I got a lovely surprise today in the shape of a really gorgeous pipe from you. You had to post ridiculously early apparently to catch the Christmas mail for these parts, and your parcel turned up today! But that’s no matter, the point is the rippingness of the present. Thanks ever and ever so much for it Mother: it’s a regular “just what I wanted” and such a gorgeous pipe too; I’m awful proud of it and it’s the envy of the Brigade.
Kindly tell me please what’s come over the posts lately! Two days ago I got a letter written by you from Pitney on 25th Sept, & today I get the pipe & letters from Nell date Oct 3rd to Oct 9th! So things seem rather higgledy piggledy all round- Nell tells me she has rheumatism in her shoulder poor child. Can’t it be sort of got out of her system now while she’s young, by baths (mud baths I’ve heard of; she’d better try the trenches!) or some means, I’m so awfully sorry for her poor dear & I’ve no doubt she’s being looked after all right, but I’m naturally very anxious to get all that can be done, done now. Otherwise she seems very fit & cheery, & I wish she could manage to get a bit of a change & go & stay at Delaford for a bit-
Your letter to me from Pitney was sad in many ways, I mean the way the old place has been so unavoidably neglected – one always associated Pitney with neat lawns & flower borders, & your description is hard to picture. Joe must be getting very old & feeble now, but from your account is still happy & his simple pleasures still appeal to him.
I have’nt heard ftom Ben for some time now, the vagaries of the post again I suppose. But all the same I think the posts out here are most awfully good, & we have had heaps of mails lately & have really no complaints- Yes, Jim wrote & said he had actually got orders to come out here, but I’ve heard nothing since-
So glad you met the Kelways. I met them of course at Cheltenham College, & remember them awfully well. It was the first time I had met them, as I had always missed them as kids at Pitney.
Rather cloudy & muggy here now, & some rain hanging about I think. The papers we have had from home these last 2 weeks have been wonderfully cheery & optimistic, but since then the Italian débacle has occurred, so I wonder what they all say now-
I have no news. I was vaccinated two days ago – at my age too! I do hope it won’t take, but it’s looking rather angry just at present – what a lot of stuff one has injected nowadays, enteric, cholera, vaccination & emitone, I must be a walking chemist shop by now! I retired to bed early last night with a head & a cold, good old neuralgia & shivers- nust have been a touch of malaria I think, but I’m all right today & am going to drink a hot whiskey & lemon in bed (you know the krewst!) & then fairly pile on the clothes, though I have not got many to pile on, though fortunately the paternal government gave us another blanket all round today & I got a beauty.
Again thanks awfully for the ripping pipe, most welcome a real beauty too-
Best love to all
yr loving son
I told you did’nt I that D-B gives up command on 21st of this month, & Jack Hogg, now commanding our 3rd Batt, succeeds him & is coming out here.
Lyell has left Basra to join us, & will be here in a week or two, so that puts me down to Major when he arrives, & when Jack Hogg arrives to command us, I subside to Captain!
History of Pitney
Probable Kelways – family of peony cultivator