Jan 31. 1916.
(Just upset some soda all over this!) I hear the English mail goes out on Wednesday so I am writing tonight to catch it. Also an English mail comes in tomorrow, so I shall have some more letters to answer I expect and hope. I’ve been busy all day today writing to all sorts of people who have written to me; I am trying to answer them all as soon as I get them otherwise I find one gets so behindhand.
I have had only 3 letters from Nell since I left, but letters seem all over the place in this country. So I wired to her last Sunday to send all letters to
THE GARHWAL RIFLES
C/O INDIA OFFICE
as they get out here just as soon as if they are sent to any I.E.F and it does’nt matter where the rgt: goes they reach me just the same, so it saves changing the address. Still I should just write & ask the India office when they should reach there so as to catch the weekly mail. I asked Nell to send on the address to you so I expect you have already started sending them there.
Awful fun last week: Dick came over on Friday to stay the night, bringing June with him. She was in great form, and was a great favourite in the mess. I think Dick enjoyed the visit though of course there is absolutely nothing to do here, but I’m glad he had a chance to meet some of my pals in the regiment. He missed the boat back to Suez on Saturday so had to stay another night here, for which I was very glad. Just after he had gone a letter came for him from you, addressed from Cox Alexandria; they always mix us two up, so I expect we shall do a good deal of getting each other’s letters.
Gorgeous weather here nowadays, ripping and warm all day and still very cold at nights. Don’t worry about sending me anything; I should like a cigarette case, but it does’nt matter just at present; thanks awfully for offering to send one, but I’m so sick with myself for being such an ass for losing the other one; I ought to have had it on me really.
I got a Godalming paper today with some trash about me in it; I was glad some publicity was given to the fact that you have five sons serving, but I do draw the line at photographs!
There is great talk of our going back to the country I started out for- (a roundabout way of putting it, but there are censors about) And I think we shall fairly soon; but not back to L., probably to some outlandish place; I don’t think we’ve done with real live soldiering yet awhile.
Yes is’nt that a ripping little picture of Nell. I got one last week and I like it most awfully. Will you please get 3 copies of me from Adrian H. and send 1 to Mrs Stack (150 Sutherland Avenue Maida Vale) one to Bunchie & I forget who the other’s for, but will try & let you know soon! Glad Aunt Edward approved.
Jack Lodwick poor fellow was next me on deck, wearing a life belt, directly after the torpedo struck. We were trying to shore our lifeboat over to port & ours was a starboard lifeboat of course it was useless, & I never saw him again. But I know he was seen throwing chairs & tables overboard, to help people in the water, & doubtless several people owe their lives to him accordingly. What happened to him I don’t know, as she went down so soon afterwards, & I know no one who saw him in the water. In any case he was the coolest and bravest of men & died as game as anyone, & I’m sure none of those drowned suffered very much. I think he must have been taken down with the ship. Poor old Lodwick, a great friend of mine whose loss I shall ever deplore, and one of the very best that ever lived, both as a soldier & a gentleman. Best love to all yr loving son