Started at 7.30 a.m. with Grant on board, Captain Dunning as my A.D.C., arrived Kut el Amara 6 p.m.
NOTE: more excellent reading about the situation in (modern-day) Iraq and Turkey can be found here, with particular reference to Kut el Amara, which was witness to a disgraceful defeat of the British by the Ottomans. (For Dunsterville’s views on that defeat, see his entry of 1 May, 1916.)
Sailed off into the great unknown at 2 p.m. on the “Baroda”, leaving poor Daisie forlorn at the Carlton Hotel. She returns to Peshawar to-night. None of my Staff were able to catch the boat and I have only Sergeant Watson, my Head Clerk with me. I am on a Special Mission, vastly important and interesting. God give me strength, courage and intelligence to carry it through to a successful issue. I am to be a temporary Major General and to have the full Staff of a Division. Topham of the 15th Sikhs is my A.D.C. Colonel Arnold of the 26th Cavalry commands the ship.
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.