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Date: December 13th 1916

Rather late to ask what Xmas
presents I want unless for next year.
Seaford, Eng.

Dec 13th 16

Dear Emmie

I received yours of the 20th of Nov. today & as I have been dying for someone to write to for the last two or three days I will make the best of the opportunity & scribble off a few lines to you, if you don't mind the compliment. I suppose you notice that I am using my own paper instead of Y.M.C.A. paper, well I wouldn't be sitting in this miserable smokey hut writing if I could get to the Y.M. but there have been so many cases of measles in camp lately that they have quaranteened the 100th lines where we are located. Therefore altho we are not isolated to our huts as some are we might as well be for we can't go outside the lines. The general yell here is Where will we eat our xmas dinner, reply - In hut 32 of the hundredth lines. If that is spelled wrong you just say it is my lack of education. It takes a college graduate or first year or such like to make a man over here Rolph Smith for instance. Well it may be sour grapes but I'd much sooner go into the trenches as I am than as an officer for if a man is not a genious with men he has a slim chance of getting through the war for they say that if a man is no good his own men soon put him out of their way & you can hardly blame them when you see some of the things they send over from here. For my part I don't wonder the war is going so slow.

I see by todays paper that the Germans are offering peace terms on pretty descent terms provided that the war were a draw but I think things will move in the spring with Lloyd George in power & that this time next year the terms will work out quite differently. We have plenty of men & Germany knows it & she just wants to make her people believe that we are pushing the war & that she must defend herself. Then again she'd be glad to get out at a draw, but waite & see.

The 196th Batt havent got over there as yet & by the looks of things are not likely to. They say this camp was under quarantine once before for measles for nine months. If history repeats itself then we won't see France until after the war. Or I should say until near the endof it for I think xmas 1917 will be a happier one than this will be for a good many folk. All the fellows coming home on leave say it won't last long once the winter is over. Still we have heard things like that before & you never can tell.

I had a letter from Jim today & he says my letters home are to blue so here is where I am going to cut it out if possible. Still I can't half but express the feelings of the crowd sometimes, "pretty often I guess". Do you know there isn't a man English or otherwise in the camp who isn't as keen as can be, to get back to old Canada again. Believe me it will be a great day for those who are left when we hear that peace has been proclaimed & we are headed back to Canada, Even if we do get the South_land to go back in. Oh quit.

Letters come in rather slow over here at least it seems so for we watch for them so close. Oh! say a few eats once in a while would go fine so some time when you have the postage just send a little along. In a light tin box is best for it travels best that way.

The fellows in the isolated huts have to wear yellow bands on their hats & it sure makes them look ghastly to say the least of it. Of course the rest of us give them the broad side of the road & pass by on the other side of the road. Excuse the repetition but I am not one of those University guys.

You say Jessie wrote the same day as you Well I dont know whether it was the one I got a week ago or another which I have not got.I will live in hopes of the latter. Tell Jessie she is dreaming of this as you called it did not rub out but was plain as could be. Yes I heard about Mr. Parkers calf & the raffling of the same. I wonder how I heard?) Re that platoon for the 249th read Jessies letter & do thou likewise. A bit more don't have to many of their dances on your entertainment list. I guess I'd best quit for I must save paper. Cant get out to buy any more. Merry Xmas etc.