July 12, 1916
Well, here we are, Skilling and I, seated at our table by the window looking out on the beautiful quadrangle of Keble College. Verily, as usual, the lines have fallen to me in pleasant places! It was, of course, a bit of a disappointment to have our commissions deferred; but we could hardly have chosen more pleasant conditions under which to pursue the elusive appointments, than those under which we find ourselves. Whether we overtake them in the end or not, we at least have the prospect of a month or two of very pleasant life.
The old gang which has seen so many vicissitudes is now broken up - some have been attached to A. Coy., some to B, and the remainder to C coy which together with D. Coy occupies Keble. We have not yet learned at what Colleges the others are billetted. Here we are two to a room or rather to two rooms. Of course there is little furniture - a chest of drawers, shelves, a table and two chairs -, but the privacy is delightful. We sleep on biscuits on the floor; but they are nice flat, new biscuits, not dirty and lumpy like those at Shorncliffe. And then to go to dinner, as we did last night, in the beautiful, vaulted hall with its stained glass windows, and long polished oak tables, and eat a real dinner - fish, roast-beef, potatoes, greens, and a delicious looking and tasting compound of peaches and blanc mange - cooked by the College chef, served on the College china, and by the hands of the College waiters! - No mess-tins to wash! No jam-pots to dispose of! - Oh! didn't we get homesick for the 32nd! Breakfast just as tempting - Porridge with real Milk, Bacon, Coffee, Marmalade - everything deserving of capitals. We're almost tempted to become "bomb-proofs." Of course there is another side to it. We are in for some jolly hard work, as we have been duly warned to-day, and while the course is supposed to last 4 months, there is every probability that some of us at least will be sent on before that time. And there is always, of course, the possibility of our being sent back to the ranks before the completion of the course.
Our leisure time will e somewhat restricted - only allowed out Wednesday and Saturday nights. We have from 4 until 7 o'clock off, however, and all of Saturday afternoon, with week-end passes about once a fortnight.
Love to all,
P.S. For the present I cease to be Private and become Cadet.