Original Letter

France

13th September 1917

My Own Dearest:–

To-day has been a gala day for I have had a bath. I went over to the bath place alone and unattached and stated my case to the soldat i/c friend bath. He was most anxious to please It was a very simple ceremony this bathing. One takes one’s clothes off [and] walks into a large room where there are several dozen meeching little showers. But I had a good bath and needed it badly too. On coming out they hand you a towel and after the drying process is completed the old clothes are handed in [and] a complete issue of underwear, sox, and towel and grayback is presented. My drawers are too funny for worlds. They are made of linen I think or duck or heavy cotton and come only half way down to my knees In addition they are splitting tight and the chances are that if they do not split they will ruin me. But I think that they will split. Anyway I feel very clean again and quite respectable. There is a perfectly good well just outside our door here and I shall keep c lean while we are here.

It is very nice here but very busy and the Turk and I are kept busy from eight in the morning until any time at night. Always in the line I was promising myself a soft time when we got out but as a matter of fact I have less time here than in the line. A stenographer who works here when we are out is on leave and consequently — well we are busy.

The boss calamity of all is that my pack is lost or mislaid and I had lots of things in it including my book which I hadn’t finished. Charley Holmes the RQMS scoffs at the idea of it being lost and assures me that in a day or so he will locate it. Personally I do not feel at all sanguine. You see when the Battalion goes “in” the packs are all taken to the Transport Lines and when they come out they are handed out again. For some reason or other mine was not returned.

Dear, as the days go by I get more and more lonesome for you. I just never do get through wanting you and longing for you and the life here is calculated to make my longing more acute. There is lots of interesting stuff and everything interesting I see I want you to see it too. I should like to you to see – just once – some of the things about here – not just here but where we were a week ago. I told you of a walk I took with Bob Goodman one day when we were in support. The ground we passed over was incredibly torn up and the wreckage was pathetic I could have got loads of souvenirs but have no place to carry them. I did get two covers for the snouts of minnen-werfen shells. They were light and portable so I brought them along. I think that I shall mail them down to you. If you do not care for them, why, you can throw them away.

Dearest, I love you to-day and always and I want you. I need you. I want to be loved and babied and looked after and I want to love you and look after [you]. Although I know you for the most capable women ever I can never feel that you don’t need me to protect you and fend for you.

With all my love,

Dearest, your own

Ross

War Diary

Parades from 8.30 A.M. to 5.00 P.M. Inspections for equipment and organization. Officer Commanding inspected Transport Lines.

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Photographs

the wreckage: les décombres:

Map

  • Location: Gouy-Servins
  • Battalion role: Rest

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