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January 20, 1942
Siems Drake Puget Sound
Japonski Island
Sitka, Alaska

My Dear Friends:

Your last letter came to me yesterday and I was very glad to hear from you.  I have been sick and when one is feeling low, a letter from friends means so much.  Yes, the old devil flu and a bad stomach has laid me low for a little while but I am feeling much better now.  I lost about a weeks work and up here if one doesn't work it is no pay.  So this little siege of mine was rather expensive.  I lost quite a bit of weight and now I am wondering if I shall regain it.  I certainly don't look like I did when I last saw you folks but there is no need to worry as I have been pronounced okay and I am back at work.  So much for that.

Everything is rolling along in much the same manner as usual and we up here would like a little diversion but I do not know where we would find it and if we did we don't have the time to go out and do it.

The weather has been frightful this past week.  I don't believe I have ever seen it rain so hard, Los Angeles not Excluded.  But living about the office has its advantages in weather like this.

Last night we had what we thought was an air raid alert but it turned ot to be the fire siren across the channell [sic] in town.  However we all jumped out of bed and into our clothes ad were headed for the wet winter night when we got the all clear signal.  It certainly makes one feel queer to hear the siren go off at ungodly hours.

I am pleased to learn that you boys have gotten under way with the additional land you have.  This next year should prove a bountiful one for you but I fear Old Uncle is going to take quite a bit away from all of us in taxes.  My income this year (1941) was a very sad affair, believe me.  You can well imagine that it was with seven months in the army.  Yes the whole thing has been a very sad affair.  However when a man makes his own bed he must lay in it himself and that is exactly what I am doing.  I shall never return to Southern California to live but I promise you I will come and visit you folks when the time is opportune.  Mom, in your Christmas card or letter you spoke of a medal or medallion which you said was enclosed.  I did not receive it and I am wondering if you forgot to enclose it.  I would like to have it.  Your Xmas card I have in my pocket.

I had a nice card and letter from Anne a short time ago and I will write to her as soon as I can get a little extra time.  It is rather hard for me to write too many letters in one night.  As a matter of fact I should be in bed right now (11:30 P.M.) but I do not feel sleepy.  Gosh I wish I could have been there at Christmas time with you folks and eaten some of those tasty things you mentioned.  My, My, [sic] how different things are here.  Our meals are pretty good as a whole but cannot compare to home cooked food.

Last week freight rates went up 45% and now it costs $1.00 per for HAMBURGER over in town.  Boy, it sure is expensive up here.

Well I think I have covered everything for this time so will trot off to bed.

My sincere best wishes to each and every one of you.


P.S. Has little Elmo Arrived [sic] yet?

Envelope - from: H.A. Taylor, Siems Drake Puget Sound Co., Stika, Alaska.  Postmarked - Sitka, Jan 21, 1942 5:30 PM.  Addressed to Mr. & Mrs. Wm. Destefani & Family, Route 3 - Box 702, Old River, Bakersfield, California




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