October 29, 1918
Haven't had my exam over and to tell the truth, I don't care much, as much as I was disappointed in the first place. Over a thousand sailors have shipped to Brist, France, to stand by in a U.S. Naval Station there, to do partial duty and go on ships who lose men in those waters. There is every chance in the world for me to ship, if the rumor that there is one more boat to be outfitted is true. If not -- then we get an exam in another week.
Richards and I have been lucky so far. Before any of us did any work, we were appointed orderlies for the commander of Regiment 7 -- now all the others are on the coal pile and we have a snap. Hope I get to keep it til I'm shipped. If I go in the near future, it'll be quite a record to go over in about two months after I got in, won't it?
You ought to hear the fellows yell as they go out in bunches of 250 -- it's enough to make an Indian run. An unpopular chief petty officer (about like a first sergeant) came around a bunch today, and they made jokes til he was mad enough to die. The reason he's so unpopular is because he works the men so hard on the coal pile.
The weather suddenly turned warm and we haven't needed our sweaters, although we've had to wear them -- since they changed back the old hours, it's dark here by 5:15 or 5:30. Seems funny after long hours of California.
The government owes me $50.00 but we won't draw our pay this next payday, because we haven't been here long enough. I may have to wire for a few dollars if I ship. If I don't, of course I'll not wire -- for I know how things must be at home.
Haven't heard yet -- it's almost time though.
Give my love to all.
(Postmarked New York, New York, October 31, 1918)