My dear Mother
I’ve been unable to write till now as an order was issued on 8th holding up all outgoing mails till further order for some reason or other. The authorities at Havre had no orders for me so I had to return here, and we still wait instructions. I wouldn’t like to be in the army for a permanency; one feels far too much like a very small cog in a very slowly moving machine, and one’s importance at first depends entirely on rank and not on capacity. However I suppose someday they’ll discover that I can be more usefully employed elsewhere than here. Meantime it’s very dull.
The journey back was quite uneventful, it was nice to meet the others in town. I thought Kathleen looked rather tired. We had a fairly smooth passage. The boats on that route are very nice. One of the torpedoed steamers lies just inside the harbour at Havre. I had a companion all the way here, Commander Carew, so we stayed together at Hotel Bellevue in Paris where we were very comfortable.
Trains run better than they did but have not I think reached the standard of peace times in France.
My short leave was very refreshing. I was lucky to get it, I think, as all ordinary leave is now stopped. Probably you still have Mary with you but I suppose she will be going on to Dowlais soon. I hope Father’s cold is all right by now.
Until further notice, please address letters as before. I’ll let you know as soon as possible of any change of address.
With very much love to you all.
From your son Arthur