Oct. 17th 1917
Well, I left the rest station last Monday and came up to the battery yesterday. Half the battery has moved and are over in B/62's old position. I am with them now and it sure is some place. A peach of a big dugout with 8 entrances. We have the gramophone down there and have a good mess. B/62 got shelled one day and left so we took it and there's hardly been a shell near since.
I sure had a swell birthday. I staked them all to a champagne dinner and we got a piano from Madame who owns the chateau and a scotch fellow played. We had a regular scotch evening.
I suppose you've guessed it by now but it's quite safe to tell you that my official age is now 20. We all took a chance, except Des MacMahon, at Forest Row and shoved an extra year onto our ages thereby saving the government and ourselves much time, trouble and expense. However, as you all knew I'd do it if I had a chance I guess you won't be much surprised. Jack Price and Bill Morris are out of for good now as they are both badly cracked up.
None of my mail was forwarded to the rest station so you'll get many letters asking why the, what the, where the, you didn't write. However, in the words of the prophet, "Grab your shirt." I take back all the nasty remarks I made about the navy, re-guarding mail boats too.
Had a bunch of letters from Nen you & Ella waiting me and one from Mrs. MacLaren in London so I'd better pull up my socks and get busy answering a few.