36 Reserve Squadron
PER ARDUA AD ASTRA ROYAL FLYING CORPS,
March 12 1917
Another rotten week with no flying. All last week it was fog or rain or snow until I was very sick of it indeed. One has to look busy and try to keep out of the way as much as possible, more than at ordinary times. I have been stuck on as an instructor, on the ranges, of machine guns. Why I got it I don't know, unless it is always the duds who get the jobs in the army, which is true. I did get a 1st class at Hythe while there in Jan. but I have forgotten most of it now. Can you fancy me knowing anything about machine guns? Neither can I.
Today has been rather good weather. We have had quite a busy day at the aerodrome. Everybody flying or attempting to. Some very amusing incidents. In all we crashed 6 machines today. Not too bad for one day. No, I didn't do one today, although I did some rotten flying. When one is off for a week it is surprising how much one forgets, more so when the one in question knew little to begin with. My instructor crashed one this morning at 6:30 to start the day with, and so several others followed his example. No one was hurt a bit, so it is not so bad. Anything for a little excitement you know.
One fellow let his machine run away on him, rather it got out of his control, landed at 100 mph, ran along the ground 500 yards, hit a hedge at 40 mph and the whole machine turned a complete somersault over said hedge. He was strapped in well, so when the ambulance got to him he was suspended in the air, 12 feet up, and upside down, and quite happy because he hadn't broken his neck, as he fully expected to. So did we.
Had a letter from Alf a couple of days ago. He is still in England and wants me to meet him someplace soon, before he goes over. I will write him in a day or two and see what can be done. I don't think he had better come away up here, and I cannot get down there very well, but we may be able to manage it somehow. He was well at time of writing.
I was inoculated last week and felt a little seedy for a day or two, and I see by tonight's orders that I am down for another dose in the morning. I think it must be a mistake. I am also down for flying at 6:30 am, so I will have a busy morning I
No Canadian mail this week. I suppose it will be along in a day or two though, as it is often days late now, I suppose mine is late also. I guess it is hard enough to get it across at all, so we shouldn't complain.
I have a new hobby now. I was pushed into the Mess Committee here, and as we have one of the rottenest messes in the country I don't think I can spoil it any more. It is a rotten job but someone has got to do it. I hope to help to get the price down anyway.
Will be glad to get my letter and know that all are well. Hope Father and Mother are both keeping well, also yourself. I am feeling tip-top but it is rotten not having anything to do, and sitting around here. However that is my chief complaint just now. Must close now as it is 12 P.M., and I have to be up quite early. Lots of love for Father, Mother and self.
P. S. The Jones are all well and Mother's letter rec'd O.K. All were delighted with it.
W. H. G.