August 17 & 19, 1943. Two letters from home. Dad’s furlough is over and Anna picks up the correspondence once again as she mentions that Dad took over the letter writing duties while he was home. Anna notes in the letter that when Dad boarded the train to return to Topeka “the train was so packed that they only let service men get on it.”
Anna draws a contrast between Stanley’s visit and Dad’s on one point and takes the opportunity to tease her youngest brother about it. “… Mama didn’t wait so much on Stanley when he was home. Stanley, when you were home you slept in bed until you got up and ate breakfast at the table but not Anthony NO but by any chance Mama would bring it to him to bed every morning. I thought that the army was supposed to make men out of pour boys and the way Anthony sprawled in bed with all the service he looked like a sissy. I am only kidding. Well Anthony you certainly made us happy and I hope you too were happy.”
Anna also tells how mama had been worried about Dad since news has come about a train wreck near Buffalo. “…mama started asking me if you rode on that train and maybe it got wrecked but I tried to assure her that everything was Okay and that you were already in Chicago. It seems that every time you boys go back to camp something happens that gets mama worried. Last time Stanley when you were going back we had the floods that were coming out from the Mississippi River and mama was awfully worried that something might happen and Stanley wouldn’t get back safely… I think it is the devil just to get mama nervous.”
Ann describes the scene around the house to be a typical evening. “At present, mama is sewing – finishing the reperowanie (mending) that I didn’t finish in the day time and I am typing and Eddie is wasting electricity and amusing baby in the parlor. They are both listening to the radio and all you can here is the machine running for all it’s worth and the baby yelling in the front room. Such a house always noise if it ain’t one kind it is another.”
It also seems that mama is finally recovered from all of the dental extractions. “She feels much peppier and looks swell on her face. Today she looked so young she could pass for about 43 instead of the sure fifty which she is. …Mama isn’t as slow as she used to be and I am glad that she feels better.”
Anna reports that the baby is “growing like a weed” and that little Terry is getting used to being around strangers more often. Anna writes that during a recent shopping trip downtown one of the sales ladies “came right up to me and before she even asked if we wanted anything she wanted to hold Terry in her arms. Terry was not afraid but when she looked up into her face and smiled and the woman said, ‘what a good natured baby.’ …Everybody was cooing over her and making such a big fuss and baba knew it – you could tell by the expression on her face.” The baby is even getting used to the hustle and bustle on the downtown streets. “Before when we took Terry downtown she was afraid of the trolleys and the noises they make and the buses and trucks. When she heard any noise she would look around so scared and start to scream… Now she is used to them and doesn’t cry but watches the way they ride and even turns around to see where they disappear to.”
In other news:
- The weather in Albany is turning colder. ”…quite chilly in the mornings and evenings ….you freeze in the house all day and roast when you go outside.
- Anna encloses a clipping with “a picture of one of your classmates”. It turns out to be a picture of Pvt. Joseph Talar and a report on how he helped to fire the 155 millimeter gun that opened the invasion of Sicily.