Sunday, January 16, 2011

Somewhere in France, 25/7/16

My dear Mother,
Just a line to let you know that I am still in good health. I came out of the trenches yesterday and am now in billet in the town here. We had been about eight weeks in and I am now out for four or five days spell but expect to have a much longer spell shortly. We are in a fairly big town here which has once been a very busy place, now however most of its manufactories have closed down and only those civilians remain who cannot afford to leave. There are soldiers clubs and canteens here, a picture show & baths all run for our benefit so that we are fairly well off.
Your parcel containing the vermin proof shirts, socks, etc. arrived all right a week or so ago. I came across Jim Fleming, Bob's brother, the other day he is in one of the ambulances and seems to be getting along all right. I intend to have my photo taken before I return to the trenches, but am waiting to get a new rigout before doing so at present I am a bit ragged.
A New Zealand mail is expected in any day now, no doubt there will be letters for me and I will write you again. Thanks for the presents & goodbye with love to all at home.
Your affectionate son, Rawei

Friday, January 7, 2011

France, 14/6/16

Dear Gwen,
The letter you wrote me you wrote from Wellington in January was a long time in reaching me but it arrived alright about a fortnight ago. I am glad you had such a good time while up there. We are in the trenches now for the second time since coming here. This seems to be a very wet place for although it almost midsummer we have just had a weeks rain and no prospect of its clearing yet. Of course this makes things grow so that between the trenches there is a field of grass two or three feet high. When out in billets last time I saw Gordon McDonald who is in the 1st brigade he looked well. I think I mentioned it in my last letter but in case it did not reach you my address is now No. 2 Coy. N.Z. Machine Gun Corps. N.Z.E.F. Enclosed are a couple of views of Anzac which I have been carrying about for some time. The photo is taken from the lower end of the beach looking towards Suvla Bay the one in colours is taken looking down towards the entrance to the Dardenelles. We hear all sorts of rumours here as to how long the war is going to last but we do not take much notice of any of them. 'Fritz' is reported to have stuck up a notice in his trench a few days ago which read "Fire high boys. The war will be over in eight days". That was when the first account of the last North Sea fight came through. He is not so optimistic now I think.
Well Gwen there is not much more I can write about.
Give my Best Regards to all at Home.
With Best Wishes from your affectionate brother,