The mail came in yesterday but I did not get your letter until nearly tea time when it was too late to answer it then. I generally like to write home on a sunday but I suppose monday is all the same and this morning a later mail arrived dated October 5th but it is not all up yet but I have got a letter from Bill and I am expecting one from you.
And so Cyril has enlisted! I thought he would somehow and I expect that Aunty Jenny feels it a good bit, but it might be all over by the time he gets away. Thankyou very much for the socks, they are lovely and warm but I am sure you must be neglecting your housework to knit them. I wonder if Dads tea is ready when he gets home on an evening, perhaps by now he thinks I've got enough but really they must take a lot of care and patience and I appreciate them all the more on that account. I will write to Rosie Wilson and thank her for the pair she made also, the camphor will come in very handy. I bought some in Hellipolis before we left but it nearly all evaporated now. I gave Ernie his one and he said “Oh thank you very much” but he willl write to you himself sometime. I was very lucky to receive them at all though for all that was left of the wrapper was one small corner with the address on, it had evidently had a very rough passage. Reverting back to the Camphor Stakes, we were each issued with a small bag of sulphur, in fact two bags; one to hang in front and the other behind, but they made lovely nesting places for the fleas so we discarded them.
Bill was telling me that you had heard the news about the torpedoing of some of our brigade and the death of Colonel Linton through immersion, well those rumours were not so very far out, were they, as you have doubtless have found out before this.
We had a lovely smooth voyage up the Aegean Sea dotted all over the place with little mountainous islands which looked beautiful at sunrise, sunset and one would never have guessed that there were enemy submarines lurking around although we had life-boat drill twice a day and we were allowed nowhere without we carried our lifebelts with us, and we were a couple of hours too soon, so we had nothing to write home about, just our luck.
Now as regards news – I am not quite sure that there is any just the same old six and eight pence. There is a couple of battleships up Suvla Bay whose guns are thundering out every few minutes (pity help those at the other end when the shells lob, they are beauties) and “Beachy Bill” and his three brothers have been very busy today, but no harm done to our section. He has been sending most of his shells onto our batteries though now and again a bomb will roar and a snipers rifle will ring out but other wise things are so peaceful that it is very often hard to realise that a war is on. Things have settled down now. The first division did all the hard toil and won the place for us.
Yesterday morning I went to Church Service on a little cleared space just behind the trenches and afterwards to Communion which was held in a dugout. It was the first time I was able to go and I enjoyed the services very much and after “stand to” in the evening Ernie and I went down to a Sing Song held at the cook's fires, and superintended by the Chaplain. We sang all the old favourites and its real good to put in an hour on Sunday night singing to the accompaniment of rifles, machine guns, bombs and battleships.
Boiled onions for tea, thickened with milk and flour, are we not living high? Its absolutely my best dish here, although now that they have changed the cooks we get better stew but the stew only contains desiccated dried vegetables and at home would not be accounted exactly a luxury.
When I get home, Mum, have a good square meal, not forgetting apple pie or date pudding waiting, also a nice warm bath (large) and some clean clothes. Its great fun here trying to wash and bathe in half a ration dixie of water (its too cold to swim) you do the bathing process in penny sections, a section a day it takes a week to have a bath and then you have to start all over again but its teaching us how to appreciate our homes, isn't it?
I will close now with love to all.
I am sending Lester, with this, some cigarette cards, I don't think he gets this sort in Australia.