16 March 1917
Good Day Mack
Pleased to see you again. I see now that you really are at ‘Wooder’ [Woodville] still: that’s jolly good luck. No doubt I’m a ‘stoopid’ as Jean says – but so long as I get her letters, what does that matter? She & Aunt Soph evidently liked the photos all right, so that’s good. Don’t forget to tell me about Hoolie’s & if you get any more – there’s plenty of 2/-’s a day to pay for them by this I expect.
This paper is slightly worn but that’s nothing – it’s been too long in my packet & I haven’t much left here today so it’s got to do the best it can.
It’s quite interesting I should think, having Vere S to help you teach & your old pal Eva (Gust) Ayliffe also in the school. You certainly had a fine picnic – very interesting I’m sure seeing all the people looking peggish – for those who were well you all were lucky in keeping OK. No-one said anything of Mother – was she not there? Guess she stayed at home (my pen has run dry again – I couldn’t have filled it properly). Judging by Aunt Clara’s & Jean’s letters they are all striking pretty good crops this season. Vince too – that’s good luck. Aunt C said he couldn’t get bags to put his stuff in – that’s tough.
You have gathered by Sally or Dork’s letters that I have been out riding this week. It came about this way – the chap detailed for the job was feeling sick & asked me to go in his place. I was pleased to do it & so was on till yesterday eve (Thursday). My work was easy enough – I had decent horse & had to ride round with a party of about 15 or 16 officers & NCOs & at each stop hold a few of their horses. There were always 3 or 4 of us horse holding – Roy Hicks, 9th LH was out one day. The party was out on a mapping and country road reading tour each day. Perhaps we would work out only a mile or two & again we would go 6 or 8 miles out, take dinner with us & sit down anywhere – in shelter of an old wall or amongst a bunch of palms to eat it. It was all right to have a look at the country round about, most interesting for those of us who had not been out at all before.
I was out with Lieut Hamilton, a son of Dr TKH. This chap is a jolly decent sort. He was telling me he came over as a Private at the first go off – knew Perce Smith & Frank Roennfeldt. He said when I told him I come from Laura ‘I guess my father knew your father’. I said I was sure of that.
This pencil is a rotter – hope you can read this rotten scrawl.