Today I received your letters written on -( Mothers-Jan 10th and Jan.18th) (Dad- Jan 17th) All with three cent postage! And old A.P.O. No. I received letters from Grandad Sherer in about twice as short in time. He sent his airmail! So try them and see. That is why I'm sending this letter to you airmail.
Well last Monday I went on a 48 hour pass in London, England. I reached there about four o'clock in the afternoon. Hopped a cab, which are very funny compared with ours in New York, they look like the cars you used to have in the 1900's, but the are kept in very good shape. To us the price would not mean anything. You know in N.Y. you around the block and it costs about .30 cents, well here it cost very much less. Say around the block to compare with N.Y. it would cost here about 3 cents in American money. (cost of living is a lot lower here) So all in all your money goes a long way. Now to get back to the pass. Well the Red Cross has many hotels, houses and places to stay for the armed forces over here so we make reservations with the Red Cross for rooms. Well I was with my platoon Sargent and the s/Sargent from the mess hall. Well we all were together in one room in the Red Cross hotel. First we went out to find something to eat! We did! There are a lot of restaurants in London. A lot like the ones in N.Y. We took the tube from the club to their times square. Boy what a thing that is. It's a lot better than our subway in N.Y. by a long shot. A lot more modernistic a lot cleaner and more peaceful. It's just like being on one of our newest passenger trains. But it's smaller. One thing I liked about it was that, no matter where you were you could never get lost on that thing. It's a lot simpler than ours too. Anyone could find his way around in it.
After eating we went to one of the largest cinema's in London and saw a fairly new picture from the states. I didn't see it so it did not matter. By the way I will tell you something about their cinema's, in all of them you can smoke! And you pay a high price to sit upstairs where all the smoke is. And you pay the lowest price to sit in the middle downstairs. Can you figure that one out? I can't. Costs something like a shilling to go. Gee, I'm getting to know this English money better than the American. No kidding, I am. I haven't seen or used any in such a long time that I am really breaking away from it. After the movie we went to a few pubs and then back to bed. Not much to do in the black out.
Tell you something about the people. The children come up to us and all they ask for gum and candy! Get sick of it after a while. Got up the next morning and had a good breakfast then went sightseeing. First we went to see Buckingham Palace. Boy what a place that is. The King was not there but was coming in the nest day. Too bad to miss him. We couldn't go in but we walked around it and saw everything we could from the outside. At the rear we met the King's coachman and he told us a lot about the King. He is the head of the stables. They used to have 130 horses there but they had been taken away because of the air raids. After that we walked down through the park to the Parliament Buildings. Saw Big Ben and heard it strike Four O'clock, boy what a clock. From there we went to Westminister Abby. You know the church where they crown the Kings and Queens. We stood right where they were crowned too! I think it's the most marvelous thing I have seen since I have been born. It is so beautiful and so quiet inside that it makes you feel funny inside. As you go in the main door on the floor is the British Unknown Soldier. Also the medal which was on his coffin for a year given by General Pershing. And the Union Jack. And all through the church were the graves of the late Prime Ministers, Kings, Queens, poets and etc. All in all it's wonderful to see. There was so much of it to see I forgot a lot about it. I should have had a notebook. But maybe I will remember more about it later in this letter. Outside of the church is a statue of Lincoln, which inspired me at the time. Nice to see something like that when you're over here. Never expected to see anything like it.
After that we spent the rest of the afternoon downtown looking at the buildings that had been bombed. Most of the city has been cleaned up, but you can take all of the scars out. No matter how hard you try. We compared pictures with the actual places that had been bombed in 1941 and you should see the differences. They have done wonders with the buildings. We also tried to buy something to send home to you from London, but there isn't anything we could buy in that line. All clothing is ration, so I'm sorry on that subject. I sent a cable but I left out the 230 on the address so I don't know if you will receive it or not. I don't know why it is, I always forget to bring the address when I have the opportunity to send something like that. Maybe someday I will remember. We had another swell dinner and then to another movie. Next day back to camp so all in all I had a wonderful time. As you would know.
I think I told you that I wasn't seasick, and we spent Xmas and New Years on the water!!! Isn't that the good luck for you! Well anyway we will all be back together again soon, I hope.
Dad, I received the watch but the same cold strap! Can you send some other kind for me? Thanks A lot. Boy I did miss my watch a lot. It's a relief to get it back. If you can't send of get a knife skip it. I know how it is so please don't go to any trouble for me.
That's swell news from Charl but I would rather see him in a Bomber!!! You know if he has two or four motors it's a lot better than one. But I'm happy that he will get his wings in March. At that time it will be just a year for me in this mans army too. Think of it Mother and Dad! I have been in the army almost a year. It seems like yesterday. Even now I can look back at basic training and remember the hell I thought I was going through. But now that I look back on them I realize that it wasn't hell it was just getting used to the army.
Lt. Col. Dad, hey what do you want the fellows to think. A Lt. Col. coming to see me!! Why dad I'm just a buck private what will he think when he looks at me. So, this is the son of Mr. Copley, Well, well, a private too!!! Kidding aside it's swell of you to ask him to try and see me Dad. But when you write him next tell him my A.P.O. is 230 and not 9115. Ok. I think if Lt. Col. Mawhinney is one of the 24 of General Eisenhower's staff I don't think he will take long in finding me. Boy I would sure like to talk with him about home. Boy! Rank doesn't mean a thing when you're talking about home. I really don't know how to talk with a Lt. Col. So don't be surprised if I get busted to a 4F.
You know Mother you are allowed only 5lbs per buy but they don't say how many, do they? How about sending me some cookies or a nice fruit cake? Boy what I wouldn't do for a big ice cream soda. The first thing I do when I get back is get a couple of gallons of ice cream. Boy oh boy. Say Mom, is Jell-O ration? If it isn't please try and send some will you? Please. Thanks.
Do you mean that, that first cable didn't tell you I was in England? Here is what I think I said or something to this effect:
Am ok in England please send cig and so on....
I will write again soon.
Love to you always,