I typed different forms, like the names of a lot of boys that [had] come back and where they were from, they were all across Canada and I was in Halifax out at A23 [Coast and Anti-Aircraft Artillery Training Centre] and that was [at] Eastern Passage [Nova Scotia] then, we were way out there in the sticks.
But there was a lot of girls there, a lot of girls, they were from out west. And there was two or three from the island [Prince Edward Island]. It was a different life than [that of a civil servant] in Ottawa because we only got I think then 60 dollars a month and you had to pay your rent, and live and dress. And there, when you got your pay, it was yours.
So that was the big difference, you had to buy your toothpaste and stuff like that but you got your, and your underwear, you had to buy that. But you got your socks and your shoes and your raincoats and your heavy coat for the winter. And all the troops from out west [came] to Eastern Passage before they’d go on the boat overseas. Oh yes, they were always telling us some, the news was, if anything big took place, they always told us. Oh yes.
There was a lot of girls where I was in Halifax from out west and they liked Halifax and they liked the East Coast. And most of them [had] come from big farms or what we called it, away. But anyway, they were all nice girls and you had to be adjusted, have your shoes polished and your buttons shined and your thing on your cap done and be on parade every morning - or not parade but inspection. And I had my hair long, it was black and I had it in a roll-up. I never thought to put a picture in. And I must have worn my hair and sometimes the girls would braid it for me. But I just rolled it in a roll-up. And it was black, black, black. So. No, it was a good life. Some of the meals weren’t so hot but …