"Any time there was a float or a parade in town, we girls were on the float, handing out war certificates."
I'm Ester Might from Peterborough, Ontario. I joined the Women's Division of the Royal Canadian Air Force. I joined up in a mobile unit in Peterborough in December 1942. I was put on leave until the 1st to 3rd of January 1943, when I went to Rockcliffe from Toronto by train. I spent a month there, learning how to drill, from the right from the left, and then we were sent to Toronto for a refresher course, more or less on my stenographic work. When we graduated in Toronto, we were all lined up in a hallway, and one by one we were called to go into this room to get our posting. We were all quite young and very excited, and I was ready to go anywhere, from Halifax to Vancouver.
When I came out, the tears were rolling down my face and my friend said, "Oh, Ester, where are you going?" "Oh, I'm just going to Haliburton Recruiting Centre, about thrity-five miles away." I was so disappointed. But then, on the other hand, it was a wonderful posting. I guess I didn't realize that we were more or less picked for recruitment.
I worked in an office, but I spent more time outside of the office than in the office. Any time there was a float or a parade in town, we girls were on the float, handing out war certificates. We were invited to afternoon teas. We were invited to bowling parties. We were invited to speak at the Oshawa Hotel for a convention, where we walked around the tables selling war certificates. Anywhere in the public, where the other girls on the street could come up and talk to us, see our uniforms, "What's it like?" so they would make their entrance into the recruiting centre. A lot of the girls in the recruiting centre lived in Hamilton, so they were able to go home for Christmas, and those of us who were out of town would have the time off. The Sergeant Major called me into the office one day and said, "I'm sorry, Might, but you can't have either Christmas or New Year's Day off." I was so upset. Then he said, "Well, it says here that you're supposed to report to Y Depot in Halifax for an overseas posting on December the 15th." That was my first notice of going overseas. Another girl from the recruiting centre was also posted, so we were sent on leave for two weeks before we were supposed to report to Halifax.
My mother and dad were very good to me. They sat me down at the kitchen table and said, "If this is what you want to do, go ahead. We will support you. We taught you right from wrong, and now it's up to you." So I went off with a good feeling that my parents were behind me, and sending me off in goodwill. They hated to see me go, mind you.