March 30, 2015 – Twin boys play day – freezing cold on the northern French Border

Today I got up early, now that was a miracle.  Went to the lab and gave them some blood for a test and then filled my gas tank for $16.00 – wow that was thrilling. Got .90 off a gallon, thank you Price Chopper.  Then I ate some breakfast and got myself ready to head out.

Went up to Halfmoon to visit friend Susan who I have not seen in ages. She babysits for her adorable twin grandsons. They were adorable and so busy which of course is a good thing.  Wonder how I ever used that play pen. Their house is just one big playpen for cute little kids.  The kids are just over a year but climb on everything and just keep going. Such fun.

I came home and went through all the mail and paid bills and made some donations so if I get the table cleared we will have room for the four of us to eat when we get back here from DC.  That is going to be so much fun. Oh and I made my plans to head south. Going to visit family then going to see the lovely Sarah starting in the “Miracle Worker”.  Should be a grand week. Then I bring the girls up here for the week. Such fun.

That was my day, how was yours?  My goal is to get up early every day since I will have to do that when the girls are here. Might be starting something new.  Been working on the A to Z challenge.  So many wonderful names to pick to write about. Even figured out some misinformation about my A person. Going to see if I can find out more about him tomorrow before I start.

And here is the continuing story of Pat’s adventures in northern France.

10 Sept 44’

Hello dears:

My hands are fast becoming stiff with cold but I shall be very brave and get this written (ha-ha).  About 11 p.m. the temperature really drops very low.  I wear two sweaters, my battle blouse, a sheepskin lined flying jacket (a loan from one of my Air Force friends) and when I sit down I keep a hot water bottle inside the jacket and a blanket over my knees and I am still cold.  And I don’t sit down much.  We are very busy.  The casualties from the seaport towns are very bad.   The Calgary Highlanders were practically wiped out the other nite.   Entered a town which the “Recon” had said was vacated, walked into machine gun fire, lost everyone – wounded and otherwise.  The other western units are also taking a terrific beating but then that is nothing new for them.  Its been the same since D-Day.  The boys tell me grim stories about it all which doesn’t help my morale any.

We had a perfect time yesterday. Fr. O’Leary told me be would take me to R…. that Lib could come along.  Capt (Fr.) Sweeney was taking us.   So at 9:30 a.m. Capt S. picked us up in his jeep.  He is perfect.   Young and very clever.   He is with Arm’d troops.   The sun was out for the first time in a week so we had a perfect drive.   They took us all over the city.   We went into the Cathedral where “LaSalle” was baptized.   It was bombed badly but still beautiful.   The French people told us “L’Anglais bombs” and smiled.   This with wild gestures.  They said, “le Bache bombe”,  I guess they didn’t like the Germans but who would!   We saw a monument where Joanne d”Arc was burned at the stake. We went to “Perfume” shops where I got a few little gifts for you.

Fr. Sweeney stopped at a corner where flowers were being sold and bought us armfuls of marigolds, dahlias, astors.  What a thrill!  Then he took us to a side walk café and we had drinks of rum.   Very good and potent stuff.  Then we drove home at noon and passed a convoy of Canadian soldiers, such a ride, we were so thrilled to see them and they rose and whistled.   The French people come up and shake our hands and we give them issue candies and cigarettes etc and they throw us kisses.   What a day!   I get so thrilled and happy. Fr. S has never met the other Fr. S in Ottawa but has heard of him.   He is from Toronto.

Sorry this is full will write more later. I never have enough space and mother will never understand this. Pat.

From Wikipedia here is a paragraph about their action in SEptember 1944.

“On 6 July 1944, one month after the Normandy landings, the regiment landed in France. In Operation Spring, the Calgary Highlanders were part of the Battle of Verrières Ridge, along with the Black Watch, in which the regiment took heavy casualties. The unit saw extensive action in Normandy, marched through Dieppe with the 2nd Division in September 1944 as liberators, then moved on to the fighting for the Channel Ports. By the end of September the regiment was in Belgium and forced a crossing of the Albert Canal, northeast of Antwerp.”

picture of the cathedral at Rouen today


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