SATURDAY, DECEMBER 4th

Rained all night. This life in billets in winter is wretchedly uncomfortable for the men, and so little means of improving their lot. They get wet day after day, and no means of drying their clothes. Up to their ankles in mud if they stir out; food not to good, I mean not enough potatoes and vegetables, and constant short ration of bread, and very indifferent at that; always a proportion of bully beef, 25 p.c. [%] generally, and of biscuit, which they loathe. Dark at 4.00 p.m. and nothing to do. Reading room so small and no other to be had, and they absolutely loath this playing at soldiers. Field days, digging, etc. Today was finer, rain most of a.m. and fine p.m.: water everywhere.

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