Original Letter

 France. 12th Jan’y 1918

My Dearest:

Three letters fell to my lot last night and two of them were from you and they were the only ones that counted. The second one – the one you wrote after getting home is the kind of letter that I can never read often enough. Mind you, the first one you wrote wasn’t ever equalled by any letter written by anyone else but the second one was in a class all its own. You have absolutely spoiled me by writing me every day because when a day passes without one getting to me I am sulky and beastly for twenty four hours – until the mail comes. How can people who love each other ever be satisfied with one or two letters a week? Its by me, I could never cope with it, me. That’s good, that bit about you “making me write every day”! I get an intense pleasure out of trying every day to write and on days when I cannot write I feel very badly. But if I have ever suggested that I found it a hardship writing every day, I certainly was not telling the truth. It’s the second best time that I have each day – writing you.

You are an angel, Dear, to send me the pipe and nail file and best of all the photo of yourself in a case. I’m all eyes for that parcel now – that and sweating for leave will keep me pretty busy for the next day or so.

I think it’s a splendid scheme your meeting me in Paris. I want to go that way so that I will get a chance to get clean before reaching Bernay, and I did not want to waste time on such a detail as a bath when I might be with you. Of course I have no intention of coming down there a crawling mass of filth and vermin but there is always a good lusty chance of having the odd one secreted somewhere – as a matter of fact that is their favorite hiding place. So despite the fact that I shall have a bath of sorts and clean clothes before I leave it is a matter of extreme urgency that I should have a real bath – say in Paris. And if I were to meet you there – well it would be great that’s all. First you catch your fish – or get your leave – but I’ve thrown caution to the four winds and am taking it for a settled accomplished fact and very sensible scheme too. So far as seeing Paris goes – well it would be great with you but then so would any other place be. On the level if anything happen[s] to thwart my plans for leave I shall take all this war and throw it into the sea. The mere thought of it makes me cold and shivery – but I shan’t think of it. On the fifteenth day of this month as ever was my application goes in. That should give me two days after coming out to get some clothes fixed up wheedle some kale out of the tightwad who replaced Hewett – who by the way transferred – and fix up my relief. Didn’t I ever tell you that Bob Page came back? Any way he did and Major Parry is again second. I thought that I told you that. Maybe you weren’t listening.

I just prepared another ‘Business Man’s Lunch’ for Turk. Bobbie got a parcel last night with two or three more ‘Gong’s Soup tablets. It was good to-day, consomme. Turk said that it should properly be eaten with spoons that it was ‘ignorant’ both of us drinking out of the same mess tin! With that soup ignorance was bliss. We have had some good eats up here. I have some bad news that I’ve been holding back on you. I broke my ring again a few days ago and sent it down to Charley Holmes to have him arrange to send it out to a town close by to be fixed. A man who came back this morning tells me that friend town had had some shelling and I’m worried sick about my ring. I may have it back to-night if all is well but I am awfully scared. I should never have sent it out but I couldn’t go home to you without my ring.

Dearest, I adore you pretty much one way and another to-day. Honest I am just dizzy at the prospect of being with you soon – perhaps in ten days or so – it can’t possibly be true do you think? I can’t believe it myself anyway. Sweetheart, I am mad about you. Your own Ross

Photographs

Bernay: