Acting platoon sergeant

Posted: November 29, 2015 by saraherhodes in 1915

Well we are gradually settling down to work again. The general idea seems to be to start from the beginning and go over all the work from squad to brigade drill. I am acting as platoon sergeant for No 2 platoon, and as I am a corporal I have my hands full.

We are having a very rough time from the weather. The sun is shining brightly now for the first time for about four days. We have had snow the last three days, and this morning there was ice on all water left in the open. It strikes us so hard too because our clothes are all threadbare. We are waiting on an issue of new clothing now. Snow is quite a novelty to most of us. It blows in your face, eyes, and ears, but so far there hasn’t been enough to cover the ground.

We have our sergeants mess going now. It is certainly much more comfortable to have a table to sit at, and have the dixies cleaned. It will cost a bit I expect as everything is so expensive here – the Greeks don’t fail to take advantage of their monopoly of stores.

3rd December
The weather has improved greatly in the last few days. We have had quite bright sunshine, and if the wind drops it is quite pleasant. I was pleased to receive your letter of the 10th October with the A.R.C. Report a couple of days ago. I also received two parcels containing chocolate and socks, and “bandages” in the shape of four pipes, and sox. You can bet I was very pleased with them. I will give you a tip for posting pipes – always pull the mouth pieces out. Three of the four pipes had snapped off just in the junction of mouthpiece and bowl. As luck had it the one good one was for me. I don’t think it will make much difference though as I have managed to repair one of them. In the paper line I have Sunday Mail (2) Adelaide Mail (2), Bulletins, Leaders, Magazine, and all sorts and conditions of papers. Another thing was that Kangaroo Card. It is very good isn’t it?

From what I can make out I fancy I was some distance out in front of what is now “Lone Pine”, on the first Sunday. Crowie was well out when he was hit. They retired soon after I was hit, and got out of it. By the way I received the Chronicle all right. Many thanks for that pouch and tobacco. The big periscope you sent got smashed in transit from Anzac to here. Bill Christophers was bringing it over to me and it got crushed on the barge. Have kept the mirrors though, they will do for shaving if nothing else.

We had several photos taken today. Old P.A.C. men who “landed”, O.P.A.C. who were on Gallipoli, and all O.P.A.C. men in the 10th, and the same with Saints. Among the landing party were Capt. Giles, Sgt.W.Hoggarth, Roach, and a few others I can’t recall at present. Those on Gallipoli were Capt. Giles, Lieut. Fowler and Lieut. Hooper, “Streak” Goddard. There were quite a number in the whole crowd, as many came with the reinforcements and joined us here.

There is a football match on this afternoon between the 10th and 11th, I didn’t trouble to go down. Managed to buy half a box of very fair cigars the other day, paid at the rate of 7/6 for 50. They would be 15/- in Adelaide I think. I suppose everyone is getting ready for Christmas now. Am afraid we won’t go in for much preparation.

I ran across Sgt. Bunny of the 11th the other night. You remember I was with him in Alexandria a fair amount. He is a brother to the Artist who toured Australia two or three years ago and sold pictures to nearly all the galleries. He reached 500 pound for some of them. He was with the American Ambulance in France but got blood poisoning and had to toss it. Now he has been commissioned by the French Government to paint a cyclorama of the Battle of the Marne.

Well I have lots of letters to write so must get along.

Lots of love to you all.
From, Lance.

________________________________________________

Notes:
DIXIE Large oval-shaped metal pot with lid and carrying-handle for cooking. The lid was often used for baking (e.g. bacon and biscuit pudding) whilst the pot itself was employed to brew tea, heat porridge, stew, rice etc. From Hindustani degchi, small pot.
http://www.ict.griffith.edu.au/~davidt/z_ww1_slang/index_bak.htm

A.R.C. – Adelaide Rowing Club

P.A.C. – Prince Alfred College (Adelaide)

Saints – Saint Peter’s College (Adelaide)

Cyclorama – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyclorama

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