Sunday, February 6, 2022

Post #472 - October 3, 1944 Sy Said That Anyone Who Likes Either the Army or Navy is “Plain Nuts” and Youth is More a State of Mind Than a Springy Step, a Rosy Cheek and a Sparkling Eye


Oct. 3, 1944 

My sweet,

Yesterday I was at a loss for (got it right that time) words, but today I've got so much to say I don't rightly know where to start.

Immediately after I mailed your letter Dot called to inform me that she is joining Snuff for a short while, alone. They have cut his basic training from 17 to 6 weeks and the camp is closing up. He expects to ship out to Ft. Lewis, Washington state and perhaps overseas from there and wants her to be near 'him, while it is at all possible. She expects to leave tomorrow or Thursday. Yes, Jack N. got his basic at Claiborne, but I understand Snuff's outfit gets tough training and it beats the basic training handed the Infantry. He is in the Engineers and there isn't a doubt about it.

I'm sorry I forgot to tell you that Sy's ship is a battleship. He isn't thrilled about the “traveling and seeing the world idea” as you seem to think he would be. He told me he was "so happy" to leave camp and "hates like the devil to go back". He also said that anyone who likes either the Army or Navy is "plain nuts".

As soon as I finished getting Adele bathed and into bed the doorbell rang and in walked Mollie and Pearl and Clara Wagman. Yes, sweet, I finally am taking my vitamin pills as Clara was good enough to bring them along. We all chatted (and got very much on Harry’s nerves ) until about 11. Clara says that anyone who comes back to S & D is crazy. She thinks, by the way, that Donald Weitzel (is that his name) (the guy who has your job) is being groomed to take Mr. Farron’s place. I never did ask you about it, sweet, but do you think you might go back to S & D?

I notified her of the change in your address. She asked me to suggest what I thought you would like to have in your package. The only things I could think of were the yellow bole pipe and razor blades. I'm sorry. I didn't ask you what you would have liked to have previously. By the way, sweet, is there anything in particular that you would like to have this Xmas, beside, of course, home and family. I hadn't given any serious thought to a Xmas package, preferring to send along packages whenever I think you need something.

I promised to call Clara when I received a letter from you concerning her relationship to the Reisners. She said she didn't recognize me. I was wearing my hair in a different style other than she remembered.

I got to bed rather late, but didn't mind, cause I had had plenty of sleep the night previous. By the way, and before I forget, my mother also received her bond and by this time you must know that she finally managed to get a letter off to you.

Today brought me your two exceptionally long and especially welcome letters of Sept. 25 and 26, along with my check. It was raining this morning and I left early, wanting to buy the Charles of the Ritz powder I told you about yesterday. I caught the post man as I was taking Adele over to my mother's and had to keep your letters in my bag til I got on the subway. Then I eagerly tore them open and proceeded to read quickly. Then I reread and re-reread. I managed to do the first two on my trip down and the third on my way home. I'm glad you finally decided to try to "click" with your short story and I'm not any the less proud of you for failing. You must know by now that  I'm not that easily disappointed. I don't give a hang if your stories are rejected a hundred times. It will give you valuable experience and make you work harder for perfection. I'm right with you, baby, and I'm sure you've got what  it takes to make the grade. Just keep writing! I like your attitude concerning the whole thing. In fact, here's a big kiss for trying.

I managed to get into town just in time to have the girl mix the powder for me. She looked closely at my skin and advised me to give my skin a pore treatment with their special cream and skin freshener. I can't make the whole outlay at the moment, but I fully intend to get the other articles and try to get my skin into really good shape. I love the smell of the powder. I'd particularly like to have a bottle of perfume, for it must be ages since I wore perfume or even toilet water, of their brand. They have a toilet water called Spring Rain, which ought to be very nice. I shall get all their items gradually. This was the first time I spent $1.20 for a box of face powder, but it should last me quite a while. I wish you could see how they mix the powder. She has a whole tray with various jars of ingredients of all colors, such as purple, green, blue, brown, orange, etc. and you would never think they would blend into regular face powder, but they do.

I got into work at 11:15 and had a fairly busy day. Mom went into town with Theresa today and bought herself a complete new outfit. She got the following: A black coat, trimmed with Persian Lamb (I haven't seen it yet, as she told them to send it) for $60.00, a pair of black suede and patent trimmed shoes - $10.95, a black hat, small, but nice, and two dresses - a grey sports dress, button-down-the-front for $8.95 and a dressy black dress with a fuschia top and black sequins at $13,95. Mom now wears a size 18-1/2 dress, so that ought to give you an idea of how much weight she has lost. Don't get me wrong, honey, she is far from being thin, but nevertheless, she is much thinner than I ever remember seeing her. I hope to follow suit and get a complete outfit for myself. If I don’t get myself some other clothes I'll wear this suit out. Now I know how you feel wearing the same suit day in and day out.

