Posted: November 18, 2015 by saraherhodes in 1915

Here we are again! We have advanced one stage on our way. Yesterday we were relieved of our portion of the trenches and took up our abode on the side of one of the gullies. As usual there was endless confusion and hanging about, and to cap it all, there was more dirt in the air than on Gallipoli. I think every time we move we seem fated to have a bad day.

But the day was nothing to the night. There were very few good dugouts, and they were claimed early in the day. I managed to get one nearly at the foot of the hill – it is more like a grave than a dugout. It is just a hole about 6 feet long by about 2 feet wide by 2 feet deep. I turned in early, tied my oil sheet over the top and had a very snug little bunk. I woke up after about an hour’s sleep to hear a slight pattering of rain. I thought “good enough” and turned over again. Next thing I knew was my leg was awfully cold, feeling down I found about two inches of water in my dugout. I hopped up and started to pull my oil sheet off and blankets out. Then the rain started in earnest. It tried to rain this time. My overcoat was rolled up in my pack and before I could get it out I was drenched to the skin. Of course my blankets were wet through too. If I had had a dry dugout I would have enjoyed the situation very much – those who had dry ones did enjoy it. There were fellows running round trying to save their belongings from getting washed away. One chap was in his shirt only, picking his clothes out of a deep stream as they floated by. Others were up to their knees in water in their dugouts. There are a few dugouts just below me in which everything was lost. One chap pulled his equipment out of two feet of mud and water by means of a rope with two of them pulling at it. There was about a cubic foot of soft mud all over the gear. I saw it was no good staying where I was, so just left everything as it stood, and climbed the hill. Near the top I came across Colby in a fairly safe “pozie” so climbed in there. I borrowed a blanket and had a wet overcoat and with these I settled down to one of the most miserable nights of my existence. I was too cold to sleep, and my legs and hips were cramped with the wet.

At daybreak this morning I saw the most miserable crowd of men I have ever seen. Everyone has spent the day cleaning equipment and drying blankets and clothing. On looking back it is only another experience added to many similar, but at the time the gods were called on many times. As far as I can make out the ducking has done me no harm externally or internally, so we will say “nuffsed”! The oldest inhabitant declares that the sea was rougher than it has ever been before in this part (the O.I. dates from 25th April 1915 of course). The whole affair lasted only about half an hour too. Quite a quantity of damage for the time.


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