did however see something of the towns and after the blackout
at home it was a joy to find the streets lit and the car headlamps
shining bright. I couldn't help wondering how long it would be
before the lights went on again at home. A welcome and much appreciated
gesture was shown to us at a town called Truro where some kind
people boarded the train at midnight to distribute apples and
offer words of welcome to Canada.
26 October 1941.
When we arrived at Moncton at 4am it was snowing hard. This was
a brand new RCAF camp with well equipped quarters but seas of
mud in place of roads and I was glad to lie down for an hour
or two after a much needed shower.
A large breakfast was served at 7.30 and the feature which caused
most comment was the bowl of sugar on the table after the rationing
back home. During the morning we walked into town which we found
attractive with many interesting features - the wooden houses
built up on piles, the very large cars, the right hand traffic,
the railways running through the streets and the abundance of
goods in the shops.
In the evening we were invited to a social, run by an organisation
called the Knights of Columbus, where we had a great time and
were further invited home by a Mr & Mrs Wolstenholme. They
were keen to hear first hand news from home and we stayed talking
until 1am when we were given a lift back to camp. All the RAF
chaps have found Moncton residents very hospitable and eager
to make our stay a happy one - I wonder whether British people
have been as kind to Canadian troops over here and I am inclined
to doubt it.
27 October 1941.
All cadets today attended a lecture by the CO on what to do and
what not to do in Canada and USA; he warned us not to give foolish
interviews to the press and apologised for the unfinished state
of the camp. We have been entertained by watching the building
in progress and very impressed by the speed of the work which
is aided by many mechanical aids not seen in Britain.
Our first pay of 10 dollars was issued today but after airmailing
a letter to Moira and visiting a Soda Fountain I went to bed
early for a solid night's sleep.
30 October 1941.
Rumours of going to Montgomery, Alabama next week. There is little
to do all day except parade at 9am and 2pm when we are usually
dismissed after rollcall. We have been photographed for identity
cards which will serve as passports and we have now received
Canadian money in exchange for the Sterling which we handed in
on board 'Pasteur'.
An attempt is being made to confine us to camp until 4.30pm and
we are supposed to be back in camp by 10.30pm but twice this
week we have been at the Wolstenholme home until about 2am without
any trouble. We find a great variety of subjects to discuss and
information to exchange on life in Canada and Britain - they
are particularly interested in air raid stories.
This is a strange life and the sooner we all get down to work
the better as everyone is getting restive. However behaviour
has so far been excellent and I understand that Moncton residents
have no complaints as yet.