Received your letter tonight before coming to work. It was swell to hear from you - and at just the time I needed your letter so.
Honey, you wrote as if you were very tired. I know just how you felt. Ten hours a day is too many hours, My Love. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Maybe you ought to take awhile off. Go places, do something different. It breaks monotony. Then you can go back to work with a new zest. Why, a few nights ago, I rode a truck in a blizzard, staying up all night - just to break routine. It’s nerve wrecking. There is such a thing as staying too close to home. The next thing you know, you’ll be saying “what’s the use?” And that, my Pet, is just what I don’t want to happen.
You said you didn’t get the idea of something I said about a hopeless feeling. Well, whatever I said, must have been said in a period of dejection. I am sure I do not feel hopeless now.
Often, we may become so bored that we think we have lost faith in everything. But usually after I reach bottom, I rise up and begin to fight back. True - there are times when I would not believe even a promise of the U.S. Gov’t. But even then I know that I have supreme faith in it. You said you couldn’t understand. I do not expect you to - no one could. Remember, I have often said you couldn’t understand this life unless you had been here? This place does things to you. You may catch yourself telling your best buddy to go to ___. But, then, at night, sometimes, a moon will rise above a snow capped mountain, casting its glow on the water, and the place becomes a place of beauty. Or the sun (seldom ever seen) may set behind the far off hills and the ever present clouds will be painted gold. Then, as you see God’s own art, you realize that He is even here, in the world’s most forsaken land. And you can’t feel hopeless.
You said your brother had moved. What was his last A.P.O.? Of course, he can’t tell you much, but if he had gone to Sicily, I am sure he could tell you that. For I got mail from there, telling me of the people, scenery, name of place, etc. That may be changed by now, as censor rules are set to fit the circumstances. I hope him the best of luck, wherever he is.
Some of the guys from Alaska have already gone back to the States on this rotation deal. It may work out, yet. I am keeping my fingers crossed. Gee, but I’d love to see civilization again. More so when I read such lines as in your last letter “—and we can be together forever.”
Yes, Dear, I’ve had quite a bit of experience at going to work at midnight. I have grown so used to it. It has been 20 months, now, that I have been on a shift duty. But after the war, no one is going to put a night duty job off on me. Ha. Here it is all the same, and you get to where you don’t pay any attention to it. I can sleep as easily by day or by night.
One more week and Christmas will be here again. My third one in the Army. It will sure look funny with all the G.I. socks hanging up. “‘Twas night before Xmas. All the G.I. socks hanging in neat military row. Midnight! A form looms up in the door! Is it Santa entering? - No. It’s a dog face going out for fresh air.”
Three years ago, this was a gala week. Long gone relatives returning, laughter, fun. But this year, as so many others are doing, military and civilian alike, I get my Bible out and read Luke Chapter 2:11-15, alone. Yes, I can still feel some of the Xmas spirit. “Peace on Earth, good will toward men.” Though you go to bed with a gas mask in handy reach and a rifle by your bedside, you say a prayer for those you love, and say “Lord, thy will be done —-“; you also know that someday the children will laugh again. There will be no anxious tears, heartbreak, and loneliness. And Shortys will have their Alices. Smile, fair maid, for ‘tis Xmas time! “May God watch between thee and me while we are absent from one another.”