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Dear Ma and Pa:

I am well. Hope you are. Tell Brother Walt and Brother Elmer the Marine
Corps beats working for old man Minch by a mile. Tell them to join up
quick before maybe all of the places are taken. I was restless at first
because you got to stay in bed till nearly 6 a.m., but am getting so I
like to sleep in late like everybody else.
Tell Walt and Elmer all you do before breakfast is smooth your cot and
shine some things. No hogs to slop, feed to pitch, mash to mix, wood to
split, fire to lay. Practically nothing. Men got to shave but it is not
so bad, there's warm water.
Breakfast is strong on light trimmin's like fruit juice, cereal, eggs,
bacon, etc., but kinda weak on chops, potatoes, ham, steak, fried
eggplant, pie and other regular food. But tell Walt and Elmer you can
always sit by the two city boys that live on coffee. Their food - plus
yours - holds you till noon when you get fed again.

It's no wonder these city boys can't walk much.
We go on "route" marches, which the Platoon Sergeant says are long walks
to harden and tough us up. Ok if he thinks so. It's not my place to tell him different.
A "route march" is about as far as from our house to the mailbox out at the road at

home. Then them city guys get sore feet and we all ride back in trucks. The country

is nice round here, but awful flat. The Sergeant is like a schoolteacher. He nags some.

The Captain is like the school board. Majors and Colonels just ride around and
frown. They don't bother you none. This next will kill Walt and Elmer
with laughing. I keep getting medals for shooting. I don't know why. The
bulls-eye is near as big as a chipmunk head and don't move. And it ain't
shooting at you, like the Higgett boys at home. All you got to do is lie
there all comfortable and hit it. You don't even have to load your own
cartridges. They come in boxes.
Then we have what they call hand-to-hand combat training. You get to
wrestle with them city boys. I have to be real careful though, they
break real easy. It ain't nothin like fightin with that ol bull at home. I'm
about the best they got in this - except for that Tug Jordan from over near
Silver Lake. He joined up the same time as me. But I'm only 5'6" and 130
pounds and he's 6'8" and weighs near 300 pounds dry.
Be sure to tell Walt and Elmer to hurry up and join before other fellers
get onto this setup and come stampeding in.
Your loving daughter, Gail

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