January 14, 2011

Signal Halyards

March 26, 1919

Dear Mother,

No letter from you in two days, but I shouldn't say a word about it for I haven't written but twice myself.

Just got back from Cramps shipyard, where we have been putting up our signal halyards, and my standpipe climbing has made it easier for me to get to the top of sixty-foot mast as I reeve a line through a block. The first forty-five feet have spikes to climb, but from there on is only a straight pole to the yardarm about twelve feet above. However I got by very well and didn't fail, and now it's all done.

The ship is a beauty -- long and low, and all the compartments are fixed up "Jake and a half." I went to Mr. DeTreville with my affidavit to get out, and he said they had "received orders not to let any more out, and especially quartermasters and listeners," so I'd have to stay a while. After him telling me that, I wanted out bad, but I don't know how to go about it since he has temporarily turned me down.

On account of having to repair the turbines we may miss our trip to Cuba in the bargain. However, I'll just make the best of it and talk to him again as soon as the ship goes into commission.

The weather has been fine since I've been back, but it's still too cold not to go on liberty without a pea coat. Will be glad when we can wear white hats instead of that pancake.

Got six letters from Grace Hapgood that had been delayed since January.

Am going to turn in early tonight for the unusual exercise made me pretty tired.

Will write as soon as I hear.

Love to all,

(Postmarked Philadelphia, Penn., March 27, 1919)

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