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Training in the USA

April 9, 1944

Letters from Theodore Katz

sketch of soldiers ordering food in a resaurant

Ted's sketch of a Tullahoma restaurant, 4/7/1944

[postmarked April 9, 1944]

Monday – 7:30 PM.

Dear Helen –

My movement orders finally came through – but before you get scared – let me explain that I’ve only moved from the second floor down to the first – where I am now ensconced in the area designated to the first echelon of Headquarters Platoon. This is the big news of the day.

This has also been a lucky day as we were supposed to go out on bivouac this morning for a full week and it’s been postponed – so perhaps we will have a full week in camp for a change. We’re really fortunate in being in because the weather is truly foul – cold, rain and sleet and we all got out our prayer rugs, faced Mecca and gave thanks for our deliverance.

And also – today found me the recipient of two letters from you. They are 1 and 2 of your new numbered series – just to make sure I’m not to be cheated of my daily word from you. Lately – I assure you – they’ve been coming in regularly – except for Sunday – (there being only one mail delivery on Sunday)  - but, then I get two on Monday.

And now to answer your inquiries concerning my choice of raw, medium or well-done steaks, chops – etc. – you must immediately begin the practice of doing this meat medium – or I will even accept it a little rare – but make sure it never becomes well-done to the point where it becomes dry and void of the tasty meat-juices. Gosh – I sound like a fancy cook-book –

Our week-end (for it was really ours – as I felt you were almost actually near me – my thoughts being with you most of the time) came to an uneventful close with a trip – by daylight this time – down the mountain where we had been perched. The view was magnificent – almost like flying in a plane – we stopped once and took some pictures – if they come out I’ll send them on to you.

Speaking of pictures – I’m enclosing some snaps of Tullahoma and vicinity – with appropriate remarks on the backs –

In regard to your request to make a cover for a scrap-book – during our furlough – that’s out – I’m sorry but I won’t have the time – Every moment will be occupied with more important things – Can you guess what they’ll be?

Besides the cover is not important – Haven’t you heard of the adage – “You can’t tell a book by its cover” – so keep the sketches in any form you desire – just so we can look at them together – later on.

Sam has just interrupted this letter by pulling some pumpernickle, herring (of all things) and cheese from out of his sleeve I think – so we have partaken of a few of these delicacies. I never liked herring – or had never even eaten any until Sam introduced it to me a few months ago – I guess I never liked the looks of it – but once having tasted it – I fear I’m well on my way to being a true herring-tearer. Sam wants to add a few comments – Here he is :-

[handwriting change]

My dear Helen: I thought this would be the best way to thank you for “trying” for me. All you’ve done is really deeply appreciated. – I now have “dream boy” as my neighbor – and it’s good. That one floor between us – was too much like a barrier, now we really can enjoy my herring and cheese. – Just lean over and “Kai” –

Bye and love and regards and thanks – Sam – and from New York – Eva

[handwriting change]

This is “Dream Boy” back again – but as we spent so much time eating – I find that the lights will be going out soon so I must hurry – Goodnight my Sleeping Beauty –

St. Ted

P.S. I hope you’ll be able to “smile again” real soon.

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