Dear Mom & Dad,
I just received two of your letters Dad - one of June 3rd and the other of June 6th so
I thought that I would write. I also received a card from Cliff and a short note.
It's always good to hear from him. He writes an interesting letter.
Well, good news at last. Yep, you guessed it - Blackhorse. We leave here
tomorrow morning at about 7:30 and will get in to Blackhorse at about noon. For how
long I don't know. I hope for at least two months. I don't know. I
haven't heard anything. Perhaps longer or perhaps shorter.
It will be good to get back. When we get back there we will work shift. One
day on and one day off. I can catch up on a lot of lost sleep. The only thing
we will have to worry about back there is mortar attacks. Of course they only get
mortared once in a blue moon. When they do get mortared it's on the other side of the base
around the motor park and headquarters area. So we are pretty safe there.
Out here in the field I'm a nervous wreck. Every time our artillery has a fire
mission I jump 10 feet straight up in the air. They tell me here that if I hear an
explosion that I don't recognize to duck. So far I've heard the enemy's 82mm
mortars, our 105 and 155mm Howitzers, AK-47 fire (VC's) and M-79 grenades (VC's and ours -
we both have them). These M-79 grenades are not thrown. They are launched from
a special gun which looks like a big barreled sawed off shotgun. So I have gotten
used to most of the sounds of war. I have got so that I can sleep through a fire
mission of 155mm Howitzers.
I have adjusted to conditions over here very fast. I thought that it would be
hard to get used to sleeping under the stars in a sleeping bag and having bugs eating you
alive and having to dig your own toilette (latrine in the Army) every time that you have
to go and having to wash and shave out of a steel pot (that's slang for helmet) but it's
not. We wash our own cloths out of the same steel pot but I adjusted quite quickly
and in fact, I kind of like it. It makes me appreciate more the finer things in
life. This is a rugged life and it take rugged men to lead it. It's surprising
what a man can live on - not having things like TV, magazines to read, hot showers, clean
cloths or dry socks. Personal possessions are kept at a minimum. You travel as
light as you can and get used to living with nothing at all.
I am going to cut this letter short because it is going to rain very soon. So I
will write again when we get to Blackhorse.
By for now!
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