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VOLUNTARY WAR RELIEF   9235

in about an hour and a half £4,750 were paid out. To see these men come in laden with their equipment, tired, muddy, and hungry, and to hear the cheery welcome given to each in turn by the captain in charge, is something never to be forgotten. One night, as the captain extended his hand for a man's pay-book, it was grabbed with the eager words: "By Jove, sir, it's good to have a handshake again." Each man gets a friendly greeting: "Well,—staying with us to-night?" Some few reply, with a happy grin, "No, sir, going home"; or, "No, sir, my wife's here!"—and always the offer is made to those who are going on: "Time for a good hot dinner before your train goes, and you can have a hot bath and a change of under-clothing if you want it." The majority, who are staying, have their kit stored for them and are advised to deposit their money at the club, and to draw it out as it is needed. The amount deposited between November 1st and 17th, 1917, was $317,386. There are times when some discretion is needed on the part of the chief orderly in giving out money—especially late at night. Under these circumstances it usually happens that "the bank is closed" and the amount asked for "is not available." Many a man has expressed his thanks the next morning for the refusal. Liquor is of course not allowed in the clubs. If a man who has been drinking comes in, he is gently but firmly encouraged to remain in the lounge or to go to bed—he is never allowed to go out again in that condition.

This quotation from a mother's letter shows what she feels the Maple Leaf Club has done for her boy:

"Words cannot express the inestimable benefit it has been to my son. His letters written on return to camp gave a glorious account of the kindness and hospitality he received at the Maple Leaf Club. My boy is only twenty-three and young enough to be very lonesome, and I feel as if I must write and express my gratitude for the welcome he received. I was quite happy and con-


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