England Feb. 1st 1917
Here I am in trouble as usual. Was just out of quarantine three days. This morning two of the boys reported sick and one has the mumps all right. Don’t know about the other one. So this means two weeks anyway, probably more for some of us are sure to get them for there are a lot of us who have never had them. If I steer clear of them this time - must be mump-proof.
Well Squire and I sure got a load of mail yesterday. First we have had in two weeks. Don’t know what happened to it but none of the boys got any last week. Had a letter from Mum and two from yourself. Mother tells me Noble is in France but don’t know whether is in the trenches or not. She sent his address. Must try and write him some of these nights if am not too busy. But have been busy since we came in cleaning up and it’s 8:30 now. We don’t much time to ourselves for they are expecting to have another inspection this week so we have to keep more than clean now. Am scared half to death for fear we won’t get out of quarantine in time to go with the Bn. if we don’t I think I will commit suicide for I want to be with them when they leave for the trenches. For I sure have waited a long time for this Bn. and don’t want to have to leave it at this late hour. So Tommy left for the States did he? What was the trouble? Did he think he might have to Sign up? What does Lloyd think of it? Suppose he thinks he has no right to go he might get hurt. With some of the boys could hear one of my boy’s talk. He is only a youngster and they put him on waiting man. So last night we drew our rifles, the ones we take to the trenches with us, he got his and they took it from him. The poor little devil cried. Said he wanted to go with us. Didn’t want to go to any damned boys Bn. so this noon Capt. Lute came and told him he wasn’t waiting man any longer. He was going with us and to get his equipment. I tell you there was some change in him after that. One of the happiest boys in England you bet. Was glad myself for I think a lot of him for he is a genuine little sport and a dead shot. Great Lord, what a racket! It’s a hell of a place to write with all this bunch yelling and jumping around. Well Angus got clear of quarantine this time. He was up at the dentists all day so they let him stay out. He is a lucky boy for it’s no fun being penned up all the time.
It’s some warmer here today. Had a little snow yesterday and that seemed to take the cold out of the air. The papers claim it’s the coldest winter in 36 years. It seems to be our luck to get cold winters in the army. I haven’t forgotten some of them cold nights I was on guard duty last winter in Halifax. Well I haven’t got John’s letter yet. Expect it isn’t finished yet. Oh yes, we got your parcel yesterday. The gloves are great and you can hardly tell the difference in color from the ones we were issued with. They just came in time for I had lost mine. Planned to buy a pair soon as I got the chance. Many thanks. Will write Sun.