August 23rd 1942

I linger on in hospital, with sorties to the club for my morning beer. Eventually on 19th I depart in a lorry with my revolver and my rifle, and a lot of other BOs discharged from hospital. We meet the Column coming back and Brigadier Freeland and Morris Latham 3/1 G.R. pass close by but I don’t get in a word. We run into a battle just above Razani and they seem to be coming over near the lorries.

A night in Bannu rest camp, where I manage to get a good berth and meet Major Speight of 3 G.R., ex RAF in Iraq. We talk alot and then go to club and join up with Brigadier Quyell, who was in Jhelum when we went there, and one Obsdell/Ulsdell of Somersets. On next day to Kohat in an R.A. convoy, riding in the RAF W/T tender that had been out on the column. He nearly puts us over a khud!

Hammerbeck temporarily gone to some job in Bangalore, we hope for good, and Mann CO of Sqn. Tom Pierce in Karachi looking for spares, the Rail Party due to go shortly and the Air Party (2 a/c) gone already. I am left in charge of the repairs, to make 2 aircraft out of 3 crashes, which will take months to do. So I shouldn’t get away until then.

A new A.L.O. [army liaison officer], Major Rose, a regular gunner, and M-O’Ferrall got rid of so we ought to be OK. My bearer now decides he won’t come to Ranchi, so I’m giving up the struggle.

I see myself in print “Floating Down the Indus”!


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