And last, but not least, I made an appointment with the eye doctor, whose name happens to be Dr. Freed and he is located at Old York Rd. and Ruscomb Sts. on York Rd. for tomorrow evening between 7:30 and 8. In case I do need glasses and I'm fairly sure I do, what sort of shaped glasses should I get? I sort of remember you liking octagon shaped glasses, rimless. I only intend to use the glasses for reading, knitting and at work, when I'm typing.

That just about brings me up to date, except for the fact that I called Lil to notify her of your change of address and learned that she had sent you a large package. You're not supposed to know it, but I'm telling you just the same so that you might not hold your grudge or doubtful feelings toward her. If guess that's her way of replying.

One more thing - we had a letter from Gloria today. She received a $10 monthly raise, and was disappointed with it, having expected a larger raise. She's pretty busy these days, what with work and school taking up most of her time.

And now to answer some of your questions. If you tickle Adele she'll yell "top eet" and then "more". As concerns my question about whether or not I should quit work before you come home, I merely asked to get an idea of what you thought on the subject, My mother will care for Adele if I decide to work for a while even after you come back - til we get on a settled financial footing. It was really a silly question, as things are so unsettled that it is hard to decide anything definite, but I just wanted to talk about it. I want you to get started on the right foot this time and if my working will help us to that end, then I'll continue to work for a while. I'm going to buy a $50 bond this month with my check, as I said I would, so that we'll have the total I quoted - $1025. Do you know, Sweet, that one of our bonds is over 2-1/2 years old? It was the first one we got through the weekly deductions of your pay. I hope we'll not have to cash it til it matures. So, actually we have approximately $770 cash by way of the bonds and our bank account stands at $150, which, in case you didn't know it, brings us mighty close to having that $1000 in cash I hoped to attain. I'm sure we'll pass that figure before the year is out, don't you? Gosh, sweet, I just can't believe it. It just goes to prove that a systematic savings account brings good results, no matter how small the amount saved. You seemed a little hazy on our finances, so I hope I've enlightened you.

I promise not to double space again - nuff said?

I'm glad you had the opportunity to relax, though I understand the children gave you little peace. I often wonder how you'd react to some of Adele's habits. Sometimes when I think she is about to fall or bumps her head or gets into a tight spot I become very jumpy. It is these times, especially when I wonder what your reaction would be.

I'm sorry you don't like the ringlets, but I didn't have the opportunity to comb them out properly before taking the snaps. Those panties of Adele's that annoyed you couldn't be helped. The elastic in the panties today is just as good as nothing at all and in this case the elastic broke. So you see, sweet, it couldn't be helped. It rarely happens. I'm anxious to get on a scale to see how much I've gained. I think I've gained back most of the weight I lost and perhaps a little to boot.

I called the Gas Company, as we must have heat now. It will be a few days before the man gets around to us, It rained all day and the house is damp. I skipped Adele's bath tonight for the first time in months. I've also been calling about her corrective shoes, but just can't get them. I'm really at my wit's end - it's a big pain in the ear as far as I'm concerned. I can understand cutting down on other items of apparel but baby's shoes are so necessary that it seems a little ridiculous that a mother has to go through so much to get one lousy pair of shoes. (I'm getting mad in case you hadn't noticed).

As far as I know Harry is still jobless. My folks. had a nice letter from Eddie today, their first letter in a month. I haven't read it yet, but I understand it's the nicest one he's written to date. Have you heard from him lately?

Sat. night when I got the ride downtown with Fay's mother (who is employed by the gov't, making soldiers clothes) she told me that the Army has cancelled all orders for the old type of jacket, and have copied the British style, except for a few small changes, for it is neater and saves material. I mention this only cause you said something about buying a British jacket in a previous letter, due to the fact that it was neater.

And now, sweet, I think it high time I told you that I adore you beyond words, that I miss you keenly and I want you very much, Baby -

Your Eve

P.S. Excuse the errors - I’m kinda sleepy -

3 October 1944

Dearest Darling,

Seems like there is always something popping up to prevent my writing to you every day. Believe me, Sweet, it is not my intention to write every other day. I would want to write each and every day, but I’m afraid I have fallen far short of the mark. Last night, just as it was getting ready to write, there was a power failure and we didn't have lights for the rest of the night, so I did it any sensible thing under the circumstances. I went to bed. 

Day before yesterday, after I finished my letter to you, I wrote to Eddie and Harry W. to ask them if they could let me know where they are so that I may visit them about the end of this month, when, if nothing prevents, t expect to take a furlough.

Yesterday, after another busy day at the office, I rode down to the base theater, where “Rose Marie” was supposed to be showing only to find that there was no show owing to mechanical difficulties. Your nice long letter of 18 Sep. arrived in the afternoon and I’m still reading certain parts of it over and over again.

Today, after a most exasperating day (because I got nothing done in spite of my best efforts), your mail of 25 Sep/44 arrived to lighten my spirits. First, I'll answer
the “longie”.

You tell about Shirley's visit, describing her as the (one you thought was so chesty in a snap with Harry and Goldie". Sorry honey, I haven't any recollection whatever of her. Wonder what you gabbed about 'til 1:30 in the A.M.?

