FRIDAY, MAY 26th

I have to go over and see young Dickson, about seven miles from here this p.m. A very wet night has turned into a fine, but cold day. Smyth here this morning. He says we go back about six miles to Varennes, on Tuesday, for a fortnight. The gooseberry tart was excellent, and there was enough left to have cold the next day for lunch. Peacocke, who commanded the raiding party in the 9th Inniskillings has got the D.S.O., and the officers the M.C., and well they’ve deserved it. Our ‘Times’ has taken to coming three days late now, which keeps us backward in news. I hear the Bosche has had a success Verdun way. In the line the nights were hot and one’s breeches irksome to a degree, but since we came out the nights have been very cool. Another small draft of 12 came from the Base yesterday; all but three were men who had been in hospital, and had left a various times, one with appendicitis and three or four with Hun spots. I am getting ventilation holes drilled in this tin hat; there’s no ventilation and one’s head gets fearfully hot. Smyth says he’s going to Paris for 4 days. Gillespie, from Levaghery, came in today’s draft. Holt just turned up.

10.00 p.m.— Went over to the hospital and saw young Dickson. He’s going on well, and is quite wonderful, so cheery, though suffering. They have not located the bullet, and are to move him early next week to a Base hospital. Holt came in just as I was starting, and rode back some way with me—very cheery, he is still with X Corps, but no one’s child. Some of his men are digging some way behind us. I had not heard of M’Farland’s exploit at Havre. Curiously enough he rejoined today, and I will see him tomorrow and congratulate him on his conduct. Of course, nights are disturbed generally in the line, but I always manage to get my share of sleep, sufficient to keep fit. Yes, do ask the Bishop to stay. I can imagine how the agricultural community, always rootedly Conservative, would object to the new time arrangement. The evidence before the Commission is astounding. Birrell’s was a revelation of ineptitude, and Wimborne’s a revelation.

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