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Date: July 21st 1916

Friday. July 21st 1916

My dearest Mother

I received Father's letter last night also Minnie's and one from Allen. Many thanks. Really I get so many now that it takes some doing to keep pace with the incoming mail. Still I don't mind at all. Keep on and I'll manage the answering sometime or other.

Father gives me in his letter a lovely description of home the Sunday Percy was up for a long weekend so I thought that a peep into how I spent the same day would be of interest to you. What do you say?

I awoke at 6 o'clock that dull Sunday after a good night's rest in our tent for I sleep with a pal, that means we "double up" for by such an organisation we each have the benefit of two blankets and 2 overcoats instead of one. See!

Well, we scrambled out, got dressed, had breakfast at 7 (bread, bacon and tea). We then loaded our fighting artillery into the limber and packed our own junk. This took till dinnertime when we had our refreshment - beef and potatoes. Having thus satisfied (or otherwise) the inner man we "fell in" at 1.30 pm and began a march of about-----(censored). We had with us, I mean carrying it, all that we possessed, blanket, overcoat together with our quota of ammunition. It rained part of the way but was a day very similar to yours for the Sun came out strong ere we reached our journey's end. How glad we were to unhitch ourselves and throw our weary carcases on the straw in our barn. A straw bed never felt so good as then I can tell you. It was eight o'clock when we did enter that farmyard so after supper (bread, jam and tea) we made down our beds and were soon in the land of dreams. There is my last Sunday, and it's slightly different to yours. Isn't it? Ah! A strange life here indeed.

I left the gas school I told you about yesterday and got back to the barn where I found Father's letter (and cash for which many, many thanks for I was "dead broke") awaiting me. So I went into the town and had a good feed. You bet!

The weather here continues to be lovely and the country really is very pretty with the picturesque windmills dotted about among the fields of waving corn or barley or oats and sweet smelling new mown hay> Oh! It's grand but in the distance one still hears the murmur of gun fire and this, together with the humming of an occasional aeroplane brings one quickly back to ones mind the reason of us being here.

Now, Ma dear I must stop, leave this YM and walk out of town to the barn and bed so good night.

Hoping you are well and cheerful.

Your ever-loving boy