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Date: August 27th 1917

Mon. Aug. 27th 1917

Dear Mother:-

Well I haven’t had any mail from you for a long while now, so I’ve got nothing to answer this time. I sent you a whiz bang last week, I guess you got it. We were up the line then & that was all I could manage. I suppose I’ll have to be writing all the time now to make up for the time I missed up there.

Well I know something of what it’s like up the line now, & I must say I’m not enchanted by the life, & even then I haven’t fired a shot yet. But I certainly don’t wonder at fellows getting shell shock. Fritz was at us all the time, that is, several times a day, maybe for up to an hour a time, Sometimes we might be able to get into a dugout or cellar that was pretty safe but most of the time we just had to hug the bottom of the trench, wondering whether the next whiz bang was going to hit the top of the trench & bury you or whether the next minnie was going to light beside you in the trench or around the corner. None of them fortunately came nearer to me than to shower me with stones & dirt. I tell you a bath felt good when we got out.

There was one good thing about our trip tho’, it didn’t rain, tho’ for a while I wished it would so that I could get something to drink. I never suffered so much from thirst in my life before. The first couple of days the water had to be carried up quite a piece & Fritz’s shells made it still more difficult to get it up, so that for 60 hrs I only had 3 pints of water. Two days, not in succession, too they didn’t get up any rations for us. We didn’t suffer much from that tho’ & the rest of the time we had more than we could eat of bread and butter, jam, cheese, beef, ham, beans, mulligan (cold), veal loaf onions. I guess that was about all. They supplied us with Tommy cookers tins of solidified alcohol, or maybe paraffin, & we had tea. They sure treated us fine in the grub line when they could get it up.

Anyhow we are out back at C. camp again for a while, at the old shining job, & it’s raining. I get awfully tired of having to shave every day but I don’t know but perhaps it’s better than going for ten days without shaving. I can grow quite a nice little beard in ten days too, but no signs of a moustache.

Well there’s [?] to write about [?] that [?] think of. There’s a concert on as usual tonight. I do wish a parcel would arrive soon too. They’ve let up on the grub since we got back here.

Well I’ll close.


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