Oct. 11th 1915
My dearest Mother,
I was most delighted to find a parcel awaiting for me this evening. Thank you all so much for it. It was most interesting unpacking all the little parcels. The scarf looks very neat and warm, and I think I shall use it as a body belt when we go to the trenches. Many thanks to Nance for her letter which arrived yesterday. You are all so good in writing, don't have any qualms about your letters being too long as they do not have to be censored. Hearty congratulations to Marjorie on passing her matric. I can well understand how pleased she would feel. We left our last quarters two nights ago at dusk, and had a nine mile march. The transports were to have caught us up and taken our packs, but owing to a mistake we missed them. We were not sorry when about 10 p.m. we reached one of the rest camps behind the firing line. It was a pleasant change to have a dry floor to lie on once more, and I did not need any rocking to sleep. It was very nice the next morning to be wakened by the cry of "Morning Paper." We are able to get the "Express" Mail in these rest camps for 2 1/2p each. There seemed to be no prospect of any breakfast so I wandered to a farm nearby to fill my mess tin with water with a view to making a fire and some tea. I found I could get breakfast there, so had three scrambled eggs, bread and butter and three cups of coffee for ½ [?]. It was a great luxury after cooking my own meals for a week. On the way back to the hut I discovered we were only a few hundred yards from where we were a week ago before moving nearer the firing line. We have not been given the chance of a bath yet. It would not come amiss. The last wash I had was in the sea at Folkestone. The tea tabloids are an excellent idea. I shall be pretty well stocked up for a bit. When you do send another parcel you might put in some coffee tabloids or a tin of café au lait, also a tin of zambuc would be useful. The cake was very nice, but it goes very quickly for the room it takes up. I would propose substituting one of those paper packets of round oatmeal biscuits like I took on the voyage to Canada last time. A few envelopes would be useful too. I posted a letter to Alf two days ago. I hope he got it. Tell Madge I am going to get a tin of fruit to eat with the cream that she sent me when we get paid. I was interested to see all the Standards and have passed them on to the other Vermilion fellows. I think Vermilion has done awfully well in it contribution of men and the machine gun.
Well dearest Mother I will stop for the present
Ever your affectionate son
I have that group the Dunkerleys took of you all at No. 10 The Leas and it is such a nice reminder of the jolly time I had.