March 7, 2015 – The countdown is on

LIfe is a grindstone

Whether it grinds us down

or polishes us up

depends on us.

                                               Thomas Holdroft

Had trouble sleeping last night and still woke up at 7:30 this morning. Had the weirdest dreams. Caused a lot of panic. Once I got up I ate and went shopping. So if there is a big storm we won’t starve.  Lots of fruit and veggies.  Came home and read for a bit and took a little nap.  Cooked dinner and we are going to watch a movie tonight. The good news is we figured out that my new lap top – not recently new but the newest in the house – can connect to the TV so we can get Netflicks.. That should make TV watching more interesting since we don’t have cable.

These three letters show they are getting closer yet to D-:Day.. I laugh at thinking of the woman who loves dressing up and looking good all the time going on long hikes and always having to wear fatigues.. Such an adventure. Enjoy

18 May 44’

Hello dears:
I got Mothers and Dad’s letters – very lovely. I was glad to know a little more about Sheila. I hope I can see her – I am now near Edward so you will have some idea but it isn’t for long. He is coming over tomorrow nite to see Eileen. Lib and she and Hollie Sloan and myself are together in one room. It is a marvelous place. Later I will send you a postcard but right now I can’t say anything about it. Security you know. That is all we hear and letters are being censored now I imagine.

As soon as Sheila sends me her phone no I will send it to Dick and Norm and they will phone her and arrange to see her as soon as possible. I had a wonderful weekend with them before I left and now we just talk on the telephone. I will miss them very much but we are hoping we will all be together somewhere sometime. In the mean time I can’t say very much.

The DO’s and nursing sisters mess together. Very chummy but somehow I can’t get interested in them.   It isn’t like good old Rideau.

Give my love to Bertha and Grandmother Simpson. How are they? Do they like their new home – much nicer for them than the apartment. Had a letter from Aunt Bessie. She wanted Jim’s address to write him but I didn’t know it so Bertha could convey her sympathy if she would.

I wish I could tell you all about everything or at least have time to write a book. I could fill one easily.

Saw Ivy and Gert S. and Bert B and Kay Freeman and Betty Malloy. Jack Moss and I went out one nite and one afternoon before I left. Talked over everything. Said to say Hello to everyone.

The house sounds simply perfect. The halls will be lovely. Aren’t we wonderful. I do hope Mother is taking vitamins and iron and don’t do a thing. For Pete’s sake rest yourself. I have enough on my mind fighting this war without thinking about hemoglobins. Oh I must tell you about the straw mattresses we sleep on. You would die Frankie, my pet, you who likes “beauty rest” mattresses and little straw filled pillows. After the war I can live anywhere and in any conditions and be happy. I’ve seen everything now.

Must run but will write soon. Hope Mary got my sweet god-child a nice gift, imagine him being one whole year old. love to everyone Pat

22 May 44’
No 8 Cdn Gen Hosp

Dear Marye:
Happy birthday my pet. Take $5.00 and get yourself something nice eh!   Something you have been wanting.

Well the first few days here were not too good. It rained continually and we marched for miles in it and then to come back to this huge place which hasn’t been dry for the last 600 years, wasn’t too good.   We could have fires if we got wood so we (Hollie, Lib, Eileen and I) went out and got what we could and it was so wet that we had quite a time getting it to burn, no hot water anywhere. we get water in jugs and wash in basins – we eat in our mess tins and drink out of mugs and I described our beds at least we have a bed roll to lay on top and climb into. The meals are fairly good but I am always starving, its all the fresh air and exercise, I guess.   Anyway a half hr after we eat I am ravenous again!

But today the sun as shining and it was wonderful to be out and everything is so beautiful. We are getting the snaps developed so I will send them soon. Also some picture postcards of the place and near-by towns. I walked over the bridge in one of them etc. I have been near or in each picture. the other nite we went into Richmond to have dinner and see a movie.

We are on “field rations” now so we get cigarettes (which I give to our batman Bill) liquor etc. none of which we need as yet.

I was thinking you should put Sheila and my pictures in the paper – together as being over here. The two nice ones – me in my suit and the one of her in her sweater, if you do – send me a couple of papers will you! by the way, I had to send for money because of all the equipment, battle dress etc. I got very low and was afraid I might overdraw so to be safe always I shall leave that much in.   From now on I won’t be spending very much I don’t think surely we are through buying things, and we won’t be spending much either. Hope you are all happy and that this reaches you in time and do get something nice from me ( for your birthday) all my love, Pat

27 May 44’

Dear Mother and Dad:

Had a letter from Mother this week. Thanks a million for sending the flannelette sheets. They will be wonderful next fall.
There isn’t much to tell you. We march every morning. The second morning we went out, we went on an 8 mile march… If you say it fast it isn’t too bad but we were sore and stiff for days. Walking was agony, sitting down dreadful and lying down sure death but I survived it nicely. A lot of the gals are off with sore feet or sick etc. but my feet feel wonderful.   In the afternoon we have P.T. or gas drill or some similar business. Very dull really. And from what I hear we won’t be getting much better.

Had a lovely letter from Madeline. Tell her I will write to her when I have something to say. Right now there in nothing.

We had a bridge tournament during the evenings last week. The N/S’s and M.O.’s was highest of the crowd. I played, so was in the pay-off which I and my partner lost. However we all got a prize – a few chocolate bars.

We have Mass every nite which I try to get too.

We walk or take a bus to the near-by towns to have tea and sometimes see a movie but we are usually so tired that we hang around. I am always starving, So there is nothing wrong with my appetite.

Eileen and Ed are getting married soon so she will not be with us for long.

I am waiting anxiously to hear from Sheila, She got off in a hurry didn’t she! I do hope she has a good trip but I know she will love it.

There is a party in the mess tonight. One every Sat nite, but we have only the one outfit to wear – for everything so we can’t get dressed up but we have fun anyway.

Hope everyone is fine and that the weather is nice at last. Perfect for Misty going to the convention. I know he would enjoy it.

Lots of love, Patt

Picture of Pat and Sheila at a family wedding.



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