There are no letters during this time between Doreen and Bill, however I do have the information to fill in the blanks until the letters pick back up again later in 1943.
Dorren made it! She made her way down to meet Bill safely on December 29th, 1942. This was of course after Marg married Ted on Boxing Day 1942.
Doreen boarded the train at Union Station in Toronto and she made her way to Montreal without incident. Once she got on the “Ocean” train she was was shocked to find out that the ticket Bill had bought her was one for a soldiers transport. She was the only woman on the entire train. As she would say later, all the men were nothing but gentleman, they always opening doors for her, pulling out her chair, and asked if she needed any help with her bags in her berth. All in all she said that the amount of attention that was directed her way was very odd, but she just chalked this up to being the only woman in sight for 24 hours.
Bill was waiting for her on the platform when the train arrived in Halifax and they could not contain their enthusiasm to finally see each other after 4 months. Doreen showed off her new train outfit, a blue dress with white boots. It was at this moment that Bill laughed continuously and Doreen asked him why he was laughing. Bill first apologized that she was on a soldiers transport. He then explained to Doreen that is was common knowledge between all the service men that women who wear white boots are better known as “ladies of the evening”. It now made sense to Doreen why she was so popular on the train and they laughed about this for years.
Bill and Doreen spent the first 5 nights at the Lord Nelson hotel, enjoying all the comforts of both each other and what the city had to offer. Dining out, walking along the shoreline, dancing, all the things that Bill promised to Doreen came true. They then moved Doreen into her new one room in the house owned by Mrs Mullens.
Bill retuned to work after the 5 days and stayed in the barracks as prescribed by Air Force policy and Doreen settled into her new routine. She had breakfast with Mrs Mullens and then would get herself ready to head down to the barracks where Bill and her would have a chance to see each other through the chain link fence at lunch. She would then return back to Mrs Mullens and continue this practice for the next few weeks. When Bill would get his 48 hours leave, he would join Doreen in their little room and talk and talk until the wee hours of the morning about what they planned to do after the war was over.
It became very clear to both of them that Doreen would not be going back to Toronto after the months visit, so they both decided that she would stay.
Doreen went down to the Halifax Eaton’s store and asked if she could get a transfer and it was granted. So Doreen now had a new routine. She could go to work during the days and wait to see Bill when he had his leave. They went to the dances 2 times a week, went to the show at least once a week and had all the comforts that they had always wanted when they got married, it was just like a dream.
One thought on “January – March 1943”
Thank you for this gap filler! I was worried because of course they wouldn’t be writing to each other while in each other’s company!