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Date: September 6th 1917

Vimy Front September 6, 1917 My Darling Budsie: Please don't be cross with me for keeping you waiting so long for a letter, but honestly, you can't believe how busy we have been for the last three weeks. In that time we have made four moves and every time we move it makes double the amount of despatch riding. And, since last week, we have taken over the line again and have now more than enough to do. At present, while we are particularly rushed, one despatch rider is doing all the work and I am second driver on one of the ambulances. Where are you staying now? I haven't had a letter from you for almost three weeks. There has been very little Canadian mail come in lately. I am still waiting for your picture. Will finish this later - have a load of wounded to take out. Well, I did not get a chance to add this yesterday, so will try and finish it tonight. I am despatch riding again now. One of the D.R's was taken very ill yesterday. Oh, I am so disappointed tonight. The Canadian mail came in and not a thing for me. When I walked down the trench from the dressing station everybody was reading a letter. Gosh I was mad! But cheer up - better luck next time. One day last week when I was riding on the ambulance, Fat Hamner (the first driver) and I decided we would stop at one of the miner's houses and get some eggs and chips before going back to the advance dressing station. We had just been paid and were crazy for a feed. The place where we stopped was one of a row of about twenty houses, all occupied by coal miners and their families. It was only a short distance from the line and Fritz had been shelling it for three days. When we got in the house there were four "Scotties" ahead of us with an order for eggs and chips. The old miner was peeling potatoes and his wife was cooking eggs. We had been there about five minutes when "crrruuummmp - an eight ounce shell landed on the road in front of the house. It blew the door down, smashed all the windows, half the roof caved in, and a lot of furniture was broken by a piece of shell and falling debris. But not a person in the house was hurt beyond being hit by a few falling pieces of brick and tile etc. The French man and women beat it, the women crying her head off. The Scotties went outside to look at the shell hole and then wandered off so Fat and I ate what was left of the eggs and chips and made a darn good meal of it. The house adjoining the one we were in suffered much worse. Half of it was blown down and a poor little baby about two years old was buried under the debris. It was a mean sight and hit me harder than any of the cases of wounded or killed that I've seen among soldiers. I would like some of the Canadian slackers to have seen that poor family tearing away the ruins to find the body of that wee baby. It would have opened their eyes some, I'll tell you. I saw the body and it near broke my heart. The old man, when he found the baby, tucked it under his coat and crept around the remains of the house trying to get it away before his wife should see him. I have two pieces of the shell that hit the road - steel shrapnel bullets. We stayed around with the ambulance for about half an hour and the next shell got several men of a labour battalion. With help we got them dressed and took them to the hospital. One poor old man who had been previously wounded four times got shell shock and he was a terrible case. Maybe I ought not have mentioned this to you because it may make you worry about me, but please to not. Such occurences are very rare, and now that I'm on the cycle, I'm jake! Beyond having to make a round of Regimental Aid Posts every morning, I have a very easy time. Would you please send me the addresses of all the Meota boys - Tobey, Seeley, Alex Pruden etc. I would so much like to see them if they are in France. Well, I must quit. I have to get away before daylight to visit the Regimental Aid Posts, as Fritz has observation on the roads. All my love Dear, As ever, yours Cis.