26th March 1916
My Dearest Mother
Very many happy returns of yesterday: I hope that I shall be with you for the next one and that the Huns have been mopped up by then. I’m afraid it is a scandalously long time since I wrote: I don’t know how it has happened: I hope you’ll forgive me.
I sent you off a telegram yesterday and shall hope to choose you a small token tomorrow. Tim is now in the operation ward and having a grand time: there is much more scope for her abilities there than in a huge ward of 60 men, where she spent half her time and all her energies in trying to keep it clean. I have had several new instruments installed recently and have had much work getting them adjusted and regulated. Of course all our apparatus requires constant readjustment and regulation as they work incessantly, and the details which require to be precise become worn, and therefore cease to be precise.
I think I told you that I saw George about two days after Ford: he came one evening to the hospital and I had a chat with him, and we arranged to go out to tea together, Tim, he and I, but the next day he came up about 2 o’clock and said he had to go off at 4 so he had to say goodbye and go to report himself. How is B: getting on ok I hope – please give her my love. I suppose they have heard from Stanley.
Thank you very much for the Indian and Canadian letters I will return them shortly. Have you had an answer to your cable yet: I do hope she won’t come: I think it is a dreadful undertaking: ships are being torpedoed everywhere it seems. The war news seems to be a little less depressing if one can believe the papers, which I doubt. I was amused to see an account of the naval engagement, that Aunt V. mentioned, in today’s Daily Mail (continental edition) between the Grief and the Alcantara. Why they hugged the account to their bosom for nearly a month, before putting it in the papers, is a mystery to the ordinary lay man. I think it will shortly be very difficult to do the Channel crossing if they cut down the service much more. Your letters nearly always take 5 days now.
I will leave this letter till tomorrow morning. I don’t seem to have any news or any ideas at present. The only things I can think of would be promptly excised or deleted by the Censors scissors or black ink, so it isn’t much good writing them down.
Certainly Mrs Eric Scorer is a tiresome woman, thanks very much for sending me the cutting.
The weather here is most odd: cold all this week with downfalls sometimes snow and sometimes rain.
What did Mrs Jake die of? I’ve never heard, oh, and please tell Father I had an acknowledgment of my draft from the C.L. on Saturday and thank him very much for same.
I think it will be a good thing when Jack goes for light service somewhere: he seems to be playing the fool no end. I suppose his leg had mended more satisfactorily than they thought: does he limp or anything like that. Would you send me 3 dozen linen buttons, for aprons they are unknown here!! in this one mouse power place.
Goodbye now and best love to all