes and my blues, just taking one outfit of blues – our battle dress is perfect. Mine fits wonderfully well. I am trying get snaps taken so I can send you one. I love it. We go for drill every day. We marched for miles today with full kit on our backs in the hot sun. I didn’t mind it but I think it all is a little mad. I am coming off “nites” tomorrow morning so I can pack etc. I won’t go back on duty while we are still here and I guess we won’t be working this summer just training but I will keep you informed.

This letter is full of shop but I haven’t much more news than that. I hope you are having fun. Paul sounds perfect. Tell me all about it. Love to everyone. And many happy birthdays. Patt.

#22 — 6 May ‘44
#8 Cdn Gen Hosp

Hello dears:

Once again I am living in a ward with 26 other girls amid trunks and bags and boxes. I had to buy a smaller trunk the other day to take and store my big one full of my clothes. we had to get sleeping bags, convertible beds, bath tubs, kits with new tins, water bottles etc. I am living with Lib Madden and Eileen Hanson now. They are my best friends now that Robbie has gone. We look forward to the post-war days when Eileen lives in Kingston with Ed and Lib is in Napanee and I’m in Kingston. They are very sweet and it’s good to have them around.

I got Sheila’s “ordinary mail” letter today. I always love to hear from you – it will be wonderful if you get over. I get excited just thinking about it. Of course I want you way back nowhere near the thick of it, but I’d love you to see it all. And I’m so glad you are having fun, no one deserves it more and didn’t I tell you long ago that you would love it. Paul sounds absolutely perfect. I’d love to know him.

Did I tell you Robbie is going to be married as soon as her six months over here is finished. She met “Perk” the first minutes we were here – he is Senator Perkin’s son and very, very nice. Physically he isn’t terribly attractive being fat and not good looking but that does not mean a thing and Robbie being a complete snob happens to like all he has to offer – you know. family, security, money. I’ve told her all that and she agrees with me wholly but we also agree that we are as different as day to nite. I shall be bridesmaid – sort of exciting, then Eileen and Ed plan to be married soon. That will be perfect too.

Dick got his majority the other day and Norm and he came down my first nite off and we celebrated. Dick is coming down tonite and tomorrow I am going to L… (London) for dinner and evening. Should be fun but alas all will be over soon. Did you tell me you were saving my letters. I am not allowed to keep a diary for security reasons so I would like them as a sort of record later if it isn’t too much trouble. It shouldn’t be long now anyway till all is over. As soon as they see the RCAMC moving in they’ll be scared. Lots of love and kisses. keep well and I’ll be writing soon again, Pat

#23
12 May ‘44
No 8 Cdn Gen Hosp

Hello Dears:

A whole week of doing nothing and the weather is perfect. We stopped our drill etc. and are just waiting now.

I have a marvelous tan for so early in May. Each day we (Lib, Eileen, Hollie Sloan and myself) go somewhere. We either take the train or a bus or bicycles and go for tea in some little town. Everything is so lovely but I won’t rave too long. the rhododendrons are in bloom now and for miles the country is covered with their deep colour. Wisteria crops over the houses and there are so many other flowers, every shrub has a blossom of some description.

I took the train the other day to visit Peter’s grave. I told you I found it, didn’t I. I look some flowers. The Canadians have a beautiful cemetery, not like anything you see in Canada, just like a huge park and maybe because everyone buried there is young and like him that it doesn’t seem like a graveyard. I took a snap of the temporary cross at his grave. You would be amazed to see now many Canadians have died. I felt very badly and depressed.

Was at a party at the Officers mess the other nite and Allan Miner was there. He said to tell Dad he was asking for him. He said that Dad was remembered more than any other Queen’s man by the men who went through. He said each one remembered him individually as a friend – what a man eh! – you are – of course I agree heartily but they all talk about you for ages and keep reminding me not to forget to tell you.

Was over playing golf – at it – the other day – at a perfect club. we stayed for tea and the evening. Norm and Dick are down when they can. working terribly hard these days though.

No 4 CGH moved in last nite. Saw Helen Shanks for a minute. She brought it over you know and has her Majority. Haven’t seen the others yet. I am dying to hear what Sheila is coming with. Isn’t it wonderful.
We had some groups pictures taken the other day of the unit so well send them home for you to see and keep for me. We took some snaps also that I will send you as soon as they are done. In my battle clothes… Well dears, must go to dinner. Hope the weather is nice in Canada and you are all well and happy. love and kisses, Pat
The Peter she mentions was Peter McLaughin who Aunt Mary was in love with and turned down because of not being Catholic. He married someone else and then went off to war and was killed in action.  He was the love of her life they always said.   Majority means they were make the rank of Major.  Her father was an obstetrician in Kingston Ontario and also taught at Queens Medical School, that is why men were always coming up to her and asking to be remembered to her dad.  What I love is the comments they had to say about how great he was. We loved him very much and he was  wonderful but to hear that his students felt he was special says a lot more. 

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