Sept. 8, 1917
Received your card on the 14th and your nice letter on the 15th last night, also a letter and papers from Clemmie, a letter from Enid, a pair of socks from Mrs. Green, a letter from Aunt Christie and letters from a couple of old college chums. I will be kept on the job during my spare time for a couple of days answering them all. Many thanks for the verses enclosed. They are very beautiful and their splendid truth inspires in me a renewed feeling of courage and strength. Yes I would like to be there to fill out the family circle in the word picture you have painted but the Fates have seen fit to will it otherwise and for the present it is not to be. And I am content that it should be so for much as longing to be home again we know that our duty lies in France and we would be unwilling to change our khaki suit for muftis even if we could. But at the same time we would like to have some of those boys who are hanging around our Canadian towns in mufti doing work which the girls would be glad to do over here helping to bear the burden. Was sorry to hear that Walter Randall was sick but hope that by now he may be much better again.
I have been very fortunate since I joined the army for with the exception of that touch of measles in England, which was really a rest, rather than anything else, I have never had a day sick. Roughing it seems to agree with me. After all I think worry is the cause of a great deal of sickness and as I do not indulge in worry or do not believe in it under any circumstances. I have not been afflicted with nervousness or nervous strain which I think is one of the worst forms of sickness especially under the present circumstances. I believe in doing one's duty as it comes to the best of one's ability, then, come what may, one need not fear for the result and whatever harm worrying may do it certainly will not do any good.
Yes I heard about the Eighth some time ago but did not see the list until I received the one enclosed in your letter. I don't imagine cases are very serious. Being somewhat new to the game no doubt they were a little careless in taking the necessary precautions and were probably caught napping. We have had a good share of the same dope lately but with no serious results. Some of our fellows have been feeling pretty seedy on it, but they are not the stuff to quit until they have to and would not report with it. Personally I have felt no effects from it except in one case of slight headache next day. Out of the Eighth list there are our some fourteen or fifteen old P.W.C. fellows and out of the bunch I know
about twenty, most of them well.
You ask about sending boots. I don't think I will need any this winter as the pair you sent last fall are quite good yet except for new half soles. I am going to send them back tonight to get them fixed up. I've got myself a pair of light boots in Paris which are very comfortable and will be fine as long as it keeps dry. As for sweaters I also have the one you sent last fall and no need for any for some time at least. Yes I received the underwear and shirts that Clemmie sent. They are fine.
You ask for Joe Clark's address. I have written to him twice lately but have not heard from him for an age. As far as I know his address is the same. Anyway it will get him even if he has got his transfer. Yes we hear from the Debneys at times. I had a letter from Mr. D. just a few days ago. Will enclose it in this. You will see by it where their little girl has won honors for herself from half the county.
Major Prowse is back with us again after his sick leave to England. We are glad to have him again for a finer officer is hard to find. Instead of taking turns each day on the different jobs we go on the one thing now for eight days at a time. For instance I was eight days on office duty and now I am with another fellow, on battery lines-man for a like term. The first day there was considerable artillery activity on both sides and we were kept pretty busy but since then it has been damp and foggy and consequently not much doing. Have not been out at all yet today, but we are going to take the walk over one of the lines that is not working very satisfactorily this afternoon.
Now Mother I think I must close for this time. News is scarce. The boys are all well and in the best of spirits. I'm OK. Am enclosing a snap which we had taken in Paris. It did not turn out very well but perhaps better next time. Now I must say au revoir. Excuse scrawl as I'm lying outside of our dugout.
Your loving son, Harold