We are full of preparations for Christmas. We shall try to make things as jolly as possible for the men……

D Higgins 1915 IWM12/12/1916

My dearest Father

I think it is time I wrote to you. How are you getting on, have you had any shooting lately? I suppose Walter will shoot Tothill once or twice.

Can you raise a big turkey for Christmas? I have promised to be responsible for one for Christmas. There are about 24 of us so it will have to be a hefty fellow. It must go to this address:

Miss Moberg, 45 Princes Square, Hyde Park, London W. She is leaving London on the 19th I have written and told her that it is coming. Will it be a bird of Mrs Lowe’s raising ?

I hope that this is not an awful nuisance for you and that you’ll be able to get it off on time, if not there will be 24 very hungry and disappointed people on Christmas day. This is only a scribble to catch the post. Will write a proper letter later.

Best Love                   From your loving Dorothy.

12/12/1916

My dearest Mother

Thank you very much indeed for the books, jujutes, hooks warrant and badge. I’m afraid I have been a nuisance and an expensive nuisance too just lately. It was the fat book I wanted but you were quite right; I had made a muddle. I’ll send back the warrant next time I go down to Rouen. I don’t want the money out here: it had better accumulate at home.

17/12/1916

This letter will never get finished: Tim has been in bed for three days with influenza and is very sorry for herself. I am looking after her when I am not on duty which keeps me awfully busy. She feels fearfully sea-sick all the time poor girl which is so awfully rotten for her. There seems to be a lot to do, straightening her bed, making tea and such like, filling bottles and washing her absolutely fills up my spare moments. It is awfully bad luck as she has just been moved to the electricity department about a week ago and was enjoying life tremendously. I am going to get Matron to write a certificate of 12 months work and shall send it to Mr Walker: Mrs Baron ought to see to it but I shall send it direct to him as she is so slack. As for my Christmas present: I think a fiver is too much: I want to get an oil stove for our room which will cost about a £1. There is quite a nice brand of stove one can get out here. Also I am getting some new curtains for our room so may I have £2 out here please and if you really want to give me any more keep the rest and pay Father a little more of my War Loan: I still owe him about £6 I think.

I hope your cough and cold are quite cured now.

I wonder if Elsie will come home next year. Of course the Mediterranean seems to get worse rather than better.

I think it would be awfully nice for you to spend Christmas in London: I’m sure you must need a change and it would be nice for Father to be within hail of his only remaining sister too.

Will you send me a Stores weekly provision list some time, I’m rather keen to compare English and French prices. I do so hope Vear’s knee is not being allowed to go stiff. Father wrote and said of course the wound must heal before they can do anything. I’m sorry to sound superior but that is just what they mustn’t do: it must be massaged and worked and given all necessary treatment as soon as possible: many of our men are treated with open wounds: in fact no one stops treatment for a wound unless he is in excessive pain or very recently operated on, or having some special drug which requires to be left on the wound for several days.

The screws were much too small. Was my drawing bad? The diameter of the opening should be about that of a florin. A dozen will be plenty but there is no particular quantity. Thank you very much for the Clay’s fertiliser, Miss Loveday has bought it. I hope May’s case will come: the last one she sent has never turned up.

Matron has recently been home on leave and we may still have our papers seen to by Mr Beard at Southampton so that is all right.

I was awfully amused at your account of the Missioner and his appeals!!

The new Govt. makes one reflect a good deal. Anyway I think it is full of new blood and ginger: let us hope it will justify its existence. The new French push is splendid everyone here is awfully bucked about it. We want something to cheer us up anyhow. I hope Father’s throat and cough are better. We are full of preparations for Christmas. We shall try to make things as jolly as possible for the men. It is not so easy to plan for 1000 odd as for 210 as it was last year.

We are doing a little show of our own on Boxing Day. Tim and I and other nurses are doing two little plays in our mess for the others and the doctors. One of them is “Between the Soup and the Savoury” that hardy perennial. I am again doing the cook’s part.

The weather is absolutely beastly, to-day is thick raw fog, bitingly cold and most of the other days in the week it has rained.

There is now news much to tell you. Tell Father that I think the turkey is quite enough Christmas present for me.

I shall dry up now as I must go and look after my invalid.

I shall write again before Christmas.

Best love to you both

From your loving Dorothy.

About Mrs T

Beyond the day job, the housework and the garden I love to delve into local and family history. I also love to get involved in local projects. Recent research for Alford Manor House has combined the two and led to obsession.
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