The Theodore Hosp.
53 Mount St.
My Dearest Mother Father and Sisters.
Please note my present address - right in the swell west end of London - close to Buckingham and St James Palaces, Park Lane, Berkeley Square and all the rest of it - Don't you know!
This Hospital is being run by a Greek Lady named Zarifi - apparently a rich widow. It is apparently a converted private house and even now is run pretty much as such - a butler two footmen, and several maids, a music room and smoking room, as well as a dining room on the ground floor and all the wards decorated like a private home. There is of course a matron, a nurse, several V.A.D's and at noon, tea and dinner two W.A.A.C's to assist. Then Mrs Zarifi is always in to see us - I think she spends most of her time here. The capacity of the place is limited to twenty and is apparently never full so we seem to have much attention.
On Sunday I was bundled up in the usual way and about 4 P.M. was chucked on a stretcher with a card marked in Red letters HELPLESS. With a number of others I was taken by motor ambulance down a big hill and through the town of Le Ireport to the Station a leather visaged woman being the driver of the cart did awfully well in avoiding the rough spots & the jolts.
We were loaded on the Hosp train by U.S.rs We tried to get them to talk but every time they started they would remember something else that someone else had done long before they thot of it and just a little bit better and their voices would trail off into an indistinct murmur. It seems so significant to see these bit strong fat united staters doing such work and to compare them with our Canadian and English Hospital orderlies everyone of whom is a B.[?]. man and looks it.
On the train from 6 P.M. until 6 A.M the following morning to travel some forty miles to Le Havre where we were bundled up again put on stretchers and carried on board an Ambulance Transport boat which is a lot different from a Hospital ship in that it does not depend on the Red Cross for protection but carries a battery of guns and the necessary shells and crews to fire them.
After loading we moved out into the harbour and waited for another ship and for dark. About 8 P.M. we sailed accompanied by several destroyers and reached Southampton Harbour about daylight. Shortly afterward we moved up to the Quay and were given a chance to say where we wished to go - I elected London and got it. We were then unloaded by some big U.S. blue jackets and after a short wait on the quay the Hospital train to London pulled in and we were loaded on - then the train moved onto a siding to make way for other trains and to wait for the unloading of the other transport. So we had to wait until two PM to finish loading then we started for London. Gee it was fine the way that train moved. It took less than two hours to go over 60 miles. We pulled onto Waterloo station and had to wait a while for allocation to Hospitals and the unload was rather slow but I finally passed St James Palace clock at 7 PM & arrived here shortly afterward. A good dinner and this lovely soft bed & I passed out until the next morning.
I have been hoping to get my overdue mail for some time now as soon as I got here for I wrote to France to tell them to send any mail for me to the Union Bank but though I wrote the Bank yesterday morning I have had no answer. It may come along this afternoon.
Some underwear I had left in my trunk when I went to France was sent to me some months ago. It was all moth eaten but I cut the legs off above the knee and wore the rest. I intended writing to Cooks to have my trunk turned out but never made it until today. I expect everything in it will be all destroyed by now.
So far I have not told you of getting several parcels of MacLean's Magazine on the Evening of Sept 1st and a parcel from Ethel containing a suit of underwear a pair of sox some tobacco and cigarettes and so on. This was just about 8 PM and we had to move forward at mid-night to get into our jumping off position for our advance of Sept 2nd at the last moment I sent my haversack with the underwear down to the Company Quarter Master Sergeant to keep for me. I was very glad the rest of the day that I had as it was very heavy & would have been too much to carry after I was wounded.
Well I still hope to hear from you soon.
Oh by the way - my lung is all healed again - only a small amount of fluid still there and no temperature. But oh my my seat is sore