1915 – February 27

Splendid news. The dream of my life. I am to a General before I am 60. Got a wire yesterday to go to Abbeville and there I got the news that I am to go home to command one of the new Brigades. God give me strength to do my duty, serve my country , and live and die as a Christian gentleman. It will be a blow to my darling wife, but she has been prepared for it and has seen the sword of Damocles hanging over her head.

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1915 – February 24

Cazalet I am sending to Marseilles to get warm as he is always sick up here. I shall miss him very much, he leaves to-day. The number of my officers is increasing. Wrote a final ultimatum to the War Office, telling them to take me out of this soft job, and give me a Brigade up at the front where I ought to be. This is a good job, but a one-armed and one-legged man could do it. Everybody is impatient with the war, but we know we must wait till April or May before our time comes to strike the blow.

1915 – February 12

I have been in bed ever since last Monday with a most frightful cold, fever, flu, sore-throat, sort of thing and feel very miserable. I manage to get down to the office every day for one hour from 11 to 12.0 and then I go straight back to bed. I am tremendously soigné by Madame, who brings me grogs every night before she goes to bed, and tisanes all day long. “tisanes des quatres fruits.” I went to see Cazalet in hospital on Monday and in chaff drank some of his medicine out of his glass and I can only suppose I swallowed all his microbes as he has every sort of chest complaint and I was bowled over immediately after. Madame wants to paint my back with iodine and put a plaster on my chest, but I have drawn the line at that. She is determined to badigeonner me, a special verb for splashing paint on a wall. Lying miserably in bed, not undressed about 7 p.m. Knock at the door and Henriette enters announcing with huge delight “Madame Dunsterville”!!! Made me jump you may be sure. Of course it was a very great treat. She has two days’ leave from the hospital.