It was such a pleasure paying up all the bills in full. Now I owe nothing in the world to shops, except my tailor in London who likes to be owed. All my debts are bank debts with interest duly paid and instalments.
My Army birthday. To-day I begin my 33rd year of service and I give thanks to God that I have been allowed to do my work so long and to have enjoyed it so, and for the many blessings those 33 years have brought me – my wife and children not the least among them. I start my 33rd year as a Brigadier General. an A.D.C., and a C.B. Quite enough honours, thank you, and though I love my work I’d like to go. I want some home life and I want to see my children.
Yesterday we had tea in the city with Rai Bahadur Karm Chand, a wealthy old man with a fine house, furnished in the worst taste.
More rain, not at all wanted, and a sharp earthquake shock at 6.45 a.m. Daisie and I were in our dressing-rooms and lost no time in skipping out into the open where we met in the garden with our brushes and combs in our hands. The bungalow creaked and groaned and plaster began to fall, it was quite time to get outside. Church is at 7 a.m., or else we would probably have been in bed. Wrote to Leo and sent off letter as he joins at Haileybury on September 22nd.
Poured like anything, a regular flood. A week ago we had four small earthquake shocks, yesterday we had one big one about 10.30 a.m., but it seemed to be straight upwards, just lifted the chairs and didn’t sway or make the roof creak.
To-day is a great day in my life. The beginning of the end of my money-troubles!! In the early morning I felt sure they were gone, I don’t know why, but I suppose these things are answers to prayer. I went over to the Club and met Major Jackson the Controller of Mil. accounts, who told me an order had just come that I am to have full Brigadier pay in the future – an increase of £240 a year, and 4 months arrears which is £80. The whole world seems so different – my financial web was looking sadly tangled and now it is all straight.
These Pathans are very outspoken and impertinent. Old Khalu came to see me to-day, an enemy Mohmand who did some secret service for me during the trouble last year. He says “You soldiers are like hawks, never know where you will be next. Sometimes like you in France, then on the Frontier here, then perhaps in Mesopotamia and so on. The Civilians are like your women-folk, while you fight and kill and lose your lives, they stay at home and look after the house and eat presents of fruit and reap the rewards of your deeds of valour!” A rather unjust view of the Indian civilian who’s just as ready as anyone to take his place in the firing line.
Leo goes to Haileybury in September, his reports are very bad, lazy and dreamy, but I suppose he is just what he is, and what he inherits from us, so there’s no use being cross about it.
Both boys write cheerfully from their schools and seem to be doing well. I hope and think that Leo will do well at Haileybury. He does not seem to be brilliant and his reports are bad, but he has depth of character and I am not afraid of his success in the end.