November 22nd 1944


I have a drink with Viv and her new girlfriend in the “Sloop” just before closing time and then we make for the latter’s home, but they become more interested in a stray dog found on the way than me, so I leave them for Curnows and bed.

After much packing I have a few, quite a few, drinks in the “Sloop” on Tuesday, all Ma’s Lelant crowd come over, and then on with the Gibsons to the “Queens” for more gin. I get through Ma’s supper and stagger home, losing the way in the dark.

Next day off to Andover and meet the other boys at the station. I have a slight sore throat. Thursday we go to Larkhill School of Artillery for lectures and lunch in a huge Mess there. I see George Bainbridge as a gunner again, having been thrown out by the RAF. The coldest day ever, and my throat is so bad on return that I see the M.O. He finds I have a temperature and packs me into the station sick quarters. I share a room with a Canadian gunner with Quinsey (?) or some such throat trouble, and fortunately I am not well enough to eat the food, which is airmen’s, and at their times too. After a couple of days I am passed on to Bossington House, near Roughton. A lovely country house taken over for the invasion but short of patients as the German air force did not turn up. Good food, attention also, but nothing much to read. My temperature is now down, throat almost gone, and I expect to get up after lunch today. But – I have missed artillery reconnaissance course and next one is not for another two or three weeks. In the meantime presumably I go back to Hawarden, or to St Ives on sick leave, both of which will be horrid. I have a huge kit bag of Daddy’s but it tears in the ambulance and appears to be rotten, as well it may be after 20 years service. Also my useless camp bed.

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