Then you talk about going in town with Goldie and Shirley to see “Janie”. Glad you liked it, Sweet. I haven't seen it yet, but am looking forward to seeing it. From what you say about recalling certain memories in connection with Broad & Chestnut and later, over that chocolate sundae, and who knows how many more references you made to me, Goldie and Shirley must have been pretty well fed up with you. But as long as you had a good time, Baby, I don't care if you bored them to death.

What's all the mystery about Myra and Lil - and why can’t you talk about it? [At this point I interrupted my writing long enough to ride down to the mess-hall to have supper.] You might be interested in the kind of meals the Army is feeding us these days. Anything to fill up space!) – Anyway, supper consisted of the following: Three hot-dogs (I can see you grinning already, but wait!), potatoes in jackets, pickled beets and onions, carrots & raisins (not for me), catsup, bread, peanut butter, cocoa - and butterscotch ice cream - and because they were almost through feeding when I got there and had plenty, I had two portions, which was damn near a quart. Outside of that, I didn't eat a thing! Dinner wasn't anything to brag about. Just a big, tender steak, lyonnaise potatoes, string beans, b & b, peanut butter, coffee and cherry cobbler. So you can easily understand, Chippie, why am just wasting away - oh yeah!! If you think that is too much food for one day, just consider the gluttons that also eat breakfast! Now, where was I?

Here we are. Your story about Adele and the soldier was real cute. But if she should slip up and say “uh-uh" to me, I think i'd die - no kiddin'!

Poor Dottie! I feel for her - I really do, and I’m darned if I'd discourage her from going to Snuff and staying with him wherever he goes. On the other hand, she had better look to Hal's welfare first and foremost when she's making plans in that direction. If Snuff is against the idea - and I can imagine a reason or two why he might be - then she should stick it out for the time being where she is until Snuffy can no longer bear it without her. You may not agree, Chippie, for a number of reasons, and the foregoing is strictly between you and me, but that is my opinion - and I'll stick to it. Don't compare their situation with ours, Sweet. There are more points of variance than you would imagine - off-handi

Say hello to our new neighbors for me. You say they are “very nice". That's good enough for me.

Your recollection of Sep 18/41 brought many tender memories crowding. It was easily one of the happiest days of my life, and I'll never forget a minute of it. Like you, Baby, I am looking forward eagerly to a repetition of that glorious day of homecoming and re-union. Only this time it will be a thousand times sweeter. I'm sure I don't. have to enumerate the reasons for your benefit! 

I know it isn't right to say so, but the picture you draw of the punkin being “fresh"; sticking her nose up in the air and saying "a very definite ‘no’” is infinitely appealing to me. I'm very much afraid that were I there to see it, I would kiss her for it instead of spanking her. Don't ask me why and stop muttering “what a pop you'll make!"

Thanks, Chippie, for Rae's regards, and give her my love next time you see her, and ask her if she and Mickey won't be good enough to drop me a line. By the way, did Stevens go out of business, or not?

You apologize for any technical errors" there may have been in your letter ’cause you "rushed through it,” there were surprisingly few, Chippie, considering - but never fear, I forgive you. Now - ain't that nice of me? How's about a nice, big kiss, huh?

So Sarah painted Adele's finger nails and she reacted like a real woman, eh? Hmmm! Interesting! – and just a bit disturbing, too. Makes me wonder if she'll ever be “my baby” before she gets to be “my little girl"

Your closing paragraph was mighty sweet, sweetheart, and each time I read it I thrill anew. In it you recalled a few incidents that belong exclusively to “us". Thanks for reminding me, honey. Not that I had forgotten - never that! But I hadn't thought about those particular “excitements" lately. Of course, all the things you mention are as vivid in my mind as they were on the “mornings after" - and will be just as vivid and dear to me fifty or a hundred years from now. Your plaintive cry that “the best days of our lives are slipping by unnoticed" draws forth no agreement from me. You're wrong, darling - it's the worst days that are “slipping by” - the best are still to come. Don't doubt. it for a minute! Neither do I feel as you that “this part of our youth is most important”. Chippie, believe me when I say that I am not a day older than I was the day I left you. I neither feel nor look older. Down deep inside me is the conviction that one does not really age (in the sense you mean when you speak of “wasted youth") until one has either ceased to love, or expended his love. Your sympathy on my account is very touching, dearest Evvie, but wholly unwarranted, I assure you.

In closing, let me leave this thought with you, my darling: Youth is more a state of mind than a springy step, a rosy cheek, and a sparkling eye. What price the physical aspects of youth if the heart beats to no harmony or rhythm of love? Conversely, what meaning has the halting step, the sallow check, the lustreless eye of age, if the heart is full of the sweet stuff of love? In a phrase - You are as young as your love. – And how old are you, my dear young lady? Me - I’m a mere babe in arms! Some day, dear wife, I'll prove to you that the above are more than empty phrases and pretty words. - Until then, know that I adore you in all the fullness of my heart.

My love and admiration to my cute and clever punkin. My love to all.

Yesterday, today and in all the tomorrows –
Your Phil