January 7, 1937
Handwritten letter of Nephi to the Scheffler family in Elbing from Salt Lake City, Utah. He has been home now for five months and is studying at the University of Utah to become an engineer. He doesn't like the cold. On the other hand, he loves his automobile. He asks about Bruno (a general in the army?) and Erich (in the merchant marine). Nephi still has wanderlust and would prefer to be plucking roast doves from the trees in Tahiti.
Salt Lake City, Utah
7 January 1937
I'm taking this opportunity to write you a few words. I've been so very lazy but now have summoned up the requisite courage to send you this correspondence.
Five months have already passed since I arrived back in Utah. Time is passing so quickly that I can hardly notice it. Christmas and New Year have already been here. Now it's slowly making its way towards Spring.
A lot of snow is piled up on the ground in the Salt Lake Valley. At the moment it is very cold, but I think the cold will let up soon. Although we have a lot of snow, the sun shines very often and very pleasant weather is our blessing.
Maybe you're wondering why I write about Salt Lake City. That is very simple to explain. I don't know whether I've already written to you or not about the fact that I'm going to the university now. Right now I'm in the study-hall building of the University of Utah. I already have one semester behind me. I'm also glad that I've completed my courses successfully. I'm studying engineering, maybe electrical.
I drive to school and back and live in Saltair with my father. The car is put to work every day. I've already put more than 10,000 kilometers [6,000 miles] on the new car. I would like so much to have an opportunity to come to East Prussia again, but I surely wouldn't come without my car. Maybe when I have a lot of money I can fulfill this wish.
I can easily imagine how cold it is in East Prussia. During the time I was in Hamburg, I read about it in the paper a lot. Often I read about the cold in Königsberg and Elbing. I don't envy you at all. I don't like the cold.
How is everything in Germany now? The Führer did a great deal for the poor at Christmas. That was a very good deed. I can imagine how busy Bruno is in the Reichswehr [German army] as a general. Maybe it'll get to the point where he'll get a position in Berlin in the Reichskanzlei [Reichs-Chancellory]. And how are things with Erich? Is he still with the shipping company? He'll be a captain soon, too.
Other than that, I imagine everything is still as it was - Hilda at the sewing machine, mother at work cooking and [doing] housework and father at the forge.
It would be lovely to travel to Kahlberg now. I think the swimming would be a little too cold, though. It would be better to bring the ice skates along.
I want to thank you very much for the lovely Christmas card. Ella and Willi didn't forget us either. How's everything going with them? In Crimmitschau it can be a little warmer than in Elbing (the city on the Ice-border). In weather like that, you ought to go to Italy or to Nice until Spring.
It was a very funny feeling to be in America again. Everything was so different than in Germany. I got homesick for the Fatherland before long. Now it's going better. I'm an American again, instead of a wandering gypsy.
The wanderlust has gripped me again. I'd like to keep on moving [Further-Further Hacken]. This time I'd like to go to the South Sea islands -- Hawaii, or Tahiti. I wouldn't have to work there, and I could pluck the roasted doves from the trees. That would be a wonderful life.
With me, everything is going as usual. We are both healthy and happy. I hope the same for you. Accept the most cordial greetings from me and father and also send greetings to Ella and Willi, Bruno and Herta, as with all others in Elbing.
It was with pleasure that I received the letter from Hilda when she and Miss Brettschneider were in Berlin. I'm glad she was able to make a trip there.
All that's good
the best of