Squared Around

Ft. Riley, again
Dec. 6, 1942

My Darling:

I’m back in the harness again, and how I wish you were here! Got in yesterday, and spent all day yesterday and all day today getting squared around. Just had supper, and after I write this, I’ll send a card home and prepare for bed.

I have been attached, unassigned, to the weapons department here at the replacement center. My address is c/o Weapons Dep’t., CRTC, Ft. Riley, Kans. Guess for a while anyway, I’ll be a weapons instructor.

Darling, you’ve no idea how much I’ve missed you in the past 10 days. I know my letters have been few, but it wasn’t because I didn’t miss you. People kept me so busy at home that I couldn’t find the time to write. If I stayed home, people came to see me, and if I went calling, I would be out until all hours. It really was a busy few days in Casper. I sure caught the dickens from everyone for not having you with me. You’d think I was the only person in Casper who had ever gotten married. Everyone is crazy to meet you, and especially since I’ve told them how grand you are. The folks are crazy about your picture. The mantelpiece at home has pictures of Marge, Lois, Donna, you and me, and everyone is as proud of your picture as any of the Hopkins kids. So you see, they’re crazy about you already, as well they should be. It isn’t every family which has the sweetest girl in the world as a daughter and sister-in-law.

Darling, though this present job is just temporary, it may become a permanent one, or it may be for several months at least. For that reason, I hope you can join me here soon. I’ll find out a little more definitely some time this week, and I’ll write you as soon as I can find out something. If I’m going to be here for over a month, I certainly want my wife. Do you think you can come after the 1st? We may have to stay in a room for a while, but I have prospects of getting an apartment after the 1st. A fellow I know who is planning to be transferred soon after the 1st told me I could have the first call on the apartment after he left. Please let me know what you think of it, darling. Please consider the fact that our future is indefinite, and we can never tell how much time we may be able to spend with each other. We must take advantage of every moment we can. I hope you feel the same as I, darling.

As for finances, I have enough to see me thru this month, and the first, I’ll have $300 coming. A new bill which just passed will also give me an extra $100 for uniforms, but Lord knows when I’ll get it. It won’t take much for me to go on, darling, so I hope you’ll see fit to come to me as soon as I can possibly send for you. Please let me know your reaction.

This afternoon, darling, I went thru all your letters, and reread them all. I’m forced to part with them, because I have so many that they’re becoming quite a problem. Wish I could have kept them, but I just don’t have the room. I have your picture before me now, and that I’ll never part with. I had quite a time bringing it back with me, because all the time I was home, it held a position of honor on the mantel, and everyone who came simply raved about it.

Darling, I hope your dental troubles are nearly over and that you areĀ feeling fit again. Please write soon, my sweet. I miss you terribly.

Goodnight, my darling. Remember that I love you and need you very much, and that I’ll be awfully lonely until I see you again.

Your loving
Jim

Ed. note: Shorthand time!

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Such Excitement!

Casper, Wyoming
No Dec. 2, 1942

My Darling:

I’ve been awfully poor about writing to you since I’ve been home. They’ve really kept this kid busy. If I stay home, people come here to see me, and if I go out, I can break away easier, so I’ve been doing most of the calling. One of the old gang came home on furlough and got married, so that took up most of yesterday and the day before. Such excitement!

Another one of the gang, a crippled fellow, has been the recipient of a lot of calls from me. His house is the gathering place for half the town, and things are really humming there all the time. There’s where all the wedding plans were formulated, hashed over, etc.

Didn’t do much this morning, but made about 3 calls this afternoon, and did some very extensive shopping. In fact, I bought a pair of garters. Howzat for blowing the old wad?

Tomorrow morning, I have to make at least 3 calls, go to the Kiwanis luncheon at noon with Dad, pack, and prepare to leave on the train at 7:35 tomorrow nite. We get into Denver at 7:15 Friday morning, and don’t leave until 4:15 P.M., but it’s the best connection we can make.

Darling, everywhere I go, people ask me about you, and wish you were here. From what I’ve told them, they must figure that I married an angel, and I think I did. In spite of my being so terribly busy, I’m very lonesome for my wife. Ever since I called you the other nite, I’ve felt terrible about not being able to be with you, but let’s pray it can be soon. Without you, it’s getting to be unbearable. I’ve prayed for your well-being every nite, and I hope you are feeling a lot better by now.

I have a shock for you, darling. I’ve been sleeping with another woman— Donna. She has been making Dad and me both promise that when I go to bed, I take her with me. The little rascal sleeps with her back to me, crooks her legs back until her feet touch me, and then wriggles her toes all nite long. It nearly drives me nuts. She has a kitten, too, whose special joy is to jump in bed with us, and then Donna has to get up and walk all over me putting him out. Between the two, they keep me pretty well occupied,—-and sleepless.

Please, darling, don’t work too hard while you are getting your teeth extracted. It’s just too much, sweet. And please take care of yourself. I just shudder when I think of how badly you must be feeling. If you had only been with me for graduation, it really would have been perfect, and then some. How proud I’d have been! But we poor folks can’t have everything.

Darling, I’m picking up about 3 pairs of pajamas here, so I’ll have plenty when we are together again, which I hope is very soon. I’m also picking up my old bathrobe. It’s pretty ratty, but it will serve the purpose until I can afford a better one. Looking it over, I guess it isn’t so bad after all.

Darling, every time I think of you, I realize more + more how much I love you and miss you and need you. So far, I haven’t been much of a husband to you, but I hope to start making that up to you very soon. So much love I could never have for anyone else. A lot of girls around town here are so hard up for boy friends that some of them would even go out with me, but I can’t see them at all. Girls I’ve known for years, and who held a certain amount of appeal for me before, and I can’t get the least bit interested in being with them. Last Saturday nite, instead of going out, I went up and talked with Dick (the crippled kid), played cards with him and his mother, and generally spend a very quiet evening. So, you see, Mrs. Hopkins, I just can’t be away from you much longer and retain my sanity. It just can’t be done, that’s all. Maybe I’m just a baby, but after I talked to you on the phone the other nite, I cried like a baby. No one has ever affected me like that before. No one else could ever do it. Only you, my darling, can make me happy, and only being away from you can make me otherwise. I love you, Marjorie, forever and ever. Please pray with me that we will soon be together, and that we may never again be apart. Without you, I’ll never be worth a cent to anyone, not even myself. Always remember that, darling. Always.

Everyone here sends all their love, darling. As for me, you know my heart and soul are with you, always.

Your loving
Jim

Ed. note: Guess what? More shorthand!

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