Dear Ma & Pa,
I’m good. Hope you are. Tell Brother Walt & Brother Elmer the Marine Corps beats working for old man Minch at the Uvalde creosote plant by a dang mile. Tell them to join up quick before maybe all of these here places git filled.
I was restless at first because you got to stay in bed till nearly 5 in the mornin, but am getting so I like to sleep late. Tell Walt & 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, chickens to mash and scratch or rattlesnakes to kill. Practically nothing that looks like real work. Men got to shave but it is not so bad, they git warm water.
Breakfast is strong on trimmings like fruit juice, cereal, eggs, bacon, and the like, but kind of weak on poke chops, taters, ham, chicken fried steak, and other regular grub. But tell Walt & Elmer you can always sit between two of them thar city boys that live ofen coffee. Their grub plus your grub holds you till bout noon, when you get fed again.
It’s no wonder these city boys can’t walk much. We go on a thang the sergeant calls “route” marches. The Sergeant says these long walks is suppose to harden us up. If’n he thinks so, it’s not my place to tell him different. These here “route marchs” is about as fur as it is frum our’n house to the mailbox down on county route 2 back home. Then them city guys gets sore feet and blisters and we all have to ride back frum where we started in trucks.
The country is nice, but awful crowded — nothing like up in them hills. The Sergeant is like a schoolteacher. He nags some. The Captain is somethin like the school board. Majors & Colonels just git drove around by some purty guy & look all mad. Not to worry though, them big rank guys don’t bother you none, probably cuz they be mad at somebody else.
This next will kill Walt & Elmer with laughing. I keep getting fancy medals for shooting. I don’t know why. The bulls-eye is nears big as a squirrel, it don’t move, and it’s only bout a quarter mile away. And it ain’t shooting back at you, like them there Higgett boys do at home. All you got to do is to lay there all comfortable like and hit it. You don’t even load your own cartridges. They come all polished and lined up in little boxes " magine that!
I got to do my first Guard Duty a couple of nights ago with a loaded gun. Some guy tried to sneak up on me, but I heered him frum way off and was a waiten fur him. I kicked the livin tar out of him before he knew what hit him. Figgred he would get a better lesson outta the ass kickin for his bein sneaky that iffn I just shot em. Been told that I gotta go talk with the Company commander about catching that sneaky guy the other night. I bet I could git another shiny medal too. Somebody down at the barraks said that there sneaky guy I nailed was somebody they call Officer of the day.
Be sure to tell Walt & Elmer to hurry & join up before more fellers get wind of this soft setup and come stampeding in.
Your loving daughter,