Rode over to Shabkadr to talk over the battle with General Campbell commanding the Division. Spots on my face. To my surprise he said “You must take 15 days leave” – so I readily agreed on sick leave and I do want it.
Arrived Kalka 6 a.m. Left by motor rail at 7.45. a nice bath at the station. Very absent-minded, left my satchel in the train, braces, tie and tie-pin. Recovered the satchel from a passenger on another train later on. Arrived Simla fine, but so cold in a silk suit. An A.D.C. at the smart liveried Rickshaw in which I drove to Snowdon, the Commander-in-Chief’s beautiful residence, just in time for lunch. Sir Beauchamp Duff, very cheery but worried. In the afternoon the Chief drove me all round Simla in his phaeton.
I hoped to stay in Simla till the 10th and then at Murree till the 19th, but my leave is cancelled and I have to return to Peshawar immediately after the lecture, because General Campbell is at Cherat and there is no General at all in Peshawar. So I have 4 nights in the train and all this expense for 1 night in the hills and a hundred rupees fee for my lecture.
Dining with all the regiments is rather hard going on my poor little liver. To-morrow I am again going out to Shabkadr to look at camps with General Campbell. I gave a lecture at the Club to-day on the war which seemed to be a great success, which was gratifying.
Pulled out of bed 3 a.m. by General Campbell. Pabbi location map raided, 4 Hindus carried off for ransom and some houses burnt. Sent troops out to Bara and on the Kohat road to head off the raiders, not likely to catch them.
Nights quite cool, days fiercely hot. Yesterday General Campbell, commanding the Division, Colonel Rice G.S.O. and myself, motored out to Shabkadr* and Matta to look round the Mohmand frontier. It was strange to be back in these wild parts after that war in France, all this seems like another planet. I like this command, but rather regret the pay and interest of my railway work and the comfort of Mme. Delaporte’ s house and my beloved Germaine’s French lessons. The road from Peshawar to Shabkadr in the early morning at this time of the year is very beautiful, especially the beds of lotus.
* Now spelt Shabqadar