Pte. C. FINNEMORE Writes. (From France)
Pte. C. Finnemore, who went overseas with the 139th Northumberland Battalion, wrote from France to his sister, Mrs. D. Williamson as follows:
Received our most welcome parcel to-day. Thanks very much. Everything was in good condition. The butter kept fine, and I see where I will have some real butter on my bread for supper to-night. I have had nothing but margarine ever since I left Canada. I have got so used to it now that I do not mind it a bit. We are having some rather miserable weather over here lately, cold and wet most of the time. The mud is something awful and the shell holes are full of water, and believe me, there are lots of them around too. I am not feeling the very best myself at present. I had a bad cold and got a touch of gas, which makes it worse, as my throat and lungs seem to be burning out all the time. I expect that I will be all right in a few days though. if I can keep dry and look after myself. The last two weeks have been the worst that I have had since I came to France, but I came through it all right without a scratch. We had quite a few wounded but only. . . killed. The ground is so soft and wet that the shells go deep down before they explode, as a rule, so that nearly everything goes straight up in the air. I have been well soaked with water and mud from them several times. I suppose it will be getting rather chilly in Canada at this time too. The last of the leaves are dropping off the trees around here now, so the country is looking rather desolate. I have not had a chance to do any writing lately and have had a couple of large Canadian mails I have about a dozen letters to answer now. I had a box from Florence when I was in the . . . and believe me it was welcome for I made a hot cup of tea to go with the homemade cake. There were only four of us in the dugout, so we had quite a feed. Whenever we get a box like that, we always make it go around through the bunch who: are together. Oh, yes, whenever you send a box to France, do not bother putting in any oxo as there is generally more of that stuff lying around than bully-beef. The boys do not seem to care for it much over here, and unless there are three or four in it, it does not pay to light the fire and use the water. Sometimes we have to carry our drinking water four or five miles in two gallon cans over our shoulders. Fires are one of our greatest worries over here. At night we have to be very careful with the light and in the day time we have to watch the smoke, as, if old Fritz gets his eyes on a spot where there is smoke coming out, he smells a rat right away, and sends over a few shells to find out what is doing there, It seems to be an understood thing over here that when one goes out, he must not come back without bringing something, such as a rubber sheet, overcoat, some dry wood or charcoal, anything that might come in handy. It is surprising the amount of material laying around on a battlefield. I have seen pretty nearly everything from an ear ring to a locomotive lying around. Well, I do not know as I have much more to say this time. I must write home in a day or so, as I have not written for over a week, so I will close, hoping this finds you all well and again thanking you for the welcome box.
Your affectionate brother,
(814990) PTE, C. FINNEMDRE,