76 Marshfield Rd.,
Sun, Feb. 23/41
All fitted out and set to go. Wish I had a Spitfire at my disposal tonight. I'd soon find you and what a trip we'd have.
Betty arrived home Friday night for her mid term weekend which lasts from Friday til Tuesday morning. Saturday Betty & I went to Bath to complete my shopping. I got shoes (black and canvas), dressing gown (just a cheap one), enamel plate, cup & knife, fork and spoon.) Then Olive came over on the 1 o'clock train and we all went to the Odeon picture house after which we went to a restaurant and had tea, returning home by train in time for supper. Mrs. Glidden, Betty & Olive have all been busy sewing my name on everything I own. Certainly I am well marked and Bill Jones is on everything. Olive even printed it on my forehead. This morning we went to service and since then I have been busy packing my belongings in the steamer (cabin trunk), suitcase and the little black hand case which I brought away with me from Bear River. Needless to say I am most grateful to the entire Gliddon family. You must thank them all.
By the way, Miss Day received your Xmas card and wished me to thank you for it. This she asked of me when I had breakfast with her and Miss Sendamore last Thursday morning.
Betty is playing the piano, Olive is seated before the open fire reading. Arnold smoking a cigarette thoughtfully and I am occupying the big chesterfield with you. We took some snaps this afternoon and Betty told me to say that she would send them on to you just as soon as she can get them developed and printed.
My baggage will go to the station tonight and I shall leave at 5:48 a.m. for Bristol in time to catch the 7:15 a.m. for Torquay. I am most eager to get down to work and see what I can do in this new field. It will be months before I have learned anything so please don't expect too much. In fact I feel very much a beginner and shall be just as thousands more, out to get all I can in the way of information and instruction. Just who I shall know there it is hard to say. No doubt I shall be quite an outsider and stranger. [Alfred Cecil] Critchley, [He was one of Jones' commanding officers in WWI] of course, will always be i the background.
I have many friends in England now and I'm beginning to feel like a native of this country. The people have been very kind to me and have cooperated beyond my fondest desire. I shall have many letters to write when I get settled as I don't want to lose touch with any of them for your sake.
So far I have spent forty-six pounds on equipment and have about everything except that which I shall require for active service. We are given an allowance of 40 pounds for kit but will certainly have to exceed that amount to complete everything. Just what rate of pay I shall receive I don't yet know. The pay in the English forces is somewhat different than it is in the Canadian. It seems to be made up by several allowances, just what these are I have no ideas as yet.
Betty, Olive and all wish me to give you their love.
Heaps of love and a big kiss and hug to comfort you. Sleep tight and don't let old man cold bother you. Wish I were there to look after you.
All right. The next batch of letters will be from his experiences in Torquay, England which is on the south west coast facing the English Channel.
"No. 2 Squadron
No. 5 Initial Training Wing
I'm sorry I didn't write you last evening. I just arrived here yesterday morning and I had met so many people and listened to so many details concerning one thing and another, on top of all this I hadn't had any sleep the night before, having traveled from Chippenham, that by the time I got unpacked and got a note containing my address, off to the Banisters, and another off to Chippenham it was jolly well bedtime for your little ch . . . .
After the second day of duty I feel a bit more domiciled and certainly a bit clearer mentally. By the end of the week I should feel quite at home and in all probability I shall have found my feet. So far I find the work most interesting. It is all old work to me and merely a matter of reviewing. Just how long I shall be here I have no idea. They don't seem to be keeping men here very long. I'm, very glad I'm here under Critchley as it has given me a very good stand in. Yesterday I had a long conversation with the son of Lord Willingdon. He has asked me to call around again to see him. This I shall most certainly do. His name is Lord somebody or other. I have forgotten.
My billet here is a room in a private boarding house which I was very fortunate to get. My landlady is a Mrs. Downing. There are a few other guests here, mostly evacuees from the London area, elderly people. My room is very large but as cold as our garage at home. The meals are very plain and certainly not very lavish. However, Dearie, I am most happy with everything and shall manage well with what I have. Just how long it will be before I receive my first allowance, I don't know. I am hoping it won't be very long for your sake.
Heaps of love & a big hug & kiss. Go to sleep now, happy dreams.