May 17, 1917

Dear Ma,

Dad's letter, the camera and John Reed arrived yesterday. Of course, I know that you want to know how I am. I am O.K. and have been and I hope you will be when this reaches you. I have been doing all sorts of things lately and it hardly seems possible that it is within ten days of a month since I left. We do odd jobs in the morning and in the P. M., I have been going down to one of the big Red Cross clearing houses and working there. Today, I took my driving test. I went about a block and turned around and the officer said: "Well, it's just wasting your time and my time for you to drive. You're O. K."

I saw Madame Lestelle last Tuesday and she asked me to lunch on Friday - tomorrow. We had quite an interesting chat. Coal is over 300 francs per ton. Sugar is unobtainable - 3 lumps a day are allowed and everyone is worried over Russia. I told Madame Lestelle that I would mention the sugar question, as she said she wished she could get some from the States. I should think Mr. Neeser might send some over by the ambulance boys, as it seems to be done quite often by people not connected with the ambulance.

We went out to Neuilly and the hospital the other day and Dr. Keating has been gone for more than a year. However, I am in well with the big people for I met Mme. Benet, wife of Doctor Benet who is head of the whole thing, and had tea with her. We were there on a Sunday when many things like the operating room were closed, but she asked us to come again and she would show us all over.

We don't get any U. S. news here and people seem to forget that we like newspapers and magazines as well as the soldiers, most of whom can't read them.

It seems as tho' some food was cut down every day. Only one piece of meat for a man every noon, I hear, and such extreme delicacies as candy and chocolate are miles above the extent of our purses. No cakes at all are obtainable; in fact, we only use the necessities of life and what isn't eaten as such goes into soup, hash, etc.

I hope that I can have the exhilerator for my Ford with the next gang, if you are well enough. But please don't worry about me for I am perfectly all right and alive. Still, we do not get any extras except from home.

Please send this around to any who may like to hear from me, as I have not written to anyone else, and please get well soon.


My regards to Locke, Hodges & Co.