Somewhere in a dugout.
Tues. April 25th 1916
My dearest Mother
We have just passed the fifth Easter I have spent away from home but how different this one is to those of previous years. This one was spent within the vicinity of the dugout I am now in, which is very close to the firing line but the others were spent in Greenock and Canada. There hasn't been much pleasure attached to our visit to this part of the line for what with water and other experiences encountered to say the least it's been tough! Anyhow the worst is over for this trip, as far as I'm concerned, but we have a good many more days to put in yet before having our next rest.
It is a lovely hot day and I would sooner be outside than hiding in this dugout, but if I did, well Fritz could easily spot me, then over he'd sent his "whiz bangs", which for my part I'd rather he kept.
Well now to go back a bit if you haven't yet got my letter acknowledging your parcel with the currant bread and butter in I say again thanks very much, for it was more than acceptable. It was acknowledged but there are two of my letters not yet, as far as I could find out. There are ten chances to one they will arrive wet and dirty but that's not my fault but the misfortune of the letter. One, I think told I was about to leave for the trenches and the other followed it closely acknowledging the parcel. Enough of them!
Now last night I got quite a bunch of mail from you all and here I heartily thank you for it. The cooker comes first - By Jove it's fine. We used it this morning to cook breakfast and it did the job in no time for four of us. To put it out we used no cloth we simply replaced the lid! How I laughed as I thought of you blowing and blowing and then using a cloth.
The cigarettes and sweets Pa, together with your note in parcel and Easter card separate I thank you very much.
I also received your letter Ma, enclosing one of Percy's and a portion of the Daily Telegraph. Thanks muchly for all.
I received also Minnie's, Ray's and Mr. Coleman's (for the church). The latter is the best Church one I've received very sensible, kindly and helpful. I also received a letter from Percy last night which I'll answer as opportunity offers.
So now I'll ring off.
Yours very lovingly
Lovely weather here now. Please send me something in the anti-insect line for goodness sake quick. Keetings is no good.
After writing the foregoing I received one from you Mother dated April 9th! It has been a mighty time on the road Eh! It is the one I told I thought was missing. Anyhow it is a very interesting one and asks a lot of questions, which as far as possible I'll try and answer.
You mention what Pritchard knows of this portion of the Globe? Yes, he knows it all right and so do I now. Minnie's I will answer personally. You see I quite rolled in mail last night and I certainly enjoyed it, as you can't possibly conceive. What a blessing mail is out here at any time.
I like the names Dorothy has given her little boy. I wrote and congratulated her last week as soon as you told me about it.
Now must give over I think for I don't know of anything else to tell you at present so with a very fond adieu I'll shut up.
Your ever very loving boy