Woke about 7 o’clock. Had breakfast at a station by the way. Finished journey at Hesdin1 at about noon. Got motor-lorries and went to Ouve2, about 30 kilos. Took us about 5 hours owing to breaking down and losing the way. Walked round village at night. Received two letters from Ernie and one from Gertie in which she tells me about her progress at the piano. Decent news from the line. Weather fine. Sergeant Powell unwell. Turned in about 9.30.
Up about 7 o’clock. Not much to do. Got new tunic at night. Fine day. Received letter from home saying that my final Intimation of Wound1 had come through. Also letter from Gertie telling me about her lessons.
We know from ALL’s papers (specifically a document entitled “UNIT REGISTER CARD A.G.Z.500 FRANCE”) that he had qualified for “Wound Stripes: One”, no doubt in virtue of the wound sustained on 14 April; one assumes from this entry that wounds, even minor ones, were formally notified to next of kin. ↩
Up at 3 a.m. Paraded at 4 o’clock and went off in cars to Haplincourt1 crossroads. Got lorries from there to Achiet2 and train from there to Amiens3. Arrived at Amiens about 9.30. Holman taken rather badly. Had good breakfast and then visited the cathedral. In the afternoon visited the museum and were taken round by a Y M man – a very tactful and clever man. The sculpture work was the most magnificent I have seen, and the pictures were very wonderful. Thoroughly enjoyed the visit to the museum. Had tea and got train about 5.50. Arrived back at 9.45, very tired. Gertie’s Birthday.
Up about 7.45. A good day. Over 20 gas cases in from 87th Brigade Artillery headquarters. Received letter from Ernie, on the subject of Gertie.
Up about 8 o’clock. No rations up so we had iron ration biscuits and bully for breakfast with a drink of tea without any sugar. Paraded at 10. I reported sick and was given duty. The American officer put a bandage on my ankle. Spent afternoon writing a letter home. We tried to improve our billet but the sergeants took it from us because two officers took theirs. Received letters from Gertie, Mother, Ernie and Hilda Linfoot1 in New Zealand. Got down to it about 8 o’clock. Had a look inside of a tank. Walked round inside gate† and was very much interested in it. Quite a lot2 where we are. A rumour that some of us are going to a place on duty.
Knocked about town – round new park with Gertie in the afternoon. Called at Aunt Mary’s and little Jack’s. Invited to Jack’s tomorrow.
Up at 8 o’clock. Helped to rig up dispensary during the morning. Did a bit French at dinner time. Walked into Méteren1 at night and called at Jeanne’s†2. Bought an apron for Gertie. Stayed a good while and talked. A young New Zealander there. Returned about 8 o’clock.
Up at 7 o’clock. Parade at 9.15 for inspection and afterwards gas inspection. Nothing to do in the afternoon. Walked into Doullens with Holman and met Harvey there. Went to the picture house. Bought some fancy work for Gertie and Dorothy. Returned about 8 o’clock. Had 4 eggs for tea.