December 7, 1942
"December 7, 1941! Flash! Pearl Harbor attacked by Japanese."
America was dazed. Pearl Harbor bombed? Impossible! But it was true. Shockingly true. Men, women, and children practically murdered in cold blood while resting on the Sabbath. A horrible, cold blooded killing which could be accomplished only by ruthless people. That was how America entered the war one year ago today.
The only effect that the war has really had on our family is: one of my older brother's being drafted, the gas rationing, and my younger brother, George, being eligible for the draft. Sugar rationing has had no effect on us because we get more sugar than we usually use. Coffee rationing isn't so bad because we get enough of that each week too. The gas rationing, though, really hit us in a vital spot. I believe my father will still be able to ride to and from work, but he will not be able to take my mother and her friends to meetings and he will not be able to go out to Indiana on the week-ends to the cottage as he has been doing all summer. All in all, we have not been affected by the war, but other people have suffered severely by losing loved ones.
I have not been affected at all by the war. It seems that the same people are being hurt all the time. The people on the coast and those within reach of the enemy planes are the ones who suffer most. The people in the Middle West are not being touched and may never know what war really is if our borders are always so well guarded.
Looking back on the things the Japs have done since the war started, I sometimes wonder what made us send so much war material over to them. It ought to be a lesson to us not to put too much faith in people we know are liable to stab us in the back.
Christmas Eve was the night my father picked to finish his shopping, and since my mother was fixing the turkey, my sister at work, and my brother sick in bed, I was the one elected to go along with him. Now to be candid, I didn't want to go, but did I say so? You can bet your sweet life I didn't. I didn't want my father angry with me at Christmas, so I went along peacefully. Since most of the stores were closed we didn't get much shopping done. When we got home I had to help wrap packages, so to make a long story short, I got to bed at 11:00 P.M.
Christmas morning dawned but our house was quiet. Why? Because we were all so tired we didn't want to get up - a great difference between this Christmas and last Christmas. We finally dragged ourselves out of bed and gathered around the tree, oh yes, and the presents. Did I say presents? And how! But maybe there seemed to be a lot because some of them were so big. Well, it took us a while to get them all opened, and then, of course, we had to sit and talk for a while before getting breakfast.
After we had cleaned up, my sister went downtown to meet a sailor whom she had a date with. I sat and listened to records and my brother went over to his girl friend's house.
I didn't mention the turkey did I? Well that's something worth mentioning. I guess everyone will agree that an eighteen pound turkey is worth mentioning. It was 2:00 P.M. before it was ready and then three of us sat down to dinner; my mother, father, and I. My brother doesn't count since he couldn't eat much. After dinner we lay down for a rest. There's an old saying that only pigs lie down after they eat. Well, I must admit that I made a hog of myself that day. I couldn't look turkey in the face for a week after that, but maybe that's because we had it almost every night for a week after that.
After washing the dinner dishes, it was about 4:30 P.M., my mother, father, and I sat dow to play pinochle, and I must say we ended our Christmas quietly.