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Date: September 15th 1917

c/o Sergeants Mess.

5th Reserve Batt.

West Sandling.


Sept 15th 1917.


My own darling wife.


I cannot understand why it is that I am not getting any letters from you to me here, I have just got two, one of which came here & was sent to Seaford & the other which went to Seaford was an old letter that you wrote last December & which had been returned to you. I wrote you as soon as I got here so that I should be getting letters from you to me here, I have written to Seaford to send my letters to me, but apparently they are not getting any, the last letter I had was written by you on July 21st (this is the one I got to day from Seaford) in which you tell me about taking the children to the Jubilee Hospital for their throats, dear Heart, it is awful that you should be alone in all this trouble, you may guess how uneasy I am for you all, I am so afraid that you will not be able to stand it & break down under the strain, & I want you so much, & I want you to be well & strong when I get home again, whenever that will be, I feel ashamed of myself sometimes, I feel so healthy & hearty when I think of you & the trouble & anxiety that you are always having, how did the children make out after their operation, are they all right again yet, I am most anxious to know, dear, you must have been awfully lonely without them in the house, seeing that it was the first time they had been away from you. I guess there is not much use writing to Genl Currie or anyone else to get me home, I have done all I can on this side & I cant make any headway, they wont part with any A class men at all, there are hundreds going back every week but they are all C class men, that is, men who have been too badly wounded to do any work, or men with some incurable ailment, some of them are lead swingers & manage to get away with it, many a time I wish that there was something serious the matter with me, so that I could be sent back, but outside of the rheumatism & nervousness there is nothing wrong with me & I look so healthy that the doctors wont look at me, I have been bothered with my stomach for the last couple of weeks so I went to the doctor & he gave me some pills, they did me no good, so I kept on going to him, till he sent me to Brigade Hospital, I was there two days & was glad to get out of it, they did nothing for me except feed me on castor oil & salts, so I am letting the pains run their course & they are getting better without any help. I hope you manage to see George Ormsby, he & I were good friends & I am glad he managed to get home, I have not heard of him since I left the line, but I know he had a hard spell of it. I am working hard every day, I started on a two weeks map reading course on Monday & I like it fairly well, only it is a bit too hard for me, there is too much arithmatic in it for me & my old head does not seem to be able to stand the strain, if I could only pass out on it I might get a good job, but I have no hopes of that as my memory fails me all the time, I would much rather have had a good drill course, but I will get that later on. We have been having dandy weather here ever since I came back, but it is beginning to change now & it is beginning to turn colder & to-night it is threatening rain, we are also having lots of air raids, but I suppose you see about them in the papers, they have not been over here since they bombed Folkstone, but they have been close & we were able to see them in the distance, they never do a great deal of damage, but when they kill or wound anyone it is always the innocent women & children who suffer, but this is an awful war & God knows what atrocities will be committed before it is over, it looks to me now as if it would never end, look at Russia, she is having a civil war & it seems to me that she is going to make a separate peace, if she does it will allow Germany to send all those troops on to our front & the question is will we be able to stand the pressure, at any rate it is going to prolong the war for a much longer time than if she had gone on fighting. Things are not very rosy in this country just now, prices for everything has gone up enormously, matches that used to be 1 ½ d a dozen are now 1 ½ d a box & lots of places wont sell them unless you buy something else as well, Householders now have to have sugar cards & when they want sugar they have to go to a certain grocer & they are just allowed a certain quantity & they cant go any where else as the name of the Grocer is stamped on the ticket, & it is getting to be the same with everything else, we in the army are rationed down to the last part of an ounce & we don’t know what it is to have a good feed, except on pay day when one can go down town to a resturaunt & buy a meal & even then once can only buy a certain amount & the small amount of money we receive does not go very far in the mater of luxuries; so you can see for yourself dear that it is not all lavender over here, I sincerely hope that things are not so bad in Canada, or I am afraid that a great many people would starve. Bob Hanna is here now, he will probably be sent back to Canada as he is badly wounded in the leg & cannot walk without a stick, Andy Campbell is still in France & has a good job on the transport, he never has to go up the line at all, so he is all right. I don’t know that I have very much to say just now dear, I am keeping very quiet & never leave the camp except to go for a stroll in the evenings, I feel very lonely & miserable most of the time, but just have to put up with things as they are, I am sick sore & tired of everything & feel absolutely fed up, & if it was not for the thought of you & the children, I would have been back in France long ago, as it is, my only desire is to get back home to you again, of if I could only see your face again & kiss you & hold you in my arms, I would be happy, If I could only wake up in the morning & see you lying beside me, I think my troubles would be over for good, but I have to wait, and all these good things seem so very far away, but when they do come dear, wont you & I be happy, I know we will, for you know how much I love you & I know that you love me, so what more will we want. I do hope you will get this letter all right & I hope I will get one from you soon, kiss my darlings for me dear & give them a great big love from Daddy, & with all my love to you my darling wife & lots of kisses

 I remain as ever & to the end, Your own

XXXXXXXXXXXX loving Husband.






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