January 18th Hotel Bristol, Cairo 4 a.m.

Posted: January 26, 2016 by saraherhodes in 1916

It is not my usual habit to write letters at this time of day, but not feeling sleepy I thought I might as well use up my time. I am up here on leave I started off from camp about 2.30 on the 16th, and have to be back there by 10p.m. tonight. Cairo has changed a great deal since we left. The streets are full of soldiers – mostly base heroes. They are all got up to the nines. Privates wearing officers clothes etc.

The Australians have made an awful name for themselves, a lot carry on a system of begging from anyone who will give them food and drink. There is a picquet of about 2,000 strong in the town all night. All shops and bars close at 9p.m., and the whole town is cleaned up by midnight, even the lights in the streets are put out, so you see things are pretty rotten; it makes one feel ashamed that he is an Australian. I had a look at the part of the Wassieh that was burnt down early last year. The Australians and New Zealanders wrecked about five houses in one block, and then burnt them down. My word they did make a mess of things.

I am sending some photos by this mail. They aren’t a particularly good lot, but are rather interesting snaps of the Peninsular. If you use glossy paper and print in the shade you will get a great deal more detail. The one I haven’t sent a print of is a man observing with a periscope. I was in the fire position with him when I took the photo.

I received the parcel containing scarf, balaclava cap, mittons, pipe and tobacco. I am enclosing the ticket that came off my pudding.

Later

Kinnie and I are going to have our photos taken today, so you will be able to have some idea of what I am like. I have filled out tremendously since I left the Peninsular. I got a comparatively new tunic a few days ago, I have been wearing my other one for about twelve months, and it was absolutely thread bare, so I am feeling rather flash.

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