June 16th 1940 – Wana

I leave Lahore on the Frontier Mail and meet Attam Khan in Lalamusa, where I have to spend quite some time. Arrive at Darya Khan at 4.15am and then by car to DIK. This entails a trans-shipment across the Indus in a launch, which of course goes aground half way across. Met John in the rest house, and with the aid of a chap in the RIASC workshops we obtain two cars and drive staright up to Mangai the next day. We spend a night here, and after much telephoning for permission manage to get a seat in an armoured car coming up the next day. Very comfortable, and a good breeze through the open slit.

In Wana find that Freeland has gone to District HQ, Guy of 5/13 is the C.O., Willie and Abbo gone off on jobs, Keen at Political, Maitland Jerry on leave, Niven in Razmak with Patiala State Forces. Present are Guy, Golly, Reggie (adjutant), Bill, Arti and Cotterill. Bill departs on leave and gives me the job of Mess secretary besides C company and Gas officer. I try to get a grip on the work, and wonder how to lecture on gas in Urdu. I have Uncle Stanley’s Mauser .430, which he presented to me, though shells are 55/- a hundred. I work bloody hard the first week, but am now feeling rather depressed. Bill and Toby in the war now, and bits of the Indian Army, but how can I ever be? New battalions 7/13 and 8/13 (13 Frontier Force Rifles) being formed, so presumably some British officers will have to go. What a nice thought. Still further from the war would I go.


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