Strand Palace Hotel,
September 15th 1917
Am having a fine time but sure am good and homesick at present. I've got to go back to France in the morning and sure don't want to. I met Vic Thompson, John Carling and Les Wood here and we hired a car and went down to Brighton and saw the sights. Yes it was very breezy and we spent at least one interesting half hour on the promenade watching the taxis go by. Now comes the funny part of it. John knew an American in the Flying Corps and darned if he wasnt in the same squadron as Hugh Billings. You know I only heard he was safe and a prisoner from John when on leave here. Now these two Hugh and the American named Hilton made an agreement to go into each other's suitcases if anything happened and send it home so when I ran into this guy he gave it to me (a photograph album) and its on its way addressed to Dad now. Shall write Aunt Eliza when I get back to the battery and have more time. Am sending you and Ella some pins and if you don't like them don't throw them away as they weren't given to me. Not very suitable but it's the only thing I could think of. Can't find a darn thing to send Dad for his birthday but the old man always gets it in the neck in the way of presents doesn't he. Gee! I sure do wish I was back home now! However, I'm not the only one so we should worry.
Best love to Ella & Dad and Grandma with lots for yourself. Am sending some photographs trusting the censor will pass them as they're quite harmless. See how the ground is shot up.