April 24th 17
Dear Mr. Mac Mahon
Please pardon my long silence as you know I have been separated from the boys for a long time and while I thought often of my kind friends in Aylesford I never had much time to write. Events come so fast and we change camp so often. Well dear lady, I will always regret not accepting your Xmas dinner invitation and remaining about two years.
Much as I love my country I don’t like hard work and that with rain, snow and mud. Have seen my portion since coming to “sunny” France. I suppose you saw the account of the big fight of April 9th. Our Battalion was in the thick of it and came out with honor. Of course we paid the penalty but our casualties mere light compared with the work done. The worst picture was holding after driving the enemy out. Of course a blinding snowstorm came on and then rain. And we were five nights out. No blankets or fires. It wasn’t at all like a Sunday school picnic. I found a few souvenirs on the Germans and took them to send to my friends but unfortunately I had to leave them in a camp that we have not gone back to.
You cannot imagine how much I enjoyed seeing the boys who came in last night. Jack, Major and I bunked together and fell asleep talking sometime this A.M. They, in company with the rest of the Battalion except the reserve Co., went in the line just now and may be in for a few days, we move tomorrow. So as the boys were too busy this morning to drop you a line I offered my poor services. I know you are not the kind to worry so I can tell you probably they will be taking a few more chances now than they have yet. But really our big guns do most of the work for us then we rush over and finish it. And the Germans will not fight at close quarters. We have proved it time and time again. They are more anxious to surrender when we get close to them than anything else. Machine guns and shrapnel shells nip a few of us occasionally but that is part of the game.
I expect to sample Millville cider with the boys this fall yet. Please remember me to your mother, sister and brother. Also “Bully” and the girls and Jack. I intended telling you a lot about France but the Capt. caught me and I got another job in haste.