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Date: November 17th 1915
Mother and Father
John William Law

Belgium Nov 17 1915 My Dear Mother and Father:- There is not much to say this time which is perhaps the reason for not writing you before. I am well as ever in spite of the continual rain and sleet and the always ever present mud. Things have been quiet in our immediate vicinity probably because the trenches on both sides will not stand any artillery work, they are so washed away and caved in with the rain. Was out of the trenches for three days but due back in the front line again for a while. Went to see Orvil when I was out about my teeth, there was nothing wrong with them, so had them cleaned up nicely. He had just received a letter from home his mother was saying I was not allowed to write very often and the you had to send note paper. There are no restrictions like that Mother and I would write oftener if I had the time, days and nights go so quickly that I often wonder where the time goes. Your parcel with the long socks arrived just now. The socks are too good to put on and I will save them until we have a long march. This morning for a little while the sky was very clear and there are ½ doz areoplanes hovering around. The anti aircraft guns are simply firing[?] shrapnel at them but without much success. I watched an air duel of a British and German planes a couple of weeks ago. I could hear the machine guns firing at each other while manoevering in the air until at last the German turned made a long dive and fell just inside the German lines. I have never seen a German better an English plane yet. The British planes go far into the enemy lines but the German plane very seldom crosses the line of trenches. The article in "Everybodys" which you sent on "The nations Air Navies" appears to me to be very theoretical and in action conditions are just reversed. The British and French airmen are far superior to anything German. You wonder how we keep well in all this wet weather but I can only put it down to the amount we eat and the lack of real work done. For breakfast this morning, grapefruit, Quaker Oats, bacon, bread and toast and tea, also butter and jam, dinner yesterday consisted of lamb chops and onions, break and butter, gingerbread, canned pineapple chunks and cocoa, we also have corn syrup on the porridge in place of fresh milk, but I must add that these two meals were exceptions. We had just been paid while we were out and bought a few delicacies and combined them with our regular rations which we cook ourselves. Made a stew to-day for dinner, potatoes, meat, 4 oxo cubes and 2 little tines of pea flour. It made some stew at that and except for the grit (mud) in it, was fair. There is a rumor current regarding Christmas leave and if it is granted I intend to go to Glasgow if possible although I cannot put much faith in the rumor in the face of the many false ones. Sometime ago Agnes sent the address and name of a girl in the hospital who would like a card from the trench and if she would like a field service card I could send it to her otherwise picture postcards are not allowed but I'll try the next time I am out. Our Sergeant Polson was shot in the knee last week. He is in England now but we lost a very good man. He was laughing and joking all the time he was carried out. You will see his picture in the complete section at home, a corporal on the very left of the photo. Had a letter from William to-day but mail for some reason or other has been held up for the last week or so. The rumors that go up and down the trenches are ridiculous. One was the account of a naval battle in which 15 German ships were sunk and 6 British, another was the assasination of the Kaizer and the Crown prince another was the declaration of Peace. We simply feast on these rumors until a paper comes from London making no mention of it and then carry on and await another rumor. Had a parcel and letter from Aunt Agnes this week. My last letter to her was delayed and she threatened to close down and not send any more parcels as she thought I wasnot getting them. It brought me to my feet with a start, so will write her in a day or two. They are all well in Glasgow except that Jean has been a wee bit sick but is getting better. There is little more to say at present but will write soon again. Your loving Son John over

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