House shut up and everything locked away so ate my breakfast at 6.30 a.m. with my fingers – 3 poached eggs! Column marched at 8.30 a.m., punctually arrived Nagoman camp 12, noon. Very hot, but only one case of heat-stroke. Troops are Kings Regt., 72 Punjabis, 15th Sikhs, 12th Pioneers, 90th Batt. Field Artillery, 24th Batt. Mountain Artillery, 2 Squadrons, 30th Lancers, No. 1 Co. Sappers and Miners. Transport very bad, a bad class of mule, badly trained, badly fed, in bad condition, gear bad, personnel bad, officers useless. I would not care to have to undertake anything very desperate with this lot. It’s not their fault – everything of the best has been sent to the big front.
The Barbara Mullah has announced his intention of attacking us on Friday, so I have my moveable column ready, it consists of:-
1 D.Y.O. Lancers
No. 74 Howitzer Battery R.F.A.
No. 8 Mountain Battery
The King’s Liverpool Regiment
No.1 Co. Sappers and Miners.
A nice compact little force and ought to be strong enough to take on the whole of the Mohmands. The heat will be our worst enemy. I do not think it will come off as the other Mullahs do not seem to be caring much about it.
[An interesting article about the Moveable Column can be found here.]