1914 – December 10

Thank goodness we have sunk in the Pacific the Gneisenau, Scharahorst, Leipzig and Nuremberg, who sunk our Monmouth and Good Hope. Beastly rainy day. I had such a time my last trip up the line. Left Havre 5 p.m. Dec. 6th by Passenger to Rouen. Supply Train with Cazalet to Abbeville, arrived pouring rain 1 p.m. 2 hours talk with Freeland. Then on to Boulogne with slow train – reached there 9.30 all shut, no dinner. An hour with Hilliard. Then Supply Train to St. Omer, Tuesday morning an hour’s interview with Gen. [John Henry] Twiss, Director of Railways – then caught slow train to Calais, thence slow train through Boulogne to Abbeville, an hour’s interview with Freeland 7.30 p.m., caught an empty supply train to Rouen, slept with 6 Tommies in a truck and got covered with bacon grease. Wed. morning block on line outside Rouen, pulled kit out, walked down line to gare du Nord, caught a train to Rue Verte and walked thence to gare Rive Droite and caught Paris express to Havre, arriving 11.30 a.m. Got the only decent meal I had had on board this train and it was a great treat, clean and good, coffee and rolls. To-day pouring rain. Daisie leaves on Tuesday and I shall go to Rouen.

1914 – December 6

On the whole, since that cold spell early in Nov., the weather has been very good. Occasional gales and rain but mostly fine. We are not abolished after all and are going stronger than ever. I am going up to Abbeville to-day to see the Director of Railways [General Twiss] and consult officers. Eyre of the Life Guards has been cashiered for being drunk, and Newcomen has gone home with D.T., a lively lot! The old 20th seem to be doing well in the Persian Gulf with Ducat killed and Mc.Cleverty, St. John, Fordham, Burn-Murdoch and Saxton wounded – I shall be interested to know what it was all about.