I am a regular tourist now

Posted: October 2, 2015 by tripmanic in 1915

Overseas Forces base Camp, Mustapha, Alexandria

One more step on my travels, I am a regular tourist now and ought to know the Mediterranean pretty well before I finish.

We arrived in Alexandria Wednesday night and berthed Thursday afternoon. Immediately we were alongside, the Australians were marched off. We had to march through the town and catch a car on the other side which took us out to this place. It is an immense camp. There are English troops, New Zealanders and Australian, in different camps, besides a big motor transport camp. It is just the same old sand that we had at Mena, only it is on the beach practically. So far I haven’t had much to do, I am in charge of about fifty of the toughest, dirtiest, most unwilling lot of beggars you ever saw. All I have to do is to see that they are all present on parades.

Last night I took a walk through Alexandria. It struck me as being a much nicer place that Cairo. I stuck to the European section entirely. I am not physically strong enough to stand the smells of the native quarters yet. There are not the lovely buildings here as in Cairo, but the place is cleaner, neater and the niggers don’t worry you half so much trying to sell articles. I believe it can be as evil as Cairo, but I don’t think I will worry it at all.

I managed to get my black kit bag yesterday. It was like seeing and old friend. I was very lucky, I only lost two manuscript copy books, one 100 and the other 50 pages, both had been used a little, the old original one I first had was there, I will sent it on to you. Managed to get my old felt hat too, it was pretty badly battered, but after a good wash it soon regained its shape. As far as I know I will be here for a week, then we go to Lemnos, and from there to Anzac.

There are rumours that the first Division A.I.F. and New Zealanders are spelling at Lemnos. I hope it is so.

I saw  Moyse, he is looking very well. He has a job in one of the H.Q Officers. One of the things in my bag that hadn’t been touched was the old Gillette Razor. I was very surprised as some of the bags had been absolutely ransacked. I saw Crowie’s bag there, it didn’t appear to have been touched.

Coming into the wharf, we passed the Seang Choon. She has been done up and painted as a hospital ship. I believe the Ionian has been treated similarly.

I heard yesterday that Mr Rowe our late platoon commander has gone to England. He deserves a good rest, and ought to have a good time.

On the way into town, about a quarter of an hours trip on the cars, we pass the racecourse. It is a fine little place. There are polo, golf, tennis grounds, and the course. It is all green with turf and looks very inviting.

Another place is a big stone building built on the Roman forum principal – it is the bull ring. Here there used to be big bull fights held, until Kitchener put his foot down.

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