My dear Mother
I got Father’s letter this evening – letters from home come through in two days now. I have not been able to find anything out about George, but the last batch of wounded arriving here numbered some of his division, and when questioned they didn’t think that particular regiment had been in the last fight (last Monday’s). I expect postal deliveries at the front are not so regular as on the lines of communication. I’m sure he’ll send you a field postcard when possible; probably has done so long since. I was very disappointed that I didn’t know he was here at the beginning of the month, probably his stay was very short, and if he was sent to a convalescent depot he would be at liberty to leave camp. We have cleared most of our patients again but expect to fill up quite soon. It is clear to me that the best medical work is to be done at home – I daresay at Boulogne they get more chance to treat and help acute cases. I get the acute cases mostly and often am consulted by some of the other MOs! Such it is to have a reputation!
With strangers one’s apt to be very small beer at first, just a lieutenant who has to put up with many irritating conditions, but after a while the MOs of a unit shake down to their levels to some extent. The great requisite is commonsense and quickness, and I’m sure that Army work is none too good for one’s professional methods. Still in some respects it teaches me much, and if I’m not as good a physician as last August, I’ve no doubt there are other things I’ve learned to my benefit.
The home news lately has been very interesting, I have great hopes that the national government will show more vigour – if they don’t the outlook will be very bad. Doubtless the country at large has learned much these last three months that they should have learned at least by November – and such a large proportion have done their best that one mustn’t forget them when regarding slackers and shirkers with such indignation. I think myself that anyone who preaches that the war will be over in a few months does his country a great disservice. I wonder if Cyril will pass this way. I don’t know at all what proportion of incoming troops travel through here.
Mary evidently keeps well, and we both appreciate the regular mail service there.
I hope Miss Holmes will get news of her brother’s safety – but “missing” in this war rightly makes one anxious.
I had a splendid ride through the forest yesterday with another lieutenant here – have improved greatly in my riding.
Goodnight Mother dear, I hope you and Father and the girls are all well. I’ve no doubt you’re all busy.
With very much love
From your son