May 19th 1915.
My dear Gertrude
We have thought so much of you during these last few days & are so sorry to hear Ted is wounded, but glad only slightly. How glad you must be to have him at home & safe for a time. It will be nice if you can all be together for a day even, it was nice Ted arrived before the news of his being wounded reached you & you had no real anxiety, & I do trust his wounds will not be very painful & that he will be able to rest well, he must need it after the terribly trying time he has had.
What an awful war it is, really one feels as if one could not read all the accounts in the paper, they are too sad & dreadful. We have Agatha Vansittart with us & she has made out a list of 29 relations, all either in the firing line or just going out to France or somewhere. 3 airmen, amongst them one relation, a Vansittart has just been killed–
Poor little Hilda is here also, she is threatened with congestion of the brain & wears an ice cap nearly all day & night but is extremely lively & happy in spite of everything! Nurse rather scorns the whole treatment & says “let the child lead a normal life & develop her muscles”, so there is friction. She certainly does not seem ill, except for a high temperature.
I wish you could come & see us & we should so like to see Ted, could he spare us a few days before he returns? We should be so pleased if he could. How nice Paul has leave now also. We are glad Jim has a commission, I hear Guy Grossman won’t have one. Mrs Joscelyne’s eldest son has one in the 8th Somersets, but her youngest son is a private & out in India with the West Kent Regiment. She has just left us.
France & Flanders, alas, are not the only places were there is warfare!! I fear, for it is beginning in Pitney! We are all getting very sad over the way all Church services, parish work &c are being neglected & are beginning to protest. It is too long a tale for a letter, you must come & hear! but both Bishop & Archdeacon are being appealed to.
I quite agree with you about the Lusitania, people are foolish to travel unless absolutely obliged at present. Awdry Tyndal has just reached home safely from India, but it was an exciting voyage.
We have 200 soldiers now camped on the high ground between Golf Links & High Ham. They are I believe rifle practising at the Paradise butts, & we hear 1000 are to come altogether! & our Yeomen are coming home in turn to see their families before going abroad. With love to you all. Yours affecly