August 29, 1916
My dear Daddy,
Your letter of the 16th from Toronto has just reached me and filled my soul with thankfulness. It was very good of you to spare me the apprehension and uncertainty which were yours. The fullness of life here prevented me from doing more than wonder in a mild way whether any parental letters had been delayed. I could have done nothing, and you must have known how much easier it is for me to face the possibility of not going back myself than that of going back and finding the circle incomplete. Now that the crisis is so happily past, I am glad, of course, that you have told me about it. It is good to think of you back at Cecebe again, joining in the happy life which the other members of the family have been so diligent in describing. I can understand now the temporary decadence of epistolary style which puzzled me a bit in the last bunch of letters; but not enough to make me suspicious.
We were all agog to-day over Roumania's entrance into war. It seems to be the psychological moment in the Balkans, and anything may happen there. We are fervently hoping, of course, that the Greek government will see the logic of events, or that it will be hammered into them by the Greek people. With Roumania on our side and Greece and the Allies on the other Bulgaria would have short shrift. At any rate it looks as though Austria might at last be brought to book for her long years of tyranny and injustice. It really seems to be the beginning of the end.
I have not told you to change the address of my letters, but it is perfectly all right for you to do so. When we first came everything was so uncertain; and since then it had hardly seemed worthwhile to mention it. It now seems pretty certain, however, that we shall be here until the end of October, perhaps into November; so it can do no harm if you send them here direct. Keble College will reach me but you might add "C" Coy, 4th. O.C.B. If we are slated for an earlier examination I will let you know.
Marjorie's of the 13th came to-day, also, telling of her experience as a model. How I should love to have one of the sketches. Couldn't Rex photograph them? I remember he was quite successful in reproducing some old photos with his Brownie years ago; and I should think a fair-sized sketch would be easier. Photo-reproductions of pencil sketches have always been fascinating to me.
We had a beautiful adventure Sunday afternoon. It was a trifle cloudy before lunch; but cleared about two; so Murdoch and I walked to Folly Bridge, secured our punt, and poled up the Isis and the Cherwell to Mesopotamia - at least we got nearly there when the pole broke under my herculean weight and nearly let me into the river. We had two paddles so were all right. We made very good connections at Mesopotamia; and were about to embark when it began to rain and did it rain! - believe me! We got under the trees and each took a fair maid under the shelter of his capacious mackintosh - not at all bad, that part of it - and did as well as could be expected. It stopped at last, as all things will; but the punt was half full of water, and the girls were none too dry about the ankles, and it looked as if it might begin again any moment; so we beat it through the park. As we neared the other side the sun came out again, and we tempted providence by sitting down on a bench - you see it was our last chance before they were to have three weeks holiday. We got what we deserved half and hour later. It came in sheets, and as the girls had to be in by five, we had to move on before it stopped. We parted damp but cheerful, Murdoch and I beating it back to College just in time for a cup of tea. Then we changed and waited till after dinner before returning to our half-drowned punt. The rain was over then and we had a deliciously restful paddle downstream, where we got "soaked" again - 4 and six for the broken pole.
Yesterday we marched out on bit of reconnaisance and decided what we would do as piquet commander in charge of a given section of line - where we should intrench, post out sentry-groups etc.
To-day has been wet, and we have spent most of our time within doors - lectures etc.
Enclosed are snaps of my last Leicester week-end as well as one of an entrenching party, a perfectly awful view of two really very good-looking nurses, and an experiment in portraiture.
Love abounding from