23 September 1916

Life in the army I find is a life of delightful and unexpected surprises. You are told that you are going to some large town and at once visions of comfortable quarters, with perhaps the luxury of a real bed loom up before you; you reach the town only to find you do not stay there but have to tramp out into the open country and fight for a corner in some ancient barn. You hear that the journey is to be done by rail, but nothing is said about ten miles march before and after reaching the station, while the crowning joy of all is to count on a month’s rest and then find yourself back in the trenches within a week. All these pleasant surprises have been mine recently.

We had a few very restful days in the place I last wrote from, a delightful spot on the banks of a wooded river, but since then we have been on the move by rail and motor lorries, and ‘Shank’s Mare’ till we found ourselves in Normandy where the boys had the time of their lives among the apple orchards.

 

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