August 1, 1940
I haven’t heard from you for over five weeks, but I know that you are writing and that the mail is chasing me around the country, so don’t mind and will continue to keep you informed as to my activities. I arrived here just nine days ago and have been having a real holiday ever since. Apart from having a slight headache over my right eye now and then and a slight swelling in the region of my nose and cheek, I am just as good as ever. I go in for a swim in the sea every day and sometimes twice, and play the odd game of tennis.
We are quite close to a fair-sized town and are allowed to go there every day after four o’clock, but must be back by ten-thirty. I will give you a brief résumé of our routine here and you can judge for yourself what kind of a life we lead.
Reveille is at seven and breakfast at eight, morning parade at nine, and a short route march to a nearby park, where we lie about until ten-fifteen at which time we are marched back to the camp to be broken off for dinner. Dinner is at 12:30 and afternoon parade at two, when we have a short P.T. class followed by a dismissal around three-thirty, supper is at five-twenty and the rest of the day is ours.
You can see by this that we are not being over-worked. The camp here is really wonderful, on a high piece of ground and overlooking the sea. The whole thing has been a fashionable pleasure resort, so all the fixtures are the best. The large pavilion has a spacious dining room, a very comfortable lounge equipped with curtains, a good game room and a huge dance floor equipped with a stage, a radio gramophone complete with speaker system and mic, and a good piano. On rainy days, we hold sing-songs in the dance hall and this morning we were treated to an amateur contest. Some of the songs and poems were not for publication, but were very funny and some real talent was uncovered.
There is a civilian camp just across the fence from us which of course is out of bunds, but there is nothing to prevent the girls joining the poor cripples on the beach. A good-looking ape like yours truly has to carry a stick to keep the girls away, so you can readily see how a poor convalescent’s path is beset with difficulties. Aunt May and the others all know that I am here and want me to get sick leave to visit them. I imagine I could get such a leave if I really tried, but apart from the cost of the journey, I don’t like to impose on them, particularly as we are not given a ration card which would mean I would be eating their limited supply of butter and sugar etc.
Well, the whistle has just sounded for the “fall-in” for P.T. so I must close for now but will carry on this evening.