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Back in the USA

September 4, 1945

Letters from Theodore Katz

a man and two women standing in front of the steps to a house

Helen with Ted's parents. Photo courtesy of Richard Katz.

[postmarked September 4, 1945]

(Sunday crossed out)

Dearest Helen,

You can see I’ve got my days mixed up – I keep thinking it’s Sunday for, how else would I be home on any day but a weekend. It’s now 6 o’clock and at 9 I’ll be on the bus bound for camp again –

Today’s demobilization news is good. The lowering of the points necessary for discharge and the addition of accumulated points from V-E day give me a total of 72 points lacking only 8 more. However, before long the score will be lowered again and again and I’m sure it won’t be very long before my turn comes up. So you’d better get a hold of some books on “What every Bride should know” – or do you know everything already?

After talking to you on the phone yesterday noon, we all went over to Cousin Fannie’s anniversary party. As you can imagine the place was mobbed – and the table groaned under the weight of food and drink. Everyone asked about you and wanted to know when you’d be coming up. I told them you’d be up as soon as my impending movement straightened itself out – and I found myself still in the vicinity, of course. The Kleimans were there too; Mr & Mrs Kleiman and their son stayed with us this weekend, and their daughter stayed with a relative. Her name is Josephine. Jo for short and I think Mr. Kleiman showed you her picture when you saw him. She’s married and two days after the ceremony her husband left for overseas – a year ago last July – and he [is] still in Europe.

Well anyway, my cousin Joe Meadvin, the misogynist, - calls me up and wants to go out with me telling me that he has a date – (can you believe it!) – saying that he’ll break it (probably with relief at getting out of having a date). But, things were beginning to get boring at the party – Max was already playing pinochle with the boys, and everyone was making with the small talk. Josephine was sitting in a corner twiddling her thumbs, - so, I told Joe to keep his date and Jo and I would go out with him. So – we did.

I wish you could have seen what ensued. You’d have died laughing. Joe’s date turned out to be a female wolf without inhibitions – and she had poor Joe scared to death. He looked as though he had his back to the wall all evening and was ready to fight for his honor tooth and nail. We went to a couple of places where we danced and wined and watched Joe parry his date’s advances. She was really a pip, and when I say she was without inhibitions I think I’d better underline those words – so I will. She would keep at him suggestively and would say whatever came to her head and her thoughts all seemed to have a bedroom tendency. Personally, I think she was doing all this on purpose to see how embarrassed Joe would get. He kept turning colors and tugging at his collar which seemed to be getting tighter all the time. He just didn’t know what to do except grin foolishly every once in a while. Knowing Joe, - you should have a pretty good idea of what it was like. We stopped at Luigi’s (remember where we had some spaghetti[)] – and I sat in with the band for a couple of numbers and then home. I still don’t know what happened to Joe after he left us off. He hated to see us go and leave him in the clutches of what he was certain would be “a fate worse than death.” But I guess everything turned out alright. She was only teasing him and had a pretty good idea of what he’s like because she said she was only building a fire under him to wake him up.

I arose late this morning and was given the job of redecorating the kitchen. It had been repainted and all the red trimming had to be put on again – you know, on the breakfast nook set, knobs, etc. So I got a little brush and can of red paint and went to work, and now it looks very nice indeed.

The Kleimans left a short while ago and now peace reigns again in the house. King has gone with them. He’s been a lot of bother to the folks lately, and there really hasn’t been anyone to take him out, etc – so they decided to give him to the Kleimans’ son, who took a fancy to him and I’m sure he’ll have a good home in Rochester. Of course, I hated to see him go, and I’ll bet Mom & Max will miss him for a while.

I’m wondering if you’ll call tonight before I leave. Mom is funny. Every time the phone rings, she jumps up and says “Maybe it’s Helen.” I’ve missed you very much – very, very, very much and I want to hold you very close, to kiss you until you look like a Ubangi, to tell you a story, to plan together, to watch you comb your hair, to wake you in the morning, to have you wake me in the morning[.]

Max & Mom also miss you very much – but in a different way, naturally –

All my love, Tederu

P.S. Regards to your folks and I hope all is well at home.

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